David M. Schwartzbaum is a partner in the mergers and acquisitions practice of Covington & Burling, resident in New York. He focuses his practice on mergers and acquisitions, including the representation of principals and financial advisors in public and private M&A transactions, and his areas of concentration include negotiated and unsolicited transactions, cash and stock-for-stock mergers, tender and exchange offers, cross-border transactions, special committee representations, going-private transactions, takeover defense assignments and corporate governance matters. He has been recognized as a leader in the field in the Guide to the World’s Leading Banking Finance and Transactional Lawyers, Chambers Global, Chambers USA Guide, and Legal 500 United States. Mr. Schwartzbaum was named as a BTI Client Service All-Star by the BTI Consulting Group in its 2015 Client Service All-Stars Report. Mr. Schwartzbaum received a B.A. summa cum laude and M.A. in political science from Yale University in 1984, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and a J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1987, where he was an Olin Fellow in Law and Economics.
Barbara L. Becker is a corporate partner in the New York office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and Co-Chair of Gibson Dunn’s Mergers and Acquisitions Practice Group. Ms. Becker served as a member of the firm-wide Executive Committee, and she is the New York Hiring Partner and the Chair of the firm-wide Diversity Committee.
Ms. Becker acts as the relationship partner for global companies on high profile complex matters and transactions involving multiple jurisdictions and practice areas. Ms. Becker advises companies on all significant business and legal issues, including mergers and acquisitions (including domestic and cross-border), spin-offs, joint ventures and general corporate matters. Ms. Becker also advises boards of directors and special committees of public companies. She represents corporations and investment banks based in and outside of the United States. Ms. Becker focuses on clients in the consumer/retail, technology, healthcare and industrial industries.
Highly regarded as one of the elite M&A lawyers in New York, Ms. Becker was named to The National Law Journal’s 2015 list of “Outstanding Women Lawyers” and to Law360’s 2011 list of “Top Female Deal Makers,” which features the 10 leading female attorneys in the field of mergers and acquisitions. She is ranked as a top M&A lawyer by Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business and Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. Chambers USA describes Ms. Becker as an “extraordinarily smart, hardworking and exceedingly practical attorney who has an incredibly good business sense.” In addition, she has been ranked in Best Lawyers in America and International Financial Law Review. For Ms. Becker’s representation of Kraft Foods, Inc. in its $19 billion acquisition of Cadbury, she was named The AmLaw Daily’s “Dealmaker of the Week” in January 2010. In 1996, Ms. Becker was named by Crain’s New York Business as one of its “Forty under Forty: New York’s New Generation of Leaders.” She is a former member of the Coro Foundation’s Leadership New York.
Ms. Becker’s corporate clients include Ancestry.com, AOL, Avnet, EMC, Iconix Brands, Infor/Lawson Software, News Corp, PepsiCo, Publicis Groupe and Tenet Healthcare, among others.
Ms. Becker’s investment bank clients include Barclays, Centerview, Citigroup, Evercore, Goldman Sachs, Lazard Frères, Perella Weinberg and UBS, among others.
Ms. Becker earned her Juris Doctor in 1988 from New York University School of Law. She received her undergraduate degree in 1985 from Wesleyan University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Ms. Becker is a member of the Board of Trustees of New York University School of Law.
David A. Katz is a partner at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York City, an adjunct professor at New York University School of Law, and co-chair of the Board of Advisors of the NYU Law Institute for Corporate Governance and Finance. Previously, he was an adjunct professor at Vanderbilt University Law School and at the Owen Graduate School of Management. Mr. Katz is a corporate attorney focusing on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, shareholder activism and complex securities transactions, has been involved in many major domestic and international merger, acquisition and buyout transactions, strategic defense assignments and proxy contests, and has been involved in a number of complex public and private offerings and corporate restructurings. He frequently counsels boards of directors and board committees on corporate governance matters and crisis management.
Mr. Katz taught Mergers and Acquisitions at New York University School of Law for over 15 years and previously co-taught a joint law and business short course on mergers and acquisitions at Vanderbilt University Law School with Delaware Chief Justice Leo Strine. He is co-chair of the Tulane Corporate Law Institute.
In 2004, he was chosen by The American Lawyer as one of the 45 highest performing members of the private bar under the age of 45; in 2005, 2012 and 2015, he was selected by The American Lawyer as a Dealmaker of the Year; in 2016, he was named by NACD Directorship as one of the 100 most influential players in corporate governance for the seventh time; in 2013 he was named Lawyer of the Year by Global M&A Network; in 2014 and each of the five prior years he was named Who’s Who Legal’s Mergers and Acquisitions Lawyer of the Year, in 2014 was also named Who’s Who Legal’s Corporate Governance Lawyer of the Year and in 2015 and 2016 was named Who’s Who Legal’s Corporate Governance and M&A Lawyer of the Year; and in 2015 he was elected by The American College of Governance Counsel as an Inaugural Class Fellow.
Mr. Katz is a member of the American Bar Association, Section on Business Law, where he founded the Committee on Mergers and Acquisitions Task Force on the Dictionary of M&A Terms and a member of the Committee on Mergers and Acquisitions Subcommittee for Acquisitions of Public Companies. Mr. Katz is also a member of the Federal Securities Laws Committee, the New York State Bar Association and the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. Mr. Katz is a member of the Society for Corporate Governance and the National Association of Corporate Directors. Mr. Katz serves as a member of the Board of Trustees at New York University and at New York University School of Law. He sits on the Board of Directors of The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids and is a member of the Advisory Board at the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware. He writes a bi-monthly column on corporate governance for the New York Law Journal with his colleague Laura McIntosh.
Mr. Katz is a graduate of Brandeis University and New York University School of Law.
David Brown is co-chair of Alston & Bird’s Corporate practice area, which includes its corporate, energy, finance, health care, real estate and public policy groups, and a partner in its Financial Services & Products Group, which he previously led. His practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, securities disclosure, and payment system and other technology transactions, with an emphasis on the financial services, real estate, technology and telecommunications industries. David has extensive experience in complex mergers and acquisitions, particularly transactions coupled with strategic relationships between the parties, and also represents issuers and underwriters in public and private offerings of equity, debt and hybrid securities. He has advised clients on hundreds of M&A transactions with an aggregate deal value of nearly $80 billion and securities transactions with a value in excess of $57 billion.
Recent examples of his experience include:
University of Kentucky College of Law, J.D. (Order of the Coif), 1986
Princeton University, A.B., 1983
Elizabeth A. Cooper is a Partner in the Firm’s Corporate Department and serves as one of the Firm’s Hiring Partners. Elizabeth’s practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions and other corporate transactions, with an emphasis on transactions for banks and other financial institutions.
Representative M&A transactions in the financial services area on which Elizabeth has advised include:
Elizabeth also represented the U.S. Treasury in connection with structuring and documenting its $250 billion program for purchasing equity in U.S. financial institutions under TARP and in connection with its equity investments in Citigroup and Bank of America.
Elizabeth has been named an “MVP” for M&A in 2015 by Law360, highlighting her involvement in a number of the year’s most complex and prominent transactions. In addition, she was named a 2015 Rising Star by New York Law Journal, as well as the “Up & Coming Regulatory Lawyer of the Year” at the inaugural Chambers USA Women in Law Awards. She has been recognized by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business since 2011 and described as being “widely tipped to be among the next generation of elite lawyers.”
Elizabeth joined Simpson Thacher following her graduation in 2001 from Columbia Law School, where she was a James Kent Scholar. She received her A.B., cum laude, in 1997 from Harvard University. She is admitted to practice in New York and is a member of the Association of the Bar of New York City.
Gregory Varallo, executive vice president of the firm, focuses his practice on complex corporate and business litigation, arbitration, corporate governance, and corporate transactions. He has litigated numerous complex business disputes in the Delaware courts, and has appeared on behalf of the firm's clients in state and federal courts throughout the United States. Greg has co-taught classes at NYU School of Law, the University of Pennsylvania Law School, and Harvard Law School.
As a member of a task force led by Delaware’s Chief Justice Strine, Greg was actively involved in drafting the Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act, a new, specialized arbitration statute that was signed into law in 2015. He is also a certified mediator with the Delaware Superior Court and has completed the court’s advanced mediation training.
The Legal 500, a respected directory that identifies the world's foremost law firms and lawyers, noted in its 2015 rankings that Greg is "brilliant, hardworking and responsive to client needs" as well as an "effective communicator and fun to work with." Greg has been published in The Business Lawyer, The Securities Regulation Law Journal, M&A Lawyer, Corporate Governance Advisor, Insights, and Business Law Today. He is co-author of The Practitioner's Guide to the Delaware Rapid Arbitration Act, Special Committees: Law and Practice, and Fundamentals of Corporate Governance. Greg has been a panelist at the annual Securities Regulation Law Institute (PLI), as well as various PLI, ABA, and other programs and institutes.
Significant matters in which Greg has served as lead counsel or co-lead counsel include:
Admitted to Practice
James R. Griffin is a partner in Weil’s Mergers & Acquisitions practice and is based in Dallas. Mr. Griffin represents both private and publicly held companies from a broad range of industries in mergers and acquisitions and related transactions, including public and private company mergers, stock acquisitions, asset acquisitions, tender offers, divestitures, auction transactions, defensive strategies and going-private transactions. He also advises boards and special committees on fiduciary duties in the M&A context.
Mr. Griffin has been recognized as a leading lawyer in Corporate/M&A by Chambers USA and as one of the leading lawyers in mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance by The International Who’s Who of Mergers and Acquisitions Lawyers and The International Who’s Who of Corporate Governance Lawyers. He has also been listed in Best Lawyers in America for mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance since 2008; is recommended for M&A for Mega-Deals ($1bn+) by Legal 500 US; and is recognized as a “Highly Regarded” lawyer for M&A in Texas by IFLR1000. Mr. Griffin has been recognized by D CEO Magazine as one of the Dallas area’s most powerful and influential business leaders and among the Top 100 Law Influencers in the U.S. by The Business Journals.
Mr. Griffin is immediate past Vice Chair of the American Bar Association’s Mergers and Acquisitions Committee, which comprises more than 4,000 M&A specialists from all over the world. Mr. Griffin previously served as Chair of the Committee’s Subcommittee on Public Company Acquisitions and M&A Market Trends Subcommittee.
James Walker concentrates in government investigations and enforcement proceedings, complex commercial litigation, professional liability and legal ethics. Mr. Walker represents companies and senior executives in investigations of potential violations of the securities laws, and law firms and lawyers in litigations and proceedings involving investigations of criminal, regulatory and/or professional misconduct claims. Mr. Walker is the Chair of the New York County Lawyer’s Association Professional Ethics Committee. He has served on the New York City Bar’s Professional Discipline, Professional and Judicial Ethics, Professional Responsibility, and Securities Regulation Committees, and on the New York State Bar Association Committee on Professional Ethics, where he has been a member since 1996. Mr. Walker frequently lecturers on legal ethics, internal investigations and corporate governance, and has published articles addressing on attorney-client privilege, professional ethics, and issues arising under the securities laws. Mr. Walker also serves as General Counsel to Richards Kibbe & Orbe LLP.
Joel Friedlander is a founding partner of Friedlander & Gorris, P.A., a litigation boutique focusing on corporate law litigation, alternative entity disputes, and commercial litigation in Delaware state and federal courts. Benchmark Litigation recognized the firm as “Delaware Firm of the Year” for 2015 and 2017.
Mr. Friedlander has over 25 years of experience litigating breach of fiduciary duty actions and contract disputes relating to the control of Delaware entities. The 2020 and 2017 editions of The Best Lawyers in America recognized him as “Litigation – Mergers and Acquisitions ‘Lawyer of the Year’ for Wilmington, Delaware.” Mr. Friedlander has been profiled in The Wall Street Journal and named “Litigator of the Week” in The Am Law Litigation Daily. The current edition of Chambers USA designates him as “Band 1” and states:
Joel Friedlander is considered to be “the toughest plaintiff lawyer there is” by market sources. He comes highly recommended for his work representing clients in litigation involving contract disputes and breach of fiduciary duty actions. Interviewees reveal: “He has an encyclopedic knowledge and is well respected by judges.”
Mr. Friedlander was a Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School in 2019. He will be a Lecturer at University of Michigan Law School in 2020. He is an Adviser to the American Law Institute, Restatement of the Law, Corporate Governance. He is the author of eight law review articles, including, most recently:
Joel I. Greenberg is a Senior Corporate Partner at Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP and practices in the firm’s New York City office. He concentrates in US and cross-border mergers and acquisitions of public and private companies, representation of financial sponsors, and securities transactions. He also advises publicly held and private companies on a wide variety of corporate governance and day-to-day corporate as well as transactional matters. Joel is an active member and former Chair of the M&A Committee (an international committee of the ABA's Section of Business Law with more than 5,000 members) and is currently serving as a member of the Committee's Executive Council.
Among the matters that Joel has handled recently are the representation of:
Joel is a frequent lecturer on mergers and acquisitions topics, and has spoken at programs sponsored by the American Bar Association, the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, the Association of Corporate Counsel, the Center for International Legal Studies, Columbia Law School, Cornell Law School, Harvard Law School, the Inter-Pacific Bar Association, International Financial Law Review, Law Journal Seminars, Penn State Dickinson School of Law, Stanford Law School, UCLA School of Law, University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, University of Miami School of Law and University of Texas School of Law. He co-chairs the ABA’s annual National M&A Institute.
Joel is included in Chambers Global; Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business; Legal 500 U.S.; The Best Lawyers in America; Who's Who Legal (Mergers & Acquisitions); Practical Law Company’s Mergers and Acquisitions Guidebook; Experts Guides’ Banking Finance and Transactional Law Guide; and EuroMoney’s Guides to the World’s Leading Mergers and Acquisitions Lawyers and Corporate Governance Lawyers. He is a graduate of Yale Law School.
John K. Hughes is a partner in the Mergers and Acquisitions group and Private Equity group. He practices out of the Washington, D.C. office. For 25 years, he has been involved in representing clients in merger and acquisition and private equity transactions, including acquisitions, divestitures, take-privates, recapitalizations and restructurings, strategic investments (minority and majority), cross-border transactions, joint ventures, debt and equity financings, and commercial lending. In these transactions, he has represented the full range of deal participants, including bidders (U.S. and non-U.S.), targets, private equity sponsors, hedge funds (as private equity investors, financing sources, and investors), private investors, management teams, public companies and private companies, joint venture partners, boards of directors and special committees, investment banking firms and financing sources, arbitrageurs, and others involved in the transactional process. He also has represented governmental agencies (Federal and State) engaged in M&A transactions, and is familiar with associated public policy considerations involved in those settings. He has been involved in and provides advice on all phases of the transaction process, ranging from initial planning and strategic assessment, to deal structuring and negotiation, to execution and to post-acquisition advice to portfolio companies. He represents investment banking firms in their role providing M&A financial advisory services to clients on transactional matters, and as providers of fairness and solvency opinions. He counsels clients on general corporate and strategic business-related matters, including directors’ fiduciary duties and responsibilities and other aspects of corporate governance and disclosure matters, and he has experience working on transactions in bankruptcy and other distressed settings.
Mr. Hughes has worked across industries, including manufacturing, financial institutions, technology, gaming, media and telecommunications, consumer products, retail, airlines, aerospace and defense, healthcare and pharmaceutical, real estate and REITs, energy and other regulated businesses. He often works in tandem with members of the firm’s industry practice groups, where industry-specific regulatory and other matters are involved.
Mr. Hughes is actively involved in the American Bar Association’s Mergers & Acquisitions Committee, comprised of more than 4,000 M&A specialists from across the United States, Canada, and more than 20 other countries. He currently serves as Vice Chair of the M&A Committee. In 2006 he co-founded, and from 2006-2015 served successively as Vice Chair, Co-Chair, and Chair of, the M&A Committee’s Subcommittee on Private Equity M&A (1,500 members), organizing presentations and speakers (practitioners, bankers, academics, industry participants, judges) on current topics in Private Equity and M&A. The Subcommittee also participated in development of the ABA’s initial Private Equity Buyer/Public Target Mergers & Acquisitions Deal Points Study. He is a member of the M&A Committee’s other Subcommittees and Task Forces (Market Trends; Public Company M&A; International M&A; Dictionary of M&A Terms, Financial Advisors; Governance Issues in Business Combinations). He graduated from Syracuse University College of Law and from Boston College, and attended St. John’s College, University of Durham (England) and The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. He was Editor of the Syracuse Law Review, and received the "Anderson Publication Award" for his student Note (The Constitutionality of the Bankruptcy Court and the Ongoing Search for a Principled Distinction Between Article I and Article III Courts: A Re-evaluation After Northern Pipeline v. Marathon).
Earlier, Mr. Hughes held positions on the staff of the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare in the Carter Administration. He subsequently assisted that Cabinet Secretary on a book (Governing America: An Insider’s Report from the White House and the Cabinet) (Simon & Schuster) that addressed domestic public policy topics. He served as Special Assistant to the Special Counsel, Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, U.S. House of Representatives (investigation into alleged wrongdoing by Members of Congress and Congressional Pages).
Kevin Miller is a partner in the Corporate Transactions & Securities Group at Alston & Bird and the head of Alston & Bird’s Financial Advisors Practice. Alston & Bird is regularly ranked by The American Lawyer and Corporate Control Alert as among the leading counsel to investment banks acting as financial advisors.
Kevin is a frequent author and speaker on M&A topics, including fairness opinions, the role of investment bankers and legal and regulatory developments relating to mergers and acquisitions. Kevin is a graduate of Rutgers University (JD) and the University of Michigan (MA Economics and AB).
Michele M. Anderson is an Associate Director in the Division of Corporation Finance at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. As a member of the Division’s senior leadership team, Ms. Anderson is responsible for oversight of the disclosure review program for public companies and the work of the division’s offices of Mergers and Acquisitions, International Corporate Finance, and Structured Finance. She also oversees rulemaking initiatives and no-action, interpretive, and exemptive positions taken by the Division on domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions transactions, multinational offerings, and offerings by foreign issuers in the United States.
Ms. Anderson has been a member of the staff at the SEC since 1998. From 2008 to 2015, she served as Chief of the Division of Corporation Finance’s Office of Mergers and Acquisitions, overseeing the regulation of domestic and cross-border M&A transactions as well as the statutory and regulatory interpretive functions of the SEC as they relate to tender offers, mergers, contested and other non-routine proxy solicitations, going private transactions, reorganizations, debt restructurings and beneficial ownership reporting. Prior to that, she served in a variety of positions in the Division, including branch chief of the group responsible for the review of the federal securities law filings, including registration statements, periodic reports and proxy materials, made by telecommunication companies and service providers.
In addition to her duties at the SEC, Ms. Anderson served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Georgetown University Law Center, where she taught the course “Takeovers, Mergers and Acquisitions.” She received her B.A., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Colorado at Boulder and her Juris Doctorate from the University of Colorado Law School.
Paul Shim is a partner in the New York, NY office of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP. His practice focuses on public and private merger and acquisition transactions.
He also provides advice regarding governance matters and the fiduciary duties of officers and directors to corporations and their boards.
He repeatedly has been recognized by the business and legal press for his work on behalf of clients, including twice being named a “Dealmaker of the Year” by The American Lawyer.
Stephen M. Kotran is a partner in the Mergers and Acquisitions and Financial Institutions Groups at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP and a member of the firm’s Managing Partners Committee. He represents buyers, sellers, special committees of independent directors and financial advisors in connection with mergers and acquisitions transactions, including negotiated and hostile acquisitions of public companies, negotiated sales of private companies, subsidiaries and divisions, private equity transactions, leveraged buy-outs, formation of joint ventures and asset sales. In recent transactions, his clients have included Acosta, Inc., ADP, Inc., Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, China Oceanwide, Cytec Industries, Inc., Eastman Kodak Company, Evercore Partners, Goldman, Sachs & Co., ING Groep N.V., Ipsen, S.A., Orix, Inc., Platinum Underwriters Holdings, Ltd., Rothschild, Inc., Sprout Pharmaceuticals, Swiss Reinsurance Company Ltd., Wells Fargo Securities LLC and Western World Insurance Group.
Mr. Kotran graduated from Harvard College (A.B., 1985) and the University of Virginia Law School (J.D., 1990) where he was an Editor of the Virginia Law Review and a member of the Order of the Coif. From 1985-1986, Mr. Kotran served as a legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Daniel P. Moynihan (D-NY) and from 1990-1991 he served as a judicial clerk to the Hon. Edward R. Becker (U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit). He has been consistently recognized as a leading M&A, private equity and insurance transactional lawyer by many widely referenced legal guides, including The Best Lawyers in America, Chambers, IFLR, Lawdragon, New York Super Lawyers, PLC and The US Legal 500. Mr. Kotran is a frequent faculty member on M&A panels for the American Bar Association, the Practising Law Institute, the New York City Bar Association and various other professional organizations. He is a lecturer in Law at Columbia Law School where he teaches a course on M&A transactions and also has guest lectured at numerous other law schools including Fordham, NYU, Stanford, U.Penn and UVa. He is a former co-chair of the Financial Advisors Task Force of the M&A Committee of the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association. He also serves on the M&A Advisory Board of the Practical Law Company.
Steven Haas is a partner at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP and co-head of the firm’s M&A practice. In 2015, he was named as an M&A “Rising Star” by Law360. In 2013, he was named to the “40 under 40” list of legal counsel by The M&A Advisor. He was also named a “Rising Star of Corporate Governance” by the Millstein Center for Global Markets and Corporate Ownership at Columbia Law School. In addition, he is a fellow at the American College of Governance Counsel. Prior to joining Hunton Andrews Kurth, Steven worked at Abrams & Laster LLP in Wilmington, Delaware.
Steven is an appointed member of the Committee on Corporate Laws of the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association. This committee has jurisdiction over the Model Business Corporation Act, which is followed in whole or in part by a majority of states.
Steven is the co-editor and contributing author of Corporate Governance: Law and Practice (LexisNexis), which is a two-volume/16-chapter treatise. He also is a frequent author and contributes to the blogs Deal Lawyers and Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation.
Steven previously served as chairman of the ABA Corporate Governance Subcommittee on Current Developments and Emerging Issues. In addition, he is an adjunct professor of law at the University of Richmond School of Law, where he has taught a course on mergers and acquisitions and has lectured at the University of Virginia School of Law.
Steven is a graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law, where he served as notes editor on the Virginia Law Review. He is a member of the Virginia and Delaware bars.
The Honorable Karen Valihura was sworn in as Justice of the Supreme Court of Delaware on Friday, July 25, 2014.
Justice Valihura, as a practicing lawyer, was consistently selected for inclusion in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and The Best Lawyers in America. Recently, she was selected by the National Association of Corporate Directors to the NACD Directorship 100, honoring the most influential people in corporate governance. She is also a member of the American Law Institute. Her corporate litigation practice included complex commercial and corporate governance issues, federal and state securities matters, as well as mergers and acquisitions and other transactional litigation. Prior to her appointment to the Supreme Court, Justice Valihura was a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP, where she practiced law from 1989 until her appointment to the Court in 2014.
