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Kutak Rock Elects 19 Attorneys to Firm Partnership

News - Press Release | January 1, 2023

Kutak Rock LLP has elected 19 new partners from its attorney ranks in seven of the firm’s 19 offices—Denver, Little Rock, Omaha, Rogers, Springfield, Tallahassee and Washington, D.C. The promotions became effective on January 1, 2023. 

“Our new partners include experienced lateral hires from other firms, former in-house counsel, and associates—all of whom exemplify Kutak Rock’s values and have demonstrated their ability to provide exceptional client service and quality legal counsel,” said John Petr, Chair of Kutak Rock. “I have great confidence they will continue to represent the best traditions of our firm while serving as trusted advisors supporting firm clients in achieving their business goals. They have each played an important role in driving our continued success and we’re excited to welcome their experience, their energy and their expertise to our partnership.”

Among Kutak Rock’s 2023 new partner class, 57% are considered diverse according to Mansfield Rule definitions or they identify as part of one or more minority group.

The attorneys elected to the partnership are: 

Nicholas R. Alvarez (Little Rock) focuses his practice on corporate and securities matters, primarily concerning public company corporate governance, SEC regulations and Nasdaq and NYSE listing requirements. This includes advising on the full range of SEC public disclosure obligations, from proxy statements to current reports on Form 8-K.  Nick also advises on year-end and annual meeting preparation, board and committee best practices, executive and director compensation, Section 16 compliance, insider trading regulation and Regulation FD policies. In addition, his practice includes other day-to-day corporate advice on transactional matters, corporate reorganizations, general corporate contracts and corporate formation documents.

Dana Baggs (Denver) focuses his practice on civil litigation matters, including commercial litigation, real estate litigation and eminent domain litigation. He has experience in general contract disputes, title insurance disputes, creditor lien and mechanic’s lien litigation, landlord/tenant disputes, real-estate purchase and sale disputes, real estate foreclosure proceedings, and eminent domain proceedings.  In the eminent domain context, Dana has represented both landowners and condemning authorities. He takes a practical approach to his practice and is dedicated to acquiring the details, analyzing the facts, and developing the strategies to help clients achieve their goals and success as they define it. 

Joseph A. Brown (Tallahassee) advises clients on a variety of matters, including special district governance, public financing, and land development; compliance with state and federal environmental regulations; governmental rulemaking and permitting; and coastal construction and property rights. He has a wide-ranging practice encompassing administrative, state and federal litigation for various clients, including individuals, landowners, developers, industrial business interests, and state and local governmental entities.

Katie S. Buchanan (Tallahassee) represents large landowners in the planning and establishment of special taxing districts throughout the State of Florida, enabling landowners to utilize favorable financing options for the development of new communities. She utilizes her experience with private property rights, scope of easements, construction foreclosures and contract and procurement disputes to counsel dozens of districts on matters including contracts, real property, public procurement and construction, ethics, public records, and litigation.

Scott P. DeMartino (Washington, D.C.) has worked in the community development space for over 20 years, advising clients during all stages of the tax credit finance lifecycle. He regularly partners with lenders, investors, syndicators, developers and nonprofit sponsors to advise on how best to utilize historic rehabilitation tax credits and new markets tax credits, as well as renewable energy tax credits, as sources of financing for real estate and renewable energy investments.

Ashley S. Dennis (Denver) primarily acts as bond counsel and disclosure counsel to municipal issuers in connection with the issuance of municipal bonds. She has represented a variety of clients, from large municipal entities to school and special districts. She regularly advises issuers on continuing disclosure obligations and related annual filing requirements. To date, Ashley has assisted in closing public finance transactions in an aggregate principal amount exceeding $2 billion. 

Michael C. Eckert (Tallahassee) is skilled in local government law, concentrating his practice on the relationship between local government and its citizens. With significant litigation experience in both state and federal courts, Michael provides legal services in the establishment of community development districts and other special districts on matters related to contracts, real property, public procurement, construction, finance, and local governments.

Wesley S. Haber (Tallahassee) concentrates his practice in community development districts and other special district work, focusing on infrastructure financing, land development and local government law, as well as counseling landowners and developers on the financing and managing of infrastructure requirements for new and developing communities. He advises clients on bond issuance, lease-purchase financing, contracts, bid processes and protests, construction matters, and other land development, local government, and financial matters.

