Sheppard Mullin Announces 2022 Partner Class
Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP is pleased to announce that 24 attorneys have been promoted to partner. The 2022 Partner Class includes Michael J. Baranovic (Washington, D.C.), Michael T. Campbell (Century City), John G. Crisp (Orange County), Brian S. Fong (San Francisco), Robert Gorzelany (New York), Linda Igarashi (Orange County), Sean J. Kirby (New York), Erica J. Kraus (Washington, D.C.), Ryan J. Krueger (Los Angeles), Jared K. LeBeau (San Diego), Aaron Levy (New York), Jeffrey Liang (Silicon Valley), Matthew A. McCalip (Dallas), Abby Meyer (Orange County), Peter D. Park (Los Angeles), Yasamin Parsafar (San Francisco), David M. Poell (Chicago), Cedric A. Powell (Washington, D.C.), Tenaya Rodewald (Silicon Valley), Jesse A. Salen (Del Mar – San Diego), Paul Seeley (Los Angeles), Aerin A. Snow (Century City), Nora Stilestein (Los Angeles), and Danielle Vrabie (New York). The promotions are effective March 1, 2022.
"Each one of our new partners is an excellent lawyer and critical advisor to our clients, and they all represent the drive, teamwork, and commitment to quality of service that are engrained in our Sheppard Mullin culture,” said Sheppard Mullin chair Luca Salvi. “The Partner Class of 2022 is the largest in the firm’s history, which is a testament to our strong and consistent strategic growth. We could not be more thrilled to welcome these incredible people to the partnership.”
Meet Sheppard Mullin’s 2022 Partner Class:
Michael J. Baranovic is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and is based in the Washington, D.C. office. He represents private equity sponsors, their portfolio companies, other business borrowers and financial institutions (including bank and non-bank lenders) in connection with a wide variety of debt finance matters, including syndicated credit facilities, acquisition financings, cash flow financings, asset-based financings, and mezzanine financings. Mike also helps clients navigate loan workouts and other special or distressed situations and routinely advises regarding the debt finance aspects of M&A transactions as well as general corporate governance matters. He received his B.A. from Wake Forest University and his J.D., with honors, from Emory University School of Law.
Michael T. Campbell is a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment practice group and the Entertainment, Technology and Advertising practice group and is based in the Century City office. Michael represents employers in all aspects of labor and employment litigation. He has successfully litigated and obtained complete defense awards in arbitration, obtained summary judgment in state and federal court, as well as favorably resolved cases involving allegations of harassment, discrimination, retaliation, and wrongful termination. He is also experienced in representing employers in class, collective, and representative actions and single plaintiff wage-and-hour matters involving claims relating to overtime, meal periods and rest breaks, misclassification, inaccurate wage statements, and other derivative claims. In the entertainment industry, Michael represents producers and distributors of feature films, television shows, commercials and new media, principally in their dealings with unions and guilds. Michael received his B.F.A., magna cum laude, from Chapman University and his J.D. from the University of Southern California, where he was notes editor for the Interdisciplinary Law Journal. During law school, Michael clerked for the United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of California.
John G. Crisp is a member of the firm’s Tax practice group and is based in the Orange County office. John is also a member of the Private Equity and Healthcare teams. He represents clients in a broad range of transactional tax matters, including domestic mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, capital markets transactions and tax matters particular to partnerships and joint ventures. John provides federal income tax advice, from pre-transaction structuring and planning to post-closing implementation, and negotiates complex tax issues on behalf of his clients. John regularly counsels private equity groups on the purchase and sale of operating companies. He earned his B.A. from Brigham Young University; his J.D., cum laude, Order of the Coif, from Pepperdine University; and his LL.M. in Taxation from New York University.
Brian S. Fong is a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment practice group and is based in the San Francisco office. In litigation, Brian focuses his practice on the defense of employers against all aspects of employment-related claims, including harassment, discrimination, and wage-and-hour disputes. He also advises employers of all sizes and business in proactive preventative measures to improve employee relations, minimize exposure to litigation risks, develop workplace policies regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion, and prevention of sexual harassment. Brian provides management and employee training on diversity, equity, and inclusion, conducts equity audits, and regularly presents on employment-related topics, including sexual harassment prevention, conducting workplace investigations, effectively dealing with leaves of absence, and social media in the workplace. Prior to the practice of law, Brian oversaw network and information systems technology for an architectural planning firm. Brian received his B.A. from the University of California, Santa Cruz and his J.D., cum laude, from the University of San Diego, where he was Comments Editor for San Diego Law Review and Senior Executive Editor for Journal of Contemporary Legal Issues.
