Two former Baker & McKenzie partners, Shon Ramey and Cristopher Farrar, today are joining Dewey & LeBoeuf’s oil and gas practice in Houston, about two weeks after former Baker & McKenzie partners Karl Hopkins (pictured) and Steven Otillar also made the move to Dewey & LeBoeuf,says Hopkins. The former chairman of Baker & McKenzie’s oil and gas industry group says he and the other three lawyers had worked together at Baker & McKenzie for 11 years. The group’s move “is a commercial opportunity that will allow us to do things in emerging markets that we all wanted to do and focus, in my case, on the Middle East,” Hopkins says. Hopkins says he will be splitting his time between the firm’s London and Houston offices. “We will be helping Dewey expand its footprint in the Middle East,” he says. The recent addition of the former Baker & McKenzie lawyers increases New York City-based Dewey’s Houston office to about 20 lawyers, Hopkins says. Hopkins and Otillar are Dewey partners, and Ramey and Farrar are senior counsel, he says. Baker & McKenzie has 3,750 lawyers in 68 offices in 40 countries; Dewey & LeBoeuf has more than 1,100 lawyers in 26 offices in 15 countries, according to the firms’ respective websites. Hopkins declines to name his clients but says the list includes governments and national oil companies. Hopkins notes that Baker & McKenzie is “a good firm with good people” and that it is difficult to describe his decision to make the transition. “It felt right,” he says. Lisa Meyerhoff, managing partner of Baker & McKenzie’s Houston office, did not immediately return a telephone call seeking comment.
-- Jeanne Graham