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Nuts and Bolts of Corporate Bankruptcy 2019


Speaker(s): Alan D. Halperin, Barbra R. Parlin, Blaire A. Cahn, David B. Shemano, David G. Epstein, Elizabeth (Lisa) Feld, Evan C. Hollander, Hon. Martin Glenn, Janet M. Weiss, Joseph Samet (Ret.), Kenneth Pasquale, Lisa G. Beckerman, Lisa M. Schweitzer, Lorraine S. McGowen, Mette H. Kurth, Michael H. Goldstein, My Chi To, Sandy Qusba, Steven H. Felderstein, Trevor Hoffmann
Recorded on: Dec. 2, 2019
PLI Program #: 253575

Barbra Parlin is an attorney in Holland & Knight's New York office and is a member of the firm's Litigation Section. Ms. Parlin practices in the areas of bankruptcy, creditors' rights and litigation.

Ms. Parlin represents persons who are in or are touched by financial distress, including debtors, indenture trustees, secured and unsecured creditors, bondholders and other parties in interest in Chapter 11 cases, 363 sales and other bankruptcy related matters. She also represents the foreign representative/liquidator/debtor and creditors in numerous cases under Chapter 15 in aid of foreign insolvency proceedings. Ms. Parlin represents defendants/creditors in preference, fraudulent transfer and other avoidance type actions; creditors in claim objection proceedings and secured creditors/lessors in actions to recover collateral and/or leased property; and advises creditors and distressed debt investors on pre-bankruptcy planning and claim/investment strategies.

In addition, Ms. Parlin has broad experience in matters concerning corporate governance, director and officer liability, derivative and securities fraud litigation, and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigations and commercial litigation. She has advised boards of directors with respect to their fiduciary obligations and has managed a broad range of litigation matters, including bankruptcy and avoidance litigation, securities fraud, shareholder derivative litigation, SEC investigations, merger and acquisition (M&A) litigation, corporate governance actions, construction litigation, directors' and officers' insurance issues, and other general commercial litigation.

Ms. Parlin analyzes real estate transactions with respect to fraudulent conveyance issues and represents real estate clients in connection with claims in insolvency proceedings. Ms. Parlin defends law firm clients in cases alleging claims to recover unfinished business, preferences, fraudulent conveyances under state and federal law, as well as damages for breach of contract and torts such as tortious interference and aiding and abetting breaches of fiduciary duty. She also advises individual partners faced with liability after their firms filed bankruptcy.

Ms. Parlin previously served as the New York office's recruiting and diversity partner as well as partner coordinator of the Women's Initiative.

Ms. Parlin was the recipient of the George A. Katz Memorial Award for Academic Excellence in Securities Regulation from New York University School of Law. She also served as staff editor and articles editor of the Environmental Law Journal.


Blaire Cahn is a counsel in Baker McKenzie's Global Restructuring & Insolvency Practice. 

Blaire’s practice covers all areas of domestic and international restructurings, crisis management, corporate governance, and financings and acquisitions involving distressed situations.  She has represented a range of distressed companies, creditors, and companies seeking to acquire distressed assets in both in-court and out-of-court restructurings.  

Blaire has advised companies on the development and implementation of corporate restructuring strategies and has litigated disputes before bankruptcy and appellate courts. Blaire’s creditor experience includes representing private equity funds, hedge funds and investment banks. Her experience spans a variety of industries, including automotive, education, financial services, healthcare, oil and gas, real estate, retail, technology, and transportation. She recently joined Baker McKenzie from Weil, Gotshal & Manges. 

 


Evan Hollander, partner in Orrick’s New York Office, is a member of the firm’s Restructuring Group.

Evan has over 25 years of experience representing debtors, secured creditors, holder of fulcrum securities, potential acquirers, and independent directors in complex U.S. and cross-border restructuring matters. Mr. Hollander is equally comfortable in the courtroom as he is at the negotiating table and the boardroom, and has extensive experience crafting and implementing restructuring plans. He also frequently assists parties interested in acquiring debt and equity securities of distressed companies.

Evan frequently writes on insolvency related topics and routinely appears on panels at industry conferences.

 

 


Janet M. Weiss assists clients in achieving their objectives in complex bankruptcy cases and out-of-court restructurings. Whether representing debtors, creditors, strategic buyers or other interested parties, Janet’s strong transactional skills coupled with her practical business sense enable her to develop creative solutions in corporate reorganizations and debt restructurings.

