Press Releases

Sheppard Mullin Elects Eleven Attorneys To Partnership

February 11, 2009

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP is pleased to announce that the firm has elevated eleven of its attorneys to partner.  The eleven new partners are Elizabeth S. Balfour (San Diego/Del Mar), Daniel L. Brown (New York), Geoffrey D. DeBoskey (Los Angeles), David E. Heisey (San Diego/Del Mar), Ronda D. Jamgotchian (Century City), Whitney Jones Roy (Los Angeles), Ori Katz (San Francisco), Seth (Byoung Soo) Kim (New York), Kyle J. Mathews (Los Angeles), Deborah M. Shelton (Washington, D.C.) and Beni Surpin (San Diego/Del Mar). 

"We are proud to expand the Sheppard Mullin partnership with these eleven outstanding attorneys.  Our newest partners have distinguished themselves through their achievements, enthusiasm and dedication to clients," said Guy N. Halgren, chairman of the firm. 

Elizabeth Balfour, in the firm's Business Trial practice group in the San Diego/Del Mar office, handles complex commercial and securities litigation.  Balfour is experienced in all aspects of litigation, arbitration, and mediation, representing technology and life sciences companies in cases involving contract disputes, unfair competition, breach of fiduciary duty, theft of trade secrets, and products liability.  She handles class action and creditor's rights cases for financial institutions and funds, and has appeared in state and federal courts, NASD arbitrations, and Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement proceedings.  Balfour's practice also involves advising clients on internal investigations, document retention, and electronic discovery.  She received her J.D., cum laude, from Harvard Law School in 1999 and her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, from Yale University in 1996.

Dan Brown, a member of the firm's Antitrust practice group, is based in the firm's New York office.  Brown regularly handles high stakes, complex, commercial disputes on behalf of his clients on a wide variety of subject matters, including breach of contract, fraud, fiduciary duties, securities, hotel owner and manager disputes, intellectual property, discrimination, and class actions.  His experience includes litigation and alternative dispute resolution in many forums, including federal, state, and bankruptcy courts in New York, where he has successfully argued cases before the Appellate Division, First Department, and Second Circuit Court of Appeals.  While in law school, Brown interned in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York for former United States Attorney General, the Honorable Michael B. Mukasey.  He received his law degree from Fordham University School of Law in 1998 and his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan in 1993.

Geoff DeBoskey, in the firm's Labor and Employment practice group in the Los Angeles office, specializes in class action defense litigation and he has specifically defended employers against charges of wage and hour violations; race, age and sex discrimination; federal consent decree compliance allegations; retaliatory discharge in violation of public policy; family and medical leave violations, and sexual harassment.  DeBoskey also provides counseling and advice to clients and has specific experience under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, California’s wage and hour laws, the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and the California and federal WARN acts.  He clerked for the Honorable Kim McLane Wardlaw of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and received his J.D., order of the coif, from the University of Southern California in 2000 as well as his undergraduate degrees, with honors, from the University of California at Davis in 1997.

David Heisey is a member of the firm's Intellectual Property practice group and based in the San Diego/Del Mar office.  Heisey's practice is devoted to the representation of life sciences and high technology clients with extensive experience in patent portfolio development and patent infringement litigation.  He also has significant experience in opinion and counseling, due diligence, licensing, and trademark matters.  Heisey is a registered patent attorney with experience in prosecution of patents in a variety of technologies, recently representing clients that include Open Energy Corporation, Quantum Corporation, Mitek Systems, Inc., Nextec Applications, Inc., MasterCard International, CODAN US Corporation, Transonic Combustion, Clean Energy Fuels Corporation and SynergEyes, Inc.  Heisey received his law degree from Loyola University of Chicago in 1998 and his undergraduate degree from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1993.

Ronda Jamgotchian, in the firm's Labor and Employment practice group in the Century City office, has defended employers against a variety of employment-based charges, including allegations of harassment, retaliation, and discrimination based on age, race, sex, national origin, and disability, as well as claims for wage and hour violations, breach of contract, denial of medical leave, and wrongful termination.  Jamgotchian has appeared in both state and federal court, and before administrative agencies including the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement, and the Workers' Compensation Appeals Board.  She received her J.D., order of the coif, magna cum laude, from University of California, Hastings College of the Law in 1998 and her undergraduate degree from California State University, Fullerton in 1994.

