Insights
Firm News

Farella Braun + Martel Names New Practice Area Leaders

February 15, 2011 Announcement

SAN FRANCISCO, February 15, 2011 - Farella Braun + Martel announces new practice area leaders.  Partner Thomas Mayhew was named chair of the Business Litigation practice, Partner Samuel C. Dibble was named chair of the Business Transactions practice, Partner Matthew J. Lewis has stepped up to chair the Distressed Assets practice, Partners David J. Lazerwitz and David Stoll were appointed to co-chair the Renewable Energy and Clean Technologies practice, and Partner Barbara A. Murphy was tapped to chair the Exempt Organizations practice.

"The new practice chairs are strong leaders and exemplify the evolution of the next generation of leadership at Farella. They will continue to build on the strengths and successes of these core practice areas," said firm managing partner, Steve Lowenthal.

Mayhew is a trial lawyer who represents companies and individuals in high-stakes business disputes.  He represents both plaintiffs and defendants from the Bay Area's leading industries in cases involving breach of contract, fraud, negligent misrepresentation and other business torts.  He has significant class action experience, litigating more than 20 class actions including claims of false advertising, corporate breach of fiduciary duty and federal securities law.  He serves on the Board of Governors for the Association of Business Trial Lawyers for Northern California.   Mayhew earned his J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law (1995).

Dibble's business transaction practice focuses on corporate transactions, including leveraged buy-outs, asset sales and other types of mergers and acquisitions.  He has extensive experience in corporate finance, having worked on transactions ranging from PIPEs and other private placements to complex convertible debt and equity securities.  His practice also includes advising boards of directors and special committees of public companies in the context of mergers, acquisitions and other significant transactions.  Dibble holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation, and prior to his career as an attorney he was a financial consultant.  He recently served as co-chair of the Corporations Committee of the State Bar of California.  Dibble earned his J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law (1998).

Lewis represents businesses in securities, corporate and commercial transactions, private and public company mergers and acquisitions, structuring and restructuring, and structured, real estate and commercial finance.  He represents both borrowers and lenders in commercial and real estate financings transactions, structured financings and Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) matters, with an emphasis on secured transactions.  He provides advice on creditor and debtor rights issues, including workouts, reorganizations and restructurings, collections, repossessions and rights in bankruptcy, in technology, real estate, construction, agriculture, and other industries.  He is also a member of the firm's Wine Industry Practice.  Lewis received his J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School (1984).

Lazerwitz represents and counsels public and private clients in environmental and natural resources compliance, permitting and litigation matters.  His clients include renewable energy, water services, agricultural, winery and manufacturing firms, and his practice focuses on water quality, wetlands, environmental impact analysis, endangered species and federal public lands issues.  He has extensive experience in counseling clients in all aspects of project and site development from orchestrating overall permitting strategies to securing individual permits and approvals.  He previously served as an attorney in the Environmental and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice and has significant federal and state court litigation experience, including more than a dozen federal appellate arguments in environmental cases.  Lazerwitz earned his J.D. from the Indiana University School of Law (1995).

Stoll's diverse transactional practice includes representing start-up and emerging growth companies with all aspects of corporate and LLC formation, governance and financing strategies, mergers and acquisitions, as well as strategic partnering and technology sharing arrangements.  He also has significant experience working with solar manufacturing and project development companies, including the acquisition and sale of development projects.  In addition he counsels clients on development, exploitation and protection of intellectual property, and maintains an active role in the firm's Wine Industry Practice.  Stoll received his J.D. from Stanford University (1998).

Murphy's practice emphasizes taxation issues and organizing and advising tax-exempt organizations, including major public charities and private foundations, on entity formation, business planning, tax planning and applicable agency filings.  She is also an experienced trusts and estates attorney counseling clients on estate planning, estate and gift taxation, trust and estate administration, and compliance review of individual and trust tax returns.  Murphy earned her LL.M. in taxation from Golden Gate University School of Law (1998) and her J.D. from the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law (1992).

Farella Braun + Martel represents clients throughout the United States and abroad in sophisticated business transactions and high-stakes commercial, civil and criminal litigation. Founded in 1962, the firm is headquartered in San Francisco and maintains an office in the Napa Valley focused on the wine industry. Farella Braun + Martel lawyers are known for their imaginative legal solutions, dynamism and intellectual creativity. With an unwavering service ethic and interdisciplinary team approach, the firm is committed to advancing clients' objectives in the most effective, coordinated and efficient manner. Farella Braun + Martel is a green business. www.fbm.com 

Contacts:
Melinda Hepp / Traci Stuart                              
Blattel Communications                                    
415.397.4811                         
[email protected] / [email protected]           

Cheryl Loof
Farella Braun + Martel 
415.954.4433
[email protected]

Firm Highlights

Publication

Top 10 Practical Business Implications Arising From the Passage of the CPRA

California’s Proposition 24 passed as expected, and the new California Privacy Rights Act will change the privacy landscape created by the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA), which went into effect only months ago. While...

Read More
Publication

Battery Energy Storage Systems Integrated in Solar Facilities To Receive Tax Incentives

Intermittency is one of the largest issues impeding increased reliance on energy from utility-scale renewable energy generation sources such as wind and solar. Battery energy storage systems (“BESSs”) can alleviate concerns related to intermittency...

Read More
Publication

Permitting Utility-Scale Battery Energy Storage Projects: Lessons From California

The increasing mandates and incentives for the rapid deployment of energy storage are resulting in a boom in the deployment of utility-scale battery energy storage systems (BESS). In the first installment of our series...

Read More
Publication

PG&E Bankruptcy: Lessons Learned and a Path Forward

Farella's Unplugged Renewable Energy Series features Nick Moore (moderator) and Gary Kaplan (panelist) discussing "PG&E Bankruptcy: Lessons Learned and a Path Forward." The California power giant, PG&E, has emerged from the country’s largest utility bankruptcy proceeding as...

Read More
Publication

CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program Summary (Updated)

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) aims to provide qualifying small businesses, nonprofit organizations, veterans organizations, tribal businesses, sole proprietors, and independent contractors forgivable loans of...

Read More
Publication

Breaking up the Patent Monopoly for the Benefit of Batteries

The patent monopoly is at odds with the global need for battery storage technology. As the world mobilizes towards climate change solutions, companies with battery patents will face increasing pressure to share this critical...

Read More
Publication

Engineering, Procurement and Construction Agreements for Utility-Scale Battery Projects

The negotiation of an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) agreement for a battery energy storage systems (BESS) project typically surfaces many of the same contractual risk allocation issues that one encounters in the negotiation...

Read More
Publication

Batteries, Bankruptcies and the Future of Renewable Energy

The Growth of Renewable Energy Renewable energy sources have been rapidly deployed across the nation for more than a decade. In addition to government mandates in California and other states promoting renewable energy, federal...

Read More
Publication

Battery Energy Storage Systems Series

The increasing mandates and incentives for the rapid deployment of energy storage are resulting in a boom in the deployment of utility-scale battery energy storage systems (BESS), presenting both challenges and opportunities for energy developers...

Read More
Publication

Renewable Energy Roundtable Update in the Wake of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in widespread disruption of business and industry across California, including the state’s vibrant renewable energy and energy storage industry. Farella Braun + Martel attorneys are tracking developments and advising...

Read More