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Kim Askew named a Leader in Diversity by the Dallas Business Journal

DLA Piper is pleased to announce that Kim Askew, a partner in the firm’s Employment practice, was named to the Dallas Business Journal’s inaugural Leaders in Diversity list honouring “organisations and individuals who have shown exceptional commitment to promoting practices that advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace.”

Askew has received numerous awards throughout her career as a result of her legal practice and her efforts to advance diversity and inclusion, including the inaugural Dallas Bar Association Distinguished Service Award, which was named after her and recognises a Dallas Bar Association member who is dedicated to good work and positive relations with lawyers, the judiciary and the community, and the ABA Spirit of Excellence Award, which recognises contributions to diversity in the legal profession. Askew serves as the local Diversity and Inclusion chair for DLA Piper’s Dallas office. She has moderated firmwide webinars focusing on racial equality, allyship and social justice, and she sits on the board of the National Women’s Law Center, a non-profit that advocates for women’s rights through litigation and policy initiatives.

In her practice, Askew represents clients in significant employment matters involving claims of race, disability, gender and age discrimination and sexual harassment, as well as in litigation involving business torts, trade secrets, non-compete, and non-solicitation and employment agreements. She has successfully tried cases to jury and non-jury verdicts in state and federal courts across the US and has handled appeals before federal and Texas appellate courts.

Eversheds Represents CCI in Sale of NorTex Midstream Partners

Eversheds Sutherland is pleased to announce that it is representing client Castleton Commodities International LLC (CCI) in its sale of NorTex Midstream Partners (NorTex or the Company), a Houston-based natural gas storage and transportation company, to private equity firm Tailwater Capital (Tailwater).

Founded in 2007, NorTex provides revenue optimisation and asset reliability solutions for utilities and power generation facilities in North Texas through strategically located natural gas storage and transmission. The Company operates the largest portfolio of non-utility gas storage facilities in North Texas. NorTex’s asset base includes 36 Bcf of depleted reservoir working gas capacity, 83 total miles of natural gas transportation pipelines, as well as the Tolar Hub – the largest natural gas hub in North Texas. NorTex’s storage facilities have operated consistently for nearly 60 years, serving as critical infrastructure for the greater Dallas-Fort Worth market.

CCI is a global energy commodity merchant with integrated businesses focused on marketing, merchandising, and trading commodities, and the ownership, operation and development of commodities-related infrastructure and upstream assets.

Partner Ram C. Sunkara led the Eversheds Sutherland team in this transaction, with assistance from Partners M. Hill Jeffries, Meredith O’Leary, Lance J. Phillips, Amish M. Shah, Michael J. Voynich, Counsel Ronnie Dabbasi, Graham R. Green, Kyle E. Wamstad and Associates Katherine E. Dugat, Kyle J. Hayes, Michael M. Petrov, Alyssa N. Walker and Kathryn V. Wymer.

About Eversheds Sutherland

As a global top 10 law practice, Eversheds Sutherland provides legal services to a global client base ranging from small and mid-sized businesses to the largest multinationals, acting for 75 of the Fortune 100, 68 of the FTSE 100 and 113 of the Fortune 200.

With more than 3,000 lawyers, Eversheds Sutherland operates in 68 offices in 32 jurisdictions across Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the United States. In addition, a network of more than 200 related law firms, including formalised alliances in Latin America, Asia Pacific and Africa, provide support around the globe.

Eversheds Sutherland provides the full range of legal services, including corporate and M&A; dispute resolution and litigation; energy and infrastructure; finance; human capital and labour law; intellectual property; real estate and construction; and tax.

Eversheds Sutherland is a global legal practice and comprises two separate legal entities: Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP (headquartered in the United Kingdom) and Eversheds Sutherland (US) LLP (headquartered in the United States), and their respective controlled, managed, affiliated and member firms. The use of the name Eversheds Sutherland is for description purposes only and does not imply that the member firms or their controlled, managed or affiliated entities are in a partnership or are part of a global LLP.

Duane Morris Opens Dallas Office with Addition of Four New Partners

Duane Morris LLP has opened a new office in Dallas, Texas, with the addition of Trial partners Robert M. Castle III, Randy D. Gordon, Jamie R. Welton and Lucas “Luke” Wohlford. The group joins Duane Morris from Barnes & Thornburg LLP. The move further aligns Duane Morris’ domestic operations with the robust high-technology and energy sectors in Texas. The firm opened its Austin office in 2017 and its Houston office in 1999. The new Duane Morris LLP office is located at 100 Crescent Court in Dallas.

“For more than 20 years, we have focused on and invested in Texas. With our new Dallas location and team, our commitment is clear,” said Matthew A. Taylor, Chairman and CEO of Duane Morris. “Duane Morris now has a critical mass of legal talent and a footprint in key markets, including Houston and Austin, and we expect to expand our presence in Texas in the years to come. We look forward to supporting our broad client base with high quality and cost-efficient legal services.”

“Texas is central to Duane Morris’ strategic growth plan, and our Dallas office creates more opportunities to better service our technology, corporate and energy clients and grow our business in-state,” said Tom Sankey, managing partner of Duane Morris’ Houston office and Texas operations. “Our Corporate, Trial and IP practice groups represent a large client base in Texas, and our interdisciplinary, industry-sector approach to legal services enables us to deliver additional value.”

“Dallas, in particular, is an extremely positive business climate for entrepreneurs, the many Fortune 500 firms headquartered here and a broad array of high technology, healthcare, financial, energy and transportation clients,” added Randy Gordon, the managing partner of the Dallas office. “We are excited to plant the flag for Duane Morris in Dallas.”

