United States: Piper Rudnick Bolsters National Real Estate Practice, Los Angeles Office, With Expected Addition of Five Partners
Last Updated: January 29 2004

Led by Michael Meyer, John Whitaker, Marshall Taylor, John Duffy and Jackie Park. Real Estate Group to Enhance National Real Estate Practice, Signal Piper Rudnick’s Continued Growth in Los Angeles and Commitment to the California Real Estate Market

Los Angeles, January 27, 2003 -- Piper Rudnick LLP, a leading national law firm with one of the largest Real Estate practices in the country, announced today that a team of highly regarded real estate attorneys are expected to join its Los Angeles office within 30 days. The new additions are five partners and two associates currently with the Los Angeles office of Pillsbury Winthrop.

The group recently completed headquarter leasing assignments for Trust Company of the West, Bank of America, The Capital Group of Companies and a major 300,000 sf deal for City National Bank in downtown Los Angeles.

This addition, the latest in a series of strategic growth moves in California market, follows Piper Rudnick’s announcement earlier this month of its merger with Steinhart & Falconer, a San Francisco-based law firm of 32 attorneys.

Building on National Real Estate Growth, Local Los Angeles Momentum

This team of highly regarded real estate attorneys will join one of the foremost real estate practices in the nation. The additional attorneys will more than double the size of Piper Rudnick’s Los Angeles real estate practice and bring a roster of national clients that stand to benefit tremendously from the firm’s national footprint.

"Michael Meyer, John Whitaker, Marshall Taylor, John Duffy and Jackie Park and their team are among the most outstanding members of the Los Angeles real estate bar. We are very pleased to welcome them to the firm," said Lee Miller, co-chairman of Piper Rudnick LLP. "Their arrival not only signals the continued growth of our Los Angeles office, but also will add a significant depth to the firm’s national Real Estate practice."

"The team coming over from Pillsbury will beautifully complement the work of Pam Westhoff, Linda Bozung and others," stated Jeffrey Rosenfeld, managing partner of Piper’s Los Angeles office. "Their commitment to excellence in the practice of law and their commitment to our community is legendary, and we are honored to have the opportunity to work with them."

"We are particularly pleased to be joining a firm that not only exhibits considerable strengths in every area of real estate law, but also is such a good fit culturally," said Mr. Meyer. Mr. Whitaker added, "We all fell in love with the people at Piper and its culture. Our group has always believed in giving something back to the community and Piper gives us the opportunity to continue our charitable and pro bono work."

Over the past year, Piper Rudnick has experienced dramatic growth within its national real estate practice and Los Angeles office, including:

  • The January 2003 addition of over 30 real estate attorneys formerly of Hill & Barlow to the firm’s Boston office
  • The February 2003 addition of prominent real estate attorneys Pamela Westhoff, Linda Bozung and Howard Parelskin to the firm’s Los Angeles office
  • The January, 2004 addition of eight real estate attorneys formerly of Swidler Berlin Shereff Friedman to the firm’s New York office

Additional highlights of the firm’s recent national growth include:

  • Formation of a strategic alliance with former Defense Secretary William S. Cohen’s international consulting firm, The Cohen Group
  • The merger with legal and consulting firm Verner Liipfert Bernhard McPherson and Hand, which brought former Senator and Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell and former Michigan Governor and Ambassador to Canada Jim Blanchard to its partner roster
  • The addition of former Congressman and House Majority Leader Dick Armey in January 2003
  • The opening of a San Francisco office earlier this month with the addition of 32 lawyers from Steinhart & Falconer.

About the New Attorneys

Michael Meyer, one of the leading real estate lawyers in California, represents some of the nation’s leading financial institutions, accounting firms and law firms in connection with major leasing transactions. Mr. Meyer’s recent experience includes the Nestle headquarters lease in Glendale, MGM’s lease in Century City and the City National Bank/Arco Plaza deal.

Mr. Meyer has been named as one of the 100 Most Influential Lawyers in California, one of the Top Ten Super Lawyers in Los Angeles, and has been selected as a leading lawyer by Best Lawyers in America and Chambers. He is a member of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers and frequently lectures on commercial leasing topics. Mr. Meyer is active in numerous professional and charitable organizations and currently sits on several boards, including the Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation, the Building Owners and Managers Association of Greater Los Angeles and RBI, a charity dedicated to reviving baseball in inner cities.

John Whitaker has more than 35 years of experience working as both a transactional and entitlements lawyer. He has represented a broad range of domestic and foreign developers of major downtown Los Angeles and outlying projects, as well as investors in major office buildings, shopping centers, hotels, residential and resort properties. Formerly the chairman of the Central City Association, Mr. Whitaker recently received the Association’s prestigious Shining Star award. Mr. Whitaker is also actively involved with the Urban Land Institute. He currently serves on the Advisory Board of the Los Angeles Headquarters Association, of which he was formerly president. He is a frequent lecturer in California on a variety of real estate topics.

Marshall Taylor has more than 29 years of experience working on a wide variety of real estate and project finance transactions, handling major assignments involving Port projects along the California coastline, particularly in the Port of Los Angeles. He is an expert at transactions involving energy and FERC issues.

John Duffy is a real estate transactional lawyer, with an emphasis on commercial leasing. He has handled major leasing transactions for both landlords and tenants. On the tenant side, he represents retail and restaurant clients as well as software companies, financial institutions and Internet service providers.

Jackie Kim Park is a general real estate lawyer, with an emphasis on commercial leasing. She has handled extensive leasing transactions for both landlords and tenants in office and retail settings.

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