Skip to main content

Drafting and Negotiating Corporate Agreements 2011

Author(s): Alyssa A. Grikscheit, Gerald T. Nowak, Deborah J. Ludewig
Practice Area: Corporate & Securities
Published: Jan 2011
ISBN: 9781402415128
PLI Item #: 28797
CHB Spine #: B1858

Deborah J. Ludewig founded DJL Corporate Law in March 2008.  Deborah practiced law during the last 24 years at several large law firms based in Silicon Valley and has been a partner at K&L Gates, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman and Cooley LLP.  She has worked with hundreds of companies in corporate formations, venture capital financings, joint ventures, public and private offerings, merger and acquisition transactions and as special advisor on board and governance matters.  Deborah’s experience includes serving as a general counsel of an internet start-up.

 Deborah currently works with private and public companies on a range of projects typically managed by a general counsel. She has supported early stage clients engaged in financing and team building matters and late stage companies in negotiating strategic commercial agreements and supervising the growth of IP portfolios. Her collaboration network includes her contacts and former colleagues in several large firms as well as specialists in a wide array of practices around the country.

Deborah is a frequent speaker and educator on topics relevant to entrepreneurs and executives. She has developed governance seminars for board members and other educational programs of interest to entrepreneurs and venture capitalists. Deborah is a faculty member of the Practicing Law Institute and Chair of the PLI’s annual program in San Francisco on Drafting Corporate Agreements. She is also a guest lecturer on topics relating to start up companies and negotiation for UC Berkeley, in the Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology.

Deborah is the former President and Chairman and a current member of the Board of Directors of the Silicon Valley Directors Exchange (formerly the National Association of Corporate Directors, Silicon Valley Chapter),, and has previously served in leadership roles at Girls for a Change and Watermark (formerly Forum for Women Entrepreneurs).

JD – 1991, Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California, Berkeley
BS – 1980, College of Notre Dame (summa cum laude)

Alyssa A. Grikscheit has a diverse corporate practice that currently emphasizes complex transactions and alternative investment funds. Her experience also includes private equity and hedge funds, mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances and restructurings. Alyssa is fluent in Spanish and French and has extensive experience in international transactions, particularly those involving Latin America and other emerging markets such as China and India. Alyssa represents domestic and foreign clients making cross-border investments. She also represents buyers and sellers, including private equity funds and their portfolio companies, in acquisitions, dispositions, strategic alliances, restructurings and financings, including transactions in regulated industries such as the healthcare, pharmaceutical, energy, telecommunications and defense industries. In addition, Alyssa represents sponsors of alternative investment funds in fund formation and other aspects of their operations. Such funds have included distressed debt, energy, infrastructure, real estate opportunity, agribusiness, fintech, microfinance and emerging market funds.

Alyssa is ranked in Chambers Global, Chambers USA and Chambers Latin America where “she is noted for her work in the M&A and private equity space and has longstanding experience dealing with cross-border transactions in Latin America.” Additionally, she has been recognized in IFLR1000 as a “Rising Star” for Investment Funds in the U.S. Alyssa was also recommended in Private Equity Funds in The Legal 500 US and in Capital Markets and Corporate M&A in The Legal 500 Latin America. Alyssa has also been recognized by Latinvex in “Latin America’s Top 100 Lawyers” and is featured as one of “Latin America’s Top 50 Female Lawyers: Corporate/M&A.”

Alyssa actively represents a nonprofit in establishing and capitalizing microfinance institutions in emerging markets on a pro bono basis. She served as co-chair of the Inter-American Committee of the New York State Bar Association’s International Section and is a Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation.

Alyssa graduated cum laude from The University of Michigan Law School in 1994.  She received a Diploma in European Studies from the College of Europe in Bruges, Belgium in 1991 and an A.B. magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1990.

Gerald T. ("Jerry") Nowak, P.C., is a corporate partner in the Chicago office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. He has a broad transactional practice, including capital markets transactions, M&A transactions and corporate governance matters.  Mr. Nowak's capital markets practice focuses on complex securities matters, including initial public offerings, high yield offerings, spin-offs, tender offers and investment grade debt offerings. His M&A practice includes public and private acquisitions for private equity funds and public companies. Representative clients include: NRG Energy, Thoma Bravo, Sun Capital, Sara Lee, Hanesbrands, Code, Hennessy & Simmons and Centene.

Mr. Nowak has twice been identified as a "SuperLawyer" in Law & Politics Magazine's annual review and was identified both as a top M&A practitioner and as a top high-yield debt practitioner in The Legal 500's annual review of Corporate & Finance attorneys. He received his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School, an M.B.A. from Auburn University and a B.A. from Michigan State University.