May 2021 Legal Industry News Highlights: Attorney Moves, Law Firm Pro Bono Work & Innovation
Friday, May 28, 2021

We’ve returned with another edition of our legal industry news column for May. Read on for the latest news on attorney promotions, law firm recognition, pro bono work and legal technology and innovation:

Attorney Promotions & Moves

The International Financial Law Review (IFLR) recognized Blakes’ law firm partners Pamela Huff and Catherine Doyle as IFLR1000 Woman Leaders for the quality of their advice and the consistent recommendations of their clients and peers.

Ms. Huff is the head of the Blakes Restructuring & Insolvency group and advises on Canadian business law. Ms. Doyle is a leading member of Blakes’ Project & Financial Services group. Ms. Doyle has been a part of some of the most impactful infrastructure deals in Canada.

Jamie M. Ramsey joined Frost Brown Todd as the newest litigation member of the Cincinnati, Ohio office. Mr. Ramsey’s litigation experience includes breach of contract claims and trademark infringement to class action litigation. Mr. Ramsey also has experience helping clients navigate the legal framework impacting the collection, use, and protection of personal information.

“Jamie’s work with everyone from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies will provide our clients additional insight into how to manage risks to both their operations and reputations,” said Cincinnati Member-in-Charge Chris Habel. “He represents companies in both Ohio and Kentucky, and we couldn’t be more excited to have him in our Cincinnati office.”

Marjorie J. Peerce, managing partner of Ballard Spahr’s New York Office, is the new Vice President of the New York City Bar Association (NYCBA). Ms. Peerce served as Chair of the NYCBA Board of Directors since May 2020. She also formerly served as Chair of the NYCBA’s Criminal Law Committee and served on the Mass Incarceration Task Force. The NYCBA, founded in 1870, works to maintain the high ethical standards of the legal profession and includes over 150 committees.

Ms. Peerce is a founder and leader of Ballard Spahr’s Blockchain Technology and Cryptocurrency team, and handles high profile civil and criminal matters in state and federal courts in New York and around the US.

Adrian Cyhan joined Stubbs, Alderton and Markiles, LLP as a partner in the firm’s Intellectual Property & Technology Transactions practice. Mr. Cyhan is a patent attorney who focuses on identifying, protecting and leveraging intellectual property assets and providing related counsel and advice.

Mr. Cyhan manages intellectual property portfolios and handles intellectual property-related transactions such as joint ventures, acquisitions, and divestitures.

“I’ve known Adrian for several years and I’m thrilled we will be working together. He’s an exceptional attorney and a creative thinker. Bringing Adrian on-board reflects SA&M’s commitment to expanding our premier IP and technology law practice,” said Kevin D. DeBré, the Stubbs, Alderton and Markiles’ IP & Technology Transactions practice chair.

Law Firm Pro Bono & Philanthropy

Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP attorneys Corby C. Anderson, Matthew S. DeAntonio, Erin Jane Illman, and Jonathan E. Schulz joined the 2020 class of the North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society. The attorneys each provided more than 50 hours of pro bono legal services in 2020 to North Carolinians in need.

“Our Charlotte attorneys continue to go above and beyond to provide equal access to justice for all,” said Bradley Pro Bono Counsel Tiffany Graves. “We are very proud of their commitment to the community and their well-earned recognition by the North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society.”

Bradley Arant Boult Cummings attorneys work with the Safe Alliance’s Victim Assistance/Legal Representation Program to help victims of domestic violence and the Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy, which helps low income residents of the Charlotte metropolitan area and west-central North Carolina.

The North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society is administered by the North Carolina Pro Bono Resource Center, which launched in 2016.

The American Bar Association (ABA) Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service selected Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton as an individual recipient of its 2021 Pro Bono Publico Awards. The awards are scheduled to be presented on the opening day of the 2021 ABA Annual Meeting, which runs through Aug. 10.

The Committee selected Sheppard Mullin for its actions following the death of George Floyd. The firm launched the Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement (ABLE) project with Georgetown Law’s Innovative Policing Program, which came from an initiative to teach officers to become active bystanders and prevent misconduct in the New Orleans Police Department.

The initiative led to Sheppard Mullin successfully litigating cases in California to obtain disclosure of records of police misconduct, as well as executing a plan to manufacture and secure face shields for frontline workers in Los Angeles.

