May 18, 2022

Alumni News and Moves – Spring 2022

Our alumni have forged diverse career paths and taken on interesting new adventures and personal challenges. They are thought leaders, advisers, mentors, advocates, business executives, elected and appointed officials and trusted professionals.

We are proud of the contributions our alumni continue to make to the legal and business communities, grateful for the time they spent with the firm and honored that many have stayed in touch with the firm and each other.

Here are recent news and moves from our alumni community over the past few months (Office/Practice Group/Year of Hire).

  • Jennifer Oberhausen (Washington, D.C./Government & Regulatory Affairs/2011) joined Microsoft as Senior Corporate Counsel in May 2022.
  • Jim Jeffers (Princeton/Real Estate/2007) was promoted to Vice President, Assistant General Counsel – Real Estate at Burlington Stores, Inc.
  • Jennifer Williams Zwagerman (Des Moines/Litigation/2007) was recently promoted to Associate Professor of Law at Drake University School of Law, effective July 2022.
  • Karen Wilson Thissen (Minneapolis/Litigation/1993) was named General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of General Mills, effective June 6, 2022.
  • Earl Barnes (Chicago/Health Care/1996) will join Sentara Healthcare on June 2, 2022 as General Counsel. Earl previously served as executive vice president and chief legal officer at Amita Health.
  • Viktoriya Torchinsky-Field (Philadelphia/Product Liability & Mass Torts/1999) joined Avantor, Inc. as Vice President, Legal in May 2022. In this role, Viktoriya is Chief Counsel for litigation/enterprise risk and labor and employment law.
  • Bree Archambault (Philadelphia/Corporate/2007) joined PPL Corporation as Senior Counsel, Assistant Corporate Secretary in May 2022.
  • Saba Shatara (San Francisco/Labor & Employment/2013) was promoted to Senior Manager, Multistate Tax at Deloitte in May 2022.
  • Mary Rosen (Minneapolis/Corporate/2006), Lead Counsel in the Capital Finance/Global Receivables and Trade Finance Section of the Commercial Banking Division at Wells Fargo, was recently elected as a Fellow to the American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers (ACCFL), a professional organization dedicated to promoting the field of commercial finance law through education, legislative reform and the recognition of distinguished practitioners, jurists and academics. Since the founding of ACCFL in the early 1990s, approximately 300 fellows have been elected. This honor is in recognition of Mary's participation as Co-Chair of the American Bar Association Letter of Credit Subcommittee, her service as a member of the Legal Committee of the International Chamber of Commerce, the Legal Advisory Group for BAFT and the International Section of the American Bar Association, as well as her contributions as faculty for educational programs sponsored by the University of St. Thomas School of Law, the Business Law Institute, the Banking Law Institute and the Institute for International Banking Law and Practice.
  • Mimi Wang (Philadelphia/Investment Management/2002) was promoted to Managing Director, Associate General Counsel at Macquarie Asset Management Public Investments in April 2022.
  • Sawyer Traver (Wilmington/Real Estate/2018) joined the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control for the State of Delaware as Deputy Attorney General in April 2022.
  • John McBroom (Minneapolis/Labor & Employment/2001) was named Open Technology Counsel at IBM. This is a new position providing legal support to IBM’s various open activities across its business units around the world. John was previously Senior Counsel for IBM. John will continue to help lead IBM’s Competition Law Team and remain co-leader of IBM’s Global Pro Bono Program.
  • Carla Pratt (Philadelphia/Litigation/1996) currently serves as Dean and Professor of Law at Washburn University School of Law in Topeka, Kansas. Carla accepted an endowed position at the University of Oklahoma College of Law (OU Law) and, this fall, Carla will become the first Ada Lois Sipuel Chair in Civil Rights, Race and Justice in law. She will primarily be teaching and conducting research in the areas of civil rights law, election law and race and the law. In 2019, OU Law launched a grassroots effort, in conjunction with the 70th anniversary of Ada Lois Sipuel Fisher’s admission to OU Law, to endow a chair in Fisher’s honor and recruit an outstanding faculty member who would support and empower law students with the tools necessary to engage in meaningful civil rights work. In 2022, Carla also received several awards including the Topeka Human Relations Commission’s Troy Scroggins Outstanding Individual Award and the Society of American Law Teachers’ Shanara Gilbert Human Rights Award.  Both awards were in recognition of her work to make the legal profession reflect the diversity of the society that it serves.