Justice Valihura served on the Advisory Board of the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance and served as Chair of the Delaware Supreme Court’s Board on Professional Responsibility and as Chair of the Delaware Supreme Court’s Permanent Ethics Advisory Committee on the Delaware Rules for Professional Conduct. Justice Valihura served for eight years on the Corporation Law Council of the Corporation Law Section of the Delaware State Bar Association. Additionally, Justice Valihura served her community as a member of the Board of Directors for the Delaware Special Olympics for eighteen years, including service as that Board’s President, and as a member of the Delaware Bar Foundation for eight years, including service as that Board’s President.
Justice Valihura received her undergraduate degree from Washington and Jefferson College in 1985 where she was valedictorian, and her law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School where she was a member of the Law Review. She served as a law clerk to Judge Robert E. Cowen of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
William Regner is Deputy Chair of the firm’s Corporate Department and a member of the firm’s Mergers & Acquisitions, Technology, Media & Telecommunications, Financial Institutions and Corporate Governance Groups. He focuses on public company transactions and corporate governance matters and advises boards, special committees and senior management on governance issues, including activist challenges and risk management. He has experience across many industries, but is particularly active in the TMT and asset management sectors. He also regularly represents investment banking firms in their roles as financial advisors in major transactions. Mr. Regner was recognized as a “Client Service All-Star” by BTI Consulting in 2018.
Mr. Regner is ranked as a leading M&A lawyer by Chambers USA (2019), where sources say he “has the knowledge and experience, but his approach is pragmatic, commercial and practical” and that he has “outstanding technical knowledge and commercial awareness” and “comes up with creative solutions.” Clients highlight his “excellent commercial judgment and good commercial sense” and say that he “really commands a room but is also a very good listener,” and he is also praised for his “superb negotiating and drafting” skills. Clients describe his approach as “commercial and practical” and note that he has “outstanding technical knowledge and commercial awareness.” He is recommended by The Legal 500 US (2019) which calls him “thoughtful, smart and savvy” and lauds his delivery of “high-value and to-the-point advice.” He is also recognized by IFLR1000 (2019) as a leading M&A lawyer.
Mr. Regner is a frequent speaker on legal developments affecting mergers and acquisitions. Recent engagements include “Advising the Board of Directors in an M&A Transaction: An Overview of the Board’s Responsibilities” (2018) at the Practising Law Institute’s Mergers & Acquisitions 2018: Advanced Trends and Developments conference, “Bank M&A Mechanics and Regulatory Issues” at FIRMA’s Current Risk Issues seminar (2017) and “The Deal: A View of Delaware Law Developments from M&A Practitioners” at the Practising Law Institute’s Delaware Law Developments 2017: What All Business Lawyers Need to Know seminar (2017). Mr. Regner also moderated a discussion on “Disclosure Matters and Other SEC Considerations in M&A” for Practising Law Institute’s Mergers & Acquisitions 2017: Advanced Trends and Developments event (2017).
Mr. Regner is the co-author of Takeovers: A Strategic Guide to Mergers & Acquisitions (Wolters Kluwer Law & Business 2013) and is a contributor to Corporate Governance: Law and Practice (Matthew Bender 2013). His published articles include “Appraisal Rights: Navigating the Maze After DFC Global, Dell, and Aruba” for the Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation (2018), “US And UK Share Purchase Agreements: Comparing Approaches,” Practical Law (January 2015) and “How Sell-Side Advisors Can Reduce Litigation Risk in Light of Delaware’s Rural/Metro Decision,” Journal of Investment Compliance, Volume 15 Issue 2 (August 2014). He is also a contributing author of The Private Equity Primer: The Best of the Debevoise & Plimpton Private Equity Report and the Debevoise & Plimpton Private Equity Report.
Mr. Regner joined Debevoise as an associate in 1994 and became a partner in 2002. He received his A.B. from Colgate University in 1988 and his J.D. summa cum laude from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in 1994, where he was articles editor of the Cardozo Law Review.
Mr. Bayliss is a partner at Abrams & Bayliss LLP, a corporate and business law boutique based in Wilmington, Delaware that focuses on (a) high stakes litigation involving Delaware corporations and other business entities and (b) transactional matters carrying a significant risk of litigation or involving novel or complex issues of Delaware law. Mr. Bayliss represents a broad array of clients in both defensive and offensive roles, including contingent fee litigation.
Mr. Bayliss’s current engagements include serving as Delaware counsel to Kindred Healthcare in appraisal litigation challenging its $4.1 billion acquisition by affiliates of TPG Capital, Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe and Humana. Mr. Bayliss is also serving as Delaware counsel to BA Sports Nutrition LLC in litigation over the right to distribute BodyArmor sports drink, as well as a special litigation committee of Alphabet, Inc. in derivative litigation arising out of payments made to certain departing executives and alleged violations of privacy and data security laws.
In 2019, Mr. Bayliss’s notable engagements included his representation of FrontFour Capital Group LLC in an expedited trial that secured a deal-blocking injunction and an opinion declaring that the challenged three-way business combination failed both entire fairness review and enhanced scrutiny under Delaware law. Mr. Bayliss also represented the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela as amicus curiae in expedited Section 225 litigation challenging regime control over Citgo Petroleum Corporation.
Mr. Bayliss’s accomplishments as counsel for defendants include successfully arguing before the Delaware Court of Chancery and the Delaware Supreme Court for dismissal of a consolidated class action challenging Valeant Corporation’s $15.8 billion acquisition of Salix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Mr. Bayliss also served as lead trial counsel in both Merlin Partners, LP v. AutoInfo, Inc., C.A. No. 8509-VCN (Del. Ch. April 30, 2015) and LongPath Capital v. Ramtron International Corp., C.A. No. 8094-VCP (Del. Ch. June 30, 2015), two key cases that helped establish the importance of merger price in Delaware appraisal litigation. Mr. Bayliss’s accomplishments as counsel for plaintiffs include seeking and obtaining an order blocking a $230 million recapitalization transaction in Kalisman v. Friedman, C.A. No. 8447-VCL (Del. Ch. 2013).
Mr. Bayliss received his B.A. from Yale University and his J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, where he served as a managing editor of the Virginia Tax Review and received the Kingdon Prize for winning the William Minor Lile Moot Court Competition. Mr. Bayliss has been selected for inclusion in Chambers USA as a leading litigator in the Delaware Court of Chancery and recognized as a “Top Rated Business Litigation Attorney” in Delaware by Super Lawyers.
Before joining Abrams & Bayliss LLP, Mr. Bayliss worked for Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in Wilmington, Delaware.
Mr. Macakanja is an Investment Banking Managing Director in the Chicago office of J.P. Morgan. Mr. Macakanja has led the execution of numerous M&A assignments and corporate restructurings. M&A assignments include both buy-side and sell-side engagements for large public and private companies as well as a wide range of cross-border transactions. Prior to joining J.P. Morgan, Mr. Macakanja worked at Lazard in the investment banking group.
Mr. Macakanja received a M.B.A. with high honors and concentrations in Finance and Accounting from the University of Chicago and a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Purdue University.
Patricia regularly provides advice on corporate governance matters and a variety of corporate transactions for publicly traded and privately held corporations. Patricia is often called upon to advise on mergers and acquisitions, financings, asset sales and other significant transactions. Her work includes structuring complex transactions and often involves counseling boards of directors and board committees on their fiduciary duties and the technical aspects of Delaware corporate law. She also provides formal legal opinions on issues involving Delaware corporate law.
Patricia is actively involved with the American Bar Association’s Mergers & Acquisitions Committee and Corporate Laws Committee. She is Co-Chair of the Subcommittee on Acquisitions of Public Companies of the M&A Committee and Co-Chair of the MBCA Implementation and Outreach Subcommittee of the Corporate Laws Committee. From 2011-2018, she also served as Co-Chair of the Joint Task Force on Governance Issues in Business Combinations. As part of her role as Task Force Co-Chair, she served as an editor of The Role of Directors in M&A Transactions: A Governance Handbook for Directors, Management and Advisors.
Patricia is a member of the Council of the Corporation Law Section of the Delaware State Bar Association and, in that capacity, participates in the annual review of, and preparation of amendments to, the Delaware General Corporation Law. She was appointed by the Delaware Supreme Court to serve as a member of the court’s Board on Professional Responsibility (2012-2018). In 2018, she became a fellow of the American College of Governance Counsel, and in 2019 was named to the Board of Trustees and Secretary. She has been ranked as a leading Delaware corporate M&A practitioner in Chambers USA since 2014, and ranked by various other publications.
Patricia also frequently speaks on Delaware corporate law issues at corporate law seminars and symposia around the country, including the Tulane Corporate Law Institute, the University of Texas Mergers & Acquisitions Institute, the Ray Garrett Jr. Corporate and Securities Law Institute, the Northwestern Law Securities Regulation Institute and the ABA National M&A Institute.
Patricia received her J.D., magna cum laude, from Villanova University School of Law in 1996, where she served as Executive Editor of the Villanova Law Review. She completed her undergraduate education at University of Delaware, receiving a B.S., magna cum laude, in 1992. Prior to joining Morris Nichols, Patricia served as law clerk to The Honorable Randy J. Holland of the Supreme Court of the State of Delaware.
