(February 26, 2013, Houston) – Reed Smith LLP today announced its expansion into the Lone Star State. The firm’s first Texas office is now open for business in the BG Group Place at 811 Main Street, Houston. The move is the culmination of a longstanding desire by Reed Smith to enter the fourth-largest city in the United States, and the country’s energy capital. More than half of Reed Smith’s largest clients have operations in Houston, and this office will allow Reed Smith to improve service to those clients and develop new relationships. The office opened with 12 partners from the local offices of seven leading law firms forming the initial group of new Reed Smith partners. Six of the lawyers are joining Reed Smith’s Energy & Natural Resources Industry Group (ENR); two join the U.S. Commercial Litigation practice; and one each join the Life Sciences Health Industry (LSHI), Labor & Employment, Financial Industry, and Intellectual Property Groups.
The six partners joining the Energy & Natural Resources Industry Group are: E. Lee Haag and Chris Watt from Fulbright & Jaworski; Paul B. Turner, formerly of Sutherland Asbill & Brennan; Craig R. Enochs and Daniel Nossa from Jackson Walker; and Charles “Stan” Perry from Haynes & Boone.
In the U.S. Commercial Litigation practice, the two new partners are Kenneth E. Broughton and Francisco Rivero, both formerly with Haynes & Boone.
Reed Smith’s Life Sciences Health Industry Group adds Stephen E. Scheve, formerly of Baker Botts.
Wanda G. Holloway joins the Labor & Employment practice from Seyfarth Shaw; Carol M. Burke, formerly with Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, joins Reed Smith’s Financial Industry Group; and Robert R. Riddle joins the firm’s IP practice from Baker Botts.
“Establishing an office in Houston is an important strategic objective for the firm,” said Gregory B. Jordan, Reed Smith’s Global Managing Partner. “We are very excited to get this important office off the ground with such a strong and balanced group of partners who are already well known and very accomplished in the Houston market. It provides significant benefit to Reed Smith’s clients in the energy and natural resources industry sectors, and further complements our premier practices in commodities and trading, renewables, and natural gas.”
“As is evident from the initial group of lawyers joining the firm, Reed Smith will have a full-service office in Houston serving clients across the complete spectrum of industries and disciplines, including financial services, life sciences, and employment, among others,” added Michael Pollack, Global Head of Strategy. “We plan to continue to recruit new partners within the market to expand our offering and to be able to serve all of our clients’ legal needs in Houston.”
“Houston is unquestionably one of the hottest legal markets in the world,” said Brad Hildebrandt, Chairman of Hildebrandt Consulting, a preeminent global consulting firm serving the legal profession. “This is a smart strategic move by Reed Smith, given its increasingly strong position in the global energy sector, and the approach they have taken shows real commitment and focus.”
Houston Integration Partner
Reed Smith also announced that David A. Thompson, a partner in its Energy & Natural Resources Industry Group and Real Estate practice, will be its Integration Partner in Houston. Prior to assuming this key role, Mr. Thompson was Office Managing Partner of Reed Smith’s San Francisco office, a position he had held since 2003. The firm routinely relocates a senior partner with significant knowledge of its operations and clients into its new offices to help integrate the lateral partners into the firm’s global client relationships and work processes.
Reed Smith’s Energy & Natural Resources Group
The firm’s Energy & Natural Resources Industry Group has more than 100 members worldwide providing regulatory, transactional and litigation services. It serves businesses in the extraction, production, distribution or financing of energy and natural resources projects, products, and services worldwide, including developers, producers, manufacturers, traders, financiers and investors, insurers, and transporters in the energy and natural resources sectors – whether they are involved in traditional resources, such as oil, gas, nuclear, metals and minerals, or in renewable and clean energy.
“Although Pittsburgh is at the center of the Marcellus Shale and Reed Smith is deeply involved in its development, many of the key decision makers for the Marcellus resources are Houston-based. That’s another factor making Texas a smart location for our firm,” Mr. Jordan added.
In Europe and Asia, Reed Smith is a recognized leader in trade and commodity finance, providing counsel to project lenders, developers and equity investors, as well as power purchasers and end-users in energy and natural resources project finance and development projects.
The group also provides support for businesses navigating the complex environmental aspects of conducting business in the energy and natural resources sector. Its lawyers are experienced in anticipating and managing the health, safety and liability issues that arise in pursuing the profitable commercialization of energy and natural resource projects.
Houston Office Initial Partners
The firm’s initial group of Houston partners brings diverse talents and experience to Reed Smith’s newest office.
