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  • Employment Law & Litigation
  • Discrimination, Harassment & Retaliation
  • Wage and Hour

Annie Prasad Vadillo Associate Employment Law & Litigation, Discrimination, Harassment & Retaliation

Silicon Valley

Driven and always prepared, Annie thrives on new challenges and brings an eye for precision and efficiency to her work. Combined with her passion for overcoming obstacles, Annie loves to conquer high-stakes employment challenges.

As a litigator, Annie helps employers navigate single plaintiff, multi-plaintiff and class action lawsuits under state and federal laws. She also works with companies on state agency tax audits. Since an adverse ruling can threaten the very core of a company’s business model, companies need attorneys like Annie to guide them through the complex audit and assessment process.

Having amassed significant courtroom experience, she knows how to deliver the best results for her client – whether that means resolving a matter quietly, or winning decisively at trial. For example, Annie was a key member of the team which secured a complete defense verdict for a Fortune 500 retail employer in a religious discrimination, retaliation and wrongful termination case. As the only associate on the trial team, Annie assisted with witness preparation, argued four of the pre-trial discovery motions and a motion in limine. Moreover, to help ease the stress of litigation for her clients, Annie maintains the highest service standards.

Annie also serves on the planning committee for Orrick’s Women in Employment Law (WE) Initiative. She spearheads networking events to foster connections between female leaders in the human resources, employment and legal professions. 


  • Complex Litigation & Dispute Resolution

José Mario Valdés Managing Associate Complex Litigation & Dispute Resolution

New York

José Mario Valdés is a Managing Associate in Orrick’s Complex Litigation & Dispute Resolution Group.

José Mario represents clients in complex, multidistrict, and class action litigation.  Prior to clerking, he worked as a litigation associate at a global law firm representing companies in complex commercial disputes involving claims of fraudulent transfer and successor liability.  He also represented clients facing regulatory enforcement actions before the SEC for alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Pay to Play regulations.  His pro bono experience includes representing low income tenants in NY Housing Court and asylum seekers in removal proceedings.

José Mario received his JD from Columbia Law School and a bachelor’s degree in Government from Harvard College.



  • M&A and Private Equity
  • Renewable Energy
  • Energy
  • Infrastructure

Riccardo Valle Special Counsel M&A and Private Equity, Renewable Energy


Riccardo Valle is a special counsel in Orrick’s corporate team, based in the Rome office.
Riccardo boasts more than 15 years of experience providing legal assistance to leading Italian and international companies, with a particular focus on clients operating in highly regulated markets.

His main areas of expertise are energy, including generation, infrastructures, incentives, PPA/EFET and IPEX, environmental matters, including waste and EIA/IPPC, and healthcare and life sciences, from clinical trials to authorizations procedures, from import/export to advertising, pricing, commercialization and wholesale distributions. His assistance spans both transactional and litigation matters, before Civil and Administrative Courts as well as before the Supreme Court of Cassation.



  • Intellectual Property
  • Trade Secrets Litigation

Amy Van Zant Partner Intellectual Property, Trade Secrets Litigation

Silicon Valley

Clients count on Amy to move their business forward. Whether litigating a complex patent suit, or advising on a multi-faceted IP strategy, Amy incorporates an in-depth understanding of each client’s business, employees and corporate strategy into her solutions.

For her litigation practice, Amy’s ability to distill the most complicated technology across an array of fields, including telecommunications, semiconductor manufacturing, renewable energy, cloud computing, and big data, into relatable, every day concepts that has made her successful in persuading judges and juries alike. She has led trial teams, litigated, and tried cases in state court in California, numerous District Courts, the International Trade Commission, and has briefed appeals before the 9th Circuit, the Federal Circuit, the Supreme Court of California, and the United States Supreme Court. 

