January 06, 2003

Eight Real Estate, Finance and Corporate Attorneys Join Venable’s Washington Office; Group Includes Four Partners, Top Practitioners in D.C. Area

7 min

WASHINGTON, D.C. (January 6, 2003) – Further strengthening its real estate, finance and corporate practices,Venable LLP has added four new partners, three associates and one of-counsel attorney to its Washington office. The partners, Philip M. Horowitz, Jerry A. Moore III, Lawrence Gesner, and Grier Hoyt are among the top practitioners in the Washington area, with well-known local, national and international clients and extensive experience in commercial and residential real estate projects, financings, corporate transactions, leasing, land use/zoning and securitized lending.

The eight-attorney group joins Venable from the D.C. office of Arter & Hadden LLP.

"These very experienced attorneys expand our capabilities a great deal in areas that are complementary to the strengths of our existing practices," said Robert Gottlieb, who chairs Venable’s real estate group in Washington. "Phil Horowitz, Jerry Moore, Larry Gesner, Grier Hoyt and the others not only bring with them important new clients, but they round out major elements of our practice, particularly in finance, corporate, land use and development."

Venable’s real estate group now has 21 attorneys in Washington, and 41 firmwide, including offices in Maryland and Virginia.

Four Partners with Broad Real Estate, Finance and Corporate Experience

Phil Horowitz brings an impressive national practice of property acquisition and development, commercial leasing and real estate financing. He recently represented the Louis Dreyfus Property Group in connection with its development of a more than 1,000,000 square foot new headquarters for the Securities and Exchange Commission adjacent to Union Station. The SEC is leasing the first two buildings of a three building development covering more than 1.5 million square feet. The first phase is scheduled for completion in 2004.

Mr. Horowitz has also served as outside real estate counsel to the World Bank for more than a decade.

"We expect to continue our representation of developers, owners, investors and institutional tenants, with the added resources that our move to Venable will make available," Mr. Horowitz said. "Venable has a tremendous reputation and outstanding people," Mr. Horowitz added. He anticipates that the firm’s sizable practice in corporate, tax, litigation and intellectual property work will be of use to the group’s existing client base.

Mr. Horowitz serves as the chairman of the Member Development Committee of the American College of Real Estate Lawyers, of which he is a former officer and member of the Board of Governors. He has been an adjunct professor teaching real estate planning at Washington College of Law, American University, for 15 years.

He is a board member and former president of Mentors, Inc., a non-profit organization which creates one-on-one mentoring relationships and enrichment activities between adult volunteers and DC public high school students to promote the students’ academic, career and personal development.

Mr. Horowitz received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1973.

Jerry Moore practices principally in the areas of land use and zoning, DC administrative law and employment defense litigation and is the author of published articles on these subjects. Over the past 22 years, his practice has included representation of developers, employers, healthcare institutions, retail stores, financial institutions, universities, churches, hotels and non-profit corporations in a variety of zoning, real estate and employment litigation and administrative law matters.

He is land use counsel to supermarket chain Safeway, Inc. in its development of its retail stores, and has represented George Washington, Howard and Southeastern Universities in obtaining land use approvals for campus plans and other real estate development projects. He has also represented MedStar Health and major office, institutional and retail developers in real estate, administrative and litigation matters.

He has served as a Naval Officer, a clerk to U.S. District Judge Barrington D. Parker and as a Senior Manager for the Greater Washington Board of Trade. He has also served on the boards of many community organizations including as Vice Chairman of the Board and Treasurer of the Children’s Hospital; the Greater Washington Urban League, where he serves as Chairman of the Board; and the DC Building Industry Association, where he is a member of the Executive Committee.

Mr. Moore received an M.A in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin in 1970; and his J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center in 1975.

