WILMINGTON – The city will be home to two new offices from law firms Lewis Brisbois and Block & Leviton, both of which recruited experienced lawyers away from some of the city’s other firms.Los Angeles-basedLewis Brisboisrecruited Francis G.X. Pileggi and Chauna A. Abner away fromEckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, with Pileggi serving as managing partner.
[caption id="attachment_199871" align="alignright" width="245"] Francis Pileggi | PHOTO COURTESY OF FRANCIS PILEGGI[/caption]
Pileggi, who had led Eckert Seamans’ Wilmington office since 2011, is a well-known expert on corporate and commercial litigation. His practice focuses on representing corporations, stockholders, members of boards of directors, and members and managers of LLCs in high-stakes disputes and he’s published a well-read legal blog on the state’s court rulings for years. Pileggi is also well-known for litigating several high-profile Second Amendment cases on behalf of gunowners in federal and state appellate courts.“I am very excited to be joining Lewis Brisbois with its impressive array of practitioners well-known for their national reputations for excellence in their practice areas and exemplary client service. I have worked on several Delaware corporate and commercial litigation matters with several partners in multiple offices of the firm over the last few years, and I look forward to continuing, and increasing, my working relationships with many of the same partners I have come to know and respect as high-quality people and high-quality lawyers,” Pileggi said in a statement announcing his move to Lewis Brisbois.Abner, who will be an associate in the firm, is a commercial litigator with both private and public legal experience, having worked as an assistant city solicitor in Wilmington.The expansion into Wilmington is the 53rd office for Lewis Brisbois, which is ranked as the nation’s 65th largest firm by revenue with more than 1,300 lawyers, according to the 2020 AmLaw 200. The office is in the WSFS Bank Center at 500 Delaware Ave.
[caption id="attachment_199868" align="alignleft" width="319"] Nathan Cook | PHOTO COURTESY OF BLOCK & LEVITON LLP[/caption]
Meanwhile, Boston-based national securities litigation firmBlock & Leviton LLPis expanding into its fourth market with offices also in San Francisco and Washington, D.C. The Wilmington office, located in the Trolley Square shopping center, will be headed by Nathan A. Cook, who has left Grant & Eisenhofer P.A.Cook was a director at Grant & Eisenhofer, where he litigated complex matters before the Delaware Court of Chancery and the Delaware Supreme Court, including stockholder class action suits and other litigation against companies like Dole Food, Clear Channel, News Corp. and Delphia Financial Group. His stockholder books and records lawsuit, Indiana Electrical Workers Pension Trust Fund IBEW v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., resulted in a landmark Delaware Supreme Court ruling recognizing the “Garner doctrine,” an exception to the attorney-client privilege, as state law.“I have been fortunate to work on a wide range of business matters, as a clerk with the Court of Chancery and at premier law firms on both the defense/corporate-advisory side and on the plaintiffs' side,” Cook said in a statement announcing the move. “Block & Leviton is a leader in the field of investor rights, and I look forward to working closely with the entire Block & Leviton team to establish the Wilmington office and continue the firm's tradition of success in safeguarding investors.”In a statement, Block & Leviton partner Joel Fleming complimented Cook by saying his addition “enhances our ability to go toe-to-toe with the cream of the defense bar and continue to win significant victories for our clients in the Delaware Court of Chancery — one of the most important forums in the country for the protection of investors’ rights.”By Jacob Owensjowens@delawarebusinesstimes.com