Indiana firm opens Atlanta office

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Barnes & Thornburg, one of the largest Indiana-based law firms, has opened an office in Atlanta.

"Atlanta is a strong financial center, and we thought we'd be a good fit," said the firm's managing partner Alan Levin, who announced the expansion this morning. He added that while financial centers are hurting in the current economy and financial growth may not be what it has been, Atlanta is still a significant market.

The office opened Saturday with partners Stuart C. Johnson and Jason A. Bernstein. Johnson is now a partner in Barnes & Thornburg's business department, and Bernstein is a partner in the firm's intellectual property department. The two were previously partners in the Atlanta office of Bryan Cave Powell Goldstein. That firm was the result of a Jan. 1, 2009, merger of Atlanta-based Powell Goldstein and St. Louis-based international law firm Bryan Cave; Powell Goldstein's name is being retained temporarily only in that merged firm's Atlanta office.

Levin said Barnes & Thornburg has had good growth here, including in its office in Chicago, which he referred to as a kind of capital of the Midwest.

"We're looking at Atlanta as kind of the capital of the Southeast and a good market to gain entry to," Levin said.

"We've always been conservative about our growth and have managed our costs well so we have remained competitive with our rates," said Levin, who noted the firm has not had any reductions in force.

Firm management is aware of law firm layoffs in Atlanta, but the city - like Chicago - is competitive and they anticipate growing the office to reflect the needs and skills sets required for that market, said Levin.

He added they have no hard numbers by which they hope to grow the Atlanta office, but he said they will aggressively recruit lateral attorneys in all practice areas with the intention of growing a full-service office in Atlanta, similar to its approach in Chicago. Atlanta is the firm's eighth office in the U.S.

Barnes & Thornburg opened its Chicago office with one attorney in 1994; it now has more than 80 attorneys. The firm opened an office in Grand Rapids, Mich., with two attorneys and has grown to more than 20 lawyers in five years. The firm also recently hired attorneys for its Grand Rapids and Washington, D.C., offices. Based in Indianapolis, the firm has 517 legal professionals - 456 attorneys plus paralegals and law clerks - firm-wide and also has offices in Elkhart, Fort Wayne, and South Bend.


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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues