Hogan Lovells announces leadership changes to its global disputes practice

London, Washington, D.C., 21 March 2019 – Global law firm Hogan Lovells has announced new leadership across several areas of its market-leading dispute resolution practice: 

  • Kerstin Neighbour will become Head of Employment and Labor
  • Michael E. DeLarco will be part of Kerstin's team as Head of Employment and Labor in the Americas
  • E. Desmond Hogan will become the sole Head of the Commercial Litigation practice across the Americas
  • Dennis Tracey will take up the newly created role of Head of Operations and Finance
  • Stephanie Yonekura will become Head of Investigations, White Collar and Fraud in the Americas, working with Crispin Rapinet, the current practice area leader
  • Roberta Downey will become the sole head of the Construction and Engineering sub-practice

Michael Davison, Global Head of the Litigation, Arbitration and Employment practice at Hogan Lovells, commented: "Our market-leading practice is a $600 million business that operates in over 45 offices, employing over 900 lawyers worldwide. It operates at the cutting edge on some of the most complex and ground breaking disputes in the world and our work often makes a significant difference to the success and failure of our clients’ businesses. Nurturing and promoting the excellent talent that we have within the business is central to our strategy. I am confident that the new practice area leaders will lead the practice to even greater success." 

Some background on the new members of the Leadership team: 

Kerstin Neighbour. Kerstin Neighbour has been with the firm for 16 years, and joined the partnership in 2008. She currently leads the European Employment practice, and has earned a global reputation as one of Europe' s preeminent employment lawyers, working throughout the continent for many of the firm's largest clients. She read law at the University of Münster and worked as a scientific assistant in the Employment Law Department of Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster. In her new role, she will lead a practice with over 140 lawyers around the world, including 36 partners. The team advises clients on a wide range of issues, from handling disputes to negotiating with unions, advising on executive compensation arrangements and managing bullying, harassment and whistleblowing issues.

Michael E. DeLarco. For more than a decade, New York-based partner Michael E. DeLarco has been representing management, large and small employers, and government agencies on all areas of labor and employment law, including cross-border issues.

E. Desmond Hogan. Partner Des Hogan, based in Washington, D.C., has been with the firm for 23 years and is widely recognized as one of D.C.'s top litigators. He handles class actions, cyber litigation, commercial disputes, and government investigations. In his new role, Des will be charged with leading the continued success and growth of the firm's highly-acclaimed Commercial Litigation practice in the Americas. 

Dennis Tracey. New York-based partner Dennis H. Tracey will take up the newly created role of Head of Operations and Finance, assuming responsibility for the firm's legal staffing methods, legal project management and finance. 

Stephanie Yonekura. Stephanie Yonekura, based in Los Angeles, is adept at conducting internal investigations for companies across industries in response to potential violations of law, including bribery and corruption, anti-money laundering, healthcare fraud, securities fraud, and the False Claims Act. Before joining Hogan Lovells three years ago, Stephanie served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for more than 14 years, culminating in the position of acting U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California. In her new role, Stephanie will work closely with Crispin Rapinet, the current Global Head of the practice. 

Roberta Downey. Roberta Downey, based in London, has considerable experience of fighting disputes in the Technology and Construction Court and by way of International Arbitration but has also conducted mediations, adjudications and other forms of ADR. The projects cover a broad range of industries (e.g. renewable and conventional energy projects, major infrastructure and process plants) and span the globe (Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Central America and the Caribbean).


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