(Clarifies not all of the defecting energy group are lawyers,
corrects spelling to Jonathan Odell from O'Dell, corrects number
of lawyers at Crowell)
By Casey Sullivan
July 1 The Washington law firm Dickstein
Shapiro, following a round of defections over the past four
years, is losing a six-member energy group including its chief
to the larger Crowell & Moring, both firms said.
Dickstein, a 300-lawyer firm, has become known in the legal
industry for its insurance recovery, intellectual property and
regulatory practices. Its energy practice is also sizeable and
its website lists 22 lawyers specializing in the area, including
the firm's chairman.
Dickstein energy practice head Larry Eisenstat, who sat on
the firm's executive committee and was at the center of the
firm's crucial business decisions, joins Crowell's Washington
office with two partners and three junior members.
Eisenstat, who helped build the firm's energy practice, has
had clients including Constellation Energy Partners, Reliant
Energy, Competitive Power Ventures and NRG Energy
He is the latest loss for Dickstein, which has seen its
lawyer count dip since 2009 from 360 to 308, profits per partner
fall from $1,050,000 to $950,000 and revenue slow from $297
million to $258 million, according to trade publication The
Dickstein Chairman Mike Nannes addressed the firm's
financial performance in a statement but did not address the
departures other than to wish them well: "We continue to
position our firm for the future. With our fiscally sound,
debt-free platform, we are confident in our market-leading
practices, and clear about our path to continued prosperity."
Nannes declined multiple requests for an interview.
In May, Nannes announced to the firm's lawyers in a memo
that he would step down from his post after 10 years. Jim Kelly,
the leader of Dickstein's corporate and finance group, will take
over as chairman on January 2014, a firm spokeswoman has
Eisenstat said in an interview that his move was not linked
to the leadership change, but pointed instead to Crowell's
energy clients and the firm's geographic reach.
Dickstein energy and corporate partners Jonathan Odell and
Patrick Lynch, who worked on Dickstein's energy group on
corporate and finance matters, also join Crowell.
The lawyers begin work today.
Crowell staffs nearly 500 lawyers in 11 offices nationwide
in a range of practices including litigation, regulatory,
corporate, labor and employment, healthcare and government
contracts. It ranked No. 83 out of U.S. law firms for its 2012
gross revenue at $350 million and No. 98 in profits per partner
(Reporting By Casey Sullivan; Editing by Ted Botha and Chris