Whether litigating patent, trade secret, or IP contract disputes, Amy strives to put herself in her client’s shoes to ensure personalized results tailored to each client’s business objectives. As SAP’s General Counsel Landon Edmond commented to Acritas, Amy “has acquired a great knowledge of our business, and therefore you know you can trust her in a wide variety of topics and to get the right colleagues within her firm involved across the globe.”

Amy also provides comprehensive IP counseling on issues including trade secrets protection, employee departure investigations, freedom to operate analysis, licensing strategies, data privacy protection, and regulatory compliance. She has also conducted comprehensive patent portfolio reviews and assisted with IP corporate transactions.

In addition to her IP work, Amy devotes significant time to her pro bono work. For more than a decade, she has assisted domestic violence victims, as well as led Orrick’s Bay Area summer program that enables law clerks to be certified to argue in Family Court to obtain Temporary Restraining Orders for domestic violence clients.



  • Technology Companies Group
  • Banking & Finance
  • Cyber, Privacy & Data Innovation
  • M&A and Private Equity
  • Global Compliance & Regulatory
  • Fintech
  • Corporate Lending
  • Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

Barrie VanBrackle Partner Technology Companies Group, Banking & Finance

Washington, D.C.

Barrie VanBrackle, a partner in Orrick’s Washington, D.C., office, is a member of the Cyber, Privacy & Data Innovation practice and co-leads Orrick's Fintech team.

An authority on payments and consumer financial services compliance, Barrie has been recognized as a Leading Lawyer in the 2020 Legal 500 U.S. Fintech guide and in Band 2 of the 2020 Chambers FinTech directory for her leadership in Payments & Lending. Reflecting on her business acumen and experience, clients described her as a "black belt ninja when it comes to payment processing" who provides "very cogent reasoning on complex regulatory matters." Her strategic market advice is also praised, with clients citing her "detailed knowledge of the regulatory environment and the business environment." Under Barrie’s co-leadership, Orrick’s Fintech practice was ranked in Tier 1 and Band 2 by Legal 500 and Chambers, respectively, in 2020.

Barrie is focused on three areas at the cross-section of the fintech space: consumer-facing financial and banking, regulatory counseling and investigations, payment card industry, including brand operating rules and data security standards; money transmission; and prepaid card access on behalf of leading merchants, payment processors and industry vendors. Barrie advises on transactions involving the payment systems participants, including large merchants and financial technology companies, with respect to payment acceptance, payment issuance, co-brand agreements, payment card industry data security issues, and payment regulatory matters. In addition, Barrie has deep experience advising corporate and private equity clients in M&A contexts and other investments in fintech. Barrie represents payment card issuing and merchant acquiring banks (including acquiring a card program for one of the Top 5 largest financial institutions, negotiating cobrand agreements for a large issuing bank and a sports franchise, and negotiating novel payment acceptance methods for more traditional merchants). She helps fintechs navigate the banking and money transmission rules, including representing new market entrants into the US. 

Barrie is a sought after speaker on the evolving regulatory and compliance issues surrounding payments and related e-commerce matters.



  • Renewable Energy
  • Project Finance
  • M&A and Private Equity
  • Corporate

Eric Vanderhoef Associate Renewable Energy, Project Finance

New York

Eric assists on a wide range of corporate transactions, primarily focusing on renewable energy project finance and mergers and acquisitions.

Eric has experience drafting and revising a variety of financing, construction and operating agreements. He also assists in deal closings, reviewing corporate materials and drafting diligence memoranda.

Prior to joining Orrick, Eric worked as an extern at the Environmental Defense Section of the Department of Justice Environment and Natural Resources Division and as a judicial intern for Judge Laurie J. Michelson in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.



  • Technology Companies Group
  • Capital Markets
  • Life Sciences
  • Corporate Governance
  • M&A and Private Equity

Albert Vanderlaan Partner Technology Companies Group, Capital Markets


Albert Vanderlaan is a partner in Orrick’s Technology Companies Group. He works with public and private companies, venture capital firms and investment banks focused on the life sciences and high-growth technology sectors.