Janet has represented debtors, creditors, committees, secured lenders, debtor-in-possession financiers and acquirers in substantial chapter 11 cases and out-of-court restructurings.  She also has significant experience in bankruptcy litigation, retail insolvencies, and bankruptcy aspects of asset-backed and mortgage-backed financings.  In addition, she has assisted structuring corporate transactions to minimize insolvency risks.

Janet was a partner at Gibson Dunn for more than 15 years and most recently was a partner at Dorsey & Whitney.

Janet is a frequent speaker and writer on bankruptcy and financial restructuring law topics.  She has lectured at ABA, American Bankruptcy Institute, New York City bar and PLI programs.  She has written articles on the intersection of bankruptcy and trademarks, indentures and real estate, among other topics.

Ms. Weiss was educated at the University of Pennsylvania where she earned her B.A., cum laude, and her J.D.


Joseph Samet has been a partner and member of Baker McKenzie's Global Recovery, Restructuring and Bankruptcy Group, residing in the New York office. He retired from the firm in 2015, and still teaches and writes in the R & B fields. He is available for mediating, expert witness, officer/director, and other work. Since 1975, Mr. Samet has been immersed in national and international restructurings, chapter 11 reorganizations, distressed sales of assets, SIPC and bankruptcy practice, representing all parties in interest. This includes chapter 15 cases. He counsels parties in interest and transactional lawyers on potential creditors’ rights/bankruptcy implications of deals, sales, investments and litigation settlements they are considering. His experience includes structured finance, corporate governance, pre- and post-bankruptcy litigation, negotiations and mediation. He counseled on insurance, monolines and bank liquidations, and advises corporate boards. He analyzes executory contract issues, including licenses for businesses in the e-commerce economy, and gave written opinions and analysis in transactions. His practice has involved diverse businesses, including in manufacturing, financial services, retail, service, airlines, energy, healthcare, real estate, e-commerce, sports and telecommunications. He prosecuted and defended preference, fraudulent conveyance, equitable subordination and substantive consolidation actions, officer/director liability and Ponzi scheme issues.  He counsels professional firms and their principals on risk management, “unfinished business” and clawback type issues. Mr. Samet has prepared expert reports and testified as an expert witness in jury trials and in an international arbitration.  He is on the SDNY bankruptcy court mediation panel and took extensive meditation training courses in 1994, and in 2015 through the ABI.

Mr. Samet is the principal co-author of the two-volume annotated Herzog’s Bankruptcy Forms and Practice published by Thomson Reuters. He has been a contributing author of Collier on Bankruptcy 15th Edition, and the Collier Bankruptcy Practice Guide treatises, having written and updated for many years three chapters on voluntary and involuntary bankruptcies totaling about 400 printed pages. He has written or co-authored published articles and outlines including on Arbitration and Intellectual Property in Bankruptcy; Breakup Fees and Topping Agreements in Sales of Assets; Multinational Insolvencies; Duties of Officers and Directors and Liability Issues; Unfinished Business; Mediation; Partners and Partnerships; The Basics of Chapter 11 and Chapter 15; and Research Tools.  Since 1981, he has chaired or lectured at over 250 CLE and Industry programs in the U.S. and internationally on pre-bankruptcy restructuring and bankruptcy-related issues, including programs of the National Bankruptcy Judges’ Conference, the Practising Law Institute, The American Bankruptcy Institute, the Commercial Law League, the Turnaround Management Association, and INSOL. He is chair of the annual PLI programs “Current Developments in Bankruptcy and Reorganizations” 2009-2018, and “Recent Developments in Distressed Debt, Restructurings and Workouts” 2008-2018. Mr. Samet was an Associate Conferee of the National Bankruptcy Conference and a member of its Bankruptcy Code Review project which was submitted to the United States Congress in 1994.  He has been an Adjunct Professor at Brooklyn Law School, and served on bankruptcy committees of national and local bar associations. Mr. Samet has been regularly selected by Super Lawyers as one of the Leading Insolvency and Restructuring Lawyers, the Best Lawyers in America, in Banking and Finance Law, and Who’s Who in America. He received the 2004 Burton Award for Legal Writing at the Library of Congress as co-author of the article entitled “When Worlds Collide: Intellectual Property and Arbitration Rights in Bankruptcy Cases.”  Mr. Samet is a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute, the ABA, the NYS Bar Association, TMA, the NYC Bar Association and CPR relating to mediation. He has served as a member of boards of directors of the American Bankruptcy Institute, the CLLA Fund for Public Education and the NY Chapter of the TMA, and is a member of the Steering Committee of the Zaretsky Roundtable at Brooklyn Law School.


