For Fujifilm Imaging Colorants (formerly Avecia, Inc.), Steve Bizar and Jill Rogers secured a trial victory over the U.S. Department of Justice before the United States Court of International Trade in a significant case that will save Fuji millions of dollars in import duties.
Steve Bizar and Wendy Newton obtained the dismissal of Catholic Health East from a putative antitrust class action suit alleging a conspiracy among hospitals and health care systems to fix the wages paid to nurses in the Albany, New York, area at below-market rates.
Rudy Garcia is representing 20 major mushroom producers in individual and class action antitrust claims filed by supermarkets and other food retailers alleging overcharges on more than 400 million pounds of mushrooms sold annually by the producers.
Steve Bizar and Howard Scher represent a major multinational chemical manufacturing company in ongoing federal and state antitrust class action litigation and opt-out lawsuits. The actions challenge its pricing and business activities in the sale of plastics additives, hydrogen peroxide, methyl-methacrylate and polymethyl-methacrylate to customers in North America.
Steve Bizar obtained a significant victory in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida on behalf of Catholic Health East in a putative class action lawsuit when the court dismissed the suit against CHE in its entirety and ruled, as a matter of law, that CHE is not liable for the actions of its member hospitals.
Sam Braver and his team, including fellow shareholder Stan Parker, are representing two major domestic title insurance companies in three title insurance class action cases filed in the state and federal courts of Pennsylvania. The cases involve alleged overcharges for title insurance during the period of 2000 to August 2005.
Rosemary Bruno and Chris Dalton successfully defeated certification of a purported nationwide class action against a major international automotive industry client. The plaintiffs sought certification of a nationwide class for claims of consumer fraud/deceptive trade practices, breach of warranty and unjust enrichment — including claims for treble damages and attorneys’ fees. In denying certification, the trial court concurred with Buchanan’s position that the plaintiffs’ application failed on multiple grounds, agreeing that the plaintiffs’ proposed class definition constituted a prohibited “fail-safe” class, and that, despite two years of discovery, the plaintiffs failed to establish the requirements for class action treatment. Of particular significance was the trial court’s determination that the consumer fraud claims asserted here were different, and distinguishable, from those asserted against Merck & Co. in a recent New Jersey appellate court decision affirming certification of a nationwide class action against Merck under New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act.
Jack Stover and Kevin Brobson represented Pennsylvania’s largest health care insurer in an extended case in Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court defending proposed class action litigation relating to the reserves and statutory surpluses of insurance carriers.
Charles Gibbons and Michael Manzo obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of the University of Pittsburgh in multimillion-dollar roof litigation involving a new facility that experienced significant construction complications just a few years after completion.
Jack Stover represented a major sports coaching figure in NCAA Division I collegiate sports in a case relating to player allegations of discrimination.
Blake Delaney and his team recently secured victories for two related entities seeking to establish charter schools in Florida. After their charter school applications were denied by their respective school districts, Discovery Education Services, Inc. and Universal Education Services, Inc. retained Buchanan to appeal the decisions. Our litigation team secured a unanimous vote from the Appeals Commission to reverse the Orange County School District’s denial of Discovery’s application, and the State Board of Education concurred. Universal’s victory came two weeks later. Even though the Appeals Commission affirmed the Osceola County School District’s denial of Universal’s application, our trial team successfully argued to the State Board of Education that both the School District and the commission had erred. This victory for Universal marked the first time in recent memory that the Florida State Board of Education reversed a decision of the Charter School Appeals Commission.
Energy and Natural Resources
A trial team led by Greg Krock won a $219 million jury verdict on behalf of Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation in a five-week trial. The dispute alleged fraud against Massey Coal Company and breach of contract on the part of one of its subsidiary coal sales companies, Central West Virginia Energy Company. The lawsuit was filed in April 2005, after Massey subsidiary Central West Virginia Energy Co. failed to deliver 104,000 tons of metallurgical grade coal per month to the steelmaker as required under a contract that extended to 2010. The complaint was amended more than a year later, based on extensive documents obtained from Massey in discovery. Wheeling-Pitt claimed that the defendants started diverting coal to higher-price customers, mainly export customers in Europe and Asia, while falsely blaming production and railroad problems for the shortfalls and knowing their actions could cause very substantial harm to Wheeling-Pitt. The jury verdict included $119 million in compensatory damages and $100 million in punitive damages — $50 million against each defendant.
