White & Case rebuilds with Wall appointment

<a class=White & Case rebuilds with Wall appointment” />White & Case has appointed former chairman Duane Wall as head of the firm’s global bank advisory practice.

The move is a response to the loss of prominent financial services regulatory partner and former head, Kevin Barnard, who left to join Arnold & Porter with fellow partner Alan Avery today (Wednesday 9 July).

Wall, who stepped down after seven years as White & Case chairman last October assumes his new position immediately.

Washington-headquartered Arnold & Porter announced its hire of the financial services partners earlier today. Both partners worked in White & Case’s New York office.

Although Barnard’s departure in particular will be felt by White & Case, the firm’s appointment of reappointment of Wall to the post he held before becoming chairman suggests the firm has acted rapidly to deal with the loss.

“Naturally, we regret Kevin and Alan have left us,” said Wall. “They are excellent lawyers and well-liked colleagues, and we wish them both all the best in their new roles. [But] the bank advisory practice in New York and worldwide remains extremely strong, with more than 15 partners in New York alone and strength across the board.”

Barnard is widely recognised as one of the top financial services regulatory lawyers in the US. The former management board member was also in the running for the role of White & Case chairman last year, a position that ultimately went to Hugh Verrier.

Prior to entering private practice, Barnard had several senior positions including general counsel of the New York State Banking Department. He joins Arnold & Porter as co-head of the firm’s financial services practice, along with New York-based partner, Patrick Doyle.

Commenting on the arrival of the group, Arnold & Porter chairman, Tom Milch said it was “a wonderful development” for his firm.

“Combining Kevin and Alan’s in-depth regulatory experience, particularly with foreign banks, with the strength of our existing top-ranked financial services regulatory group, will provide our global banking clients with deep expertise on a broad range of issues in the US,” Milch added.

The pair’s high-profile departure from White & Case follows that of two of its most successful finance partners, Maurice Allen and Mike Goetz, who left for Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in March (www.thelawyer.com, 11 March).