Lisa Beckerman has more than 25 years’ experience advising on corporate restructurings and creditors’ rights, working with clients across the country in a broad range of industries, including manufacturing, airlines, media, energy and real estate. She assists both in Chapter 11 cases and out-of-court restructurings. Her clients in include official creditors’ committees, informal groups of creditors, hedge funds, private equity funds and Debtors. Chambers USA, The Legal 500 US, The Who ’s Who Legal and other key industry publications recognize Lisa as a leading lawyer in her field.


Lisa Feld is a partner in White & Case LLP’s Financial Restructuring and Insolvency group in New York. Lisa’s practice includes representing agents, secured and unsecured creditors, and companies in connection with chapter 11 reorganizations, out-of-court restructurings, and related financing transactions. 

Some of her recent representations have included: (i) the prepetition first lien secured lenders in the prepackaged chapter 11 cases of New MACH Gen, LLC and its affiliates, owners and managers of natural gas-fired electric generating facilities, pursuant to which over $600 million in secured debt was restructured and the lenders acquired an approximately 1,092 MW natural gas-fired combined cycle plant in satisfaction of a portion of the company’s outstanding obligations owed to the lenders, (ii) the DIP agent and arrangers in the chapter 11 cases of SunEdison, Inc., a global renewable energy company headquartered in the U.S., including in connection with SunEdison’s debtor-in-possession financing comprised of over $900 million of new money and a roll-up of prepetition debt, and (iii) Joerns Woundco Holdings, Inc. and its affiliates, suppliers and service providers in post-acute care, in connection with negotiating and obtaining post-petition financing for their chapter 11 cases.

Lisa received her undergraduate degree from Colgate University in 1996 and her law degree from The Law School at the University of Chicago in 2000 and, after graduation, joined White & Case LLP.


Lisa M. Schweitzer’s practice focuses on financial restructuring, bankruptcy, insolvency and commercial litigation. She has extensive experience advising corporate debtors, individual creditors and strategic investors in both U.S. Chapter 11 proceedings and restructurings in other jurisdictions in North America, Europe and Asia.

Lisa has served as lead counsel in various bankruptcy cases including as counsel to Nortel Networks Inc. and affiliates in their U.S. Chapter 11 proceedings, and represented Nortel in asset sales raising over $7 billion dollars in sale proceeds, as well as a 21 day cross-border trial involving disputes with their affiliates. Lisa’s additional representations include BlueMountain Capital, LLC, a significant equity holder in the chapter 11 bankruptcy of PG&E Corporation, the largest utility in the United States and a case involving over $50 billion of liabilities; Grupo Inbursa, a financial services company in Mexico and secured lender to multiple entities in the Mossi & Ghisolfi S.p.A. corporate group (M&G), in the M&G Chapter 11 cases; and a consortium of Singapore banks as major secured and unsecured creditors of Ezra Holdings Limited and its affiliates, a provider of integrated offshore solutions for the oil and gas industry, in the company’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings. Lisa has also advised various financial institutions on the bankruptcy-related aspects of resolution and matters related to the preparation and implementation of their resolution plans.

Lisa has advised clients in some of the most high-profile bankruptcy matters in North America, and her work repeatedly has been recognized by the business and legal press, including Chambers Global, Chambers USA, The Legal 500 U.S., IFLR 1000: The Guide to the World's Leading Financial Law Firms, The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers and The International Who’s Who of Insolvency & Restructuring Lawyers. Lisa was honored as a “Dealmaker of the Year” and as a “Dealmaker in the Spotlight” by The American Lawyer.

Lisa received a J.D. from New York University School of Law and a  B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania.

Lisa joined the firm in 1996 and became a partner in 2006.