  • Dennis Carlin (Chicago/Corporate/1982) recently completed his term as Chicago campus chair of the Advisory Council of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Northwestern University, and he is currently serving as co-chair of the 50th anniversary of CJE Senior Life, hosting three events culminating in a fund raiser to celebrate CJE on September 18.
  • Alan Di Sciullo (Florham Park/Litigation/1977) retired as Director of Global Real Estate at Shearman & Sterling, LLP in 2019 but continues teaching as an adjunct Professor at New York University's Schack Real Estate Institute, where he was recently honored for 30 years of service as a teacher. He was also recently elected to Council for American Bar Association's Senior Leadership Division and is republishing the book he co-authored, Negotiating and Drafting Commercial Leases. This summer Alan plans to travel to Ireland visiting, among other places, his ancestor’s home in Galway.
  • Lariss Maldonado (Minneapolis/Product Liability & Mass Torts/2012) was named Chair of the ACLU in Minnesota in April 2022. Lariss will be the first woman of color to serve as Board Chairperson. She is currently Senior Counsel, Enterprise Risk Management Education at Wells Fargo.
  • Elisabeth Fiordalisi (Chicago/Corporate/2016) was promoted to Senior Legal Counsel at SAP in April 2022.
  • Erik Anderson (Chicago/Litigation/2004) joined Fidelity National Title as Illinois Agency Underwriting Counsel in April 2022.
  • Daniel Werly (Chicago/Litigation/2009) was promoted to Senior Vice President, General Counsel & Chief of Staff for the Tennessee Titans.
  • Puja Leekha (Chicago/Product Liability & Mass Torts/2007) was named a 2022 Luminary by the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) in March 2022. The HBA Luminary award recognizes women who serve as a role model in their company, actively mentor and sponsor others, help advance women’s careers and exhibit dedication to the healthcare industry. Luminary award winners were celebrated at the 2022 HBA Women of the Year on May 10, 2022. Puja currently serves as Vice President and Chief Compliance Officer at Lundbeck US.
  • Jackie Haydock (Fort Wayne/Corporate/2008) joined Meta as Associate General Counsel, Global Devices Compliance in April 2022.
  • Vanessa Le (Chicago/Litigation/2016) joined the Office of White House Counsel as Associate Counsel in April 2022.
  • John Hangrak Choi (Philadelphia/Intellectual Property/2013) was promoted to President/COO at Qualmax, Inc. in April 2022.
  • Caroline Henry (New York/Corporate/2016) joined Maynard Cooper & Gale as an associate in April 2022.  
  • Ken Frazier (Philadelphia/Litigation/1971) received an honorary degree and addressed the graduating class as part of Temple University’s 2022 Commencement celebration on May 6, 2022. Ken currently serves as executive chair of the board of directors of Merck where he was previously CEO.
  • Jennifer Mohammed (Princeton/Litigation/2012) is hosting a weekend wellness retreat June 17-19, 2022 in Honesdale, Pennsylvania. The event will combine yoga and mindfulness to help attendees emerge from the pandemic inspired and renewed.
  • Jeff Baravetto (Chicago/Intellectual Property/2006) joined McDonald’s Corporation as Senior Counsel, Marketing and Intellectual Property in April 2022.
  • Justin Brennan (Philadelphia/Corporate/2005) was promoted to Associate General Counsel at EPAM System, Inc. in April 2022.
  • Ciera Logan (Washington, D.C./Government & Regulatory Affairs/2016) was promoted to Assistant General Counsel, Privacy & Data Protection at Robinhood in April 2022.
  • Wendy Seltzer (Chicago/Litigation/2004) joined Hub Group as Assistant General Counsel, Labor & Employment in April 2022.
  • Dan Brewer (Philadelphia/Litigation/2007) joined Subaru of American as Assistant General Counsel in April 2022.
  • Fruqon Mouzan (Florham Park/Litigation/2000) joined Fox Rothschild LLP as a partner in April 2022.
  • Vinny Montalto (Florham Park/Litigation/2008) joined DLA Piper as a partner in April 2022. 
  • Jill Pearson (Minneapolis/Private Client/2002) trekked to Everest Base Camp in Nepal in March 2022 as part of a team raising funds and awareness for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a rare and fatal disease primarily affecting boys. Their Everest to End Duchenne trek raised over $60,000 for the cause. A former associate in Faegre's Trusts & Estates group, Jill went on to work at Cargill from 2005 to 2015 before serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Albania from 2016 to 2018 and taking on her current role in Ethics & Compliance at Best Buy.
Jill and Adhish Faegre Drinker News and Moves Spring 2022
Jill Pearson Faegre Drinker Alumni News and Moves Spring 2022

