Dechert LLP > Chicago, > Firm Profile

Dechert LLP
35 West Wacker Drive
Suite 3400
CHICAGO, IL 60601-1608

United States > Dispute resolution > Securities litigation: defense

The trial, investigations and securities practice at Dechert LLP has a deep bench of partners who represent a diverse range of clients, among them leading mutual funds and corporate issuers of securities. Practice head David Kistenbroker and key partner Joni Jacobsen, who work out of both the Chicago and New York offices, are highly praised by peers. They are currently handling a class action against Antares Pharma, Inc. that alleges the company provided insufficient information to the FDA in support of testosterone replacement therapy Xyosted and subsequently overstated the drug’s approval prospects, rendering public statements false and misleading. Regulatory enforcement specialist Michael Doluisio in Philadelphia and New York litigation partner Andrew Levander are acting for AmerisourceBergen Corp. in a shareholder derivative suit filed in Delaware Chancery Court accusing the company breaching its fiduciary duties by failing to oversee compliance with federal regulations concerning distribution of controlled substances and their contributing to the opioid epidemic. Matthew LarrabeeAndrew Levander and Linda Goldstein are the key practitioners in New York. In San Francisco, corporate governance litigation partner Richard Horvath and securities and antitrust partner Josh Hess are the main contacts.

Practice head(s):

David Kistenbroker

Key clients

AIG Financial Products Corp.

AmerisourceBergen Corp.

Antares Pharma, Inc., Peter Graham, Robert F. Apple, Fred M. Powell, Leonard S. Jacob, Thomas J. Garrity, Anton G. Gueth, Jacques Gonella, Robert P. Roche, Jr.

Charles Schwab & Co. (“Schwab”)

CorMedix Inc. and certain current and former officers and directors

Former CFO Greg Rush of Syneos Health

Golub Capital

Leslie Moonves, former Chairman and CEO of CBS Corporation

Mallinckrodt Public Limited Company and certain officers and directors

Mark Frissora

Plex Systems, Inc. / Plex Systems Holdings, Inc.

PureCycle Technologies, Inc. and certain officers

Ronald Winowiecki, former Chief Financial Officer of Perrigo Company plc

Special Litigation Committee of Exelon

Work highlights

  • Represented Mallinkrodt, a biopharmaceutical company that researches and develops drugs for the treatment of various ailments, in Strougo v. Mallinckrodt Public Limited Company et al., a purported class action against the Company and certain officers and directors, alleging that the Defendants made false and/or misleading statements or omissions about the drug Acthar’s safety and ability to treat ALS.
  • Advising AmerisourceBergen Corp. in connection with a derivative suit filed against current and former members of ABC’s board of directors by putative shareholder CCAR Investments, Inc. in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware.
  • Represented Charles Schwab & Co. in class action litigation brought in the Northern District of California that alleged breach of fiduciary duty and contract claims against it and its affiliated donor-advised fund, Schwab Charitable.

United States > Dispute resolution > M&A litigation: defense

At Dechert LLP, ‘all members of the team are equally strong and engaged, and they do a phenomenal job‘. The firm is well-versed in all types of change of control and transactional litigation, and it frequently acts for leading private equity funds, sovereign investors and major corporations. David Kelley in New York and David Kistenbroker, who works from both New York and Chicago, lead the trial, investigations and securities practice. Richard Horvath and Josh Hess in San Francisco, and David Kotler in New York are ‘excellent lead trial attorneys, who are able to explain complex legal issues to both lawyers and non-lawyers alike‘.  Hess and Kotler successfully defeated an attempt by shareholders to enjoin a vote on the merger between headphones manufacturer Turtle Beach and audio technology company Parametric Sound, Inc. Chicago’s Joni Jacobsen also plays a central role in the practice.

Practice head(s):

David Kelley; David Kistenbroker


‘All members of the team are equally strong and engaged. They tried a case for us and did a phenomenal job. From brief writing to oral argument and witness testimony. Excellent trial team.’

‘Josh Hess and David Kotler were both excellent as our lead trial attorneys. They were able to explain the complex legal issues to both lawyers and non-lawyers alike and got great testimony from the most challenging witnesses. On top of being great lawyers they are extremely engaging and fun to be around outside of court as well. The support team, from the associates writing the on-the-spot trial issue briefs to the paralegals managing the massive amounts of documents and technology, were excellent!’

Key clients

Guggenheim Funds Investment Advisors, LLC

Qihoo 360 Technology and Eric Chen

Turtle Beach Corporation/VTB Holdings, Inc.

U.S. Ecology

Special Committee of the Board of Directors of Harvest Capital Credit Corporation

Versa Capital Management

Barings LLC & Shivani Khurana

SLR Senior Investment Corp.

Genesis Healthcare LLC; Post-acute Support Services LLC

Golub Capital BDC

Work highlights

  • Representing Guggenheim in class action litigation in Delaware Chancery Court stemming from a fund’s precipitous decline in 2020, an error involved in the accrual of taxes for its master limited partnership interests, and its merger with the Kayne Anderson Energy Infrastructure Fund in March 2021.
  • Defending a putative class action alleging violations of Sections 10(b), 20(a) and 20A of the Securities Exchange Act against Qihoo360 Technology Co. (“Qihoo”) and certain officers and directors.
  • A cross-office team of litigators successfully won a directed verdict at trial against shareholders alleging that the merger between the firm’s client, VTB Holdings, Inc, which does business as Turtle Beach, and Parametric Sound, Inc., a publicly traded audio technology company that is incorporated in Nevada and based in San Diego, California, constituted an equity expropriation from them to controlling shareholders.

United States > Media, technology and telecoms > Cyber law (including data privacy and data protection)

The experienced Brenda Sharton, co-chair of Dechert LLP‘s global privacy and cybersecurity practice from the Boston office, handles high profile data breaches, not limited to ransomware attacks and business email interruptions brought about by a range of threat actors, including nation states, organized crime groups and insiders. Sharton also defends clients against government investigations and enforcement actions brought by global and US regulators, namely the FTC, SEC and OCR for HIPAA breaches. Also working from Boston, trial litigator Timothy Blank advises technology, biotechnology and investment firms on privacy risks in relation to US state and global regulations, drafting security programs, class action defenses, responding to data breaches and FTC investigations. Los Angeles-based Kevin Cahill advises on complex and nuanced issues related to the scope of the CCPA’s GLBA carve-out and its impact on personal information collected from investors across various channels. Charlotte-stationed associate Hilary Bonaccorsi is a key contact for financial institutions and registered investment advisors on the SEC’s privacy regulations. Bonaccorsi also focuses on developing compliance programs related to the development and purchase of alternative data sets and web scrapping risks. Former co-chair Karen Neuman has retired.

Practice head(s):

Brenda Sharton


‘Brenda Sharton is a brilliant lawyer and a great client advocate. She is the lawyer you want in your corner. As a seasoned litigator and an experienced data security lawyer, she manages crises with confidence, finesse and strategy. Brenda will get into the weeds with the technical team and in the same breath turn to the legal team to interpret the significance and how it aligns with the bigger picture.’

‘Brenda Sharton is knowledgeable, sharp, insightful and responsive. She is very good at negotiating. She knows when to push hard and when to play soft tunes to foster good relationships with different government agencies.’

‘Dechert team is the top-tier attorney team on privacy policy and cyber security with a lot of experiences and knowledge. They solve the problems. They are super good at communication and always get to the key point. While they are knowledgeable with a lot of experiences, they are also receptive to different opinions.’ 

‘The team have a broad spectrum of knowledge and work very closely with clients. They provide expert advice along with pragmatic solutions.’ 

‘Dechert has assembled a truly global team of privacy and data security lawyers. The cross-practice specialization ensures that clients have access to lawyers dedicated to solving a range of client’s legal issues both proactively and reactively during a data security related crisis or a litigation.’

‘The practice is led by Brenda Sharton. She brings a wealth of experience to the firm.’ 

The privacy and security team collaborates seamlessly across the globe when advising clients.’

‘The outstanding lawyers I deal with are Hilary Bonaccorsi, Madeleine White, Olaf Fasshauer and Tim Blank. They all have an incredible work ethic and are able to distill the legal issues in a very simple and business-friendly way. They understand that legal solutions must work not just for the lawyers but for the businesses.’ 

Key clients

Flo Health, Inc.

Moderna, Inc.

Pearson, plc

Cano Health, Inc.

GIC Special Investments Pte. Ltd.

Easy Healthcare Corp

Rockstar Games

Chase Bank USA, N.A.

Work highlights

  • Advised Flo Health, on its regulatory and litigation matters around the globe—including a dozen class actions alleging privacy policy violations, and for advice on a new product feature designed to further protect user privacy in the face of the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
  • Advised Moderna as lead counsel, on privacy and cybersecurity matters related to safeguarding the vaccine and compliance with global privacy laws, as well as in connection with the publicized European Medicines Agency (EMA) data breach of Covid-19 vaccine information.
  • Advising Pearson on a cyberattack and the subsequent SEC investigation as well as other aspects related to privacy and cybersecurity counseling matters more generally.