Lorraine S. McGowen is a restructuring partner at Orrick, a leading global law firm focused on serving the financial, and energy & infrastructure and tech sectors.   One of IFLR1000’s Leading Lawyers, she represents clients from the US and internationally seeking to maximize their recoveries or reduce their exposure.

Recent engagements include representing Toyota (one of the largest creditors with more than $7 billion in claims) in the highly complex global restructuring of Takata Corporation, one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of automotive safety systems, including airbags; representing financial institutions in connection with Puerto Rico’s $72 billion restructuring; and representing several PPA counterparties in the PG&E bankruptcy case.

She is a member of Orrick’s Management Committee and recently completed two terms of service on the firm’s 11-member Board of Directors. She also co-leads Orrick's Automotive Technology & Mobility Group and its global Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Initiative.

As a leading D&I advocate, McGowen creates programs for the legal profession and the community.  She has been recognized as an MCCA Rainmaker, Savoy’s Most Influential Black Lawyers in 2018 and 2015, and Savoy’s Most Influential Women in Corporate America   and received the National Bar Association’s Outstanding Woman at a Majority Firm, NYC Bar Association’s Diversity Champion Award and Legal Outreach’s Pipeline to Diversity Champion Award. 

McGowen received her B.S.F.S. from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, and her J.D. from Columbia University School of Law.

 


Martin Glenn was sworn in as a United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Southern District of New York on November 30, 2006.  He received his B.S. degree from Cornell University in 1968 and his J.D. degree from Rutgers Law School in 1971.  He was an Articles Editor of the Rutgers Law Review.

Judge Glenn was a law clerk for Hon. Henry J. Friendly, Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, from 1971-72. From 1972 until his appointment to the bench, Judge Glenn practiced law with O’Melveny & Myers LLP, in Los Angeles from 1972-85 and in New York from 1985-06, focusing on complex civil litigation, including securities, RICO, financial and accounting fraud, and unfair competition.

Judge Glenn is a member of the following: Committee on International Judicial Relations of the United States Judicial Conference; New York Federal-State Judicial Council; American Law Institute; International Insolvency Institute; American Bankruptcy Institute, New York City Bar; National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges; and Federal Bar Council.

Judge Glenn is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia Law School and a Contributing Author of Collier on Bankruptcy.  He is a frequent lecturer on bankruptcy-related issues.


Michael Goldstein is co-chair of Goodwin's Financial Restructuring practice. A veteran restructuring and insolvency lawyer with over 35 years of experience, Mr. Goldstein represents debtors, sponsors, bondholders, creditors, committees and purchasers of distressed assets. His representations span a variety of industries, including chemicals, consumer goods, finance, health care, hospitality, high-tech printing, municipal debt, real estate, retail and technology.

Mr. Goldstein is a member of the American Bar Association. He is a board member of the Association of Insolvency & Restructuring Advisors and is a former cabinet member of the Real Estate and Construction Division of the Jewish Federation. He previously served on the Board of the Financial Lawyers Conference and on the Committee of 18 of the Maccabi World Union.

Mr. Goldstein is a Fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy. He has been repeatedly listed in U.S. News-Best Lawyers (Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Litigation – Bankruptcy) and selected as a “Super Lawyer” in Southern California and New York. He is rated AV® Preeminent™ 5.0 out of 5.0 in Martindale Hubbell. Mr. Goldstein was recently honored by Chambers USA as a “Recognised Practitioner” in the area of Bankruptcy/Restructuring. In 2019, Mr. Goldstein was honored by the Turnaround Management Association for his work as lead counsel for client Gibson Brands, Inc. in its Chapter 11 restructuring, which was named Mid-Size Company Transaction of the Year.

Mr. Goldstein is a frequent speaker on restructuring and insolvency-related topics, including on subjects such as compensation of professionals, conflicts of interest, executory contracts in retail Chapter 11 cases, expert testimony, litigating confirmation issues, municipal debt restructurings, second lien debt, subprime lending and valuation.

He writes regularly on topics of note in his field. His article on "Navigating the Distressed Real Estate Workout: A General Overview," appearing in ABA Probate and Property magazine, was selected as the winner of the Best Practical Use Article. Mr. Goldstein is a contributing author to Collier on Bankruptcy, Chapter 9 (“Adjustment of Debts of a Municipality”).

