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Attorneys from business, government, and technology practices elected to partnership


Washington, DC (December 6, 2012) – Venable LLP is pleased to announce that six of the firm’s attorneys have been elected to the partnership: Ellen Traupman Berge, Carmen M. Fonda, Brett A. Garner, Sarah M. Johnson, Dismas (Diz) Locaria and Jonathan L. Pompan. The six new partners from Venable’s Washington, DC, Baltimore, and Los Angeles offices represent a broad cross section of the firm’s practice groups including regulatory, corporate, intellectual property litigation, government contracts, and tax and wealth planning.

“These six outstanding lawyers have distinguished themselves by their talent, creativity, work ethic, business acumen and commitment to the values that make Venable what it is,” said Venable’s Vice Chairman Brian Schwalb. “They are team players and leaders, and have already made meaningful contributions to our clients, our practices and our firm. Ellen, Carmen, Brett, Diz, Sarah and Jonathan are an integral part of the future that Venable continues to build and we expect great things from them in the future.”

Below is background on Venable’s new partners:

Ellen Traupman Berge of the firm’s Government and Regulatory Affairs Practice Group in Washington, DC focuses on transactional, regulatory, litigation, and policy matters for direct marketers, retailers, e-commerce companies, trade and professional associations, service providers, and other clients. Ms. Berge has experience practicing before the Federal Trade Commission, the Federal Communications Commission, and state regulatory authorities. She is able to advise both for-profit and nonprofit clients on a variety of advertising, marketing, communications, and general business issues.

Carmen M. Fonda of the Baltimore office represents publicly- and privately-held companies in connection with mergers, spin-offs, restructurings, public and private offerings, and other financings, with a particular focus on Maryland corporation law as it relates to real estate investment trusts and investment companies. Ms. Fonda also represents both public and private companies in merger and acquisition transactions and advises clients on structure and formation of unincorporated entities, securities law reporting compliance, and corporate governance matters.

Brett A. Garner of the Los Angeles office has been counseling clients in the online space since the early 2000s and has seen the evolution of the online industry first-hand. Mr. Garner regularly advises clients in complex technology and intellectual property transactions, including technology licensing, technology maintenance and services, technology development, and marketing and distribution. Mr. Garner is also experienced in trademark and brand protection, anti-counterfeiting, copyrights, design patents, domain and social media disputes and has extensive experience developing intellectual property strategies for his clients.

Sarah M. Johnson of the Washington, DC office focuses her practice on estate planning and administration, business succession planning and charitable giving while minimizing estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer taxes. She is experienced in planning for the distribution of estates ranging in value from modest to those exceeding $100 million, and also drafts and negotiates premarital agreements.

Dismas (Diz) Locaria is a member of the firm’s Government Contracts group in Washington, DC. His practice focuses on assisting government contractors in all aspects of working with the Federal government. Mr. Locaria has represented clients before various Federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, General Services Administration, Department of Homeland Security, Small Business Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, and others. Mr. Locaria has developed several specialty areas, including representing clients in suspension and debarment proceedings, as well as performing internal investigations, which has also included assistance and representation for such clients with disclosures to federal officials regarding the findings of such investigations and working with the client to determine and implement compliance enhancements and improvements. Mr. Locaria is also well-versed in assisting clients with GSA Federal Supply Schedule matters and possesses a unique homeland security expertise in the SAFETY Act.

Jonathan L. Pompan co-chairs the firm’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Task Force in Washington, DC. His practice focuses on providing comprehensive legal advice and regulatory advocacy to a broad spectrum of clients, such as nonbank financial products and services providers, nonprofit organizations, and trade and professional associations, with a particular focus on consumer protection issues, including advertising and marketing. A substantial portion of Mr. Pompan's work involves advising and representing clients in a wide variety of regulatory, compliance, examination, and investigation and enforcement matters involving the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Trade Commission, state Attorneys General, and state consumer protection and financial services regulatory agencies.

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Note: An American Lawyer 100 law firm, Venable serves corporate, institutional, governmental, nonprofit and individual clients throughout the U.S. and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with offices in California, Maryland, New York and Virginia, Venable LLP lawyers and legislative advisors serve the needs of our domestic and global clients in all areas of corporate and business law, complex litigation, intellectual property, regulatory, and government affairs.