In the Energy & Natural Resources Group (ENR)
E. Lee Haag concentrates his state and federal litigation practice on construction disputes, energy and banking matters, and general commercial disputes. He has handled construction matters spanning every sector of the industry, including representing owners, contractors, designers and material suppliers. Many of his cases are related to the energy, petrochemical and health care industry; he also litigates and arbitrates disputes involving Engineering Procurement & Construction (EPC) contracts, design-build, and other forms of construction contracts. In the area of banking and financial services, he has handled a wide variety of cases involving commercial lending, lender liability, and fiduciary obligations. Mr. Haag also represents clients in arbitrations and mediations. He is a 1974 graduate of Texas Tech University School of Law.
Paul B. Turner focuses his practice on the fast-changing and evolving energy and commodity markets — principally the physical and financial trading of energy commodities. He is involved in the regulatory and commercial restructuring of the energy industry, and the ongoing changes to the physical, futures and derivatives markets, and has played a key role in significant litigation and commercial matters related to commodity contracts, forward contracts, and derivatives for major energy companies and retail electric providers (REPs). Mr. Turner also has represented various clients in large energy company bankruptcies; advised energy companies in numerous transactional issues; and worked on the sale of energy-related companies, assets and portfolios. Paul also advises energy and trading clients on the implementation of Dodd-Frank and on inquiries and investigations by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. He is a 1996 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law.
Craig R. Enochs focuses his practice on commodity trading and marketing transactions. These include asset-based structured transactions, such as tolling, fuel supply, off-take and power purchase agreements; transactions for the purchase and sale of energy-related commodities, such as natural gas, electric power, coal, chemicals, and renewable energy credits; transmission arrangements and transportation for these commodities; and energy and agricultural commodity-based financial derivative transactions. In addition, Mr. Enochs assists clients in developing and negotiating credit arrangements to minimize transaction risk, including guaranties, credit support addenda, netting and setoff agreements, first lien structures, and master netting agreements. He has experience in negotiating standardized energy commodity master agreements, and various master netting agreements, as well as related agreements such as transportation, storage, and precedent agreements, and tariffs. Mr. Enochs also represents clients in a variety of environmental trading transactions. He is a 1997 graduate of the University of California Hastings College of the Law.
Chris Watt has been involved in energy litigation for many of the major oil companies. His practice focuses on commercial litigation matters in the areas of construction, industrial products, health care and professional services. He appears regularly in state and federal court, and has first and second chair trial experience in cases with amounts in controversy ranging from a few hundred thousand dollars to more than $60 million. He is a 2001 graduate of the University of Texas School of Law.
Charles “Stan” Perry is known as one of the leading environmental and toxic tort litigation counsel in the state of Texas. He has defended petrochemical companies in toxic tort and chemical exposure lawsuits in federal courts and state courts including those of Texas, Arizona, California, Louisiana, West Virginia, Illinois, Arkansas, Ohio and Nebraska. Stan has extensive experience in applying the standards for the admissibility of expert testimony, including motions to challenge experts under Daubert, Frye and other standards. He is a 1990 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law.
Daniel Nossa represents banks, funds and corporations on structured finance, derivatives, distressed debt and traditional lending matters. He has extensive experience negotiating transactional and credit support documentation in connection with financially and physically settled commodity, credit, equity, FX/currency and interest rate derivative products. In addition to his transactional derivatives practice, he provides Dodd-Frank regulatory advice to derivatives dealers and end users. He has advised investment banks in structuring and issuing repackaged debt, credit-linked notes, and mortgage-backed and asset-backed securities and has represented funds in acquiring and managing large portfolios of structured and distressed assets. Dan also advises lenders and borrowers in first and second lien lending transactions. He received his J.D. from Stanford University Law School in 2001.
In U.S. Commercial Litigation
Kenneth E. Broughton has more than 25 years of experience representing corporate clients and individuals in a broad spectrum of business and employment disputes and litigation. He has represented clients in the following industries: health care, banking, oil and gas, waste disposal, technology, and construction, among others. He has significant financial services litigation experience and is a well-known attorney in the Houston market. During his career, he has served in several management roles, including as the managing partner of the Houston office of a leading Am Law firm. He earned his J.D. in 1981 from Baylor University.
Francisco Rivero represents clients in a variety of domestic and international litigation and business disputes. He brings international arbitration experience to the office. He has counseled clients in pre- and post-judgment garnishment proceedings, the pursuit and application of interim and injunctive measures, and in the enforcement and execution of foreign judicial decisions and arbitral awards. He is fluent in Spanish and will be active in helping build the firm’s Latin America practice. Mr. Rivero is an adjunct professor at the University of Houston Law Center, co-teaching the course, International Risk Management in Oilfield Services. He earned his J.D. from Columbia University School of Law in 2003.