Mr. Goldstein graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1984. He received his B.S., magna cum laude, from Franklin & Marshall College in 1981.


Mr. Alan Halperin has been practicing bankruptcy and insolvency law since 1990. Prior to founding Halperin Battaglia Benzija, LLP, Mr. Halperin spent six and one-half years as an associate attorney in the bankruptcy and restructuring department of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan, a law firm with a national reputation in the insolvency field.

In his professional experience, Mr. Halperin has represented unsecured creditors’ committees, chapter 11 debtors and creditors of all types in numerous jurisdictions around the nation. He has also represented, and served as, numerous post-confirmation trustees. Mr. Halperin’s broad based experience enables him to provide his clients with the sound counsel they require to safely navigate the bankruptcy process. His expertise includes not only the mechanics of bankruptcy practice, but also strategic planning and formulation of exit strategies. Mr. Halperin regularly counsels financially troubled companies with respect to strategic planning, risks, alternatives and other issues. Mr. Halperin also advises committees of creditors as to how to plan for and navigate the workout and bankruptcy processes, and helps them to actively and aggressively protect their rights. He counsels individual clients with advice on how to structure their transactions with financially troubled companies, and assists in the negotiation and documentation of agreements with both bankrupt and troubled companies. In addition, he has prosecuted and defended thousands of preference actions, coordinated the mass prosecution of preference actions on behalf of post confirmation trusts, served as a mediator for preference disputes, and lectured on the topic.

Mr. Halperin is a graduate of Brandeis University (1987) and Fordham University School of School of Law (1990), and was a Dean's List student and a member of the Urban Law Journal at Fordham. He was a student intern with former Chief Bankruptcy Judge Tina L. Brozman (S.D.N.Y.) and former Bankruptcy Judge Marvin A. Holland (E.D.N.Y.). Mr. Halperin is a member of the bars of both New York and New Jersey, and is admitted to practice before various federal and bankruptcy bars situated in those states. He is a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute, and has lectured on a variety of bankruptcy and related state law topics. Mr. Halperin was included in Law360's list of 10 most Admired Bankruptcy Attorneys released in September 2010. He was named as one of the country's Outstanding Young Restructuring Lawyers in 2007 by Turnarounds & Workouts, and was included in Chambers USA list of recommended US bankruptcy lawyers for 2009 through 2019.  Mr. Halperin was named to the 2014 and 2018 New York Metro Super Lawyer top 100 lawyers, and has been named in Super Lawyers 2006 through 2019.  He has been named in Best Lawyers - Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law the 2015 through 2019.


My Chi To is a corporate partner and a member of Debevoise & Plimpton’s Business Restructuring & Workouts Group. She has experience representing corporations, creditors and investors in complex restructurings and bankruptcies in the U.S. and other jurisdictions. Ms. To also regularly advises clients in connection with distressed acquisitions in and out of court, including cross-border transactions, intercreditor disputes and insurance insolvency matters.

Ranked as a leading lawyer by Chambers USA and The Legal 500 US, clients describe Ms. To as a “solution-oriented” lawyer with “excellent judgment,” who “thinks through all the permutations and is great at tackling complex situations” and has the “ability to straddle that line between legal advice and practical judgment.”

Ms. To is the recipient of the Kathryn R. Heidt Memorial Award, which is the highest honor granted by the Business Bankruptcy Committee of the American Bar Association. She is a frequent speaker and author on bankruptcy and restructuring topics.

Ms. To is an editor-in-chief of the Debevoise Women’s Review and a member of the Steering Committee of the US 30% Club, a business leadership group focused on achieving 30% women on S&P 100 boards by 2020. She is also a member of the Board of Trustees of The Cathedral School of St. John the Divine. Ms. To received the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association’s “Best Lawyers Under 40” award.

Ms. To received an LL.L. and LL.B. in civil law and common law from the University of Ottawa and was a law clerk to the Hon. Claire L’Heureux-Dubé, Supreme Court of Canada. She received an M.Phil. in Politics from the University of Oxford, where she was a Rhodes Scholar. During her tenure at Debevoise, Ms. To was seconded to Nishimura & Asahi in Tokyo, focusing on distressed cross-border acquisitions and restructurings. Ms. To is fluent in French.


