McDermott Continues Strategic Growth with Acquisition of Top-Talent in Atlanta - McDermott Will & Emery

McDermott Continues Strategic Growth with Acquisition of Top-Talent in Atlanta


International law firm McDermott Will & Emery announces an expansion of its Southeastern US presence to Atlanta with the addition of a Cybersecurity & Privacy partner, three Corporate partners, an Intellectual Property partner and two Intellectual Property counsel. This strategic growth supports some of the Firm’s most in-demand practices around the globe and adds the newest of now 13 US locations.

“In times of uncertainty, our clients need critical and nuanced advice more than ever: The decisions taken today could very well impact performance for years to come,” said Ira Coleman, Chairman of McDermott. “Issues around privacy, transaction strategy and IP protection are particularly critical, which means our clients can immediately benefit from the specialized experience and creative problem-solving each of these lawyers bring to our Firm.”

Head of Strategy Michael Poulos added, “We are laser focused on smart expansion and Atlanta’s evolving legal market and position as home to several Fortune 500 companies made it a natural choice for us. Our new partners and counsel are ideally suited for our platform because they are all well equipped to not only help us advance existing client objectives, but to help us grow domestically and across borders.”

New Corporate Partner Frank Layson will serve as Atlanta Managing Partner. Atlanta is the third location the Firm has expanded to in recent years – San Francisco opened in 2018 and Wilmington in 2019.

Lawyer Biographies

Frank Layson – Corporate Partner

Frank focuses his practice on mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures. He represents leading companies in a wide variety of cross-border transactions.

Todd S. McClelland – Cybersecurity & Privacy Partner

Todd advises clients on data breach response, cyber risk assessment and management, and other information-security-related issues. He also counsels clients on data privacy compliance, outsourcing, technology and data licensing, and cloud transactions.

Paul Puckett – Corporate Partner

Paul represents public and private companies on a variety of corporate transactions, including mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, restructurings and joint ventures. He has deep experience across several industries including consumer goods, manufacturing, technology, media and telecommunications.

Sam Snider – Corporate Partner

Sam Snider focuses his practice on mergers, acquisitions and corporate transactions. Before returning to private practice in 2017, Sam was chief legal and compliance officer, responsible for both the legal and cybersecurity functions, at a leading health information technology company.

Jeffrey Toney – IP Partner

Jeff focuses his practice on technology litigation, with an emphasis on patent infringement, trade secret, cybersecurity and antitrust/unfair competition cases. He litigates technical cases in many fields including patent matters involving pharmaceuticals, medical and surgical devices, electronics and controls, internet and cellular communications, cable and satellite television technologies, biotechnology, paper and panelboard manufacturing and materials engineering.

Ralph Gaskins, MD – IP Counsel

Ralph focuses his practice on intellectual property and commercial litigation matters involving pharmaceuticals, medical and surgical devices, biotechnology, digital imaging, communications-enabled transportation systems, electronics and internet technologies. He also handles FDA criminal and civil investigations under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act and the Federal False Claims Act.

Jackie Toney – IP Counsel

Jackie focuses her practice on intellectual property litigation, with an emphasis on patent litigation in the biotechnology industry. She has considerable first and second chair trial experience involving claims of patent infringement, breach of patent, software and copyright licenses. She also handles trade secret violations, contracts and business torts.

About McDermott

McDermott Will & Emery partners with leaders around the world to fuel missions, knock down barriers and shape markets. With more than 20 locations on three continents, our team works seamlessly across practices, industries and geographies to deliver highly effective—and often unexpected—solutions that propel success. More than 1,100 lawyers strong, we bring our personal passion and legal prowess to bear in every matter for our clients and the people they serve.

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