Robert Gorzelany is a member of the firm’s Real Estate, Land Use and Environmental practice group and is based in the New York office. He focuses on commercial leasing, regularly representing both landlords and tenants in New York City and nationally. In addition to owners and operators on the landlord side, his clients include financial service companies, hedge funds, retail, media, healthcare/medical, sports, fashion, and publishing industry companies on the tenant side. In addition, Robert advises those in joint ventures, acquisition/dispositions (including office, industrial, multifamily, and retail properties), and construction matters. He received his B.A. from Williams College and his J.D. from Fordham University School of Law where he was a member of the Fordham International Law Journal.
Linda Igarashi is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and is based in the Orange County office. She is also a member of the firm’s Healthcare, Private Equity, Food and Beverage, and Latin America teams. Linda represents public and private companies, private equity firms, strategic investors and financial institutions. Her practice encompasses mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, private equity investments, business formation and structuring, and general corporate governance matters. She also represents clients in cross-border transactions, particularly in Latin America, and is fluent in Spanish. Prior to her legal career, Linda worked as a financial analyst with the Federal Reserve Bank and as a risk management consultant at Deloitte. Linda co-leads Sheppard Mullin’s Orange County Diversity and Inclusion Working Group. She received her B.A., with honors, from the University of California, Berkeley; her B.S. from the University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business; her M.P.A. from Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government; and her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Sean Kirby is a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment practice group and is based in the New York office. He defends single plaintiff and class action discrimination, wrongful discharge and wage-and-hour claims, in addition to employment contract, restrictive covenant, whistleblower, sexual harassment and related claims. He represents clients in labor and employment litigation in federal and state courts, in arbitrations before the American Arbitration Association and the Financial Industry Regulation Authority, and in proceedings before various administrative agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the U.S. Department of Labor and state agencies throughout the United States. Sean also counsels domestic and international clients on day-to-day workplace employment issues. In addition to his employment litigation and counseling practice, Sean has a subspecialty in Title III Americans with Disabilities Act access litigation, where he not only focuses on all aspects of litigation but also counsels his clients in accessibility compliance both as to architectural barriers in brick and mortar locations and website, mobile applications and similar technologies. Sean received his B.A., cum laude, from LeMoyne College and his J.D., cum laude, from Fordham University.
Erica Kraus is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and Healthcare team and is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Erica represents healthcare entities in regulatory compliance matters, including with respect to federal and state fraud and abuse laws and reimbursement requirements. Her practice focuses on navigating complex and evolving regulatory demands and resolving compliance challenges to allow clients to achieve their business and operational goals. She provides clients with counseling on operations, new ventures, and strategic transactions, support in developing compliance programs and protocols and managing internal investigations, assistance in responding to government investigations, and representation in False Claims Act litigation. She also has extensive experience with value-based care arrangements, and the unique regulatory requirements and flexibilities applicable to value-based care, and leverages her background in health policy to help clients maximize opportunities in the changing healthcare landscape. She received her B.A., with highest distinction, from the University of Virginia; her J.D., magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School; and her A.M. in Health Policy from Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.
Ryan Krueger is a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment practice group and is based in the Los Angeles office. Ryan specializes in labor and employment matters on behalf of employers, including defending wage-and-hour class actions and PAGA matters, defending employment discrimination, wrongful termination, and sexual harassment claims, and counseling employers regarding California and federal employment law issues. He has experience in all aspects of employment litigation, including brief writing and oral argument, taking and defending depositions and negotiating settlements. He has also second- chaired multiple trials and arbitrations, and argued before the California Court of Appeal. He received his B.A., with distinction, from the University of Wisconsin and his J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles. During law school, Ryan served as extern to the Honorable Morton Denlow, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
Jared LeBeau is a member of the firm’s Business Trial practice group and is based in the San Diego office. Jared focuses on insurance litigation, in particular first-party and third-party insurance bad faith (including failure to defend and/or settle lawsuits), coverage disputes, class actions, insurance fraud, and unfair business practices. He has represented insurance companies at all stages of litigation, including depositions, case-dispositive hearings, mediations, and substantial arbitration and trial experience. Jared also advises clients on issues related to general claims handling and investigation, policy interpretation, as well as defense and indemnity obligations. He received his B.S., summa cum laude, from Marist College and his J.D., magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, from the University of San Diego School of Law, where he was a member and editor of the San Diego Law Review.