Sandeep “Sandy” Qusba is the Head of the Bankruptcy and Restructuring Practice of the Firm’s Corporate Department. His practice focuses primarily on restructurings, bankruptcies, acquisition of distressed companies and bank financings. He has represented agent banks, steering committees, official and ad hoc committees, creditors, private equity sponsors, special committees of boards and portfolio companies in some of the largest Chapter 11 proceedings and out-of-court restructurings in recent years across a wide range of sectors, among them media, real estate, healthcare, energy, automotive, manufacturing and telecommunications.

Sandy received his B.A. from Tufts University in 1991 and his J.D., cum laude, from Syracuse University in 1994. He served as a law clerk for Chief Judge Stephen D. Gerling in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the Northern District of New York. Sandy regularly speaks on topics related to the bankruptcy industry. Some of his past speaking engagements have included presentations at the South Asian Bar Association’s 2018 Annual Conference, the American Bankruptcy Institute’s 20th Annual New York City Bankruptcy Conference, a roundtable event hosted by the American College of Bankruptcy and New York University School of Law and the JPMorgan Global High Yield & Leveraged Finance Conference. Sandy has also been inducted as a Fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy. In addition, he has also been named by Chambers USA as one of the leading lawyers for bankruptcy/restructuring.


Trevor Hoffmann is a director in the firm’s New York office. Trevor’s practice focuses on distressed M&A transactions on behalf of private equity firms, as well as traditional representation of creditors, special servicers, acquirers, and estate fiduciaries in all phases of restructuring.

Trevor’s practice includes regular appearances in bankruptcy courts throughout the United States. He advises clients in both the transactional and litigation arenas, including on everything from financial restructuring and workouts to safe harbors transactions, avoidance actions, distressed debt, section 363 auctions and sales, plans of reorganization, and mergers and acquisitions.

Trevor graduated from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law in 1999, and moved to New York City in 2001. Since that time, he has immersed himself in domestic and cross-border cases involving everything from real estate, software, financial institutions and cable companies to airlines, leisure and energy companies.

Trevor has been recognized as a New York Super Lawyer from 2013-2017, and as a New York Super Lawyers Rising Star from 2011-2012.  He is a frequent speaker on restructuring and distressed M&A topics, and has written extensively on these topics as well. He is also a member of the Thomson Reuters Practical Law Bankruptcy Service, Advisory Board and the Federal Bar Council Bankruptcy Litigation Committee.


David has over 25 years’ experience as a business bankruptcy, restructuring, and commercial litigation lawyer. Before forming ShemanoLaw in March 2018, David practiced at the prominent national law firms of Winston & Strawn, Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe, and Robins Kaplan, and the highly regarded Los Angeles insolvency boutique of Peitzman Weg.

During his career, David has represented chapter 11 debtors, creditors’ committees, trustees, secured creditors and general unsecured creditors in all aspects of business bankruptcy and commercial litigation. He has in-depth experience handling bankruptcy and restructuring matters related to real estate, entertainment and manufacturing.

Among his recent matters are guiding DavidBarton Gym through its reorganization and emergence from chapter 11 protection, leading the section 363 sale of rights to The Terminator movie franchise in connection with Halcyon Holding Group’s chapter 11 matter, and representing one of the largest owners of El Pollo Loco franchises in Southern California in its chapter 11 restructuring.

David is very proud that his accomplishments have been recognized and honored by his peers. He was inducted as a Fellow of the prestigious, invitation only American College of Bankruptcy, and served as the president of the Financial Lawyers Conference. Mr. Shemano frequently lectures at events presented by the Practicing Law Institute, American Bankruptcy Institute, Beverly Hills Bar Association and other organizations.

Recognition

  • Named a "Southern California Super Lawyer,” Super Lawyers (2006-2007, 2009-2018)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America (2013-present)
  • Recognized as “Bankruptcy/Restructuring Leader” by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business (2012-present)

Professional Associations

  • American College of Bankruptcy, Fellow (2014)
  • Beverly Hills Bar Association, Member, Board of Governors (2009-2010); Chair, Bankruptcy Section Executive Committee (2007-2008)
  • Financial Lawyers Conference, President (2012-2013); Member, Board of Governors (2003-2005, 2008-present)

 


