Cozen O’Connor Picks Up 16 Lawyers From Buchanan Ingersoll

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By Gayle Cinquegrani

Cozen O’Connor added 16 labor and employment lawyers from Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney to beef up its Philadelphia office and its new Pittsburgh office, Cozen announced May 8.

With the addition, Cozen will add a railway labor practice and strengthen its immigration practice.

“We now have labor and employment attorneys in every region of the country,” Joe Tilson, co-chair of Cozen’s labor and employment department, told Bloomberg BNA May 8. “We’re going to be one of the few full-service firms that also will have a national footprint in the law and employment space, which will make us unique.”

“We fully expected these departures and have already taken the appropriate steps, as we move on,” Buchanan Ingersoll Chief Executive Officer Joseph A. Dougherty said in a statement May 8. “While most of these attorneys are from our Labor & Employment section, strong assets and core shareholders remain as part of the 50-attorney practice group who can meet any of our clients’ needs.”

Co-Chairs to Head Employment Section

Cozen’s expanded labor and employment department will be headed by current chair Tilson in Chicago and Tom Giotto, former chair of Buchanan Ingersoll’s labor and employment section, in Pittsburgh.

Of the five attorneys joining Cozen in the Pittsburgh office it launched May 3, Giotto, Peter Ennis, Brian Balonick and Joseph Quinn join as members. Bobbi Britton Tucker joins as counsel.

Eleven lawyers are joining Cozen’s Philadelphia headquarters office. Fred D’Angelo Jr., Robert Hawkins, David Hackett, Frances Rayer, Elizabeth Malloy, Michael Hanlon, James Sullivan, Lauren Fox, Joseph Sirbak II and Andrew Rolfes join as members, and Anna Will Kentz joins as an associate.

Hawkins will establish a new railway labor practice at Cozen, which will include Rolfes and Sirbak. Rayer, who represents clients seeking to employ foreign nationals in the U.S., is expected to strengthen Cozen’s immigration practice.

A Strategic Plan

“Part of our strategic plan has been to build a truly national labor and employment law practice” with labor and employment lawyers throughout the country “so we have boots on the ground to serve our clients,” Tilson said. The new lawyers came after a “lengthy dialogue spanning many months,” he said.

Giotto described the move as “a very natural, easy transition” and said he and the other lawyers arriving at Cozen will “miss our friends at Buchanan.” He said many of the Buchanan Ingersoll lawyers used to practice with the Cozen lawyers at a firm called Klett Rooney Lieber and Schorling. When Buchanan Ingersoll acquired that firm in 2006, a few of the Klett Rooney lawyers joined Cozen because conflicts prevented them from joining Buchanan Ingersoll.

Bloomberg Law’s Litigation Analytics shows 7.1 percent of Cozen’s federal court appearances during the past five years were for labor and employment law cases. For Buchanan Ingersoll, the amount was 10 percent.

To contact the reporter on this story: Gayle Cinquegrani in Washington at gcinquegrani@bna.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Tony Harris in Washington at tharris@bna.com

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