Orrick Adds Leading Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities Team in New York

February.18.2014

Orrick announced today that William J. “Butch” Cullen and Janet A. Barbiere have joined the firm as partners in its Structured Finance Practice Group resident in New York. 

Mr. Cullen and Ms. Barbiere are widely recognized among the top commercial real estate securitization practitioners.  They act as CMBS issuer and underwriter counsel for leading investment banks including Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America/Merrill Lynch, and represented the FDIC in its two recent CMBS transactions. Prior to joining Orrick, Mr. Cullen and Ms. Barbiere were partners at Kaye Scholer, Thacher Proffitt & Wood and Sidley Austin.

"Orrick has the commitment to structured finance and leading real estate and restructuring practices that our clients require," said Mr. Cullen.  Ms. Barbiere added: "The firm’s reputation as a leading advisor to financial institutions and its work on some of the most innovative transactions make Orrick a terrific fit for our practice."

"The commercial mortgage-backed securities market has clearly rebounded into the fastest growing asset class," said Al Sawyers, head of Orrick’s Structured Finance Practice Group. "We are delighted to add a premier team in Butch and Janet, complementing Orrick’s overall strength in structured finance."

"We have long sought to add a leading CMBS team to our finance platform, and Butch and Janet came along as the ideal team at the ideal time," added Howard Altarescu, Co-head of Orrick’s Finance Business Unit.

In addition to his work securitizing commercial mortgage assets, Mr. Cullen has also been involved in the workout and restructuring of defaulted real estate loans and securities, the sale and liquidation of both performing and distressed financial assets and the sale of servicing platforms and investment advisory businesses.  Ms. Barbiere’s practice focuses on commercial mortgage loan securitizations, real estate syndications, origination and servicing programs, the acquisition and sale of interests in mortgage loans, mortgage securities, subordinated debt and mezzanine debt, as well as transactions in the secondary mortgage market.  She has also advised banks in analyzing and structuring CMBS transactions and in the workout, restructuring and sale of non-performing commercial mortgage loans in CMBS transactions. 

Mr. Cullen earned his J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania and received his undergraduate education at Colgate University, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa and Class Valedictorian.  He is highly ranked by Chambers.  Ms. Barbiere earned her J.D. from Fordham University School of Law, where she was a Member of the Fordham Law Review, her Masters degree, magna cum laude, from Columbia University and her B.A. from Brooklyn College, magna cum laude.  She has been ranked by Chambers since 2007. Ms. Barbiere serves on various committees including the Structured Finance Industry Group and the Commercial Real Estate Finance Council.

Orrick is a leading advisor in the structured finance market and has represented issuers and underwriters in innovative transactions and programs for many years.  The firm’s recent work has included advising Redwood Trust in its ongoing RMBS program — Redwood has been the only regular issuer of non-governmental mortgage backed securities since 2008 — and representing Barclays in its $1 billion Dryrock Issuance Trust Series 2012-1 and 2012-2, the first credit card trust to be compliant with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Safe Harbor Rule.

About Orrick

Orrick is a leading global law firm focused on counseling companies in the energy and infrastructure, financial services and technology sectors. Celebrating its 150th anniversary, the firm has 25 offices across key markets in the United States, Europe and Asia. The Recorder named Orrick as California Litigation Department of the Year for 2013 and American Lawyer selected Orrick as a finalist for IP Department of the Year.  Chambers Global cites the firm’s teams for leadership across 43 transactional and litigation practice areas and recognizes 86 Orrick lawyers worldwide as leading practitioners.  Recognizing Orrick’s strong culture of client service excellence, mentoring, inclusion and community responsibility, American Lawyer recently named the firm to its 10-Year A-List.