The Committee also selected Cynthia Chandler, the director of Bay Area Legal Incubator, Oakland, California, TerryAnn Howell of Nelson Mullins in Miami, Neal Manne of Susman Godfrey LLP in Houston and Rebecca Rapp of the Ascendium Education Group in Madison, Wisconsin as recipients of the 2021 Pro Bono Publico Awards.

Ms. Chandler grew the Bay Area Legal Incubator with the Alameda County Bar Association and Legal Access Alameda to help coach diverse attorneys on how to build successful, affordable law practices serving low and middle-income clients throughout California.

Ms. Howell helped launch a COVID-19 Small Business and Nonprofit Clinic with Legal Services of Greater Miami at Nelson Mullins through Lawyers for Good Government. She also volunteers alongside other Nelson Mullins attorneys at the Tenants’ Equal Justice Clinic (TEJC), a project of Legal Services of Greater Miami.

Mr. Manne dedicated 40 years of his career to high-impact pro bono work. His accomplishments include being recognized by the American College of Trial Lawyers for his pro bono work, as well as being named Attorney of the Year by Texas Lawyer. Most recently, Mr. Manne helped reform Houston’s money bail system and represented two death row exonerees.

Ms. Rapp helps increase access to areas dubbed as “legal deserts” due to a shortage of attorneys, including a project to provide legal help to technical colleges around Wisconsin. She also assists clients at legal clinics and serves on the boards and committees of several access-to-justice organizations. Ms. Rapp also testified before the Wisconsin Supreme Court on removing limitations on pro bono services.

Legal Aid Service of Broward County (LAS) and Coast to Coast Legal Aid of South Florida (CCLA) announced the recipients of their 2021 Annual Recognition Awards.

LAS and CCLA presented the awards in a series of live presentations via Facebook Live May 4–7, 2021.

The 2021 recipients include:

●               Lauren Alperstein, Esq., of Boies Schiller Flexner LLP received the Attorney of the Year Award.

●                Van Horn Law Group received the Law Firm of the Year award.

●               Ofer Shmucher, Esq. and Shera Anderson, Esq. of Shmucher Law, PL received the Spirit of Justice Award.

●               Theresa Edwards, Esq., of American Justice, P.A. received the Commitment to Justice Award.

●                Anthony J. Karrat, Esq., Executive Director of Legal Aid Service of Broward County received the Russell E. Carlisle Advocacy Award.

●               Edwin Cordova, Esq., Supervising Attorney of the Housing Unit at Legal Aid Service of Broward County received the Jacquelyn and Bruce Rogow Employee of the Year Award.

Law Firm Innovation & Technology

Winstead law firm partnered with Texas Health Catalyst at Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin to support entrepreneurs who are in the early stages of developing healthcare technology products.

Winstead provides entrepreneurs with resources on legal matters such as entity formation, licensing from universities, IP strategy, funding, lease agreements, OSHA, privacy/global agreements, as well as educational programming and opportunities to meet and network with other startup professionals.

“Winstead is committed to moving healthcare technology and the latest innovations in the life sciences industry forward,” said Winstead Shareholder Lekha Gopalakrishnan. “Our collaboration with Texas Health Catalyst is intended to advance their mission of addressing unmet needs in healthcare through technology innovation.”

Davidoff Hutcher & Citron LLP (DHC), a New York-based commercial law and government relations firm, formed their Cannabis Practice Group to help clients navigate regulations around adult recreational marijuana in New York State. DHC’s Cannabis Practice Group builds upon DHC’s decades of experience in highly regulated and similar industries, such as New York’s wine, liquor and packaged goods industries.

“The Office of Cannabis Management will be implementing laws and regulations governing the growing and evolving cannabis industry in New York. They will be similar to those that govern entities regulated by the State Liquor Authority, and both will exist under a tiered system,” said Steve Malito, Chair of the Cannabis Practice Group. “Davidoff Hutcher & Citron is uniquely qualified to advise our clients in the cannabis space as they navigate the complexities of these regulations.”

In line with recent Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) efforts nationwide, Schiff Hardin announced the formation of their new ESG Team to help companies develop programs and company disclosures that incorporate the many ESG principles. Amy Antoniolli leads the team along with key members Sarah Fitts, Jane Montgomery, and Katherine Walton.

“Stakeholders have made clear that corporate responsibility is not just a fad or a slogan, and industry is responding as quickly as possible,” said Ms. Antoniolli. “Schiff has seen ESG quickly become an integral part of a company’s reporting and a significant factor in successful business deals. With stakes this high, companies have the opportunity to meet ESG metrics that protect their bottom line and their reputation.”

Rachel Popa also contributed to this article.

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