Lou DeStefano and Mary Sue Henifin are representing a multinational energy corporation in a civil and criminal investigation conducted by a state attorney general and a state branch of the Department of Environmental Protection.
Matt Burger successfully represented Pennsylvania Land Holdings, Inc., an affiliate of Foundation Energy, Inc., in a federal lawsuit that resulted in the enforcement of PLHC’s contractual option rights and the transfer of natural gas leases worth millions of dollars.
Bruce Americus represents COALSALES II, an affiliate of Peabody Energy, one of the largest coal producers in the world, in a dispute involving whether the affiliate is excused from performance under a coal supply agreement due to force majeure. The case, involving a risk for the company in the range of tens of millions of dollars, includes a breach of contract claim, as well as a central dispute over jurisdiction.
Matt Burger continues to represent Williamson Energy in drafting and negotiating its long-term coal supply agreements with utility customers for new Illinois Basin coal mining operations.
Jim O’Toole successfully represented Waste Management in a variety of litigation matters, including negotiating settlements with the New Jersey Department of Protection, that resulted in substantial reductions in the original multimillion-dollar natural resource damage claims. The Buchanan trial team for Waste Management has also been successful in enjoining a New Jersey municipality from an unfavorable contract and preserving public money that was intended for remediation.
Financial Services and Institutions
In the unanimous verdict, and the largest of 2006 handed down in Chester County, Pennsylvania, Craig Mills won a victory for Fairmont Capital Advisors against Henry V. Sciortino, executive director of the Pittsburgh Intergovernmental Cooperation Association. The original claim was conversion, unjust enrichment and tortious interference with contract.
The trial team of Sam Braver and Stan Parker secured an opinion from the Pennsylvania Supreme Court affirming a litigation victory for Mellon Ventures and certain of its principals in a suit that alleged more than $100 million in damages.
For one of the oldest, major brokerage firms in the the country, Stan Yorsz secured a successful outcome in an NASD securities arbitration. Two former clients of the brokerage firm had filed an action seeking significant damages as a result of allegedly unsuitable trades and investments executed through the firm between 2002 and 2005. Following three days of often-contentious hearings, the three-person arbitration panel dismissed all of the claimants’ claims with prejudice.
We prevented Asian Bank from losing its Philadelphia headquarters because Rudy Garcia obtained declaratory and injunctive relief in a commercial lease dispute in federal court.
Marc Tepper and his team are representing Bank of America in an action filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against the officers and directors of DVI, Inc. and other entities, seeking damages in excess of $50 million for breach of fiduciary duties, fraud and violation of RICO statutes.
D.C. litigator John Korns obtained an arbitration award of more than $3 million for The Greenwich Group International LLC (GGI), a real estate investment banking firm. Through an effort lasting more than 18 months, GGI had arranged $147.5 million in funding from Corus Bank in Chicago for Comstock, a Northern Virginia developer, to fund construction of a high-rise residential condominium at a high-profile location. When Comstock refused to pay the $2 million fee established in the written agreement, our trial team filed a claim with the American Arbitration Association to enforce the agreement and also asserted implied contract, quantum meruit and unjust enrichment theories. We overcame the developer's suit in court to stay the arbitration. The three-arbitrator panel unanimously found Comstock had breached the agreement. The panel awarded GGI the $2 million fee for the project, an additional fee under the agreement for the subsequent $67 million funding the developer received from the same bank for a different project, and pre-award interest, for a total of $3,057,435. We then obtained court confirmation of the award and entry of judgment, defeating Comstock's motion to vacate the award.
Leslie Smith and Chalon Allen successfully resisted the defendant Advecor’s motion to dismiss or in the alternative motion to transfer venue for franchisor Lady of America. The defendant, a California corporation, claimed it did not have sufficient contacts with Florida for the Florida court to exercise jurisdiction. In a nine-page order, U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebooks ruled that Lady of America’s arguments were persuasive and further declined to transfer venue of the action to California.
