Legal Jobs

Pro Bono, Hiring, and Innovation in the Legal Industry for August 2021
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The National Law Review offers another edition of its legal industry news column. Here are the latest NLR news highlights on law firms’ pro bono, innovation, and hiring.

Law Firm Hiring and Moves

The banking and finance practice group at Mayer Brown has added Elizabeth Hermann Smith as a partner. She represents clients in every aspect of the financial industry, including investors, borrowers, administrative agents, lenders, and more. The field of leveraged finance is Ms. Smith’s specialty, and she has specialized in buyouts, dividend recapitalizations, and other financial transactions.

“Continuing to expand our leveraged finance capabilities, particularly with private credit funds, is a primary goal of the firm’s Banking & Finance practice. Elizabeth’s addition reflects our commitment to growth and strengthens our global finance offerings,” said Frederick Fisher, a co-leader of Mayer Brown’s global Lending group.


The Banking & Finance practice group at Mayer Brown has also added Brett E. Moskowitz as Counsel. He specializes in acquisition and real estate lending, cash flow, and asset-based lending, in the Charlotte office of the firm.

Through a partnership with DLA Piper, Campos Mello Advogados added Antonio Tovo to the firm’s Corporate Criminal Law, Compliance, and Cybersecurity practice group. Mr. Tovo works in industries including agriculture, real estate, healthcare, and hospitality.

Mr. Tovo works in Campos Mello Advogados’ São Paulo office. Ricardo Caiado Lima, a partner at Campos Mello Advogados: “We’re delighted to announce that Antonio […]  has joined our team. We’re seeing significant growth in our corporate criminal law and cybersecurity practices, and it is key for us to have highly qualified professionals with extensive experience, like Antonio […] .”

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Robinson+Cole has appointed Danielle H. Tangorre to its Health Law practice group. With the firm’s Albany office, she will assist clients in understanding state and federal healthcare regulations, including anti-kickback laws and abuse laws. In addition, Ms. Tangorre has experience in healthcare transactional matters, litigation, and HIPAA compliance.

“Danielle has impressive experience and I’m delighted to welcome her to our team,” says Rhonda J. Tobin, Managing Partner at Robinson+Cole. “Continuing to expand the depth and geographical diversity of our health law practice is another step in the execution of our strategic plan to expand some of the strongest practices in our most strategic locations.”

A new branch has opened in Dallas, San Antonio, and Collin County for Steptoe & Johnson PLLC.  Steptoe & Johnson’s new Texas operation includes -eleven attorneys who specialize in commercial real estate, corporate transactions, energy, and tax law. Elizabeth Cromwell, Katherine David, and Brad Fletcher will manage the offices in Dallas, San Antonio, and Collin County, respectively.

Steptoe & Johnson CEO, Christopher L. Slaughter said “These locations represent a strategic investment for the firm to better serve our existing clients in Texas and widen our scope of services to new clients. Our new lawyers bring substantial experience and knowledge to the firm’s practices. They have valued additions to the Steptoe & Johnson team.”

Legal Industry Recognition

The new president of the American Bar Association (ABA) is Reginald Turner of Clark Hill PLLC.  In the past, Mr. Turner served as President of the National Bar Association and the State Bar of Michigan. Turner will serve as President of the ABA through August 2022.

“Serving as ABA president and representing the legal profession is an honor. The ABA is committed to advancing the rule of law and increasing access to justice. As president, I will work tirelessly towards achieving those goals,” said Mr. Turner.

Ankura is one of 83 firms contributing intelligence to the Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR), which analyzes data breaches and security incidents and identifies ways to proactively mitigate future risks. Due to the technical information and metrics associated with cyber-attacks, the Verizon Data Breach Investigations report is crucial for law firms. Ankura’s team provided intelligence on almost one hundred cyber matters, including ransomware, espionage, and other financially motivated actions.

“Leaders at every level need to understand the technology and the benefits and risks it poses to their organizations.  The 2021 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report does an extraordinary job capturing many of these risks, and Ankura’s inclusion on the DBIR team is a testament to the quality of work and collaboration our team brings to every engagement, every day,” says Hon. Patrick J. Murphy of Ankura’s Cybersecurity practice.

Adam M. Sheinvold of Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC has been named to the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC) team. A member of the IADC has the opportunity to develop new skills, build professional relationships, and become more closely associated with clients.