Albert is involved in a broad range of corporate legal engagements for high growth technology companies, including venture financings, public offerings, private and public company securities law compliance matters, de-SPAC transactions, public company disclosure obligations, mergers and acquisitions and COVID-19 related matters (including public company disclosure matters and Paycheck Protection Act eligibility and compliance matters) . He also regularly advises private and public companies and their board of directors on corporate governance issues. Albert's clients include private and public companies in the life sciences (including, among others, immuno-oncology, gene therapy, restorative cell therapy and medical device companies), real estate, finance, automotive and Internet related industries. He also represents underwriters in initial public offerings, follow-on offerings and PIPE offerings and venture capital firms in a variety of investment transactions.


  • White Collar, Investigations, Securities Litigation & Compliance
  • Securities Litigation, Class Actions and Shareholder Derivative Lawsuits
  • Internal Investigations
  • White Collar
  • Trials

Robert P. Varian Senior Counsel White Collar, Investigations, Securities Litigation & Compliance, Securities Litigation, Class Actions and Shareholder Derivative Lawsuits

San Francisco

Robert P. Varian, senior counsel, served as a partner in Orrick's San Francisco office for 12 years, and was previously a partner in Clifford Chance US LLP and Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison.

He has been named to Lawdragon's Top 500 Leading Lawyers in America list, one of the most elite accolades in the legal profession, and as one of the top 20 lawyers of the year by The California Lawyer. He is one of the few attorneys in the United States who has successfully tried securities class actions to verdict (twice), and won one of the National Law Journal's top 10 defense verdicts in the United States in the major securities class action jury trial.

Bob has extensive experience in defending securities class actions, SEC investigations and enforcement proceedings, and derivative lawsuits throughout the United States. He has led a wide variety of internal investigations centered in the United States and China, and has represented executives, directors and auditors in internal investigations, SEC investigations and enforcement actions, and in securities class actions and other shareholder litigation. He also has extensive experience in defending consumer class actions and complex business cases, and special expertise in representing Chinese companies and individuals in litigation and investigations.

Bob has successfully litigated numerous high profile cases that have received coverage in the national media.



  • Mass Torts & Product Liability
  • Complex Litigation & Dispute Resolution
  • Trade Secrets Litigation
  • International Arbitration & Dispute Resolution
  • Class Action Defense
  • 3D Printing

Christopher Vejnoska Partner and General Counsel Mass Torts & Product Liability, Complex Litigation & Dispute Resolution

San Francisco

Chris serves as Orrick's General Counsel.  He also is the President of a captive insurance company owned by Orrick and a number of other global and national law firms.

In his practice, Chris has been a first chair trial lawyer with more than 30 years of experience handling high stakes, precedent-setting cases, particularly in the products liability arena.  His most recent products liability engagements included serving as trial counsel for a large talc company, including trying to conclusion one of the very first mesothelioma cases against it, and leading a cross-office international and national team defending multiple Chinese companies in a historic MDL.  At times, a client asked Chris to lead five or more trial teams in products cases in a single year.

Chris also has acted as national counsel for companies facing thousands of mass tort product liability claims and complex, multiparty class action litigation, and has counseled multinational companies entangled in lengthy, enterprise-threatening litigation and negotiated legal and business solutions involving billions of dollars. He has extensive experience in complex and commercial litigation, ranging from insurance recovery disputes to trade secrets issues, and has significant experience in assisting foreign aerospace companies with international arbitration disputes with first-tier aircraft manufacturers.

Earlier in his career, Chris represented large public companies in mergers, acquisitions, strategic investments and private financings; private companies in initial public offerings; and emerging growth companies in general corporate matters. Chris' transactional experience also offers clients a unique perspective on risk mitigation strategies to avoid costly litigation in the future.

Chris also is the Chair of Orrick’s Risk Management Committee and a member of the Operations Team.  Prior to joining the firm, Chris was a partner at Clifford Chance and a partner at Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison, where he was a member of the Policy Committee, a member of the Executive Committee, