NEW YORK (January 7, 2020) – Morrison & Foerster, a leading global law firm, is pleased to announce the election of 18 lawyers to the firm’s partnership, effective January 1, 2020. The class of 2020 includes eight women and 10 men from multiple practice groups across six offices in the U.S., Asia, and Europe.
“I’m delighted to welcome our 2020 class of attorneys to the partnership at Morrison & Foerster,” Larren Nashelsky, chair of Morrison & Foerster, said. “These extraordinarily talented and diverse attorneys are all thoroughly deserving of this recognition. Our new partners have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to our clients as well as their colleagues across the firm.”
The following lawyers have been elected partners:
- Lip Kian Ang, a member the Corporate Department and part of the Real Estate, Private Funds, Mergers + Acquisitions, Private Equity Investments + Buyouts, and Emerging Companies + Venture Capital Groups, is based in the Singapore office. He represents international funds, financial institutions, and multinational corporations in cross-border real estate, funds, joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, private equity, and venture capital transactions. In addition to corporate transactional work, Mr. Ang assists clients on a wide range of matters including commercial, general corporate advisory, and regulatory matters. Mr. Ang received his LL.B. and his M.B.A. from the National University of Singapore.
- Yuhki Asano, a member of the Corporate Department, is based in the Tokyo office. He has broad experience in various finance-related areas, including project and finance, cross-border real estate transactions, acquisition finance, and fund formation. Before joining Morrison & Foerster, Mr. Asano worked for the New York branch of one of the major Japanese banks and was engaged in cross-border finance transactions. He received his LL.M. from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law and his LL.B. from Kyoto University.
- Julia Balas, a member of the Corporate Department and part of the Project Finance Group, is based in the Los Angeles and New York offices. She primarily represents developers of renewable energy projects, and assists them with all aspects of their project development needs, including negotiation of construction and balance of plant contracts, equipment and services supply agreements, power purchase agreements, interconnection matters, buy-side and sell-side purchase and sale agreements, build-own-transfer agreements, financing agreements, tax equity agreements, and other contracts that arise in the context of developing, constructing, selling, and owning renewable energy projects. Ms. Balas also has experience advising clients on such matters as private equity investments, sponsor-backed leveraged buyouts, mergers, debt and equity securities offerings, and commercial lending and structured finance transactions, as well as general corporate matters, corporate governance, and securities law compliance. She received her J.D. from Columbia Law School and her B.A. from Johns Hopkins University.
- Alexa Belonick, a member of the Corporate Department and of the Corporate Finance | Capital Markets Group, is based in the San Francisco office. She advises public and private companies and their management teams on a range of corporate and securities transactional matters, including financings and mergers and acquisitions, as well as on public reporting, compliance, and corporate governance. The clients that she advises are involved in a number of industries spanning technology, software and the Internet, consumer and retail, energy, and life sciences. Ms. Belonick represents clients preparing to go public and in the full scope of post-IPO matters, including ongoing public reporting and various forms of public and private debt and equity financings. She has led at-the-market equity offerings, Rule 144A offerings of convertible debt and other securities, PIPEs, and putting up shelf and resale registration statements. She assists clients with a broad range of securities law structures for mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions and has directed registered offerings on Form S-4, tender offers, issuer share repurchases, and reorganizations. Ms. Belonick received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, where she was the editor-in-chief of the Virginia Law Review, her M.A. from the University of St. Andrews, and her B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley.
- Charles Capito, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Government Contracts + Public Procurement and National Security, CFIUS, Sanctions + Export Controls Groups, is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Mr. Capito represents clients in several key regulatory areas. In the National Security space, he counsels frequently on the complex and evolving requirements of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), as U.S. businesses and foreign investors balance their business plans against CFIUS’s considerable role in protecting U.S. national security. Mr. Capito also regularly advises clients on U.S. export controls regimes—the International Traffic in Arms Regulations and the Export Administration Regulations—and issues that government contractors face when subject to foreign ownership, control, and influence (FOCI). As a seasoned practitioner in the Government Contracts space, Mr. Capito has assisted government contractors with a variety of litigation issues, with a focus on pre- and post-award bid protests as well as contract claims and disputes, and he has extensive experience at the Government Accountability Office, the Court of Federal Claims, the boards of contract appeals, and other judicial and administrative tribunals. With experience in an array of complex federal regulations, Mr. Capito enjoys thinking strategically with clients to identify and address all potential legal considerations and working collaboratively across practice groups to ensure the client benefits from the firm’s many areas of expertise. He received his J.D. from Washington and Lee University and his A.B. from Duke University.
