Ashurst PE head leaves for US rival

Fried, Frank names its new head of private equity in Europe; KWMSJB’s London corporate practice head steps down; and other private fund lawyer moves.  

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson named Graham White its new head of private equity in Europe, as well as a managing partner of the firm’s London office. He was previously a senior partner at rival law firm Kirkland & Ellis.

• US-based law firm Gibson Dunn recruited two seasoned M&A specialists from UK rival Ashurst. Charlie Geffen, who was head of Ashurst’s private equity practice, will now head Gibson’s  firm-wide private equity practice and chair its London corporate practice. He’ll be joined by fellow Ashurt corporate partner Mark Sperotto.

• New York-based tax lawyer Abraham (Avi) Reshtick left Ropes & Gray to join Bracewell & Giuliani. Reshtick focuses on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, private investment fund structures and capital markets transactions.

• Morgan Lewis recruited M&A lawyer Tim Corbett from Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr. Based in London, he works with companies in the life sciences, technology and media sectors.

• Law firm Goodwin Procter promoted 23 lawyers, including London-based private funds specialist Greg Barclay, to the firm’s partnership. Also making partner are New York private equity deals lawyers Jared Spitalnick and James Lee, as well as Boston-based private funds lawyer James Donohue.

• Hogan Lovells recruited project finance lawyer Joseph Kim for its Tokyo office. He was previously with rival firm Paul Hastings.

• Matthew Pacey, who helps take private equity-backed companies public, joined Kirkland & Ellis’ Houston office. He was previously with Vinson & Elkins.

• King & Wood Mallesons SJ Berwin (KWMSJB) lost Italian fund formation specialist Andrea Luciano to Withers, where he will be based in Milan. Meanwhile Steven Davis, the firm’s London corporate practice head, is stepping down from the position after seven years at the helm. KWMSJB partners Michael Goldberg and Richard Lever will succeed him as London co-heads. Lastly, KWMSJB appointed lawyer and tax consultant Lutz Boxberger to its international funds and tax practices in Germany.

• A number of moves at Kirkland & Ellis. The US firm recruited restructuring lawyers Neil McDonald and Damien Coles from competitor Hogan Lovells in Hong Kong. Also in Hong Kong, the firm added two partners to its private funds practice, with the promotions of Damian Jacobs and Jonathan Tadd. The firm now has four partners working on fund formation in the region. The news came shortly after Kirkland announced 82 attorneys will be promoted to partner (effective this month).

• Adam Freiman joined Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton’s New York office as a M&A and deals specialist. He was previously with King & Spalding. 

• Orrick added Shawn Atkinson and Michael Crosby as partners in its London office. Atkinson was formerly co-chair of Edwards Wildman's venture capital practice in CEE while Crosby, a private debt specliast, was formerly head of Proskauer’s UK finance practice.

• Weil, Gotshal & Manges welcomed back John Quattrocchi as a partner in its private equity and M&A practices. Quattrocchi, a former associate in both Weil’s Dallas and New York offices, was previously with Denton.

• With a potential merger in the works between Bingham McCutchen and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, four more Bingham partners departed for Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld. Joining the firm are three London partners: M&A lawyer Vance Chapman, and funds lawyers Thomas John Holton and Thiha Tun. Also joining the firm’s Hong Kong office is Matthew Puhar, a cross-border M&A specialist.

Know of any private fund lawyer career moves we might have missed? If so, email pfm editor Nicholas Donato at