Bill Davis, Leslie Smith and Chalon Allen obtained a preliminary injunction for franchisor Chicken Kitchen against its terminated franchisee The McDonnough Investment Group. Following briefing, the court held oral argument, at which Bill argued that the franchisee’s material breach of the franchise agreement in failing to obtain indemnify Chicken Kitchen from a vicarious liability claim was sufficient ground to justify termination, and that the post-termination use of Chicken Kitchen’s trade name and trademarks was causing irreparable harm to Chicken Kitchen. U.S. District Judge Jose Martinez found that Chicken Kitchen had met its burden in all respects.
Sam Braver and his trial team secured a several favorable rulings from the Provider Reimbursement Review Board, including for University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, when the PRRB ordered that more than $13 million should have been reimbursed to the hospital under Medicare regulations, and also, in another matter, when the Buchanan team led by Sam and Bob Ramsey, received a favorable decision from the for Heritage Valley Health System. In this case the PRRB ordered that cost report adjustments of more than $9 million should have been reimbursed to the hospital subsidiary under Medicare regulations.
Manoj Jegasothy represented the region’s largest air medical evacuation company in a variety of matters, including several commercial disputes and administrative investigations.
After a four-year battle, Carol Brayshaw Longwell received a favorable decision for Eastwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center from the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court in a case involving the ability to enroll in Pennsylvania’s Medical Assistance program.
Rick Simins handled a variety of complex litigation matters for a large national health insurer, including commercial and contractual disputes and litigation arising under ERISA.
Manoj Jegasothy secured the withdrawal of all charges on behalf of three physicians undergoing license investigations by the Department of Health State Board of Medicine.
Gene Giotto and his trial team obtained successful verdicts for HCR Manor Care in two complex long-term cases. One involved a week-long jury trial, and the other involved a medical arbitration in front of a member of the state judiciary.
Health Care Finance and Health Care Insurance
Jack Stover and Kevin Brobson acted as state regulatory counsel for the proposed consolidation of the largest health care insurers in Pennsylvania. Ron Chronister served as insurance industry consultant in the ongoing administrative processes relating to the consolidation.
Jayson Wolfgang and Kevin Brobson represented a group of major insurance carriers with respect to challenges to Act 106 in Pennsylvania. The case involves issues of state-mandated coverage for various conditions.
Jayson Wolfgang represented Highmark Inc. in a case brought by a physicians group involving reimbursement policies and procedures for imaging technologies.
On behalf of a major hotel franchise system, Bill Davis won a vicarious liability trial when the court entered a directed verdict that the franchisor was not liable for the acts of the employees of the franchisee.
Manoj Jegasothy obtained judgment for Pennsylvania’s largest resort and spa against a foreign corporation that distributed defective equipment used at the resort’s signature event.
Insurance and Reinsurance
Peter Russ, Marc Tepper and Sean Sullivan secured a 100 percent recovery for Caterpillar Financial, in the amount of $800,000. The victory, on behalf of Societe d’Electricite d’el Bibane, a Tunisian joint venture owned in part by Caterpillar Power Ventures, was a cross-office team effort for our litigation group.
Steve Bizar, Kevin Brobson and insurance industry consultant Ron Chronister won a series of significant victories for London-based GE Frankona Reinsurance Co., Ltd. and ERC Frankona Reinsurance (III), Ltd. (collectively known as “Eagle Star”). These complex matters were tried in the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court and the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, which is the court supervising the Legion Indemnity receivership, and then appealed to the Illinois Court of Appeals. Our trial team obtained a ruling from the appellate court that affirmed the circuit court judge’s ruling in favor of Eagle Star and handed Eagle Star its third victory in the four-year-old dispute.
Gene Giotto and his team represented the nation’s largest international steel company in a multimillion-dollar insurance coverage case arising out of welding rod fume exposure claims.