Aaron Levy is a member of the firm’s Finance and Bankruptcy practice group and is based in the New York office. He is also a member of the Derivatives and Structured Products team. Aaron represents major banks, broker-dealers, asset managers, investment funds, and end-users in a range of derivatives and structured products transactions, including financial and commodity swaps, tender option bonds, structured repos and risk retention financings. He has extensive experience with structuring, documenting and negotiating both exchange traded and OTC derivatives transactions in all major underlying markets with a particular focus on the energy and other commodity, equity, interest rate and credit markets. Aaron has extensive experience in the secondary municipal markets in which he regularly acts for the most significant market participants. He has particular expertise in counseling dealers and end-users on the strategic and regulatory implications of the Dodd-Frank Act, Basel standards and other laws and regulations of the CFTC, the SEC and the federal banking regulators affecting the derivatives industry. He received his B.A., cum laude, from Dartmouth College and his J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Jeffrey Liang is a member of the firm’s Intellectual Property practice group and is based in the Silicon Valley office. Jeff handles complex intellectual property disputes with a focus on cryptography, digital rights management, streaming media, video codecs and standards, computer architecture, and semiconductors. Jeff has years of prior experience as an engineer at Intel Corporation, where he worked on the launch of PCIe graphics. Now, as a seasoned patent litigator, Jeff combines his engineering background with his experience as a first-chair litigator in IPR proceedings to provide an integrated vision for winning cases. Jeff has represented clients in district court litigation in California, Delaware, Texas and Wisconsin, and he has represented clients in dozens of IPR proceedings. In addition to IP litigation, Jeffrey advises clients on technology transactions, including licensing agreements and negotiations. Jeff received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas and his J.D., high honors, Order of the Coif, from the University of Texas, where he was Associate Editor of the Texas Law Review.
Matthew McCalip is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and is based in the Dallas office. He is also a member of the firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions and Healthcare teams. Matt focuses on a variety of complex business transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, partnerships and corporate restructurings, and provides day-to-day corporate counsel to clients. He represents businesses, entrepreneurs and private equity firms in all stages of development, including startup companies in their infancy, middle-market players and large public and/or multinational companies. He is particularly experienced in advising clients and executing deals in the healthcare, private equity, software, technology, manufacturing, real estate, retail and entertainment/media industry sectors. He received his B.A. from Brigham Young University and his J.D., cum laude, from Creighton University School of Law, where he was assistant editor of the Creighton Law Review.
Abby Meyer is a member of the firm’s Business Trial practice group and is based in the Orange County office. She is also a member of the firm’s Food and Beverage, Class Action Defense, ESG, Cannabis and Retail teams. A seasoned litigator, Abby specializes in defending against consumer class actions targeting the food and beverage industry, specifically product information found on the labels of packaged goods or associated advertising materials, and in litigating complex civil business disputes. She has also defended clients against alleged slack fill, underfill, Proposition 65, and health halo class actions. In addition, Abby advises companies on whether their product labels are compliant with FDA regulations and other law (such as the FTC Green Guides and parallel state laws). She double-majored at the University of Southern California, where she received her B.A., magna cum laude, in Italian and in Cinema-Television (Critical Studies), and she received her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles. During law school, Abby served as extern to the Honorable Andrew J. Wistrich of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
Peter D. Park is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and is based in the Los Angeles office. He is also a member of the firm’s Aerospace & Defense, Cannabis, Emerging Companies & Venture Capital, Financial Services and Private Equity teams. Peter’s practice focuses on advising private and public companies, private equity funds and their portfolio companies on a broad range of corporate transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, minority investments, joint ventures, equity arrangements and corporate governance matters. He represents clients in a variety of industry sectors, including aerospace and defense, auto dealerships, business services, cannabis, consumer products, environmental services, financial services, food and beverage, lead generation, life sciences, software and technology, and manufacturing. Peter received his B.A., with distinction, from Yale University and his J.D. from Columbia Law School where he was a James Kent Scholar and a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar.
