Best Lawyers designates "Lawyers of the Year" in high-profile legal specialties in large legal communities based on detailed evaluations by thousands of professional peers. Only one lawyer per specialty in each community is honored as Lawyer of the Year based on their abilities, professionalism and integrity.
Honorees from Baker & Daniels represent the best in their fields in Indiana's two largest cities. Selected as Indianapolis Lawyers of the Year were Ben W. Blanton, J. Jeffrey Brown, Shaun Healy Clifford, Francina A. Dlouhy, Brian S. Fennerty, Thomas C. Froehle, David K. Herzog and David W. Miller. John R. Burns III was named a Fort Wayne Lawyer of the Year.
BEN BLANTON was selected in nonprofit/charities law. He has counseled foundations, museums, churches, universities and other nonprofits on nonprofit governance and tax-exemption for nearly 30 years. Blanton also works with exempt entities and governmental agencies in public and tax-exempt finance, public bidding requirements, open door and public records issues, and related topics.
JEFF BROWN was chosen for his work in leveraged buyouts and private equity law. He leads the firm's private capital and venture group. His practice is principally devoted to financing and acquisitions transactions, and he frequently represents both financial investors and management participants in venture capital transactions, leveraged buyouts, recapitalizations and other complex transactions. Brown also counsels on the structuring and offering of various investment vehicles.
JOHN R. BURNS was selected for his expertise in bankruptcy litigation. During more than 35 years practicing bankruptcy law, he has tried numerous business and commercial cases to verdict in federal and state courts, both to the bench and to juries. Burns also represents secured creditors and lenders in workout and bankruptcy situations and handles Chapter 11 reorganizations and liquidations.
SHAUN CLIFFORD was selected in administrative/regulatory law. She is a member of the firm's insurance and financial services team and represents Fortune 100 insurance companies, smaller single state entities, third-party administrators and regulators. Clifford advises on all aspects of insurance regulation, such as corporate reorganization and holding company transactions, market conduct and troubled company/insolvency issues, and other rules and regulations that impact the industry.
FRANCINA DLOUHY was named to the list in the area of tax law. She leads the firm's state and local tax practice and has completed substantial tax projects for businesses in a wide variety of industries. Her practice includes representing businesses in administrative proceedings and litigation involving state income taxes, sales and use tax, financial institutions taxes, and real and personal property taxes. Dlouhy also assists with tax planning, obtaining incentives and tax abatement issues.
BRIAN FENNERTY was chosen in venture capital law. He has more than 20 years of legal experience and counsels clients on business planning, business formation, joint ventures and partnerships, mergers and acquisitions, and tax planning in addition to raising capital. Fennerty has extensive experience preparing and negotiating partnership and operating agreements.
THOMAS FROEHLE was selected as best public finance lawyer. He is the chair and chief executive partner of Baker & Daniels and has served the firm's government and corporate clients for more than 20 years. Froehle has served as bond counsel and special counsel for a variety of governmental entities, including state instrumentalities and universities, school corporations, cities and related entities. He has also been underwriter's counsel for national and regional investment firms. Froehle advised on the public financing of several significant Indianapolis projects, including the Indianapolis Convention Center, Lucas Oil Stadium and the new Indianapolis Airport.
DAVID HERZOG was named best lawyer in securities litigation. Chair of the business litigation team at Baker & Daniels, he has prosecuted and defended business and securities fraud, class actions under the securities laws, contract actions, corporate governance disputes, malpractice claims, bankruptcy litigation, and shareholder and partnership disputes.
DAVID MILLER was selected as management lawyer of the year in the labor law category. He has practiced labor law for 35 years and focuses on union avoidance and developing strategies for the acquisition or sale of businesses with union represented employees. Miller is a former field examiner for the National Labor Relations Board.