Am Law 100 firm Polsinelli welcomes two accomplished employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) attorneys Gregory Brown and Christopher Buch as shareholders to the firm’s national ESOP Practice. Both are located in the firm’s growing Chicago office. The move combines Polsinelli’s national ESOP practice with Brown and Buch’s widely-known practice into a single expanded platform, with additional opportunities for corporate, transactional, employee benefits and executive compensation representation.
The Brown/Buch team, known for their robust ESOP practice, allows Polsinelli to now offer ESOP capabilities directly from its Chicago office, a longtime hub for ESOP activity. Moreover, Brown and Buch expand Polsinelli’s national Corporate & Transactional Practice, with a primary focus on matters and transactions involving ESOPs and ESOP-owned companies.
“Greg has for years been a pillar in the ESOP community, and is a highly-respected veteran who gives us an on-the-ground presence at the highest level in Chicago,” said Polsinelli Shareholder Robert D. Grossman, who leads the firm’s national ESOP Practice. “Chris is an up-and-coming leader who is developing his own reputation in the industry. He also brings a unique sub-specialty with his extensive executive compensation experience,” Grossman continued. “We are combining two established, nationally-known ESOP practices, which gives us even more firepower, depth and experience to offer our clients. We are really excited about this combination.”
With more than 40 years of experience in corporate and benefits law, Brown focuses his practice on ESOPs, executive compensation, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) fiduciary matters and tax-qualified retirement plans. He represents a variety of clients from private entities to Fortune 500 publicly traded companies on benefit matters, including businesses in the high-tech, manufacturing, banking, healthcare and retail industries.
Brown also handles audits and investigations of plans by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS), represents clients in litigation matters involving ESOPs and other benefit plans and has extensive experience serving as an expert witness in nationally prominent litigation.
“Polsinelli’s impressive Chicago office and the firm’s tier 1 national corporate practice are both really growing,” said Brown. “The firm’s platform and approach allows us a significant opportunity to serve our clients and prospects not only in Chicago, but from coast to coast,” he continued. “I’ve known Bob (Grossman) for a long time and love working with him. He has great support from others on the ESOP, transactional and benefits teams, and that really excites us. We look forward to this new chapter with Polsinelli.”
Brown has achieved widespread recognition throughout his legal career from a variety of sources, including Chambers USA rankings in Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation (Nationwide and Illinois) since 2007. He has also been ranked in Illinois Super Lawyers magazine annually since 2005, and was named among the Top Employment Attorneys by Human Resource Executive from 2012-2017. Brown obtained a Bachelor’s of Science from the University of Kentucky prior to earning a J.D. from the University of Illinois College of Law.
With over a decade of employee benefits and executive compensation experience, Buch’s multi-faceted practice reaches to ESOPs, equity and non-equity based executive compensation, health and welfare benefits, Affordable Care Act compliance, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance, DOL and IRS audits and investigations, vendor contracting, fiduciary investment advice and corporate transactions. Buch represents Fortune 500 companies, publicly traded companies and most often, private corporations and entities. He specializes in executive compensation issues, helping clients design and draft compensation and equity arrangements, compliance with tax laws and evaluation of mergers and acquisitions.
Buch was named a “Rising Star” in the Benefits category last year by Law360. His involvement in a client’s ESOP transaction was recognized by M&A Advisor as a national deal of the year in its annual Atlas Awards for Middle Markets ($100M+ category). He completed his undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and earned his J.D. from DePaul University College of Law.
“We are incredibly pleased to add Greg and Chris to our Corporate & Transactional Practice, as they bring added depth and a nationally-recognized ESOP practice to our existing platform,” said Corporate & Transactional Practice Chair Jonathan K. Henderson. “We look forward to integrating their ESOP capabilities with our existing offerings in corporate and transactions, tax and executive compensation as we strive to become the leading law firm in the country in this area of law.”
Polsinelli’s growing national ESOP Practice assists businesses regarding the design, implementation and operation of ESOPs along with a variety of other corporate and business matters, including corporate governance and fiduciary responsibility. Earlier this year, Polsinelli added corporate law veteran Sean Power to its ESOP team. Power had previously served as General Counsel of North American operations for an international steel and construction company.
“Our goal is to build the nation’s premier corporate and transactional practice for mid-market companies, and a nationally prominent ESOP Practice is an essential component of our plans to achieve that goal,” said Polsinelli Business Department Chair Frank Ross. “With accomplished and sought-after lawyers like Greg and Chris joining our current team, we are well on our way there.”
Polsinelli is an Am Law 100 firm with 900 attorneys in 21 offices nationwide. Recognized by legal research firm BTI Consulting as one of the top firms for excellent client service and client relationships, the firm’s attorneys provide value through practical legal counsel infused with business insight, and focus on health care, financial services, real estate, intellectual property, middle-market corporate, labor and employment and business litigation. Polsinelli PC, Polsinelli LLP in California.