“Matt Taylor’s vision for Texas is exciting, and the firm’s industry-focus groups represented a great opportunity to collaborate in new ways,” noted partner Rob Castle. “Overall, Duane Morris offers a unique and collegial culture that will enable me to better serve my healthcare client base.”

As one of the most diverse regional economies in the nation, Dallas offers a thriving commercial environment. With more than 65,000 businesses located in the metropolitan region including Texas Instruments, AT&T, Comerica and Southwest Airlines, the city serves as headquarters to more than 20 Fortune 500 firms.

Bert Greene named Duane Morris Austin office managing partner

Duane Morris LLP has appointed Bert Greene managing partner of its Austin office. Since its opening in 2017, the Austin office has been run by Houston office managing partner Thomas W. Sankey.

“After three short years, we now have a growing nucleus of extremely talented lawyers in Austin, resulting in an office geared to become an even greater force in this high-tech hub,” said Matthew A. Taylor, Chairman and CEO of Duane Morris. “Tom has done an amazing job spearheading the strategic growth of the firm’s presence in Texas. I know Bert will take the baton and run with it in Austin as we continue to propel our growth in the city and state.”

“I’m honoured to lead an office that has made such a major impact on the firm in such a short period of time,” said Greene. “I look forward to working with my colleagues in Austin, throughout Texas and around the firm to keep building the momentum we have established here.”

Greene’s practice is focused on the enforcement and procurement of intellectual property rights, with a primary emphasis on patent litigation and trade secret litigation. His litigation clients have included large and small technology companies, energy and chemical companies, and retailers in cases involving a diverse array of technologies. Greene has represented both patent holders and accused infringers in numerous federal jurisdictions across the country. He also has experience with patent prosecution, opinion work, portfolio management, copyright litigation, and trademark litigation. Greene has also handled numerous pro bono cases on behalf of asylum applicants in U.S. immigration court.

Greene is a graduate of the University of Texas School of Law (J.D., with honours, 2004), where he was managing editor of the Texas Intellectual Property Law Journal, and the University of Texas at Austin (B.S., chemical engineering, with highest honours, 1998).

About the Duane Morris Austin Office

Duane Morris attorneys have longstanding ties to the Texas legal and business communities and have been practicing law in the state for many years. The opening of the firm’s Austin office in October 2017 further aligned Duane Morris’ domestic footprint with the robust high-technology and energy sectors in Texas. Clients benefit from the firm’s presence in the Texas capital and in Houston, along with the firm’s global breadth of services and experience representing public entities, large corporations, middle-market companies, emerging-growth companies and entrepreneurs.

Kim Askew joins DLA Piper’s Employment practice in Dallas

DLA Piper announced today that Kim Askew has joined the firm’s Employment practice as a partner in the Dallas office.

Askew represents clients in significant employment matters involving claims of race, disability, gender and age discrimination and sexual harassment, as well as in complex commercial disputes including business torts, trade secrets, non-compete, and non-solicitation and employment agreements.

“Kim is widely regarded as one of the top employment and commercial litigators in Texas, and her addition to the firm bolsters our Employment team and supports our goal of bringing on partners with deep experience in handling high-profile matters of consequence, together with a strong track record of professionalism and success,” said Brian Kaplan, chair of DLA Piper’s US Employment practice and co-chair of the global Employment practice. “She has been recognised repeatedly for her accomplishments and distinguished service to the legal profession and we couldn’t be happier that Kim has chosen to join our team.”

“As we continue to expand our presence in Dallas, Kim will play a key role in allowing us to increase our service offerings and better respond to the needs of clients,” said Marc Katz, managing partner of the firm’s Dallas office. “She is well-known as an involved and enthusiastic leader in the legal and business communities in Dallas, and we are thrilled to welcome her on board.”

Askew, who joins from K&L Gates, received her J.D. from Georgetown University and her B.A. from Knoxville College. She is the recipient of dozens of local, regional and national awards for her achievements and contributions, including her groundbreaking work on diversity, from organisations such as the American Bar Association, State Bar of Texas, Dallas Bar Association, Dallas Women’s Foundation, the American Inns of Court, Texas Lawyer, D Magazine (Dallas 500), Lawdragon 500 and Best Lawyers in America.

BoyarMiller advises on the acquisition of Amtel, LLC

BoyarMiller provided legal counsel to Houston-based Amtel Partners, LLC in the purchase of Amtel, LLC, which closed on August 30, 2019. Amtel Partners was led by CEO Andy Priest and President Jeff Bookout.

Based in Grapevine, Texas, Amtel is a leading T-Mobile Premium Retailer (TPR) with 152 locations across multiple U.S. geographies, including Texas, California, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, New York and Massachusetts. Amtel is led by long-tenured wireless retail industry veterans who manage a team of highly talented, store-level employees that deliver world-class customer service and leading T-Mobile system operational performance.

“We specifically sought out attorneys that would be deal makers and not deal killers. Bill Boyar came highly recommended from the investment banking community and proved to be creative and a deal maker, for sure,” said Priest. “Bill’s relationships with banks and his experience with credit agreements really helped to get us across the finish line. We look forward to growing the company and to furthering the relationship with Bill and BoyarMiller.”

The BoyarMiller team included co-founding Shareholder Bill Boyar, Senior Associate Cyrus Chin and Associate Alex Parker. The transaction was financed through a senior credit facility provided by Amegy Bank, Woodforest National Bank and Bank of Texas. GulfStar Group served as the financing and structuring advisor to Amtel Partners in the debt placement.

“We are grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Andy Priest and his team, and the GulfStar team led by Scott Winship and Brian Lobo, to complete this capital formation and acquisition. It was a true team effort to overcome several challenges and get the transaction closed. I am particularly proud of the work our BoyarMiller team did to get us to closing,” said Boyar.

If you would like to find out more information, please visit: https://www.boyarmiller.com/