On behalf of Seneca Insurance Co, Inc. and Bail USA, Richard Morgan and his trial team secured a victory in a multiparty matter of considerable consequence in the District Court of Connecticut involving vicarious liability, apparent, implied, express agency, contract interpretation and construction, and related issues.
Also on behalf of Seneca Insurance Co, Inc., Richard Morgan secured a favorable outcome in two cases in Virginia arising out of an egregious wrongful death case, as well as case in Missouri involving also involving a wrongful death and claims in excess of $5 million.
In the Delaware Court of Chancery, Rudy Garcia represented PharMerica, a wholly owned subsidiary of AmerisourceBergen Corporation, the nation’s leading drug distributor and global supplier of pharmaceuticals. Through Rudy’s efforts, PharMerica was able to avoid losing its largest customer to a competitor through a declaratory judgment action.
We represent Sepracor Inc., a research-based pharmaceutical company, in Hatch-Waxman issues relating to pharmaceutical products in the U.S. District Courts for Massachusetts and Delaware.
Craig Mills began pursuing wide-ranging action for misappropriation of trade secrets for a major pharmaceutical wholesaler against a pharmacy buying group and its Fortune® 50 company partner, resulting in defendant’s agreement to return all of the client’s confidential information. The Buchanan trial team has been successful in getting an original $37 million counterclaim dismissed. The multimillion-dollar damages claim trial will start this year.
Sam Braver and his legal team, working closely with local counsel in Cleveland, obtained a favorable jury verdict for a major automotive manufacturer in an asbestos death trial that lasted 13 days. The case represented alleged exposure, claiming damages from the company in excess of $20 million, but Sam and his team were able to significantly reduce the company’s share.
Through aggressive litigation, resulting in a victory in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, Mike Dever was able to enforce the validity of a copyright ownership of the Gallup Organization’s Q12® employee engagement survey, which is a key component of Gallup’s HumanSigma® approach and the subject of several international bestselling books.
Bill Manning represented developer Reynolds Pond LLC in a successful appeal to Sussex County (Delaware) Council that resulted in the reversal of a project denial by the County Planning and Zoning Commission.
Mary Sue Henifin and Sandy Moran represented the owner of valuable New Jersey real estate against state court claims that it had agreed to sell its property to a developer based on the terms of a letter of intent and a draft sales contract. After environmental contamination was found on the property, the developer unilaterally attempted to change the terms of the sales contract, resulting in an impasse on the sale. The case was favorably settled using alternate dispute resolution on terms favorable to the property owner.
In the latest in a series of wins on behalf of Stonepath, the firm litigation team of Steve Bizar, Thomas Manning and Maryellen Madden defended on appeal the prior dismissal of a securities fraud lawsuit filed against Stonepath Group, Inc. in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The Buchanan team had convinced the District Court to dismiss a class action complaint that alleged that defendants failed to discover accounting irregularities at the company's largest subsidiary, causing the company to restate its earnings on several occasions. The appeals court affirmed the earlier decision by the district court, dismissing all claims against the defendants under sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 with prejudice. Howard Scher, Steve Bizar and Thomas Manning had earlier secured the dismissal of a related shareholder derivative action arising from the same restatements.
Barry Slotnick represented a former executive of Collins & Aikman, a now-bankrupt auto parts supplier, in connection with a securities class action suit in Michigan, as well as SEC and criminal investigation by the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York.
After years of administrative and court battles, the IRS recently decided to concede an important tax litigation case brought by the Washington, D.C., team of Stuart Lewis and Keith Mong. The case involved the IRS claim that converting a deferred compensation program into a loan under a complex estate plan (a technique known as a “SERP swap”) triggered income taxes and penalties. The central issue in the case was whether the transaction put the client in constructive receipt of the deferred compensation. The Buchanan team argued that the conversion of deferred compensation to a loan was a nontaxable event, despite IRS objections and its proposed assessment of substantial taxes and civil penalties. The taxes, penalties and interest sought by the IRS in this case exceeded $1.5 million. This case was one in a series of similar cases brought by the IRS involving executives at very large corporations, almost all of which have been handled by Stuart and Keith. In this matter, the former CEO of a Fortune 500 corporation stated his case in U.S. Tax Court. Shortly before trial the IRS — in a very rare move — agreed to a full concession. This was in stark contrast to the earlier IRS position in which only minimal concessions were offered.
