Faegre Drinker today announced the addition of two of the world’s leading restructuring attorneys, James F. Conlan in the U.S. and Patrick Corr in Europe, as partners in the firm’s growing finance and restructuring practice. Both come from Sidley Austin, where they previously held senior practice leadership positions.
“It’s our pleasure to welcome Jim and Patrick to Faegre Drinker,” said co-chair Andrew Kassner, whose practice also focuses on restructuring and insolvency. “Some of the most sophisticated businesses in the world have benefited from their commercial acumen and legal excellence. We welcome the opportunity to strategically support their successful practices while leveraging many of our existing practice strengths including product liability and mass torts, M&A and litigation.”
“In addition to their impressive practices, Jim and Patrick’s commitment to creating solutions designed for clients aligns to our culture at Faegre Drinker,” said co-chair Tom Froehle. “Their decision to join us at this moment for the global economy is an important one. One of the drivers for our combination is to attract top-tier talent. Jim and Patrick are that and add considerable momentum to what has been a promising beginning for our combined firm.”
Over his 30-plus-year career, Conlan has earned a reputation as one of the most respected restructuring lawyers in the field with deep experience in the courtroom and boardroom. Well-known companies have hired him to work on their most complex restructurings and bankruptcies. Conlan has worked on matters spanning multiple industries, including automotive, consumer products and packaging, energy and manufacturing, as well as matters at the cutting edge of restructurings driven by mass torts and sovereign debt. At Sidley, his positions in the restructuring practice included co-chair, chair and global practice leader.
Conlan has consistently earned praise from clients for his courtroom skills and the credibility he brings to the boardroom and C-suite in high-stakes situations. He has been recognized as one of the “Best of the Best” lawyers in Corporate Reorganization and Bankruptcy by Expert Guides (2018), and as an “Outstanding Restructuring Lawyer” by Turnaround & Workouts (2016). In addition, Chambers USA has recognized Conlan repeatedly for his work in restructuring law (2010–2020).
Corr, who served as the head of Sidley’s European restructuring and insolvency practice before joining Faegre Drinker, has earned praise for his work in contentious and non-contentious corporate recovery and turnaround matters. Clients have singled him out for his creative thinking coupled with technical precision. He is ranked in the leading industry guides, including Chambers UK, Chambers Europe, Chambers Global, IFLR 1000, The International Who’s Who of Insolvency & Restructuring Lawyers and Best Lawyers. Corr was recently inducted to The Legal 500 Hall of Fame for Corporate Restructuring and Insolvency.
“Faegre Drinker is a dynamic firm built for the kind of clients we serve, and the high-stakes restructurings we work on,” said Conlan. “It has all the key elements, including talent, depth in crucial practice areas, and a global reach. But most important is its relentless focus on clients. The firm’s focus on providing ‘excellence without arrogance,’ particularly resonated with us.”
“We were attracted to the firm’s diverse platform, which will allow us to bring a high level of support to clients, especially in cross-border matters,” said Corr. “It is clear that Faegre Drinker has emerged as a global powerhouse, and we are thrilled to be joining a newly combined firm and part of its continued growth.”
Conlan and Corr join Faegre Drinker’s growing finance and restructuring practice, which also recently added two partners in New York and, together with subject matter experts around the firm, is comprised of over 100 professionals. The group advises clients across diverse industries on matters ranging from financial transactions, to corporate debt restructurings, to bankruptcy and litigation matters.
“Faegre Drinker’s finance and restructuring practice has long advised clients on complex insolvency and restructuring needs,” said finance and restructuring practice group leader Mike Stewart. “Jim and Patrick’s decision to join our team expands Faegre Drinker’s ability to counsel clients on such complex matters globally and complements the talent and capabilities of our existing team.”
Conlan will spend his time across the firm’s offices, including New York, Chicago and Philadelphia, and Corr will be based in London.
Faegre Drinker launched global operations, effective Feb. 1, 2020, the result of the combination of Faegre Baker Daniels, an international law firm with deep roots in the Midwest, and Drinker Biddle & Reath, a full-service national law firm with storied mid-Atlantic origins. The merger brought together more than 1,300 attorneys, consultants and professionals in 22 locations across the U.S., UK and China.
The launch came just six weeks before the firm began remote operations in response to the coronavirus pandemic, but it has not slowed its integration efforts or plans for strategic growth. The firm has hired more than a dozen lateral partners and counsel since the beginning of the year.