NEW YORK–LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – International law firm Vinson & Elkins LLP is significantly expanding its Insolvency and Reorganization (IR) law practice in New York and Houston as six of the nation’s most prominent bankruptcy lawyers with more than 180 years collective experience are joining the firm.
V&E is proud to announce that Denis Cronin, Jane Vris, and Dov Kleiner of Cronin & Vris are joining V&E’s New York office as partners effective August 20. J. Ronald Trost and Larry Cherkis, also of Cronin & Vris, are joining V&E as Counsel in New York. Mr. Cronin, Ms. Vris, Mr. Kleiner and Mr. Cherkis were formerly with Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. Mr. Trost is a past chair of the National Bankruptcy Conference and one of the primary architects of the current U.S. Bankruptcy Code.
In addition, Vinson & Elkins is pleased to announce that Harry Perrin, co-head of the energy-focused investment bank Petrie Parkman’s Restructuring Business and a former bankruptcy partner at the law firm Weil Gotshal & Manges, is joining the firm’s Houston office as a partner.
The six lawyers have handled some of the largest, most complex bankruptcies and reorganizations in history. Their clients include creditors, debtors, potential purchasers of assets from distressed companies, and equity investors in companies emerging from Chapter 11.
“We are delighted that Denis, Jane, Dov, Ron and Larry have decided to join us in New York,” says Vinson & Elkins Managing Partner Joe Dilg. “They share our vision for growth and expansion for V&E in New York. V&E lawyers have worked with them for many years and know them to be not only lawyers of the highest stature, but also individuals with great integrity. They are precisely the type of lawyers we want to attract as we recommence building our practice in New York.
“Harry Perrin is widely viewed in Texas and New York as one of the leading legal advisors on bankruptcy, insolvency, and creditors’ rights,” adds Mr. Dilg. “His investment banking and legal expertise will be a tremendous addition to our IR practice.”
Dan Stewart, head of V&E’s national Insolvency and Restructuring practice, says the 30 lawyers in the firm’s IR group make it one of the largest and most experienced in the nation. “As we continue to build our New York office, we are thrilled to add the outstanding lawyers at C&V,” says Mr. Stewart, who offices in Dallas and New York. “Denis, Jane and Ron are renowned as three of the best restructuring attorneys in the country, and all of the C&V lawyers possess client and managerial skills and experience that will assist greatly in V&E’s effort to build our flagship New York office.
“Harry Perrin is one of the most recognized restructuring professionals in the nation,” says Mr. Stewart. “Harry’s client skills and boardroom experience in energy and other industries will enable V&E to deliver high quality legal services to our clients.”
The new lawyers joining V&E include:
Denis Cronin, 59, a graduate of Fordham University School of Law, will be co-chair of V&E’s Insolvency and Reorganization Practice Group. He also will be active in the firm’s management and leadership decision-making, especially as it applies to expanding the firm’s New York office. Mr. Cronin has been named by Best Lawyers in America for more than 20 consecutive years. He was a partner at Wachtell, Lipton from 1978 to 1993, and managing partner of the New York law firm for six of those years.
Jane Vris, 51, is a 1983 graduate of New York University Law School, where she was Managing Editor of the Law Review. She was a founding partner of Cronin & Vris, a bankruptcy boutique law firm she and Mr. Cronin started in 1997. Prior to that, Ms. Vris was at Wachtell, Lipton where she was a partner in the creditors rights group. She is a member of the National Bankruptcy Conference and has been a long-time contributing editor to Collier on Bankruptcy, the leading treatise on bankruptcy in the United States.
Harry Perrin, 54, a 1980 graduate of the University of Houston School of Law, co-headed Petrie Parkman’s Restructuring Business from 2001 to 2006, when it was purchased by Merrill Lynch. Prior to that, he was a partner for 10 years in the business finance and restructuring group at Weil Gotshal.
Dov Kleiner, 40, received his MBA and law degree from Columbia University in 1994. He was a lawyer at Wachtell, Lipton from 1994 until 2001, when he joined Cronin & Vris, where he was a partner. Most recently, Mr. Kleiner, Ms. Vris and Mr. Trost represented Entergy Corp. in connection with the Chapter 11 case of its subsidiary, Entergy New Orleans, in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
J. Ronald Trost, 74, who received his law degree at the University of Texas, is considered one of the fathers of the modern U.S. Bankruptcy Code, having been one of its chief architects and proponents in 1978. He has served as chairman of the National Bankruptcy Conference from 1996 until 2004. He was a partner at Sidley Austin, where he served as managing partner of the firm’s Los Angeles office and chair of its Corporate Reorganization and Bankruptcy Group.
Laurence Cherkis, 64, who graduated from New York University School of Law, chaired the Real Estate Law Practice at Wachtell, Lipton for many years and recently has been Of Counsel at Cronin & Vris.
“Cronin & Vris has been approached by numerous first-tier law firms over the years, but we never came close to having serious discussions with any firm until Vinson & Elkins approached us,” says Mr. Cronin. “We have worked with their partners on matters for more than 25 years and know the firm very well. Most important, it is the character of the firm and lawyers that made them stand above the others.
“Vinson & Elkins is committed to making its New York office a flagship office second to none in the country,” says Mr. Cronin. “As new partners in the New York office, we will focus on achieving that objective as soon as possible.”
Adds Ms. Vris, “V&E also has great depth in the areas we felt we needed to complement our restructuring work. Restructuring has increasingly involved leverage through litigation and a strong, well-rounded litigation capability has become critical in our area. Corporate and tax are also always essential to restructuring. V&E has all of these and more.”
Vinson & Elkins’ Insolvency and Reorganization team of 30 lawyers is one of the largest and most experienced in the country. The firm’s lawyers are engaged in matters on behalf of debtors, lender groups, ad hoc creditor committees, official creditor committees, secured and unsecured creditors, and trustees. V&E has experienced practitioners adept at all phases of the insolvency and restructuring process, including pre-bankruptcy filing or post-bankruptcy filing.
Vinson & Elkins was established in 1917 and is one of the world’s largest international law firms. The firm has more than 700 lawyers practicing in Austin, Beijing, Dallas, Dubai, Houston, Hong Kong, London, Moscow, New York, Shanghai, Tokyo and Washington D.C. Vinson & Elkins offers a wide range of legal services. Clients include public and private companies, financial institutions, municipalities, governments of sovereign nations, entrepreneurs, families and individuals. V&E is a primary sponsor of the American Bar Association’s Silver Gavel Awards, which recognizes and promotes legal journalism.