L. Kyle Heffley (Rogers) focuses his practice on trial work with a special emphasis on healthcare litigation representing physicians, hospitals, clinics and medical providers of every kind in federal and state court and before a wide variety of administrative agencies. He also provides practice experience consisting of real estate litigation, business disputes and employment law matters. Kyle has handled a wide variety of litigation across Arkansas.

Sevawn Holt (Little Rock) focuses her practice on the creation and ongoing administration of employee benefits and executive compensation arrangements, including qualified and nonqualified deferred compensation, equity and phantom equity, and bonus and incentive compensation. She regularly advises clients with respect to compliance with ERISA, Internal Revenue Code Section 409A, and the tax rules relating to deferred compensation. 

Jonathan T. Johnson (Tallahassee) focuses his practice on stewardship districts, community development districts and other special district work, including infrastructure financing, land development and local government law.  Since 1993 he has advised clients on bond issuance, contracts, bid processes and protests, construction matters and other land development, local government, and financial matters. 

Tucker Mackie (Tallahassee) counsels community development districts on matters relating to contracts, real property, public procurement, finance, and construction. In addition to her background in representing special districts, Tucker counsels indenture trustees, bondholders and community development districts on matters involving land-secured, tax-exempt debt including landowner bankruptcies, foreclosures, distressed/defaulted debt and agreed upon restructurings.

Courtney Pinaire (Omaha) focuses her tax credit practice on transactional work involving low-income housing tax credits, historic rehabilitation tax credits, state tax credits and renewable energy tax credits, as well as other related state and federal financing products. For over 15 years Courtney has acted primarily as equity investor counsel for major financial institutions, private real estate equity firms, and tax credit syndicators in commercial real estate transactions. She excels at navigating complex transactional structures and negotiating to achieve each client’s unique business objectives.

Sarah R. Sandy (Tallahassee) serves as general counsel to community development districts across the State of Florida, counseling on matters ranging from infrastructure financing and land development, to local government law. Sarah’s practice also focuses on the intricate financial issues that drive special taxing districts. She works hand-in-hand with issuers and underwriters of municipal bonds (public and private placement) on securities and disclosure law issues in the capacities of disclosure and underwriter’s counsel.

Megan Shirk (Omaha) focuses her practice on commercial real estate lending, with an emphasis on federal and state low-income housing tax credit finance, historic tax credit finance, equity bridge lending and tax-exempt bond financing. Megan also handles general real estate matters relating to the acquisition, development, leasing, and sale of real estate, including low-income housing tax credit apartment complexes.

Chase R. Waters (Little Rock) focuses his practice on federal income tax matters as they relate to business, financing, and mergers and acquisition transactions. He has experience with federal tax issues arising from transactions for both public and private corporations, partnerships, real estate investment trusts, private equity funds and tax-exempt entities. Additionally, Chase also has significant experience with regard to federal income tax matters relating to both foreign investors' investment into the United States as well as United States residents' investments into foreign jurisdictions. Chase provides tax support to the firm’s national mergers and acquisitions group with respect to tax acquisition and disposition structures, tax provisions of purchase agreements, joint ventures and private equity funds and tax due diligence matters. 

Lindsay C. Whelan (Tallahassee) counsels special districts, landowners, developers and other related parties on matters relating to special district governance, public financing, and land development. She represents special districts and other related parties in matters relating to government contracting, real property, public procurement and construction, open government and ethics, public finance, and land development.

Taylor White (Springfield) is a litigation attorney whose practice focuses on business litigation, specifically in the areas of commercial, banking, and real estate litigation. Taylor has tried bench and jury trials in numerous areas of the law in both state and federal court and has experience briefing cases in Missouri appellate courts and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. Taylor’s experience includes cases involving ballot initiatives, banking disputes, breach of contract, construction defects, employment disputes, ERISA benefits, fraud, medical negligence, and real estate disputes.

Alyssa C. Willson (Tallahassee) counsels stewardship districts and community development districts on a variety of matters including infrastructure financing, real property, land development and local government law. Her work includes representing special taxing districts in matters relating to financing infrastructure requirements for new development through the establishment of special taxing districts.

About Kutak Rock LLP
With a footprint spanning 19 offices in 14 states and the District of Columbia, Kutak Rock’s 550+ attorneys work seamlessly to provide clients excellent, responsive legal service. The firm’s multidisciplinary practice comprises more than 25 areas of focus and dozens of discrete specialties.