- Anita Choi, a member of the Corporate Department and part of the firm’s Patent Counseling + Prosecution Group, is based in the San Francisco office. Her practice focuses on patent prosecution, patent diligence, and patent litigation support across a wide array of technologies. Ms. Choi counsels clients in the fields of biochemical and renewable materials, clean technology, agriculture, food products, materials science, molecular diagnostics, medical devices, and pharmaceuticals. She has extensive experience in the preparation and prosecution of U.S. and foreign patent applications, patent portfolio analyses and management, patent due diligence, and freedom-to-operate analyses. She also has significant experience in developing, strengthening, and managing clients’ patent portfolios to maximize their commercial value. Ms. Choi received her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, her M.B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and her B.S. from the California Institute of Technology.
- Michael Dockery, a member of the Corporate Department and part of the firm’s Mergers + Acquisitions Group.
- Megan Gerking, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Antitrust Law and Investigations + White Collar Defense Groups, is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Ms. Gerking represents companies and individuals in criminal and civil government-facing antitrust enforcement matters, and has extensive experience representing companies in all phases of the merger review process before U.S. and foreign competition authorities. Ms. Gerking also regularly counsels clients on global competition issues, including antitrust compliance, trade association activities, joint conduct, mergers and acquisitions, licensing and distribution practices, and regulatory compliance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act. She frequently works with clients to develop and implement antitrust compliance programs and routinely conducts compliance training for corporate employees. Prior to joining private practice, Ms. Gerking was a prosecutor in the National Criminal Enforcement Section of the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, where she investigated and prosecuted criminal violations of the Sherman Act and other related white collar crimes. While at the Department of Justice, Ms. Gerking received the Assistant Attorney General’s Distinguished Service award for her work investigating and prosecuting corporations and individuals for participating in international antitrust cartels related to the manufacture and sale of automobile parts. Ms. Gerking also played a critical role in litigating the first successful extradition of a foreign national for an antitrust charge. After law school, Ms. Gerking clerked for Chief Judge James Baker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. She received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and her B.A. from the University of Michigan.
- Seth Graham, a member of the Corporate Department and part of the firm’s Technology Transactions Group, is based in the Tokyo office. His practice is concentrated on transactions and counseling involving intellectual property and technology, with an emphasis on licensing arrangements, technology transfers, joint development activities, and registering and monetizing intellectual property assets. Mr. Graham advises clients on issues such as software and content licensing arrangements, trademark licenses and branding strategies, outsourcing and cloud computing transactions, open source software, AI, and blockchain technologies, and he has experience counseling companies in a variety of fields, including the software, IT, pharmaceutical, and telecommunications industries. He is also involved in structuring and negotiating strategic patent licensing arrangements and advising on intellectual property issues relevant to investments in emerging companies and project finance and development activities. Mr. Graham received his J.D. from Stanford Law School, where he was a managing editor of the Stanford Law & Policy Review and a member of the Cyberlaw Clinic, his M.A. from the New School for Social Research, and his B.A. from Dartmouth College.
- Christin Hill, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Securities Litigation, Securities Enforcement, and Investigations + White Collar Defense Groups, is based in the San Francisco office. She has extensive experience representing clients in securities class actions and other complex civil litigation in both federal and state courts, as well as in government and internal investigations. With over a decade of experience in private practice, Ms. Hill has successfully represented public companies and their boards of directors and officers in securities fraud actions, SEC enforcement actions, internal investigations, and general corporate counseling. She also has experience working with pre-IPO companies in complex civil litigation in both federal and state court, conducting internal investigations, responding to government inquiries, and advising on general compliance matters. Ms. Hill received her J.D. from Stanford Law School and her A.B. from the University of California, Davis.
- Amanda Hines Gold, a member of the Tax Department and part of the firm’s Executive Compensation Group, is based in the San Francisco office. Her practice focuses on executive compensation matters including designing, drafting, and negotiating equity-based compensation arrangements, severance, change in control and executive employment agreements, preparing related disclosures for securities filings, and managing all executive compensation and employee benefits aspects of public and private mergers and acquisitions. Ms. Hines Gold received her J.D. from Arizona State University College of Law and her B.S. from the University of Arizona.