Mary Sue Henifin successfully defended a technology client in federal court litigation in the District of New Jersey over the terms of a license agreement — after we defeated a motion to dismiss our client’s fraud counterclaims, the adverse party increased its offer to purchase the company from $12 million stock and cash to $35 million all cash, resulting in a settlement and sale.
Mary Sue Henifin and Sandy Moran successfully defended a global electronics manufacturer in federal court against claims brought by inventors that they were due royalties on certain products after their employer was acquired by the defendant. After obtaining indemnification from shareholders of the acquired employer, the case was favorably settled.
In an important litigation victory for National Technologies Associates, Inc. (NTA), John Korns and his team — coming into the case after a Fairfax County, VA Circuit Court had awarded more than $840,000 in contract damages against federal government contractor NTA in favor of subcontractor SI International, one of the top 200 federal government contractors — successfully persuaded the court on a motion for reconsideration to reverse her earlier ruling that NTA had breached the subcontract with SI and to rule that there was no breach and no damages. Subsequently, we persuaded the Virginia Supreme Court to deny SI's petition for appeal and to find that the Circuit Court ruling contained no reversible error.
In a bench trial in Lehigh County Court of Common Pleas, Gerald Burns secured a $2 million judgment for a major international telecommunications carrier when a judge held the owner of a defunct company personally liable for the company’s debt to our client.
The White-Collar team is representing several employees of the Pennsylvania State Senate in connection with the FBI and DOJ investigation of state Senator Vincent J. Fumo.
We continue to represent two major corporate clients in federal criminal antitrust investigations.
The team also represented a Western Pennsylvania manufacturer of defense equipment in an investigation and trial alleging violation of the Arms Export Control Act.
Barry Slotnick secured the withdrawal and unprecedented recall of an extradition warrant from the state of Louisiana for charges of illegal online gambling against the chairman of British online gaming company Sportingbet PLC.
Recognition for Professional Leadership
Lawyers at Buchanan have achieved prominence in their field and have been singled out for their accomplishments. Our litigators are active in the legal community, participating in local and national organizations in a effort improve the profession and the justice system. This year, many of our lawyers were publicly recognized for their commitment.
Steve Bizar, Mark Hornak and Howard Scher were among the 21 Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney attorneys selected by their clients for inclusion among America’s Leading Business Lawyers by Chambers USA. The publication’s rankings are based upon interviews with clients and peers. The leading law firms and attorneys are then compiled and ranked based on the comments in the interviews.
Ed Klett was appointed to two corporate boards and honored with a lifelong fellowship at Penn State University. In addition to serving on the Board of Trustees at Bucknell University, Ed now serves on the board of Xethanol Corporation and Northeast Securities. In October, Ed was honored with the lifelong title of Alumni Fellow, the highest award given by the Penn State Alumni Association for outstanding professional accomplishments. Ed is a graduate of Dickinson School of Law, which is now affiliated with Penn State. Also this year, Ed was appointed by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to serve a four-year term on the prestigious Judicial Conduct Board of Pennsylvania. The Judicial Conduct Board investigates allegations of ethical misconduct against Pennsylvania judges and when necessary, prepares and brings cases against judges who are accused of unethical actions. The 12-member board, made up of three judges, three attorneys and six non-lawyer members, is selected by the governor and/or the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
Stan Parker was inducted into the Academy of Trial Lawyers of Allegheny County, joining fellow Buchanan attorneys Sam Braver, Christine Donohue, Charlie Gibbons, Mark Hornak, Edwin Klett, Michael Manzo and Susan Yohe. The invitation-only Academy of Trial Lawyers of Allegheny County comprises 250 active fellows, divided between the plaintiff and defense bar. In addition, Stan also serves as chair of the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Civil Litigation Section. He is on the Council of the Allegheny County Bar Association, Civil Litigation Section. Stan was also named as one of Pittsburgh’s “40 Under 40” by Pittsburgh Magazine and the Pittsburgh Urban Magnet Project (PUMP). Stan was singled out as someone who is “igniting and shaping this region through their commitment to all that is truly Pittsburgh — from entrepreneurship to medicine to community and nonprofit work and service.” Also this year, Stan was appointed to the Regional Asset District board, which distributes funds to facilities and cultural organizations from the city’s 1 percent sales tax.