Yasamin Parsafar is a member of the firm’s Intellectual Property practice group and is based in the San Francisco office. She is also the co-leader of the firm’s Blockchain & Fintech team. Yasamin counsels clients on intellectual property acquisition, protection and enforcement strategies. She frequently advises blockchain-based emerging companies on various issues related to non-fungible tokens as well as cryptocurrencies. She manages international trademark portfolios and prosecutes trademark matters before the USPTO and the TTAB. Yasamin’s practice focuses on increasing her client’s intellectual property strength while managing risks and positioning them to succeed in the event of a dispute. She strategically enforces and defends her clients’ rights on a global scale, including, when necessary, litigating complex commercial claims involving copyright, trademark, trade dress, false advertising, and patent disputes in federal courts nationwide. She received both her B.S., highest honors, and her J.D., Order of the Coif, from the University of California, Davis.
David M. Poell is a member of the firm’s Business Trial practice group and is based in the Chicago office. David represents companies in a variety of class actions, multi-district litigations and other complex commercial litigation matters in state and federal courts. He specializes in defending corporate clients in high-stakes litigation matters involving federal consumer-protection statutes, privacy torts, unfair business practices, false advertising claims, and large-scale data breaches. He is also particularly experienced in prosecuting and defending actions involving the enforcement of restrictive covenants and non-competes, deceptive trade practices, misappropriation of trade secrets, the Lanham Act, and unfair competition. David further advises companies regarding privacy matters and provides counseling on compliance with FCC, FTC and state-specific rules and regulations. He received his B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of Notre Dame and his J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Michigan, where he was executive editor of the Michigan Law Review.
Cedric A. Powell is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and is based in the Washington, D.C. office. Cedric practices in the areas of corporate law and mergers and acquisitions. He represents private and public companies and private equity firms and their portfolio companies in corporate and transactional matters, including mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and securities offerings. He has extensive expertise in acquisition transactions on behalf of private equity firms and other buy-out sponsors, as well as firms in the aerospace and defense, government services, national security, technology, manufacturing, consumer packaged goods, retail, transportation and healthcare industries. He received his B.B.A., magna cum laude, from Howard University and his J.D., cum laude, from Southern Methodist University.
Tenaya Rodewald is a member of the firm’s Business Trial and Privacy and Cybersecurity practice groups and is based in the Silicon Valley office. Tenaya’s practice focuses on intellectual property (including copyright, trade secret and patent litigation), media law, defamation defense and First Amendment litigation. She has represented media clients, online content distributors, software and computer hardware manufacturers, nonprofits, and others in litigation in state and federal court. Tenaya also advises clients of all sizes on legal issues related to U.S. and E.U. privacy laws. She is a nationally-recognized media and First Amendment lawyer and was awarded The American Lawyer’s 2020 Tony Mauro Media Lawyer Award recognizing her zealous advocacy for freedom of the press and the James Madison Freedom of Information Award from the Society of Professional Journalists, NorCal Chapter. She also received Sheppard Mullin’s Bob Gerber Pro Bono Attorney of the Year in 2019 for her work on a series of cases protecting the public’s right to know about police uses of force and misconduct in California. She received her B.A., highest honors, from the University of California, Berkeley; her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of California, San Diego; and her J.D., cum laude, from New York University School of Law.
Jesse A. Salen is a member of the firm’s Intellectual Property practice group and is based in the San Diego (Del Mar) office. Jesse focuses on intellectual property litigation, trademark prosecution, copyright prosecution, patent prosecution and intellectual property licensing in the areas of healthcare information technology, software, medical devices, optics, nanotechnology, computer devices and data storage. He litigates patent, trademark, copyright and trade secret cases in federal district court as well as in front of the Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO’s) Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) and Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB). Prior to his legal career, Jesse was the Chief Technology Officer at ONRAD, Inc., a product manager at GE Healthcare, a systems engineer at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and a research and development engineer at Micron Corporation. He received his B.A., cum laude, in Physics from Boston University; his M.B.A. from the University of California, Irvine, where he was a Dean’s Scholar and member of the Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society; and his J.D., magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, from the University of San Diego, where he was an Appellate Clinic Outstanding Legal Intern.