- Jeremy Mandell, a member of the Finance Department and part of the firm’s Financial Services Group, is based in the Washington, D.C. office. His practice focuses on financial services regulation, with particular attention to payment and emerging payment issues. Mr. Mandell advises bank and non-bank clients on issues arising under the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, the Truth in Lending Act, and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, as well as financial privacy issues arising under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. He also regularly works with clients on issues related to interbank and retail payment system issues. He received his J.D. from the George Washington University Law School, his M.A. from Johns Hopkins University, and his B.A. from Lehigh University.
- Robert May, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Securities Litigation and Securities Enforcement Groups, is based in the San Francisco office. His practice focuses on M&A litigation, corporate governance disputes, and securities litigation, and he has more than a decade of experience representing clients in a broad range of industries including technology, financial services, and pharmaceuticals. Mr. May’s experience includes defending actions challenging corporate transactions on behalf of both targets and acquirers, including litigating motions for preliminary injunctions seeking to delay or prevent stockholder votes. He has significant experience defending clients in stockholder class actions brought under the federal securities laws, and responding to regulatory and criminal investigations. His practice also focuses on breach of fiduciary duty claims, as well as counseling companies and their directors and officers in governance disputes. Mr. May received his J.D. from Columbia Law School and his B.A. from the University of North Carolina.
- Andrew Meyer, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Commercial Litigation, Antitrust, and Investigations + White Collar Defense Groups.
- Alja Poler De Zwart, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Privacy + Data Security Group, is based in the Brussels office. Her practice focuses on resolving complex privacy and data security matters. She provides practical solutions that enable organizations’ overall compliance while achieving cost-efficient and business-friendly results. The clients that she advises include European-, Asian-, and U.S.-based organizations from a broad range of industry sectors. Her practice includes compliance advice on many topics including data anonymization, use of social media, behavioral advertising, and international data transfers. She also regularly assists clients to prepare for and respond to data security incidents and represents clients before data protection authorities across Europe. Ms. Poler De Zwart speaks fluent English and Dutch, is a native speaker of Slovenian, and has a working knowledge of the Croatian, Serbian, and German languages. She is a Dutch-qualified lawyer and a member of both the Amsterdam and Brussels bars. Ms. Poler De Zwart received her LL.M. from Leiden University and her LL.B. from the University of Maribor.
- Mary Prendergast, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Patent Litigation, Trade Secrets, and ITC Litigation Groups, is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Ms. Prendergast is a trial lawyer with extensive experience litigating patent and trade secrets cases in district courts across the country and at the ITC. She frequently oversees the day-to-day strategy and management of complex litigation from pre-suit investigation through trial and appeal. Ms. Prendergast counsels clients regarding how to distill and communicate highly complex technical issues for judges and juries, and has obtained favorable outcomes for clients at every stage of litigation. She represents clients in a variety of industries, including semiconductors, software, medical devices, electronics, and telecommunications. Ms. Prendergast received her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, where she was editor-in-chief of the UCLA Journal of International Law & Foreign Affairs, and her B.F.A. from the University of Notre Dame.
- James Sigel, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Appellate + Supreme Court Group, is based in the San Francisco office. He has handled appeals in many areas of law, including class actions, securities, false advertising, antitrust, and environmental regulation, and he has briefed dozens of appeals in federal and state appellate courts throughout the country, including the U.S. Supreme Court. Mr. Sigel has also had 10 oral arguments in the Ninth Circuit and the California appellate courts. His successful argument in the Ninth Circuit resulted in a victory for his client in false claims litigation that had been ongoing for more than a decade. Mr. Sigel received his J.D. from Harvard Law School, where he was a notes editor of the Harvard Law Review, and his A.B. from Harvard College.
- Diek Van Nort, a member of the Litigation Department and part of the firm’s Patent Litigation and PTAB Litigation Groups, is based in the San Francisco office. He focuses his practice on intellectual property litigation, representing patent owners and accused infringers in U.S. district court and Patent Trial and Appeal Board litigation, and he applies his experience as a senior engineer in the semiconductor industry, director in the IP licensing field, and patent prosecution attorney to litigating complex and high-stakes IP cases. Mr. Van Nort also represents requesters and patent owners in post-grant review proceedings, and has advised many clients with respect to reexaminations and inter partes reviews, ranging from drafting petitions to oral arguments before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. He received his J.D. from Santa Clara University School of Law and his M.S. and B.S. from Vanderbilt University.