  • Heidi Wilson (Minneapolis/Litigation/1976) is retired from the practice of law but continues to keep busy serving on a few boards and also coaching lawyers on business development and making the transition from private practice to in-house through and organization called Cochran Client Development. She happily reports that “life is good!”
  • Amy Bashore (Philadelphia/Labor & Employment/2006) joined Exelon as Assistant General Counsel in March 2022.
  • Russ Chibe (Chicago/Product Liability & Mass Torts/2005) joined Beazley as Claims Manager in March 2022.
  • Scott Crumley (Philadelphia/Real Estate/2002) joined Ballard Spahr as a senior attorney in March 2022.
  • Ken Murphy (Philadelphia/Product Liability & Mass Torts/2006) joined Tucker Law Group as Counsel in March 2022.
  • Jonathan August (San Francisco/Real Estate/2017) joined Nixon Peabody as a senior associate in March 2022.
  • Andres Puerta (Florham Park/Labor & Employment/2018) was selected to participate in the 2022 National Employment Law Council (NELC) Academy in March 2022. Thirty fellows were selected from many outstanding applicants following a highly competitive process. The NELC was founded in 1995 to provide advanced skills training and mentoring for minority employment defense lawyers with less than four years of experience practicing management side labor and employment law. Andres is currently an associate in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice at Epstein Becker Green.
  • Cicely Miltich (Minneapolis/Litigation/2014) joined Lathrop GPM’s Minneapolis office as Counsel in March 2022. 
  • Mike Pellegrino (Philadelphia/Investment Management/1993) joined Toroso Investments as General Counsel in February 2022.
  • Faris Rashid (Minneapolis/Litigation/2014) was recently confirmed by the Minnesota Senate to serve on the Minnesota Campaign Finance and Public Disclosure Board. Faris was originally appointed to serve on this Board in August of 2020 by Governor Tim Walz. He was appointed again in July of 2021 for a term ending January of 2023. He has served as Chair of the Board since January of 2022. Faris is a partner Green Espel PLLP. He was appointed again in July of 2021 for a term eeen Espel PLLP.
  • Thomas Leach (Philadelphia/Litigation/1996) was featured in a University of the Pacific news article, Professor Leach retires after inspiring generations of advocates, in March 2022. He retired from the University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law in December 2021.
  • Michael Wiwchar (Denver/Intellectual Property/2016) joined CytomX Therapeutics as Associate Director, Intellectual Property in March 2022.
  • Leita Walker (Minneapolis/Intellectual Property/2006) was among six recipients of the Minnesota Coalition on Government Information’s John R. Finnegan Freedom of Information Award on March 16, 2022, national Freedom of Information Day. Leita was honored for coordinating a media coalition whose advocacy resulted in Minnesota’s first live-streamed criminal trial. Established in 1989, the John R. Finnegan Freedom of Information award is given to those individuals and groups who demonstrate through expression and action commitment to the idea that a popular and democratic government can never realize the aspirations of the founding fathers without the participation of an informed electorate and an informed electorate cannot exist without access to information.
  • Ravi Vohra (New York/Corporate Restructuring/2015) was promoted to Senior Associate at Kelley Drye & Warren LLP in March 2022.
  • Malaika Caldwell (Chicago/Benefits & Executive Compensation/2018) joined Kyndryl as Counsel, Employee Benefits in March 2022.
  • Renee Dotson (Minneapolis/Corporate Restructuring/2007) was promoted to Vice President and General Counsel, Transportation & Electronics Group at 3M in March 2022.
  • Heather Kidwell (Indianapolis/Corporate/2008) joined ZimVie as Chief Legal and Compliance Officer and Corporate Secretary in March 2022.
  • Robert Darwin (London/Corporate/2006) joined Sidley Austin’s London office in March 2022.
  • Tom Triplett (Minneapolis/Litigation/1994) is retired from the everyday practice of law but remains active as a Minnesota Rule 14 Emeritus attorney providing pro bono services part-time through LegalCORPS. Tom screens requests for help in creating new nonprofit organizations, gives preliminary advice and solicits voluntary attorneys to provide the needed services.
  • Tarik Brooks (Philadelphia/Corporate/2014) joined Greenberg Traurig in February 2022.
  • Laura Coates (Minneapolis/Intellectual Property/2005) published her book, Just Pursuits: A Black Prosecutor’s Fight for Fairness, in January 2022.

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