Wendy Newton was among the women highlighted in an extensive Pittsburgh Post-Gazette feature on the region’s women leaders. The feature, “Women at the Helm,” was published as part of the newspaper’s annual ranking of the city’s Top 50 corporate performers, and the firm was listed among the top 50 private businesses in the region.
Gretchen Jankowski was recognized by American Law Media as one of 45 practitioners in Pennsylvania on the “Fast Track” for 2006. The list recognizes attorneys under age 40 who have worked tirelessly in their professional, personal and civic lives to improve the legal landscape and the future of others.
The South Florida Business Journal and Citibank honored Bill Davis and Leslie Smith as two of five Buchanan attorneys feted as South Florida’s top CPAs and attorneys in the Key Partners Awards program.
Leslie Smith was nominated by her peers as a Legal Eagle in the franchising community as part of Franchise Times’ Third Annual Legal Eagle Nominations. The publication polled the industry for the names of franchise attorneys who are respected by their peers, adversaries and clients.
Leslie Harris was appointed to the Executive Committee of the Antitrust Law Section of the New York State Bar Association. Leslie will serve a two-year term, aiding more than 500 committee section members with their mission to keep members of the bar apprised of developments in antitrust law.
Rudy Garcia was elected chancellor of the Justinian Society, a high-profile organization of judges, public officials and prominent lawyers that promotes, among other things, continuing education in law, supports the advancement of qualified and distinguished Justinians in public office, serves the Italian-American legal profession and the community, and strives to uphold a positive image and take action against negative stereotyping of Italian-Americans.
Of the 65 lawyers at Buchanan who were named as 2007 Super Lawyers, 27 were litigators. These litigation attorneys have been honored by their peers in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and Florida, who selected them as Super Lawyers. The criteria reviewed for the award include: noteworthy verdicts or settlements; creativity or innovation within the legal process; number of cases tried or transactions handled; years in practice; position within firm; professional activities; writings and lectures; community involvement and volunteer work; professional degrees or training; and academic background, including honors and clerkships. Attorneys across each state were asked to nominate lawyers, and only the top 5 percent of lawyers received this distinction. Many of our trial lawyers have been recognized for several consecutive years. Those honored from Buchanan’s Pennsylvania offices were Sam Braver, Christine Donohue, Charlie Gibbons, Mark Hornak, Edwin Klett, John Leathers, Wendy Newton, Howard Wein and Susan Yohe from the Pittsburgh office; Steve Bizar, Gerald Burns, Joe Dougherty, Rudy Garcia, Craig Mills, Howard Scher, Richard Simins and Marc Tepper from the Philadelphia office; and Jack Stover from the Harrisburg office. Those honored from Buchanan’s New Jersey offices were Rosemary Bruno, Lou DeStefano, Allen Molnar and Bob Stickles from the Newark office; and Mary Sue Henifin from the Princeton office. Rosemary was also named as one of the “Top 100 New Jersey Lawyers” and “Top 50 New Jersey Women Lawyers.” Honored from Buchanan’s Miami office was Bill Davis.
Serving Our Communities
Buchanan lawyers give back to the community on a daily basis. We support local and national charities and civic organizations throughout the country. Our lawyers and staff give of their time and money and, throughout the last year, have demonstrated their unwavering support for communities in which we live and work.
Craig Mills served as chair of the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation Ball for the second year in a row. A former Marine, Craig serves on the foundation’s Executive Committee. The event raised $250,000 in 2006 to provide college scholarships for the children of current and former U.S. Marines, with particular emphasis on those whose parents have been killed in action. Scholarships range from $500 to $10,000 and are renewable each year.