Lawrence Gesner focuses on the structuring of complex financial transactions. He has a national practice, representing institutional clients, including Fannie Mae, the second largest corporation in terms of assets, and the largest source of financing for home mortgages in the nation. Last month he completed a $1.5 billion swap of Fannie Mae securities for loans secured by multi-family properties. In addition, he regularly serves as counsel on transactions involving the financing of pools of multi-family properties located throughout the country, and in the development of lending programs. He also has an active practice in corporate acquisitions and dispositions.

Mr. Gesner serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of an Anne Arundel County, Maryland community association and is a regular speaker and panelist at industry meetings.

He graduated with honors from Georgetown University Law Center in 1983.

Grier Hoyt rounds out the team with his commercial real estate practice representing owners, developers and users in leasing, purchase and sale, and financing transactions for land development, office, retail, build-to-suit and mixed use properties in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area and throughout the country. Mr. Hoyt is a panelist for the DC Bar’s annual Commercial Leasing Program, and closed the Washington Commercial Association of Realtors’ "Leasing Transaction of the Year" for the District of Columbia in 1989 and 1994.

Mr. Hoyt, along with Mr. Horowitz, recently represented technology-solutions provider Manugistics, Inc., in negotiations to build the company’s corporate headquarters.

Mr. Hoyt received his J.D. from the Duke University School of Law in 1984.

Four Additional Attorneys Complete the Group

Deborah J. Arnold joins the firm as counsel. An experienced real estate finance and development attorney, her development practice includes land acquisition and sales, office, retail, ground leasing and multi-family transactions. She also advises clients with respect to the financing required for these projects, including acquisition, development, construction and permanent loans. She has also participated in several restructurings and workouts. Ms. Arnold’s corporate work involves the structuring of corporate entities, and asset and stock transfers.

She is a 1988 honors graduate of George Washington University Law School.

The three associates joining Venable are Stephanie DeLong, Sarah P. Smith and Gavin Williams. Ms. DeLong and Mr. Williams will concentrate on finance, with a particular emphasis on multi-family projects; Ms. Smith will counsel clients with respect to real estate development matters. Ms. DeLong received her J.D. from George Washington University in 1999; Ms. Smith, from Emory University School of Law in 2000; and Mr. Williams, from the University of Miami School of Law in 2001.

Firm Anticipates Move into Terrell Place Later this Year

The eight real estate, finance and corporate attorneys bring the size of Venable’s Washington office to 215.

Venable’s Washington office has grown steadily this past year, further establishing the nation’s capital as its base of operations. The firm greatly expanded its Corporate Governance and Investigations Practice, headed by former U.S. Attorney GeneralBenjamin Civiletti. In September, Nancy Grunberg, an Assistant Director in the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement, joined the group.Frederic Spindel, a veteran securities regulation attorney who had held senior legal positions at both the SEC and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission moved to Venable in November.

Recently, Venable was among the first law firms to launch a practice dedicated to Homeland Security, bringing together the firm’s substantial work in government contracts, and legislative and regulatory affairs. The practice represents two of the top four defense contractors in the country, and technology companies in security, explosive detection systems, identity authentication and other defense-related businesses.

This fall, Venable will relocate its Washington office to the Terrell Place development project at 575 Seventh Street, NW, across from the MCI Center. The 240,000 square foot lease was named Best Office Lease/Urban for 2001 in the Washington Business Journal’s annual Best Real Estate Deals of the Year awards. CarrAmerica Urban Development, LLC, the project’s developer, acknowledged that Venable’s lease was the key to bringing the project together.

"We’re looking forward to the move," said William D. Coston, managing partner of Venable’s DC office. "We will certainly be happy to have the extra space, and we’ll be right in the heart of a neighborhood in the District where great things are happening."

One of the American Lawyer’s top 100 law firms, Venable LLP has attorneys practicing in all areas of corporate and business law, complex litigation, intellectual property and government affairs. Venable serves corporate, institutional, governmental, nonprofit and individual clients throughout the U.S. and around the world from its headquarters in Washington, D.C. and offices in California, Maryland, New York and Virginia.