In the Life Sciences Health Industry Group (LSHI)
Stephen E. Scheve has a practice that focuses on the pharmaceutical, medical device and chemical industries. He has defended and tried cases throughout the country and has acted as national coordinating counsel for clients in multiple litigations, each involving lawsuits in more than 30 states. In addition to his trial work, he has argued appeals on issues of importance to manufacturers in multiple appellate courts. Mr. Scheve has handled numerous commercial disputes for life sciences clients involving patents, royalty, supply, license, co-promotion, development and interference settlement agreements. These disputes have included several arbitrations, with controversies involving as much as $1 billion. Additionally, Mr. Scheve has acted as national counsel in litigations involving five prescription drugs, and has acted as regional counsel in multiple other litigations. He has handled/supervised more than 600 prescription drug cases and was the designated trial lawyer for a major tobacco manufacturer in smoking and health cases in Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Oklahoma and New Mexico. He received his J.D. from the University of Kansas School of Law in 1981.
In the Financial Industry Group (FIG)
Carol M. Burke represents U.S. and international financial institutions, equity providers, mezzanine lenders and borrowers in a variety of domestic and international structured finance matters for energy and project finance projects, asset-backed securitization facilities, equipment financings, leveraged lease transactions of plants and equipment and various structured financing transactions, including volumetric production payments, prepaid forward contracts, reserve based lending and receivables financing. She also represents energy and oil field services companies in corporate transactions, including the development, financing, and acquisition and disposition of projects and oil and gas properties. Carol is a 1983 graduate of The University of Houston Law Center.
In Labor & Employment
Wanda G. Holloway represents employers in employment and labor law matters, including multinational clients in global cases. She has extensive experience as outside and in house counsel with Fortune 50 companies, providing advice on the full spectrum of employment law issues, including day-to-day labor and employment matters, as well as strategic issues such as mergers and acquisitions, executive compensation, global policy development and implementation, compliance and training efforts, and reductions in force. Ms. Holloway has litigated employment discrimination claims, sexual harassment claims, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements, employee benefit matters, and retaliation claims, and has partnered with major clients to effectively manage litigation and related risk management strategies on a comprehensive basis. She also handles “bet the company,” high-profile cases, including matters involving senior management, matters commanding board of directors or shareholder attention, and class and collective actions. She is a 1990 graduate of Tulane University Law School.
In Intellectual Property
Robert R. Riddle is an intellectual property attorney with a Ph.D. in biochemistry, and extensive experience handling IP matters for pharmaceutical, energy and chemical companies. His practice is devoted to helping clients fully leverage their intellectual property assets. Dr. Riddle represents both plaintiffs and defendants in patent litigation, and has substantial experience in federal court. He also counsels clients on strategic patent portfolio development and management, including evaluating patents, rendering patent-related technical opinions (e.g., freedom-to-operate and design-around), and preparing and prosecuting patent applications. Dr. Riddle's technical experience and professional interests encompass the fields of chemistry and the life sciences, with emphasis on nanotechnology, drug delivery, pharmaceuticals, bioengineering and medical devices. In these fields, he serves clients ranging from nonprofit research institutions and start-up biotechnology companies, to established pharmaceutical companies. Dr. Riddle earned his J.D., cum laude, from South Texas College of Law in 2004 and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Houston in 2000.
Other Lawyers Joining Reed Smith in Houston
In Corporate & Securities
Joining the firm’s Corporate & Securities practice as counsel is Paul W. Bishop from Sutherland Asbill & Brennan. His practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, private placements, private equity, and general corporate matters for both public and private companies at all stages of development. Mr. Bishop advises and counsels clients in a wide array of industries, including financial services, distributors, manufacturers, technology, food and energy services.
Also joining the firm: in the Energy & Natural Resources Group, Rhonda R. Caviedes, counsel; and Kevin M. Page, associate; and in the Labor & Employment Group, Fazila Issa, counsel.
About Reed Smith
Reed Smith is a global relationship law firm with more than 1,700 lawyers in 25 offices throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Founded in 1877, the firm represents leading international businesses, from Fortune 100 corporations to mid-market and emerging enterprises. Its lawyers provide litigation and other dispute resolution services in multi-jurisdictional and other high-stakes matters; deliver regulatory counsel; and execute the full range of strategic domestic and cross-border transactions. Reed Smith is a preeminent advisor to industries including financial services, life sciences, health care, advertising, technology and media, shipping, energy and natural resources, real estate, manufacturing, and education. For more information, visit reedsmith.com.
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