Dechert is a global law firm that advises asset managers, financial institutions and corporations on issues critical to managing their business and their capital – from high-stakes litigation to complex transactions and regulatory matters. We answer questions that seem unsolvable, develop deal structures that are new to the market and protect clients’ rights in extreme situations. Our 1,000+ lawyers across 21 offices globally focus on the financial services, private equity, private credit, real estate, life sciences and technology sectors.

Dechert’s lawyers work together to understand their clients’ most complex legal and business problems and efficiently deliver practical and innovative solutions all over the world.

Our clients face increasingly challenging times, from geopolitical uncertainty and the increasing scope of compliance requirements, to a proliferation of commercial and regulatory risks. We partner with businesses to navigate these situations, supporting clients in achieving their commercial goals. Our method is agile and intuitive.

We have some of the world’s leading lawyers advising on both domestic and cross-border matters. The firm is frequently retained to work on the most challenging transactions and disputes, and prides itself on its ability to deliver premium legal services and sound business judgment to its clients. We create strategies that protect both commercial and private interests with discretion and sensitivity.

Dechert lawyers bring to all of their assignments a focus on quality, responsiveness and value for money. We are driven by one key principle: exceptional client service.

Technology and innovation are central to the future development of our business, both in terms of client-facing products and internal resources that enable more cost-effective operations, such as innovations in project management, eDiscovery and client-specific extranets.

Dechert has a longstanding tradition of providing pro bono legal services to individuals and organizations who cannot otherwise afford legal counsel. Lawyers in all our offices and in all our practice groups make a difference every day by contributing their talents to providing pro bono legal services. We approach pro bono efforts with the same energy, enthusiasm and resources as work for commercial clients, and associates receive billable hour credit for their pro bono work. We require all lawyers to perform at least 25 hours of pro bono work per year to ensure universal participation in our pro bono program.

Department Name Email Telephone
Financial services and Investment management Christopher Harvey
Corporate and securities Mark Thierfelder
Litigation Catherine Botticelli
Litigation Jonathan Streeter
Intellectual property Martin Black
Intellectual property Jeffrey Plies
Financial restructuring Allan Brilliant
Global finance Laura Swihart
Global finance Jay Alicandri
White collar defense and investigations David Kelley
Securities litigation David Kistenbroker
Securities litigation Joni Jacobsen
Antitrust Steven Bizar
Antitrust Mike Cowie
Employee benefits/executive compensation Steven Rabitz
Employee benefits/executive compensation Howard M. Klein
Tax Joshua Milgrim
International arbitration Arif Ali
Product Liability and Mass Torts Sheila Birnbaum
Product Liability and Mass Torts Kimberly Branscome

Dechert is a leading global law firm with 22 offices around the world. We advise on matters and transactions of the greatest complexity, bringing energy, creativity and efficient management of legal issues to deliver commercial and practical advice for clients.

History of the firm: Founded in Philadelphia in 1875, Dechert has advised on matters involving Latin America for more than three decades. Its international network of trusted local counsel is bolstered by the firm’s foreign lawyer program, where lawyers from Latin American relationship firms are seconded to Dechert and vice versa.

Main areas of practice
Corporate and securities: Dechert’s corporate lawyers have advised companies seeking to expand their traction both within and outside Latin America for more than three decades. The firm represents buyers, sellers and advisers in connection with mergers and acquisitions and joint ventures. Dechert also handles a full range of corporate finance transactions, including initial public offerings and follow-on equity offerings, Rule 144A and Regulation S offerings, rights offerings, tender and exchange offers, and sovereign debt offerings.

Financial restructuring: Dechert represents distressed companies, buyers of distressed assets, investors in debt, equity holders and creditors in every phase of the insolvency and corporate recovery lifecycle in Latin America. The firm focuses on achieving clients’ financial and business goals in the most expedient manner possible, including advocating on their behalf.

Financial services and asset management: Dechert offers a broad range of transactional and regulatory services to Latin American banks, broker-dealers, investment managers, insurance companies and other financial institutions. It works closely with local counsel to facilitate public and private offerings of foreign collective investment schemes across the region. The firm has assisted clients in listing exchange-traded funds on Latin American stock exchanges and facilitated the approval of shares/units of investment funds for sale to pension funds administrators in Chile and Peru.

Global investigations: Dechert has considerable experience investigating and advising on anti-corruption compliance issues in Latin America, as well as matters involving tax and accounting fraud, money laundering and insider trading. The firm brings particular expertise to bear on matters involving FCPA and UK Bribery Act compliance, and also advises on civil and cartel investigations.

International arbitration and litigation: Dechert lawyers have acted as counsel or arbitrator in landmark arbitration proceedings involving Latin American parties, acting for and against state parties, majority and minority shareholders in joint ventures, and independent contractors. The firm also advises clients regarding their rights and remedies under investment treaties and other international instruments.

