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    January 4, 2010  
 
2011: Settlements,
Loans & NFL Lawsuits

 
Was it hopes for a great new year of economic recovery that made all these high-powered lawyers so happy at the stroke of midnight Saturday?
 
White & Case’s Carolyn Lamm (third from left), joined for our camera by husband (and Morgan Lewis’ Peter Halle), Patton Boggs’ Stuart Pape, WilmerHale’s Jamie Gorelick, US District Judge Paul Friedman, Siemen’s government affairs chief Kathleen Ambrose, and Georgetown law professor Barry Carter.

Nah, it was the yummy lobster, lamb, and mousse five-course they’d just devoured at the home of White & Case’s Carolyn Lamm (third from left), joined for our camera by husband (and Morgan Lewis’) Peter Halle, Patton Boggs’ Stuart Pape, WilmerHale’s Jamie Gorelick, US District Judge Paul Friedman, Siemens government affairs chief Kathleen Ambrose, and Georgetown law professor Barry Carter. Jamie rang out 2010 with a Dec 30 settlement for high profile client Steve Rattner facing charges from gov-elect Andrew Cuomo. Stuart rang in the new year by ending his 14-year tenure as Patton Boggs managing partner meaning he can return full-time to his FDA practice. Paul, who took senior status a year ago but still works 50% (or, as Peter put it, “100% of the time he works”) looks forward to winding down more when “we get more judges confirmed.” Now that's a New Year's resolution that could be good for next year, too.


Bisnow

Green to Go Green

 
Chadbourne's Ken Hansen, who recently led a team representing Abound Solar Manufacturing in negotiating its $400 million DOE loan guarantee.

While we were wishing for white holidays, Chadbourne’s Ken Hansen spent his trying to make the world a bit more green. He led a team of DC, NY and LA attorneys advising Abound Solar Manufacturing in a recently approved $400 million loan guarantee from DOE. The agency's alternative energy program helps fund innovative, yet proven renewable energy projects. Abound’s winnings are going toward two thin-film solar panel manufacturing facilities; the end goal is to sell panels to use in large-scale, concentrated groups to replace power plants.

 
A stitched picture decorating Chadbourne's Ken Hansen's DC office.

Ken showed us this stitching from his time studying abroad in Chile, where his host family was neighbors with Nobel laureate Pablo Neruda. (We channeled some of the poet’s artiness to shoot Ken reflected in the picture. Can you spot him?) At one point, Chadbourne repped half of the six companies attaining loan guarantees through this initiative since its early '09 start, including a $1.3 billion financing for the world’s largest wind farm. (There are now only eight guarantees total, but Ken says the program is picking up speed, with half of the approvals from December ‘10.) Ken says many issues impeding rapid deployment have been sorted out, but some stem from the program being housed in a large agency with other priorities. He tells us there's a more efficient way: positioning the program as an independent financing agency without ties to DOE, emulating the likes of OPIC and Ex-Im Bank. (Although another great independent, TCU, just joined the Big East? So maybe there's something to it.)

Chadbourne's Ken Hansen, who recently represented Abound Solar Manufacturing in its $400 million loan guarantee from the DOE.

Ken's a former Export-Import Bank GC and OPIC Associate GC, who started as an economist teaching at Wellesley. A Harvard, Yale, and UPenn grad, Ken got his JD to teach econ in a legal context, and the rest is history: He’s been practicing law for nearly 30 years. (Hmm, did marrying his supervisor at his first law office have anything to do with it?) Since Ken has a couple dozen loan guarantee apps in the works, we asked what’s on the clean energy horizon. Try molten salt—he says it holds heat like a charm. On his personal frontier, Ken’s looking forward to total recovery from a recent bone spur surgery. A veteran of 37 marathons—a painting from one hangs at left—Ken hopes to participate in his seventh ultramarathon (50 miles) this November.


Bisnow
NFL Fumbles on Pension Plans
 
Zuckerman Spaeder's Cy Smith, who's representing former Redskins running back Eric Shelton in a pension plan lawsuit against the NFL.

Zuckerman’s Cy Smith is throwing a flag at the NFL. The first lawyer to ever win a case against the NFL’s pension plan is working on behalf of former 'Skins running back Eric Shelton. The first time Cy went up against the NFL, he represented the family of former Steelers center Mike Webster. Cy successfully argued that footballers injured in the line of duty are entitled to liftime disability pension, earning Mike’s family $1.5 million in back benefits. Cy, next to a memento from Mike’s family, has since talked to or counseled dozens of former football players and filed lawsuits on behalf of six.

Zuckerman Spaeder's Cy Smith, who's representing former Redskins running back Eric Shelton in a pension plan lawsuit against the NFL.

Cy tells us Eric Shelton, who was injured and momentarily paralyzed during a Redskins game, has debilitating symptoms leaving him unable to work, which entitle him to the highest level of benefits (around $200,000 a year). After the NFL agreed to only mid-level benefits during negotiations, Cy’s taking it the courtroom. He grew up a season ticket-holding ‘Skins fan, and hopes his NFL pension cases help establish fairer treatment for handling football injuries. Cy’s clients run the gamut: a recent case repped a British accountant tortured and held for ransom in the Philippines; another, a man instrumental in a billion-dollar international arms deal. Like Chadbourne’s Ken Hansen, Cy spends his free time doing extreme exercise: He hiked Maryland's portion of the Appalachian Trial (43 miles) in two days.

 

New year, new stories! Send transactions, exciting wins, trends, hot topics, and especially event invites with good food to DC Legal reporter Roksana Slavinsky, roksana@bisnow.com.

 
 
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