Ken Pasquale is a member of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP in New York, where he has practiced since 1990.  He has a diverse litigation practice in which he frequently represents institutional creditors in bankruptcy-related and complex commercial matters, including in some of the largest bankruptcy cases in history.  Ken is active in the American Bankruptcy Institute, in which he has served as co-chair of multiple committees and as a faculty member for the ABI Litigation Skills Symposium.  He is a frequent author and lecturer on bankruptcy litigation and related topics, and has repeatedly been selected by peers for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America in the area of Bankruptcy and Debtor-Creditor Rights.  Ken also devotes significant time towards pro bono activities through his firm’s Public Interest Project, and is a member of the board of directors of Justice in Motion, a not-for-profit organization that seeks to protect migrant rights by ensuring justice across borders.  Ken received a B.B.A. degree from Pace University and his law degree from Brooklyn Law School. 


Mette represents clients facing complex, financially distressed situations and bankruptcy issues, and is a certified mediator for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. Named one of the leading bankruptcy and restructuring attorneys in California and Delaware by Chambers USA, Mette has a reputation for providing unwavering and dogged representation in sophisticated workouts, restructurings, distressed M&A transactions and bankruptcy matters to help ensure her clients attain the best possible outcome.

Clients hailing from a range of industries – retail, restaurant, hospitality, agriculture, fitness, financial services, health care, real estate, and media and entertainment – praise Mette’s skill in the insolvency world, referring to her as “a pit bull in heels” and a “rock-hard…negotiator.”

Utilizing her razor-sharp business acumen and a practical approach to her clients’ financial challenges, Mette represents debtors, creditors, investors, creditor committees and other parties in all areas of reorganization, distressed sales and acquisitions, liquidations and bankruptcy-related litigation. With a high degree of emotional intelligence, Mette also possesses a keen ability to adeptly and effectively manage the most challenging people and situations that often arise in bankruptcy. With this trait, she has gained a reputation for successfully and smoothly handling confrontational negotiations in her client representations.

Mette completed the American Bankruptcy Institute/St. John’s University School of Law Bankruptcy Mediation Training Program in 2018.


Steven is of counsel to his boutique bankruptcy law firm. His clients include debtors, official committees, private equity funds, state agencies, public pension funds, institutional lenders, trustees and creditors in bankruptcy cases. He has helped reorganize businesses in many industries, including energy, hospitality (hotel and restaurant), forest products, food processing, publishing, entertainment, real estate development, agriculture, and financial services. 

He and his partner Paul Pascuzzi are currently co-counsel with the California Attorney General representing numerous state agencies in the Pacific Gas & Electric chapter 11 case.   Steven has represented the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) in the chapter 9 cases of the City of Vallejo and the City of San Bernardino.  Other recent engagements include representing the Roman Catholic Diocese of Stockton in its chapter 11 case.  He also represented the Creditors Committee in the Heller Erhman chapter 11 case, the Retirees Committee in the Stockton chapter 9 case, and a private equity fund in the out of court restructure of a novelty ice cream manufacturer. He served as outside bankruptcy counsel to the California Department of Transportation in the South Bay Expressway chapter 11 case, and to the California Attorney General in several large chapter 11 cases, including Pacific Lumber, Pacific Gas & Electric (2001), Enron, and Worldcom. 

From 2002 to 2014, he and Judge Michael S. McManus (ret.) taught the bankruptcy course as adjunct professors at the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law.  He has lectured for many continuing education providers, including Practising Law Institute, Strafford Webinars, the California Continuing Education of the Bar, Lorman Education Services, the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys, Central California Bankruptcy Association Institute, National Association of Bond Counsel, and local and regional bar associations.  He is a fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy, and a past president of the California Bankruptcy Forum, a statewide organization of bankruptcy judges and professionals.  The Best Lawyers in America has recognized his expertise in bankruptcy law for over 30 years, and in 2011 named him Sacramento Lawyer of the Year for Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights.  He has also been recognized by Super Lawyers of Northern California as a top bankruptcy lawyer.

Following law school Steven clerked for the Honorable Thomas J. MacBride, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California in Sacramento.


David G. Epstein is the holder of the George E. Allen Chair at the University of Richmond where he teaches bankruptcy and other courses.  Before moving to Richmond to be near children and grandchildren, David had several other jobs, including Dean of the University of Arkansas Law School, Dean of the Emory University Law School, partner at King & Spalding and of counsel at Haynes and Boone.