Governments, global corporations, corporate and sovereign debt holders, hedge funds and other financial institutions rely on the firm’s international litigators to resolve their most intractable cross-border commercial disputes, whether before courts, administrative tribunals or regulatory bodies. Its recent experience includes handling cross-border insolvency, sovereign debt and other commercial disputes involving such countries as Argentina, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Nicaragua.

International trade: Dechert handles a wide range of international trade matters, including export controls, economic sanctions, trade embargoes, customs procedures, trade defense measures and national security reviews of foreign direct investment. The firm’s practitioners include former national and multinational officials, comprising regulators, compliance officers, enforcement agents, trade negotiators and public affairs experts.

Department Name Email Telephone
Chairman Andrew Levander
CEO Henry Nassau
Corporate and securities Mark Thierfelder
Financial restructuring Allan Brilliant
Financial services and asset management Douglas Dick
Global investigations Hector Gonzalez
International arbitration Eduardo Silva Romero
International arbitration Arif Ali
International trade Amanda DeBusk
International trade Jeremy Zucker

TESTIMONIAL: “Dechert consistently provides differentiating legal advice, particularly on large, complex transactions.”

TESTIMONIAL: “The firm did a great job throughout the entire process. They have been proactive and delivered quality advice. As always, a pleasure working with such a great team.”

COMPANY/FIRM: Credit Suisse
TESTIMONIAL: “We continually have the highest degree of confidence in the work product and coverage of the Dechert team, and they are always a pleasure to work with.”

COMPANY/FIRM: Saint-Gobain
TESTIMONIAL: “Saint-Gobain frequently turns to Dechert to defend the company in its most consequential, high-stakes litigation in the United States. Their sophistication, depth of experience, and legal creativity – especially in the area of complex mass tort litigation, is simply unrivalled. When the case is unprecedented and alleged to be perilous, there is no better partner to have in the trenches than Dechert.”

Leading from the Front

“Actionable allyship moves beyond passive solidarity and requires speaking up or intervening during acts of marginalization, even at the risk of backlash or negative consequences. As catalysts for change, Dechert remains committed to doing our part in fighting systemic racism, social injustice and inequity.”
Satra Sampson-Arokium, Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer

  • Using his voice to take a powerful stand, our Chief Executive Officer, Henry Nassau, published a Leaders at the Front Pledge. His pledge is a bold action plan to create meaningful and measurable changes at Dechert and within the legal industry. Read his pledge here on the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity’s website.
  • In 2021, Dechert became one of the first firms to pilot the Mansfield Rule in the UK. The Mansfield Rule, overseen by Diversity Lab, has become the standard by which U.S. law firms track and measure their diversity.
  • Dechert was the first law firm to sign the Business Statement Opposing Anti-LGBTQ State Legislation, taking a stance against discrimination of LGBTQ people in proposed U.S. legislation.

By the Numbers

  • 43% of the Policy Committee [senior leadership team] are women or diverse partners.
  • 52% of the lawyers most recently promoted to partner [effective January 1, 2022] are women.
  • 44% of our global offices are managed by women or diverse partners.
  • 25% of partners globally are women.
  • 74% of our most recent Fall 2021 class of new associates in the U.S. are women or diverse.

Key Initiatives

Aspiring Solicitors
Dechert is an Affiliate Partner of Aspiring Solicitors (AS). 2021 marks the fifth successful year of Dechert’s sponsorship of the organization’s national Commercial Awareness Competition, with the winners offered a vacation scheme and opportunity to interview for a training contract at Dechert.

Diversity and Inclusion Week
During the firm’s second annual DEI Week, Dechert hosted a conversation with Dr. Makaziwe Mandela, the eldest daughter of President Mandela, who shared insights on her family’s work to bring greater unity to the world. Our community also joined in to connect across differences and inspired each other to take a break by sharing their favorite vacation or staycation photo, making a difference with acts of kindness, and some other lighthearted and fun moments

Sponsorship and Sustained Support (SASS) Program
Through our Global Women’s Initiative, we continued to identify and implement initiatives that promote opportunities for women to advance and lead throughout the firm. We continued to organize our SASS women into several cohorts led by partner faculty. SASS cohorts are designed to provide support and actionable skills as women continue learning and networking together to navigate the path to partnership.

Inclusive Leadership
Commitment to diversity and inclusion stems from the top. Our partners have been participating in interactive sessions on inclusive leadership since 2018. In 2021, the training expanded to the entire Dechert community. We covered such issues as affinity bias, attribution bias, covering, in and out groups, actionable allyship, unconscious bias, and inclusive leadership in times of crisis. Individuals participate in interactive sessions that center around dramatizations that prompt conversations, challenge stereotypes, and inspire change.