November 17, 2022 – Faegre Drinker announces today that Gina Kastel has been selected by the firm’s board as the next chair. Effective April 1, 2023, Kastel will succeed Tom Froehle and Andrew Kassner, who have served as co-chairs of the firm since the combination of Drinker Biddle & Reath and Faegre Baker Daniels formed Faegre Drinker in February 2020.
Kastel, a member of Faegre Drinker’s executive leadership team and board, co-chairs the firm’s compensation committee and served as its integration partner following the merger. Previously, she served as Faegre Baker Daniels’ vice chair and chief operating partner and a member of the firm’s management board and executive committee.
“I am honored to serve Faegre Drinker and our clients in this important role and look forward to working with Tom and Andy during this transition,” says Kastel. “We are a stronger firm thanks to Andy and Tom’s leadership through the combination, and their remarkable work has led to Faegre Drinker’s early success. In collaboration with attorneys and business professionals across our offices, I plan to build on our foundation of exceptional clients, talent and culture, while leading efforts to continue innovating our services, organization and the client experience.”
Kastel was selected following an extensive and thorough vetting process led by a board-appointed governance succession committee, with the help of a nationally recognized outside consultant. As part of the selection process, the committee sought feedback from the firm’s partners and principals and received extensive input on critical actions and key areas of emphasis on which the next chair should focus.
“Gina’s outstanding leadership skills and experience demonstrates that she has been an invaluable servant leader at the firm, and we couldn’t be more pleased that she will be taking over as the next chair,” says Froehle.
“We know Gina’s unwavering commitment to our clients makes her the right person for the role and a true asset to Faegre Drinker,” Kassner adds. “We look forward to seeing the firm’s continued success under her leadership.”
In her role as chair, Kastel will focus on growing the firm’s impressive client roster, strengthening the firm’s deep client relationships and continuing to attract the best talent in the industry. She will build off the firm’s strategic focus on clients and talent outlined in a three-year plan developed by the firm last year, while spending the next several months visiting firm offices and listening to colleagues and clients to crystalize her plan for the start of her tenure as chair.
Kastel has also asked partners David Barrett, Andrew Joseph, Heather Perkins and Judy Reich, Chief Operating Officer Jane Koehl and Chief Diversity Officer Maria Lewis to serve, or continue serving, as part of Faegre Drinker’s executive leadership team, which is responsible for implementing firm-wide strategy and policy.
Kastel, who is based in Faegre Drinker’s Minneapolis office, started her legal career in 1999 at Faegre & Benson, a predecessor firm to Faegre Drinker. She earned her J.D. from Harvard Law School.