Baker McKenzie elects Bangkok and San Francisco partner duo to global leadership team

Peerapan Tungsuwan and Joyce Smith replace Michael Wong and Michael Santa Maria on the firm’s executive committee

Peerapan Tungsuwan (l) and Joyce Smith Images courtesy of Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie has elected two new members to its global executive committee as part of its latest round of leadership changes.

The duo include San Francisco-based international commercial partner Joyce Smith and Bangkok-based corporate and M&A partner Peerapan Tungsuwan, whose four year terms begin in October. They replace Taipei-based special consultant Michael Wong and Dallas-based corporate partner Michael Santa Maria. Barcelona-based tax partner Esteban Raventos has also had his term extended by one year.

Milton Cheng, Bakers’ global chair, said: “Our new executive committee members bring with them a wealth of experience and expertise in our core areas of focus, namely healthcare and technology. Joyce and Peerapan are highly respected as experts in their industries with a host of professional honours to their names.”

Smith has been with Bakers for almost three decades, chairing the California international commercial group and heading up the firm’s global IP transactions and tax practice. She also joins the North America regional council. Tungsuwan, meantime, has been with Bakers for close to 40 years. She is head of the healthcare and life sciences industry group and also joins the Asia Pacific regional council. 

Back in July, Bakers refreshed its global practice group and industry leadership teams. London tax partner Kate Alexander took over as tech chair, Dusseldorf-based anti-trust partner Nicolas Kredel took over as industrials chair, London finance lawyer Adam Farlow took over as capital markets chair and London-based projects lawyer Richard Blunt and Chicago-based deals lawyer José Morán were appointed co-chairs of the energy and mining group.

In June, the firm also completed its 2022 partner promotions round, creating 52 new partners across its international office, adding to the 23 new partners in North America that were announced in January. The 75-strong cohort was an increase on the 67 that made partner last year, but still below the bumper round in 2020 that saw 84 lawyers become partners.

Earlier this month, Bakers had to install an interim management team in Dubai after parting ways with its local partner firm Habib Al Mulla & Partners when it emerged named partner Al Mulla had shared anti-gay views on Twitter.

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