Michael E. Draz > Vedder Price > Chicago, United States > Lawyer Profile
Vedder Price Offices
222 NORTH LASALLE STREET, SUITE 2600
CHICAGO, IL 60601-1003
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Michael E. Draz
Global Transportation Finance
Mr. Draz has significant experience representing commercial banks, operating lessors, finance companies, manufacturers, private equity funds, hedge funds and other investors in a variety of transaction structures, including securitizations, warehouse loan facilities and other structured financings, cross-border operating leases, leveraged leases and portfolio acquisitions and divestitures. Mr. Draz also has experience representing investors in structuring and establishing strategic joint ventures and new leasing platforms for aviation and rail assets.
Mr. Draz is conversant in Polish and Spanish.
English, Polish & Spanish
- Member, American Bar Association, Aircraft Financing Subcommittee
- Loyola University Chicago School of Law, J.D., 2008, magna cum laude
- University of Notre Dame, B.A., 2005
Lawyer Rankings(Leading lawyers)
Vedder Price‘s team has an enviable track record in representing lessors, lenders, manufacturers, government agencies, equity investors and operators. It routinely assists with the domestic and international leasing and debt financing of rail assets. The firm is able to leverage dedicated transportation asset finance and securitization lawyers in Chicago, New York, Washington DC, San Francisco and Los Angeles, as well as from its London and Singapore offices. With extensive experience in railcar financings, structured finance specialist Geoffrey R. Kass chairs the global transportation finance team. Also integral to the group are John T. Bycraft, who represents borrowers, issuers, servicers and lenders on structured finance transactions involving rolling stock portfolios; and Michael E. Draz, who is ‘unmatched in his pragmatism, collaboration, sharpness, efficiency, and lack of ego‘. In New York, Jeffrey T. Veber is a transportation finance expert, while Los Angeles-based Clay C. Thomas is a rail industry specialist. At associate level, Joel R. Thielen‘s practice includes rail finance deals, while Jillian S. Greenwald regularly assists with railcar financings. All attorneys mentioned are based in the firm’s Chicago office unless otherwise mentioned.
Vedder Price‘s global transportation finance practice covers the entire spectrum of aircraft finance transactions. Representative expertise for the ‘extremely commercial and strategically-thinking aviation team‘ ranges from large-value M&A to aircraft-related asset-backed securities work, portfolio debt financings, and structured multi-aircraft financings in the capital markets. The department also has a robust leaseback transactions practice. Heading up the team, corporate and securities law specialist Geoffrey R. Kass is highly rated for structured financings in the aviation transportation industry. Adam R. Beringer and Michael E. Draz are also widely respected aircraft finance experts, while Mark J. Ditto is regularly sought out for complex commercial aircraft and high-value equipment deals. In New York, Cameron A. Gee routinely handles financing structures established across multiple jurisdictions; and Jeffrey T. Veber has great experience in transportation financings. On the West Coast, Raviv Surpin is an aircraft finance transactions expert in the Los Angeles office. At associate level, Justine L. Chilvers in New York ‘stands out for her ability to drive deals‘, while James Kilner‘s broad banking and finance practice includes aviation sales and leasebacks. All named lawyers are based in the firm’s Chicago office unless otherwise mentioned.
- Leading lawyers - United States > Industry focus > Transport: rail and road - finance
- Transport: aviation and air travel - finance - United States > Industry focus
- Transport: rail and road - finance - United States > Industry focus
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Real estate > Land use/zoning
- Industry focus > Transport: aviation and air travel - finance
- Industry focus > Transport: rail and road - finance
- M&A/corporate and commercial > M&A: middle-market (sub-$500m)
- Industry focus > Transport: shipping - finance
- Labor and employment > Labor-management relations
- Investment fund formation and management > Mutual/registered/exchange-traded funds
- Labor and employment > Workplace and employment counseling
- Labor and employment > Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: design
- Labor and employment > Labor and employment disputes (including collective actions): defense
- Dispute resolution > Securities litigation: defense
- Dispute resolution > Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense