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PITTSBURGH - Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney proudly announces new leaders across many of the firm’s offices, industry and practice groups.

“The newly appointed leaders have all made significant contributions to Buchanan’s success,” said Joseph Dougherty, Buchanan’s chairman and CEO. “They are a diverse and significant addition to our leadership ranks and will play a crucial role in the firm executing its strategic priorities in 2023 and beyond.”  

Office Co-Heads

Kate Kronquist, a shareholder in the firm’s Finance and Real Estate sections, joins Michael Strazzella as co-head of the Washington, DC office. The office has seen significant growth in 2022 with the addition of the firm’s international trade and national security practice group and additional lateral hires. Kronquist and Strazzella’s leadership will be focused on continuing that strategic growth.

Jason Murtagh was named co-head of the San Diego office. A shareholder in the firm’s labor and employment section, he will continue to support the firm’s strategic growth on the West Coast. Kimberly Arouh continues in her role as co-head of the San Diego office.

Industry Group Leadership

Michelle Brennfleck joins Strazzella as co-chair of the healthcare industry team. The healthcare industry is a key strategic focus of the firm, and Brennfleck and Strazzella will continue to expand the team and its capabilities. The legal, legislative, regulatory and business professionals on the healthcare industry team help clients, including technology innovators, providers and suppliers, respond to today’s most pressing challenges and opportunities facing this multi-trillion-dollar industry.

Tina Hu-Rodgers joins Jason Parish as co-chair of the life sciences industry team. Hu-Rodgers will help lead a team that counsels clients on the full range of issues that arise during the product lifecycle, from idea conception to commercialization. Leading pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, wholesalers and distributors, retailers, industry trade associations and leading research institutions, trust Buchanan Life Sciences with their most challenging business and legal problems.

Section Chairs and Practice Group Leaders

Sahel Ahyaie Assar, counsel in the firm’s tax section, is the blockchain and digital asset practice group leader. The group assists clients with a variety of opportunities and challenges associated with navigating various decentralized technology and virtual currencies. They provide innovative strategies that support maximizing returns while mitigating the challenges of this dynamic industry.

Travis Boone joins the leadership for the intellectual property section as the chemical group co-chair. In this new role, he will help lead a section of more than 50 attorneys and other professionals. The section’s clients range from global Fortune 500 companies and large universities to individual inventors and entrepreneurs. The other leaders of the group include Todd Walters, Bassam Ibrahim, and Lloyd Smith.

Barbara Binzak Blumenfeld is the new FDA & biotechnology section section co-chair. She is an experienced shareholder who has worked with clients on virtually all types of FDA-regulated products. Under her leadership, the group will continue to offer its unparalleled team who work across the firm’s different sections and practice areas to provide full-service support to clients during the life cycle of a product. Edward Allera continues to be the co-chair of the section. 

Charlene Barker Gedeus and Hala Sandridge will be the higher education practice group leaders. Gedeus, a shareholder in the firm’s labor and employment section, often advises higher education institutions on compliance and policy issues, and she conducts Title IX investigations. Sandridge, a consummate leader at the firm who also serves as the co-head of the Tampa office, and chair of the firm’s appellate practice group, is an experienced and highly respected litigator. The higher education lawyers offer transactional, regulatory and litigation services to institutions across the country.

Joshua Headley, shareholder in the firm’s tax section, will be the non-profit practice group leader. The group understands the full range of issues of concern to nonprofits. They work with clients at all stages, from formation and recognition of tax-exempt status to mergers and even termination. The group represents a wide range of clients including educational institutions, healthcare and scientific research clients, religious and social welfare organizations, public charities, private foundations and business leagues.

Jared Johnson, shareholder in the firm’s tax section, will be the family office practice group leader. He will also be the business tax practice group leader. The family office lawyers offer integrated legal services across multiple practice areas to assist high-net-worth families and business owners to structure and manage family offices, holding company structures, pooled investment structures, private trust structures and foundations to accomplish family business, investment and philanthropic objectives.

George Karavetsos, a shareholder and former director of the FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations, will be the white collar defense, compliance, and investigations practice group leader. The growing group includes seasoned criminal trial lawyers, former state and federal prosecutors, former SEC officials, and former law enforcement professionals who are highly skilled and experienced in constructing compliance programs, conducting internal investigations, and defending clients against criminal allegations.

Miranda Soto, an experienced litigator and shareholder, is the new product liability practice group leader. Buchanan’s product liability attorneys have extensive experience in product liability litigation, representing Fortune 100 and multi-national companies across the globe, including Europe and Asia. Soto and the other lawyers in the group work with companies from the ground up to assist with litigation prevention from product conception to defending and protecting a product and company reputations at trial.

Firm Committees

Kelly Neal, shareholder in the firm’s bankruptcy and creditors’ rights group, will assume the associates committee chairperson role and welcome new members Alexis Graziano, shareholder in the firm’s litigation section, and Matthew Fedowitz, shareholder in the firm’s intellectual property section and life sciences industry group, to the committee. The associates committee focuses its work on professional development and talent acquisition and retention.