Abigail LeGrow serves as a Master in Chancery on the Delaware Court of Chancery, a position she has held since October 2011. Before joining the Court, Mrs. LeGrow worked in the corporate group at Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP and was a judicial clerk to the Honorable Jack B. Jacobs of the Delaware Supreme Court. Mrs. LeGrow graduated summa cum laude from the Penn State Dickinson School of Law.
Greg Weinberger is the Co-Head of Global M&A at Credit Suisse. He is also a member of the Bank's Investment Banking Advisory Committee, which oversees the rendering of fairness opinions. Prior to his current role, Greg Weinberger was Co-Head of Americas M&A and prior to that he served as Head of Oil & Gas Americas. Greg has spent most of his career in Credit Suisse’s M&A group, focusing on advising energy companies on strategic transactions. He previously was responsible for Credit Suisse's hostile takeover defense practice. Greg joined Credit Suisse First Boston in 1996 from Cravath, Swaine & Moore.
Jason Mulvihill currently serves as General Counsel for the Private Equity Growth Capital Council (“PEGCC”). As General Counsel, Mulvihill has primary responsibility for regulatory matters and international matters considered by the PEGCC. He oversees the PEGCC’s General Counsels’ Committee and the Chief Compliance Officers’ Working Group. He also plays an active leadership role on legislative issues important to private equity.
Before joining the PEGCC, Mulvihill served as Legislative Director and Chief Counsel for Senator John Ensign (R-NV). In this capacity, Mulvihill was responsible for tax and trade issues before the Senate Finance Committee. He was one of the principal Republican staff who crafted the bipartisan renewable energy tax credit legislation that was signed into law in 2008. In early 2009, he developed and secured enactment of cancellation of debt income legislation. Mulvihill also helped to prevent changes in the tax treatment of carried interest, publicly traded partnerships, and deferral.
Mulvihill joined Senator Ensign’s staff after serving as Senior Counsel for the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. Before working on Capitol Hill, Mulvihill was an Associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom in Washington, D.C., practicing antitrust law.
Mulvihill graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Georgetown University, and received his law degree from Columbia University Law School. He is a member of the New York State and District of Columbia Bars.
The Private Equity Growth Capital Council
The Private Equity Growth Capital Council, based in Washington, DC, is an advocacy, communications, and research organization and resource center established to develop, analyze, and distribute information about the private equity and growth capital investment industry and its contributions to the national and global economy. The PEGCC opened its doors in February 2007.
The PEGCC’s mission includes educating opinion leaders on the positive role that private equity investment plays in the U.S. and global economies; conducting research projects to support the PEGCC’s education and policy agenda; advocating public policy initiatives that advance and defend the industry’s interests and credibly communicating the benefits of private equity investment to a broad range of audiences, including the news media.
The PEGCC’s members are the world’s leading private equity and growth capital firms united by their commitment to growing and strengthening the businesses in which they invest.
Mr. Morton's practice involves corporate counseling, governance and opinion work. Mark regularly advises clients regarding all aspects of the Delaware General Corporation Law, governance of Delaware corporations, and fiduciary obligations, both in the context of daily business affairs and with respect to mergers, acquisitions and other corporate transactions. Mark also authors opinion letters on a wide range of matters of Delaware corporation law. In addition, Mark frequently is engaged to serve as counsel to Special Committees in connection with various conflict transactions, including M&A transactions.
Mr. Morton is a frequent speaker at corporate law seminars and symposia around the country, including The Harvard School of Law, the Northwestern Law Securities Regulation Institute, the University of Texas Securities Regulation Institute, the University of Texas Mergers & Acquisitions Institute, the Ray Garrett Jr. Corporate and Securities Law Institute, the ABA National Institute on Negotiating Business Acquisitions. In addition, he has participated in a number of programs sponsored by the American Bar Association, the Delaware State Bar Association and a host of other state and city bar associations. In addition, Mark has been a speaker for a myriad of programs sponsored by the Mergers & Acquisitions Committee of the ABA, and he has served as a speaker on Delaware corporate law issues for a number of international and national law firms as part of their internal continuing education programs.
Mr. Morton is a member of the Council of the Corporation Law Section of the Delaware State Bar Association and, in that capacity, participates in the annual review of, and preparation of amendments to, the Delaware General Corporation Law. Mr. Morton is the immediate past Chair of the M&A Committee, a committee that, with more than 5000 members, is one of the largest in the Business Law Section of the ABA. Mr. Morton also is a past Co-Chair of the Delaware Business Law Forum, an invitation only event sponsored by the ABA for leading corporate law practitioners.
Mr. Morton has been named by Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business as a leading Delaware Corporate/M&A practitioner, by the International Who's Who of Merger & Acquisition Lawyers as one of the leading M&A lawyers, and by Lawdragon as one of the 500 leading lawyers in America. Mr. Morton is an Adjunct Lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania Law School (2009 - 2013) and the University of Virginia Law School (2010 - Current).