Jack Stover was elected vice chair of the Board of Directors of Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts where he also serves as chair of the Development Committee, which has raised millions of dollars for support of the center.
Larry Farnese was appointed to the advisory board of the Rebecca Davis Dance Company, a nonprofit institution dedicated to educating youth on literary works, historical events and social issues through public performances of dance-theater.
Christine Donohue and Mike Flinn, members of the Board of Trustees of the National Aviary, sat on the committee to organize the Feathered Jewels Gala, a black-tie benefit for the aviary. Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney was among the event’s sponsors.
Gretchen Jankowski was appointed to the Pittsburgh Pro Bono Partnership Board. The Pittsburgh Pro Bono Partnership is a collaboration of legal departments, law firms and the Allegheny County Bar Foundation that work to increase attorney and paralegal pro bono legal services in Southwestern Pennsylvania.
Avid cyclist Matt Meade rode in the Escape to the Lake charity bike ride, a two-day, one-way tour that spans more than 150 miles of scenic back roads to raise money for Multiple Sclerosis. The event benefited the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Matt rode with firm client Dick’s Sporting Goods’ team.
Rose La Femina, a board member of the East Broward Auxiliary of Children’s Home Society (CHS) of Florida, chaired the organization’s annual black-tie ball. Buchanan was among the sponsors helping to raise $145,865 for CHS.
Maureen Cohon was featured in “The Thinkers,” a monthly series in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that highlights people from Western Pennsylvania who are considered to be at the forefront of new ideas in their fields. The article which appeared in the February 27, 2006, edition of the Post-Gazette, highlighted Cohon’s legal work for gay and lesbian couples, as well as unmarried heterosexual partners. She handles a range of issues from titling property to writing wills for couples who cannot acquire the rights that come with marriage.
Mary Sue Henifin participated in the kick-off event for the 2006 MentorPower Program and College Club, held at Rider University. MentorPower, Inc. is a multicultural one-to-one mentor program that helps high school students form and reach their educational goals. Volunteer mentors like Mary Sue commit to a mutually chosen project in which an environmental, scientific or technology issue is researched and tested. The students then create a classroom lesson based on the results of the project.
Dave Porter lent a helping hand by connecting George Moving & Storage with his church, The Reformed Presbyterian Church of the North Hills. The church wanted to donate pews it was no longer using to a New Orleans church flooded after Hurricane Katrina. George Moving & Storage was more than happy to help out. “We are very sympathetic to the situation in New Orleans. Our company was devastated in 2004 by Hurricane Ivan,” Vice President Tom George told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. It lost more than 150,000 square feet of warehouse space and 60 trucks. “We were able to rebound from that because so many people — our employees, vendors and customers — stepped up to help us.” The company transported the pews at no charge to either church, delighting the Rev. John T. White in New Orleans.
Richard Morgan operated a successful sporting goods drive to benefit Food For The Poor (FFP), a large and well established relief organization providing services throughout the Caribbean and Central America. FFP raises funds and provides direct assistance, usually by purchasing specifically requested materials and distributing them through churches and charity organizations already operating in areas of need. FFP has distributed more than $2.3 billion in food, medical, educational, building and small business supplies to 16 countries in the Caribbean and Central America. It supports programs that teach residents how to raise livestock and develop small businesses, and it provides agricultural assistance to independent farmers. Along with his work for FFP, Richard is involved with Switchboard Miami, a private, nonprofit, multi-service agency that provides the Miami-Dade community with comprehensive 24-hour telephone crisis counseling, suicide prevention, information and referral services. He also serves on the board of the Friends for Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami, where he served as the co-chair for the annual fundraising event in 2005. Morgan also coaches various youth sports teams throughout the year.
As a result of many years of involvement with the American Liver Foundation, our Newark office was honored with the “Corporate Sponsor Award” by the Sunrise House Foundation, which operates a drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility in Lafayette, New Jersey. The foundation helps people from all walks of life, but has a special concern for impaired mothers with young children. Lawyers continue to occupy leadership positions on its board, volunteer time on a pro bono basis and support the foundation’s fundraising efforts.