Paul Seeley is a member of the firm’s Business Trial practice group and is based in the Los Angeles office. Paul has experience in business litigation matters, including real property claims, consumer class actions and partnership/member disputes. He advises his clients in all aspects of litigation, from pre-litigation dispute resolution, to filing and responding to complaints, to seeking or opposing pre-judgment remedies (including temporary restraining orders, preliminary injunctions, and receiverships), through summary judgment, trial, post-trial motions, and enforcement of judgments. A large part of Paul’s practice focuses on the trial or resolution of real estate (including landlord/tenant) disputes and corporate conflicts. Paul also defends against class action complaints, particularly consumer class actions alleging false advertising, unfair competition, and violations of California’s consumer protection laws. Paul is deeply invested in the firm’s pro bono activities and was awarded Sheppard Mullin’s Bob Gerber Pro Bono Attorney of the Year in 2012 for his work in assisting clients in their adoptions of children in California’s foster care system. He received his B.A., summa cum laude, from Occidental College, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, and his J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Aerin A. Snow is a member of the firm’s Corporate practice group and is based in the Century City office. Aerin focuses on mergers and acquisitions, and advising public and private companies in a variety of other corporate transactions, including recapitalizations, equity financings, joint ventures and corporate governance, with a focus on the media and entertainment industries. Aerin also has extensive experience with private equity transactions and debt financing arrangements in a range of industries. Aerin received her B.A., magna cum laude, from Georgetown University and her J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and a James Kent Scholar.
Nora Stilestein is a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment practice group and is based in the Los Angeles office. Nora represents employers in every stage of the litigation process, in California and federal courts and in arbitration. She has significant experience defending wage-and-hour class actions and PAGA actions, has defeated class certification motions, and has successfully defended class and PAGA claims at trial. Nora has also had success before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal, which affirmed summary judgment for a restaurant employer in a published opinion. Nora regularly advises and trains employers on compliance issues, including wage-and-hour obligations, the use of independent contractors, and employee discipline and terminations. She received her B.A. from Pennsylvania State University and her J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Danielle Vrabie is a member of the firm’s Business Trial practice group and Healthcare team and is based in the New York office. Danielle represents clients in complex commercial litigation and government investigations throughout the country primarily in the healthcare and life sciences industries. In that regard, she regularly counsels hospitals and health systems, health plans, managed care organizations, physician and specialty practice groups, pharmaceutical companies, specialty pharmacies, and medical device companies in commercial disputes and litigation, investigations and prosecutions by government enforcement agencies, including for alleged violations of the False Claims Act, state Medicaid audits, repayment demands, and self-disclosures. Danielle also helped establish and co-leads Sheppard Mullin’s Women in Healthcare Leadership Collaborative, which promotes the advancement of women professionals in the healthcare industry by bringing them together in a supportive community and providing them with targeted education focused on complex legal issues, healthcare innovation, and other critical issues. She received her B.S., magna cum laude, from The College of New Jersey, and her J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo Law School at Yeshiva University. Following law school, Danielle served as a student judicial clerk to the Honorable Kimba M. Wood, Chief Judge of the Southern District of New York, and as an intern to the Honorable Dora L. Irizarry in the Eastern District of New York.
- Michael J. Baranovic
- Michael T. Campbell
- John G. Crisp
- Brian S. Fong
- Robert Gorzelany
- Linda Igarashi
- Sean J. Kirby
- Erica J. Kraus
- Ryan J. Krueger
- Jared K. LeBeau
- Aaron Levy
- Jeffrey Liang
- Matthew A. McCalip
- Abby Meyer
- Peter D. Park
- Yasamin Parsafar
- David M. Poell
- Cedric A. Powell
- Tenaya Rodewald
- Jesse A. Salen
- Paul Seeley
- Aerin A. Snow
- Nora Stilestein
- Danielle Vrabie