By Chris Villani for Law360.com
Massachusetts lawyers found new homes in June, with a former state attorney general rejoining Foley Hoag, DLA Piper adding a former lead U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission trial lawyer, and Hogan Lovells boosting its mergers and acquisitions practice.
Here are the latest moves in the Boston legal scene.
Former Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley rejoined Foley Hoag LLP after working with the government affairs team at Juul Labs since 2019. Coakley previously worked at Foley Hoag from 2015 until 2019. She was the state’s first female attorney general, serving from 2007 to 2015, and lost a race for Senate in 2010 and for governor in 2014.
Her legal career spans more than 30 years, the firm noted in its announcement. Before serving as attorney general, Coakley was elected as the Middlesex County district attorney and served in that role from 1999 through 2007. She had been a prosecutor in that office since 1989. She also served as special attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice‘s Boston Organized Crime Task Force.
“I look forward to returning to Foley Hoag and working alongside esteemed colleagues with whom I’ve collaborated for many years,” Coakley said in a statement. “This prestigious law firm continues to uphold a national reputation for excellence and integrity in legal practice. I am glad to be back.”
DLA Piper beefed up its litigation practice by hiring Eric Forni, a former senior trial counsel at the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, as a partner in its Boston office.
The firm touted Forni’s experience, including several federal trials and enforcement investigations involving complex securities fraud, securities registration violations and broker-dealer or investment adviser rules.
“Eric is an accomplished investigator, litigator and trial attorney, having tried both civil and criminal cases. He also has extensive experience within the SEC and U.S. attorney’s office, giving him a deep understanding of the laws they enforce,” said Loren Brown, DLA Piper’s U.S. vice chairman and chair of the firm’s U.S. disputes practice. “He will be a great resource to our clients as they navigate this changing landscape.”
Hogan Lovells added mergers and acquisitions attorney Alex Aber to its corporate and finance practice after two decades at Foley Hoag, where he was co-chair of the M&A practice.
Aber told Law360 that he was drawn to Hogan Lovells’ large platform of offerings, collaborative culture, and the opportunity to build a corporate practice in Boston focused on technology and life sciences.
“I have fond feelings for my prior firm,” he said. “But my practice outgrew it, and my clients outgrew it. I came to Hogan Lovells to better serve my clients as they increasingly support activity across the globe.”
Armstrong Teasdale LLP announced that it hired Boston-based data privacy partner Peter McLaughlin, who joined the firm following short stints with Burns & Levinson LLP and Prince Lobel Tye LLP.
McLaughlin cited firm culture as the main reason behind his decision to join Armstrong Teasdale, specifically the collaboration that exists between the firm’s attorneys, adding that he also found the firm’s midsize status a big plus.
“I was looking for a firm that does more than just talk about collaboration,” he said. “One of the best ways to build out a practice is to be in an environment where your colleagues are genuinely incentivized to engage in cross-marketing to existing firm clients.”
Garciano has experience with tax incentives and tax credit debt and equity financing. He counsels clients on federal and state tax incentives and tax credits related to low-income housing, historic status, energy investment and new markets, according to an announcement from Polsinelli.
“Polsinelli offers the perfect combination of so many factors — getting to work with esteemed leaders … partnering with nationally thriving teams in real estate and real estate financing, while also playing a pivotal role in growing the tax credit practice,” Garciano said in a statement.
Harris, who has over two decades of experience in the life sciences sector, spent more than 15 years at Axinn Veltrop & Harkrider LLP.
Harris told Law360 that he chose to join Nutter because of its strength in life sciences and intellectual property and for the opportunity to collaborate with attorneys from other practices and areas.
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC has snagged leading climate solutions attorney Elise Zoli from Jones Day to join as partner in the firm’s Boston office, where she will help focus efforts on clean energy, water, agriculture and decarbonization issues.
Zoli told Law360 she is excited to bring her decades of experience working on clean technology and environmental issues. She’s happy to be working at a firm that shares her values and believes the world is at an inflection point where she and the firm can have a positive impact together.
“Every day I get up and I’m excited to go to work of course — and I’m thrilled to have mission-aligned people doing the same thing and I think that’ll be lovely — but, no, we’re going to change the world,” Zoli said.