Mayer Brown promotes 39 lawyers to partner in bumper US-focused round

Chicago firm joins host of rivals swelling partner ranks amid surging work volumes
A reflection on 71 South Wacker, chicago.

Mayer Brown's Chicago office at 71 South Wacker Drive is still its largest Yginger Lee; Shutterstock

Mayer Brown has promoted 39 lawyers to partner as it becomes the latest US firm to unveil a bumper crop of promotions buoyed by strong financial performances and surging activity levels over the course of the pandemic. 

The Chicago firm’s latest batch of partner promotions, effective 1 January,  mark a significant increase from last year’s round when it promoted 27 lawyers across its international network, and also sees 26 lawyers promoted to counsel. The gender balance ratio has slipped slightly this year from 29% to 25%, with 10 out of the 39 new partner slots going to women. 

Mayer Brown stuck close to home with the majority of the latest promotions coming from its US network, elevating a total of 26 lawyers in the US including ten lawyers in Chicago, nine in New York and two in Washington DC. The numbers were similar to last year’s round when almost a third (29%) of the promotions came from its Chicago headquarters, while five moved up in New York and three made the cut in DC. 

Real estate expert Alexander Davis and corporate lawyer Stephanie Hurst were made up in the firm’s Los Angeles office, while corporate specialist Michael Cangolosi, dispute resolution lawyer Elspeth Hansen and banking associate Glenn Kunkes were the sole partner promotions in Houston, Northern California and Charlotte, respectively. 

Elsewhere, real estate markets lawyer Wayne Cheng and litigation lawyer Wilson Fung moved up in the firm’s Hong Kong office, which received a big boost over the summer with the arrival of a four-partner corporate and securities group in July from K&L Gates and LC Lawyers, EY’s Hong Kong legal arm. 

The firm’s Asia Pacific promotions were on par with last year’s when it promoted three lawyers in the region. This year’s round also saw banking and finance lawyer Sean Prior move up the ranks in Singapore. 

Two lawyers — Priscilla Santos (banking) and Gustavo Scheffer da Silveira (dispute resolution) — got the nod in Brazil, a month after the firm’s local affiliate Tauil & Chequer Advogados was raided by DLA Piper’s Brazil affiliate Campos Mellos for a five-lawyer team that included four partners. 

The round was completed by a handful of European promotions, including five in London compared to just two last year, with two moving up in Paris and one in Dusseldorf. 

In terms of practice areas, the highest number of promotions were doled out across Mayer Brown’s corporate and securities (11), banking and finance (8), and litigation and dispute resolution (8) groups, followed by intellectual property (4) and tax (3). 

Finally, two promotions apiece were awarded in the firm’s restructuring and real estate practices 

Congratulating the new partner class, Mayer Brown’s global chair Jon Van Gorp said: “This talented group of lawyers crosses multiple practice areas and geographies and certainly demonstrates that even in light of the challenges of the last 18 months, they continue to deliver superior legal service.”

Other US firms recording bumper partner rounds include McDermott Will & Emery and Latham & Watkins, which both promoted a record number of associates, while Gibson Dunn & Crutcher promoted 27 to partner across its offices in its most diverse round to date. 

Record numbers of partner promotions in the US come as firms battle to retain and recruit talent amid surging work volumes with research by Thomson Reuters and Georgetown Law’s Center on Ethics and the Legal Profession this week finding that that more than half of firms now view acquiring and retaining talent as a high risk to future profitability. 

Also this week, Chicago rival Sidley Austin unveiled an associate leadership and executive development programme designed to equip client-focused lawyers with business acumen and greater leadership abilities. 

The full list of the promotions is as follows: 

John R. Ablan, Corporate & Securities, Chicago

Adam G. Arnett, Corporate & Securities, Chicago

Allison M. Aviki, Intellectual Property, New York

Abigail M. Bartine, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, Chicago

Matthew Bisanz, Financial Services Regulatory & Enforcement, Washington DC

Jean-Maxime Blutel, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, Paris

Amanda Streff Bonner, Intellectual Property, Chicago

Electra Callan, Corporate & Securities, London

Michael V. (Vince) Cangolosi, Corporate & Securities, Houston

Paul A. Chandler, Corporate & Securities, Chicago

Wayne K. W. Cheng, Real Estate Markets, Hong Kong

Nicolas Danan, Tax Transactions & Consulting, Paris

Alexander G. Davis, Real Estate Markets, Los Angeles

Meir Dominitz, Banking & Finance, New York

Tyler R. Ferguson, Restructuring, Chicago

Wilson Y. W. Fung, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, Hong Kong

Robert W. Hamburg, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, New York

Elspeth Hansen, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, Northern California

Stephanie M. Hurst, Corporate & Securities, Los Angeles

James Kelly, Tax Controversy, New York

Brian L. Kuhl, Banking & Finance, Chicago

Glenn G. Kunkes, Banking & Finance, Charlotte, NC

Stephen Moi, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, London

Jamie R. Netznik, Restructuring, Chicago

Andrew Papworth, Banking & Finance, London

Niketa K. Patel, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, New York

Tarun Patel, Corporate & Securities, London

Christopher Pochon, Corporate & Securities, Chicago

Sean Prior, Banking & Finance, Singapore

Arthur S. Rublin, Banking & Finance, New York

Priscilla Santos, Banking & Finance, São Paulo, Brazil

Gustavo Scheffer da Silveira, Litigation & Dispute Resolution, São Paulo, Brazil

Daniel M. Scher, Banking & Finance, New York

Saqib J. Siddiqui, Intellectual Property, Washington DC

Dr. Jan Streer, Corporate & Securities, Düsseldorf, Germany

Kitty Swanson, Tax Transactions & Consulting, London

Sanjiv J. Tata, Corporate & Securities, New York

Jonathan W. Thomas, Intellectual Property, New York

Michael W. Weigel, Corporate & Securities, Chicago


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