Whitney Jones Roy is a member of the Business Trial practice group and based in the firm's Los Angeles office.  Roy specializes in business litigation, with experience that includes representing clients in a variety of business disputes and against claims of fraud, breach of fiduciary duties, breach of contract, unfair business practices, negligence, nuisance and trespass.  She has also developed a specialty in litigation relating to Proposition 65, CERCLA, and products liability, and has also been involved in insurance litigation, environmental litigation, and defending class action lawsuits.  Roy's cases have related to a broad spectrum of industries including financial institutions, insurance, securities trading, real estate, oil, and pharmaceuticals.  She received her law degree from University of Southern California in 2000 and her undergraduate degrees, cum laude, from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1997.

Ori Katz, in the firm's Finance and Bankruptcy practice group in the San Francisco office, specializes in business bankruptcies and creditors' rights.  Katz has represented debtors, individual creditors, creditors' committees, parties purchasing assets out of bankruptcy and parties involved in bankruptcy litigation, as well as chapter 11 debtors in a wide range of industries, including real estate, retail, construction, biotech, telecommunications and internet businesses.  He has also represented lenders in connection with loan workouts, restructurings and foreclosures.  Katz externed to the Honorable Lynne Riddle, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the Central District of California and to the Honorable William C. Hillman, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the District of Boston, Massachusetts.  He received his J.D., magna cum laude, from Boston University in 2000 and his undergraduate degree from University of California, Santa Barbara in 1996.

Seth Kim is a member of the firm's Finance and Bankruptcy practice group and based in New York.  Kim specializes in commercial law, bankruptcy, bank regulatory matters and bank acquisition transactions: including commercial lending transactions, asset-based finance, commercial paper, asset securitization, swaps, options and OTC derivatives, total return swaps and other structured derivative programs, and matters concerning Federal, New York and California banking laws.  He has represented U.S. and non-U.S. financial institutions before the major Federal bank regulatory agencies, the New York State Banking Department, and the California Department of Financial Institutions.  He received his law degree, order of the coif, from George Washington University in 1998, graduate degree from University of Texas, Austin in 1994 and his undergraduate degree from Seoul National University in 1989.

Kyle Mathews, in the firm's Finance and Bankruptcy practice group in the Los Angeles office, specializes in the area of workouts, restructuring and commercial lending, mainly representing financial institutions. Mathews' practice includes: problem loan workouts, restructurings, foreclosures and bankruptcies; sales and liquidations of assets; single lender and syndicated senior secured financing, acquisition and working capital loans.  He chairs the Programs Sub-Committee, Trust Indentures and Indenture Trustees Committee, Section on Business Law, American Bar Association and is a member of the Syndications and Lender Relations Sub-Committee, Commercial Financial Services Committee, Section on Business Law, American Bar Association.  Mathews received his J.D. in 2001 and undergraduate degree in 1998 from University of Southern California.

Deborah Shelton is a member of the firm's Business Trial practice group, Food and Drug Law group and based in the Washington, D.C. office.  Shelton concentrates her practice in the area of FDA and DEA law, with a particular emphasis on drugs, biological products, and medical devices.  She counsels manufacturers and distributors of drugs, biological products and medical devices on issues related to all phases of product development and approval, from the investigational stage to regulatory compliance and post-marketing.  Shelton also provides counseling on the DEA regulation of controlled substances and precursor chemicals.  She devotes a significant portion of her practice to advising pharmaceutical companies on market exclusivities, such as new chemical entity, orphan drug, and pediatric exclusivities.  She received her law degree, with honors, in 1998 and her undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, in 1994 from University of Maryland. 

Beni Surpin, in the firm's Intellectual Property practice group in the San Diego/Del Mar office, specializes in counseling companies in the telecom, medical devices, life sciences and high-tech industries on legal and business issues relating to intellectual property, technology and commercial transactions.  Surpin assists private and public companies in protecting, exploiting and transferring their intellectual property portfolios in a way that allows them to optimize their technology and other assets.  His specific expertise in intellectual property transactions include licenses, collaborations, research, development, clinical, services, outsourcing, manufacturing, supply and distribution agreements, technology acquisitions and the formation of joint ventures and other types of strategic partnerships.  Surpin received his LL.M., honors, from Cambridge University (Jesus College) in 1997 and his law degree, honors, from Oxford University (St. Edmund Hall) in 1995.

About Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP

Sheppard Mullin is a full service AmLaw 100 firm with more than 560 attorneys in 11 offices located throughout California and in New York, Washington, D.C. and Shanghai.  The firm's California offices are located in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Santa Barbara, Century City, Orange County, Del Mar Heights and San Diego.  Founded in 1927 on the principle that the firm would succeed only if its attorneys delivered prompt, high quality and cost-effective legal services, Sheppard Mullin provides legal counsel to U.S. and international clients.  Companies turn to Sheppard Mullin to handle a full range of corporate and technology matters, high stakes litigation and complex financial transactions.  In the U.S., the firm's clients include more than half of the Fortune 100 companies.