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24 Sherman & Howard Attorneys and Practices Among Best in 2014 Chambers USA Rankings

June 10, 2014 – Nineteen Sherman & Howard lawyers and five Sherman & Howard practice areas were recognized in the 2014 release of Chambers USAAmerica’s Leading Lawyers for Business.  This honor follows a rigorous and independent law firm research and evaluation process that seeks to identify and rank the world’s best lawyers (i.e. those who perform best according to the criteria most valued by clients – such as technical expertise, business acumen, prompt delivery and value for money).

Chambers, quoting their research, praised Sherman & Howard’s Corporate/Mergers & Acquisitions, Labor & Employment (including Employee Benefits), Litigation: General Commercial, Real Estate and Construction practice groups in Colorado. Here’s what they had to say*:

Corporate/Mergers and Acquisitions

Chambers praised Sherman & Howard for having a solid Corporate Practice with “broad expertise” and the ability to handle M&A, joint ventures and mezzanine financing as well as a series of other corporate matters.”  Clients include prominent companies in the media and telecommunications industries as well as financial institutions.

Garth Jensen, who recently joined Sherman & Howard’s Denver office, is known for his securities work on behalf of public companies and is held in high regard among market commentators.

Jill Sweeney, who recently joined Sherman & Howard and leads the firm’s Albuquerque, New Mexico office, was recognized for her work advising clients on state constitutional law and public finance matters.

Labor & Employment

Extremely professional, capable and thorough in their work product and representation,” says one source, speaking about Sherman & Howard’s Band 1 ranked Labor & Employment Practice.  Chambers adds, [They are a] “sterling competitor in the market, with a well-rounded practice addressing labor and employment issues of all natures.”  Particularly noted for EEOC and NLRB-related work, including major class action cases, the group is also strong in the areas of employee benefits and general compliance advice and counseling.

Raymond Deeny is an experienced litigator who has handled an array of jury trial and labor arbitrations.  He is recognized as “an enjoyable guy to work with who knows the labor laws backwards,” and someone who “thinks well on his feet.”

John Alan Doran, who leads the firm’s Labor and Employment Group in both Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona, is recognized as a “tenacious advocate” and “an esteemed trial lawyer with a labor and employment focus.”  According to one client, “[John] has an excellent ability to anticipate consequences in litigation and devise a strategy that will be successful in meeting our goals.”  He is particularly noted for the strength of his appellate practice.

Chuck Newcom’s clients recognize him as “very experienced, knowledgeable, calm and quietly confident – a good trusted partner and advisor.”

Theodore Olsen is hugely experienced in the field and is valued for his deep knowledge and expertise.  He handles non-competes and a range of other labor and employment matters.

Bernie Siebert is a great communicator who is “always letting us know what’s going on and coming up next.”  He is praised by peers for being one of the “top people in Colorado for labor law.”

John Wymer, III leads Sherman & Howard’s Atlanta, Georgia office.  He is singled out by commentators as “one of the most knowledgeable attorneys I have worked with” and “a very practical lawyer who understands the business implications of the legal issues we deal with.”

Employee Benefits

Giving the firm’s Employee Benefits Practice Group its highest rating, Chambers noted:

Bruce Muir has a niche in employee benefits and represents clients on matters ranging from pension plans and compensation to fringe benefits.

Kathleen Odle receives nothing but the highest praise, with sources hailing her as “very knowledgeable and probably the best in the region for ERISA matters.” She is “truly an expert” whose strength is “her practical application of esoteric laws.”

Real Estate

Sherman & Howard received a Band 2 ranking in the latest edition of the publication in the area of Real Estate.  Chambers adds: [Sherman & Howard’s Real Estate Practice Group] “continues to impress with its depth and breadth of practice.”  One source reports, “The service from the firm has been very positive.  They are timely with their response to questions and identification of key issues that need to be addressed.”

Robert Brown recently acted for Exempla Good Samaritan Medical Center on its construction, with a real estate investment trust, of a medical office building.  One interviewee reports: “Bob is what you look for in an outside counsel.  He gives clear answers, he’s concise and he gets to the bottom line.  He gets me what I need to make a decision.”

Rebecca Fischer is “competent to address any of the most sophisticated questions in detail.  She makes transactions enjoyable and she provides a real service to her clients.”

Azim Hameed manages the firm’s Real Estate Practice Group in Phoenix, Arizona and is acclaimed by clients as “an attorney you can count on and one of the most knowledgeable attorneys regarding real estate.”  He brings a background in taxation law to the table on major deals.

Diana Wendel is described by sources as having “good negotiation preparations and quick understanding of the issues” and  is “very detail-oriented.”

Real Estate: Construction

Including Michael Cook and Bret Gunnell among Colorado’s leading construction lawyers, and giving them its highest Band 1 ranking, Chambers notes:

Michael Cook is a highly talented construction litigator and mediator.  Interviewees name him as a “great person to work with,” and hold him in high regard as a “strategic thinker” and “proactive attorney.”  

Bret Gunnell heads the firm’s Construction Group and is rated highly by peers for his strong litigation practice.  Sources say he is “very capable and a good trial lawyer.”


Acting for high-profile clients in disputes including securities, fiduciary duties and intellectual property, Sherman & Howard’s Litigation Practice Group gets “nothing but the highest praise – they are my go-to firm for litigation, no question.”  Industries of focus include telecommunications, real estate and natural resources.

Christopher Koenigs is singled out as one of the market’s leading names for a wide range of commercial disputes.

James Sawtelle is adept at handling all areas of commercial litigation and clients observe that he really understands their business.  He recently joined Sherman & Howard from Bryan Cave.

Natural Resources and Environment

Ron Eddy is recognized as having experience handling a range of cleanups, Superfund cases and redevelopment issues.  Sources name him as “a thorough, careful and well-regarded lawyer.”

About Sherman & Howard L.L.C.

Sherman & Howard L.L.C. is an Am Law 200 law Firm with ten offices located in Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, Missouri, and New Mexico. Our Firm’s more than 190 attorneys provide high-quality legal and business solutions to a broad range of clients including private, public and government entities throughout the nation and abroad. We have preeminent capabilities in the aerospace and government contracting, infrastructure and construction, financial services, natural resources, telecommunications, technology, manufacturing, consumer products and retail, and nonprofit industries. With more than two dozen attorneys who focus exclusively on estate and tax planning as well as family and matrimonial law, Sherman & Howard also boasts one of the nation’s most respected private client practices.

About Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyers for Business

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*  All quotes from Chambers USA 2014.