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June 18, 2010 4:53 PM

Another Major Nixon Peabody Defection

Posted by Zach Lowe

Correction, 6/21/2010 at 8:00 a.m. - The reference to "14 partners" heading to Pillsbury in the original abstract of this story was incorrect; the 14 are not all partners. We regret the error.

Update, 6/19/2010 at 10 a.m. - Comments from Nixon Peabody operations partner Brian Flanagan, provided to the New York Law Journal after the paper's initial story was published, have been added to the third paragraph below.

Just weeks after several high-profile Nixon Peabody partners left for DLA Piper, at least 14 more Nixon lawyers have opted to leave the firm and join Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, according to the New York Law Journal, one of our sibling publications. Among the group is Mats Carlston, Nixon's now former head of global finance, the NYLJ says.

Other key partners include Bart Pisella, who will lead Pillsbury's corporate trust team, and Doug Schneller, who will head Pillsbury's distressed investment group. James Rishwain, Jr., Pillsbury's chair, told the NYLJ the acquisitions will "deepen our full range of offerings in the finance, private equity, and public finance sectors."

In an interview with the NYLJ, Brian Flanagan, Nixon Peabody's operations partner and a member of the firm's management committee, acknowledged the departures would shrink the firm's New York head count by around 20 percent. But, Flanagan told the paper, "these departures neither singularly nor in the aggregate have a material financial impact on us." He described "partner mobility" in the market as a common trend that no firms are immune to.

Over the last two months, nine Nixon partners have moved to DLA Piper. That group includes Michael Murphy, former head of Nixon's reinsurance and insurance practice, and Peter White, who helped finance new stadiums for the New York Mets and Yankees, the NYLJ reports.

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