Howrey, Reed Smith snap up Thelen teams

Howrey and Reed Smith have become the latest US firms to acquire remnants of collapsed firm Thelen.

Howrey confirmed today (Wednesday 12 November) that it was acquiring the bulk of Thelen’s construction practice, including former Thelen chairman Stephen O’Neal, with the majority of the 40-plus lawyer group based in San Francisco and Washington, DC.

Howrey chairman and CEO, Bob Ruyak said his firm’s new lawyers would particular benefit clients in the energy, transportation and heavy construction sectors.

“The addition of this highly respected team will allow us to expand and service our client base more effectively, combining the skills of top ranked construction lawyers with our insurance recovery group, arbitration and dispute resolution experts, environmental practitioners and litigators,” Ruyak added.

As well as O’Neal, the group also includes Andrew Ness, the managing partner of Thelen’s Washington office and John Heisse, the chair of Thelen’s construction and government contracts department.

“Adding our construction litigation practice to Howrey’s existing strengths in antitrust, intellectual property, insurance recovery, and other areas of complex business litigation is very exciting for us,” said O’Neal. “We were also drawn by Howrey’s international platform. Our work takes us all over the world and we are anxious to make Howrey’s international resources available to our clients.”

At Reed Smith, the firm has hired Thelen’s 14-lawyer renewable energy team. A five-partner team totalling 11 lawyers, including former energy head Ellen Bastier, has joined the San Francisco office while partners Robert Vilter and Eli Mattiolo have joined in New York. Counsel Elizabeth Quirk has also joined Reed Smith, in its Princeton office.