Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Thursday, September 15, 2011


Page 3


Bingham McCutchen Adds Partner to Structured Transactions Practice

Foley & Lardner Gains Partner in Energy and Natural Resources Practice


By a MetNews Staff Writer


Bingham McCutchen LLP yesterday announced that it is expanding its structured transactions practice to California with the addition of Dan Passage in its Los Angeles office.

A former head of O’Melveny & Myers’ securitization practice, Passage joins Bingham as a partner in the firm’s Structured Transactions Group.

He commented that he has known Reed Auerbach, the group’s chair, and other members of the group “for many years,”  and that the “opportunity to work with [them]…and to help Bingham extend its world-class structured transactions practice to the West Coast doesn’t come across often.”

Passage added that he is “looking forward to joining a team known for its deep talent and diversified client offerings across continents.”

Auerbach, in turn, praised Passage as “a market leader in the securitization of various esoteric assets” who is “among the pre-eminent securitization lawyers in the United States.”

He predicted the attorney will be “a terrific fit” with the practice group, and that the addition of Passage “reflects our strategy of continuing to diversify and extend our recognized practice by attracting the best talent.”

Last year, the firm launched its structured transaction practice in Hong Kong, and two years ago, it expanded into London.

Rick Welch, managing partner of Bingham’s Los Angeles office, remarked that the firm is “making significant investments in adding strong talent on the West Coast to extend the reach of our key practices,” noting the addition of three new tax partners in the firm’s Silicon Valley office last month.

“We certainly welcome Dan and the opportunity to build our structured finance practice in California and on the West Coast,” Welch said.

Passage graduated from UC Irvine before attending law school at Columbia University and joining the State Bar in 1995.

In other news, Foley & Lardner LLP yesterday announced that Charles E. Schwenck has joined the firm as a partner in the Los Angeles office, working with the Energy Practice Group and Energy Industry Team, as well as the Transactional & Securities and Finance & Financial Institutions Practices.

Previously, Schwenck was a shareholder at Greenberg Traurig, LLP where he served as co-chair of the Energy and Natural Resources Practice.

George W. Ash, chair of Foley’s Regulated Industries Department, remarked that the arrival of Schwenck “greatly enhances the firm’s capabilities in serving the energy industry.”

Schwenck’s “deep knowledge of all aspects of energy-related matters, from start to finish, will be an immediate asset to our clients,” Ash predicted.

Steven Barth, co-chair of Foley’s Transactional & Securities Practice, added that Schwenck “has an impressive track record of success representing various stakeholders in energy and infrastructure projects, both in the United States and throughout the world.”

According to the firm release, Schwenck has represented developers and other industry participants in major energy and infrastructure projects in over 35 countries on six continents, with a constructed value in excess of $90 billion.

Barth suggested that Schwenck’s “wide-ranging experience will be instrumental in further strengthening our transactional capabilities.”

Richard W. Lasater II, managing partner of the firm’s Los Angeles office, praised Schwenck as “an exceptional attorney” whose “work across the full spectrum of energy and infrastructure transactions will greatly benefit our clients in California and across the globe.”

Schwenck completed his undergraduate and legal education at UC Berkeley before joining the State Bar in 1972. He went on to become senior vice president, general counsel and a member of the board of directors of LG&E Power Systems. He also served as general counsel at Fluor Corporation and as division counsel for the Bechtel Group’s Power Division.


Copyright 2011, Metropolitan News Company