The new office is opening with seven lawyers who provide both transactional and litigation capabilities, with more lawyers expected to join in the coming months.
“We have long held the position that expansion would be predicated on growth in markets that are important to our clients and where we can attract and retain top talent,” said Sandy Thomas, Reed Smith’s global managing partner. “Given the importance of California in our overall firm strategy, establishing a market presence in Orange County is essential for us and our clients.”
Reed Smith has built its presence in California over two decades and today has about 200 lawyers across the state. The firm established its offices in and around Los Angeles and in San Francisco in 2003. In 2008, it opened its current Silicon Valley office in Palo Alto.
“Our Orange County lawyers represent a cross-section of the firm’s global practice capabilities, initially including real estate, IP and litigation, and we expect to rapidly expand our offering across other key practice areas,” said Doug Cameron, Reed Smith’s managing partner for the Americas. “We are delivering on our commitment to provide the full range of legal services to our California-based clients, including in our five core industry areas: financial services, life sciences and health care, energy and natural resources, entertainment and media, and transportation.”
Reed Smith’s expansion into Orange County demonstrates the firm’s commitment to continuing its growth in California. Over the past six months, the firm has brought on several noteworthy, California-based partners who will call the new office home: John Simonis and Daniel Hagedorn (real estate), Daniel Ahn (regulatory and investigations) and Marjorie Norman (intellectual property).
Simonis and Hagedorn joined Reed Smith in July. Simonis is widely considered one of Southern California’s preeminent real estate lawyers, having served as lead partner in hundreds of complex matters over his 37-year career. Hagedorn is a rising star among the Southern California real estate legal community.
Ahn is a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Central District of California who has participated in more than 20 trials and has served as appellate counsel in approximately 30 matters before the U.S. Supreme Court and federal courts of appeals, including four arguments before the Ninth Circuit. He joined the firm in August.
Norman helps clients obtain and protect their intellectual property through domestic and international trademark preparation and prosecution, portfolio strategy, licensing, clearance, and opposition and cancellation proceedings. She joined Reed Smith in October and is based in Century City and Orange County.
Partner Julia Zhu-Morelli (transactions and corporate) will also join the Orange County office. Additionally, associates Amy Depuy and Michaela Mapes will join the five partners who will be resident in the new office.
Other notable lateral partners to recently join the firm in California include Jenny Lee (financial regulatory) in San Francisco, Andrew Wong (litigation) in Los Angeles and Samantha Grant (labor and employment) in Century City.