IADC’s team is strengthened by Mr. Sheinvold’s experience in commercial and business litigation, regulatory and administrative litigation, and product liability defense. “I am honored to be invited as a new member of the prestigious International Association of Defense Counsel and to join my distinguished colleagues of the corporate defense bar who rely on the IADC to provide valuable, high-level education and professional support and development opportunities,” said Mr. Sheinvold.

Legal Innovation & Pro Bono Programs

As part of its Chicago youth development program, BUILD (Broader Urban Involvement & Leadership Development), Ropes & Gray held a legal Bootcamp in July.

“A hallmark of Ropes & Gray Chicago has always been our commitment to the Chicago community,” said office managing partner Paulita Pike. “This dedication is evident by the extensive efforts from our Chicago office family in launching the Legal Bootcamp. We are thrilled at the positive responses we’ve received from the students and BUILD, and I’m proud of my colleagues.”

In a three-week pilot program, Ropes & Gray worked with five high school and college students to explore careers in the legal industry, including attorneys, judges, and commercial support professionals. A corporate legal clinic, a speaker series, and a preliminary injunction hearing workshop were all part of the curriculum.

“Launching our inaugural Legal Bootcamp, together with BUILD, has been a highlight for our Chicago office over this summer,” said Ropes & Gray litigation and enforcement partner Tim Farrell. “We hope that by giving students who otherwise would not have access to or a background in the legal industry a front-row seat at a corporate law firm, we’re advancing our mission of inclusion while hopefully, the students are getting a broader perspective of the world of possibilities that lie ahead for them.”

Five undergraduate students were selected for the first class of Barnes & Thornburg’s Pre-Law Scholars Program, which assists students pursuing a law degree. Barnes & Thornburg will cover the cost of the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) and LSAT prep coursework for the students, as well as the cost of law school applications. Additionally, Barnes & Thornburg will provide the students with attorney mentors to help guide them through law school.

“We are very excited to welcome the inaugural class of Prelaw Scholars to the Barnes & Thornburg family. They are all amazingly accomplished individuals and we are thrilled to be a part of their journey to law school,” said Sarah Evenson, Barnes & Thornburg’s director of law school programs. “Our hope is this program not only lessens the financial burden and administrative obstacles of applying to law school but also provides key mentoring connections helping to prepare them for law school and ultimately rocket them to the legal career they desire.”

A Pre-Law Scholar program is offered in conjunction with Barnes & Thornburg’s Racial Justice Committee, which supports diverse candidates interested in pursuing law as a career.

“Our core belief as a firm and as a committee was to identify ways to build relationships with a pipeline of diverse legal talent and to mentor these aspiring legal professionals as they prepare to enter law school. The Prelaw Scholars Program does just that and I’m proud to be a part of it,” said William A. Nolan, member of the firm’s management committee and Racial Justice Committee.

The first class includes:

  • Phillip Arrington IV, Loyola University Chicago, B.A. in Political Science
  • Natalie Frazier, Emory University, B.A. in Women’s Gender and Sexualities Studies
  • Esther Oluwapelumi Durosinmi, Loyola University Chicago, B.A. in Political Science
  • Alexa M. Carpenter, Central State University, B.S. Criminal Justice
  • Jasleen Gill, University of California Berkeley, B.A. Philosophy and Legal Studies

The Benchmark Litigation Top 250 Women in Litigation list for 2021 includes Bradley Arant Boult Cummings partners Leigh Anne Hodge, Lela M. Hollabaugh, and Kimberly B. Martin. These women were selected through client feedback and research.

“Leigh Anne, Lela, and Kim continue to demonstrate superior skill and client success in their litigation practices, and we are proud to see them recognized once again in this prestigious list,” said Bradley Chairman of the Board and Managing Partner Jonathan M. Skeeters.

Ms. Hodge is the leader of the Litigation Practice Group and a member of the firm’s Healthcare Practice Group. She is based in Birmingham. Clients in the healthcare industry are represented in matters relating to product liability litigation, medical malpractice litigation, peer review, and staff privileges matters, administrative hearings before licensing boards, ERISA litigation, Medicare Advantage plan litigation, managed care litigation, insurance disputes, and insurance fraud cases.

The firm’s Nashville office is home to Hollabaugh, who advises natural gas pipeline companies and other infrastructure clients on issues related to location, land acquisition, construction, and operations. In a recent amicus curiae brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court, she supported the industry’s position on the scope of the Natural Gas Act and the state’s 11th Amendment immunity.

In addition to general litigation, Ms. Martin focuses on medical device and pharmaceutical product liability litigation. Recently, she was appointed as trial counsel defending a hospice provider who was sued by the Department of Defense in a three-month False Claims Act trial.



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