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McDermott and DLA Piper partners join Orrick for Houston launch

Having announced it will open a new office in Houston, 13 partners have joined US firm Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, including McDermott Will & Emery‘s global head of energy Blake Winburne, and DLA Piper‘s co-chair of global and US patent litigation Claudia Frost.

Winburne will co-lead the firm’s 130-lawyer global energy and infrastructure group, and brings with him two other partners – Matt Archer and Brad Gathright – who both focus on project development and finance.

Alongside Frost, disputes partner and patent litigator Jeffrey Johnson also leaves DLA Piper.

The remainder of the team includes four partners joining from Andrews Kurth; three partners from McGuireWoods; and one lateral partner hire from Susman Godfrey, alongside two partners joining as counsel from Haynes and Boone.

The new office will focus on three main areas: energy and infrastructure, litigation and IP, and public finance, with an aim to serve clients across Latin America in the energy, technology and finance sectors.

Orrick first announced the opening of its Houston office in mid-January and expects to announce seven more partners, at least five of whom are expected to join later this month. One of these will join as the firm’s Houston office head and co-head of the Latin America Group.

The firm’s chairman Mitch Zuklie said: ‘Houston is a vitally important market for our clients and a key hub for the energy and infrastructure and Latin American markets. We are committed to continuing to grow these teams and adding capabilities in areas such as private equity and energy technology that address our clients’ needs and are a strategic fit with our strengths.’

A list of the joining partners:

Energy and infrastructure: Latin America and corporate/M&A

Blake Winburne from McDermott Will & Emery

Dahl Thompson from Andrews Kurth

Matt Archer from McDermott Will & Emery

Brad Gathright from McDermott Will & Emery

George Humphrey from Andrews Kurth

Giji John from Andrews Kurth

Darrell Thomas from Andrews Kurth

Litigation: commercial, IP and appellate

Claudia Wilson Frost from DLA Piper

Jeffrey Johnson from DLA Piper

Katherine Treistman from Susman Godfrey

Public finance

Todd Brewer from McGuireWoods

Hoang Vu from McGuireWoods

Marcus Deitz from McGuireWoods

Kathryn Garner from Haynes and Boone (joining as counsel)

J. Kent Friedman from Haynes and Boone (joining as counsel)