Polsinelli secures 10-strong Maynard Nexsen cybersecurity team

Team including four former Maynard practice leaders joins across Birmingham, Raleigh and New York

Birmingham, Alabama Shutterstock

Am Law 100 firm Polsinelli is building out its cybersecurity and data privacy team with the hire of a nine-lawyer group, including four former practice leaders, from Maynard Nexsen.  

The team is made up of four shareholders, one counsel, four associates and a technology consultant and will join Polsinelli in Birmingham, Alabama; Raleigh, North Carolina; and New York. 

Its members bring experience in cybersecurity and data privacy issues ranging from proactive risk management and compliance counselling to incident response, regulatory investigations and class action litigation.  

The group also offers due diligence advice in transactions for private equity funds and their portfolio companies and Polsinelli said the hire diversified its cybersecurity and privacy practice by adding PE focused practitioners. 

“This is a skilled team with substantial experience addressing the most challenging privacy and data security issues facing businesses today,” said Greg Kratofil, chair of Polsinelli’s technology transactions and data privacy group. “This addition expands our depth and reinforces our commitment to provide clients with industry leading privacy, data security, incident response and privacy litigation services.” 

The four incoming shareholders will all join Polsinelli in Birmingham having been practice leaders at Maynard. John Thomas Malatesta III chaired Maynard’s cybersecurity and privacy practice and brings extensive experience guiding clients through incident response, regulatory investigations and class action litigation. He has defended companies before agencies including the FTC, SEC and European Data Protection Authorities and has litigated multiple data breach cases in the US. 

Meantime Starr Turner Drum led the privacy practice at Maynard and focuses on defending privacy-focused litigation, regulatory investigations and developing globally compliant privacy programmes.  

Sarah Glover has joined Polsinelli after heading Maynard’s proactive cybersecurity team and focuses her practice on cybersecurity risk assessments, data breach response and cybersecurity compliance. 

The final shareholder joining is Adam Griffin, who led Maynard’s cyber incident response practice and guides clients through cyber incidents ranging from “bet the company” ransomware attacks to data leaks and insider threats.  

Also joining in Birmingham are associates Mary Ann Hanke, Todd Panciera and Xeris Gregory and technologist Leanne McAlpine, who works with CISOs and CIOs to support efforts to respond and recover from cyber incidents and offer guidance on how to mature programmes to be more cyber resilient. 

The sole new arrival in Raleigh is counsel Jennifer Bauer, who focuses on global privacy programme design, regulatory compliance and risk reporting, while the team is rounded out by associate Elizabeth Snyder, who joins in New York. The hires take Polsinelli’s technology, cybersecurity and data privacy practice to more than 60 lawyers. 

“Our team is very excited to join Polsinelli,” Malatesta said. “The opportunities this platform creates for our practice and our clients – bench strength, resources, industry position and expertise – will only enhance our service offering.”  

The team’s departure follows the creation of 550-lawyer Maynard Nexsen in April last year through the merger of Alabama-based Maynard Cooper & Gale and Carolinas-based Nexsen Pruet. The combined firm is one of the largest in the Southeastern US and has revenue in the region of $300m, according to Law.com.  

Commenting on the team’s departure for Polsinelli, Maynard Nexsen CEO and managing shareholder, Jeff Grantham, said: “There will always be changes in firms of our size, whether those are departures or hires, and we wish them the best. 

“We’ve recruited 51 lawyers all over the United States since our merger, and they all fit well into our growth strategy. The cyber practice has been part of Maynard Nexsen for more than a decade and will continue to be important for us. Just last week two lateral hires in cybersecurity joined our existing and growing team focused on this area, and we continue to recruit and add to this team as we grow this practice and grow our firm.”

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