Patterson Belknap Announces Two New Partners and Five Counsel
Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP is pleased to announce that, effective January 1, 2020, Rachel B. Sherman and Edward H. Smoot will become partners of the Firm, and Abhishek Bapna, Craig W. Dent, Maren J. Messing, Lauren Simpson, and Amy N. Vegari will become counsel.
Rachel B. Sherman practices in the Firm’s Litigation department, where her practice focuses on complex commercial and products liability litigation. Ms. Sherman has represented clients in the pharmaceutical, medical device, consumer products and financial industries in both state and federal courts and in arbitration. She has also counseled clients and litigated matters involving false advertising, employment disputes, intellectual property issues, and internal investigations. Prior to joining the Firm, Ms. Sherman served as a law clerk to the Hon. Joel A. Pisano of the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey and worked at an American international law firm. She received her J.D. from Harvard Law School, cum laude, where she served as Submissions Editor for the Latino Law Review. Ms. Sherman received her B.A. from George Washington University, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society.
Edward H. Smoot practices in the Firm’s Corporate department, where he represents public and private companies, family offices and individuals in matters including mergers, acquisitions, private equity and venture capital investments, commercial agreements and employment contracts. His practice includes all aspects of the formation, operation, financing, disposition and acquisition of businesses, including purchase and sale transactions, debt and equity financings, employment and severance agreements, and general day-to-day corporate representation of clients in a variety of matters. Mr. Smoot is also a member of the Firm’s Structured Finance Litigation Practice group, which represents financial guaranty insurers and institutional investors in workouts, restructurings and litigation involving residential mortgage-backed securities transactions. He received his J.D. from Columbia Law School, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Columbia Human Rights Law Review. Mr. Smoot received an M.I.A. from Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs. He received his B.A., magna cum laude, from Harvard University.
Abhishek Bapna practices in the Firm’s Litigation department, where his practice focuses on patent litigation in federal district courts and the International Trade Commission (ITC), as well as post-grant proceedings in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. His experience encompasses a broad spectrum of technologies, including medical devices, consumer electronics, networking devices, and vehicular safety, telematics, and multimedia systems. He received his J.D. from Columbia Law School, where he was a member of The Columbia Science and Technology Law Review. Mr. Bapna received his B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Cornell University.
Craig W. Dent practices in the Firm’s Corporate department. Mr. Dent represents clients in a wide variety of corporate, transactional and restructuring matters. His transactional practice is primarily focused on private equity, corporate finance, investment funds, securities law issues and mergers and acquisitions. His clients include private equity investment firms, investment advisers, lending institutions, tax-exempt organizations and public and private companies in the manufacturing, insurance and technology industries. Mr. Dent received his J.D. from New York University where he was Executive Editor of the NYU Journal of Law and Business and a Robert McKay Scholar. He received his A.B., magna cum laude, from Dartmouth College.
Maren J. Messing practices in the Firm’s Litigation department, where her practice focuses on false advertising, employment law, white collar defense, and antitrust law. Ms. Messing also advises clients on privacy and data security matters. Prior to joining the Firm, Ms. Messing served as a law clerk to the Hon. Paul G. Gardephe in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, and to the Hon. Chester J. Straub in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. She received her J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she was a James Kent Scholar and Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar, and served as an Articles Editor for the Journal of Law and Social Problems. She received her B.A. from Middlebury College, cum laude.
Lauren Simpson practices in the Firm’s Tax-Exempt Organizations practice. Ms. Simpson advises public charities, private foundations, and other tax-exempt entities on general tax compliance and corporate issues. Her practice also includes assisting organizations with formation and restructuring, corporate governance and policies, charitable giving and solicitation, international grantmaking, for-profit affiliations, endowment issues, program-related investing, lobbying, and political campaign activities. Prior to joining Patterson Belknap, Ms. Simpson practiced tax law at a New York-based law firm. She received her LL.M from New York University School of Law and her J.D., cum laude, from the University of Michigan School of Law, where she served as Notes Editor for the Michigan Journal of Law Reform. Ms. Simpson received her B.A. from Yale University.
Amy N. Vegari, Ph.D. practices in the Firm’s Litigation department, where she focuses on complex commercial litigation and antitrust law. Her practice includes class action defense, white collar defense and investigations, and pharmaceutical litigation. Prior to joining the Firm, Ms. Vegari served as a law clerk to the Hon. Michael A. Chagares of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and to the Hon. Robert B. Kugler of the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey. Ms. Vegari received her J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania Law School where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. She received her Ph.D. from Brown University and her A.B. from Harvard University.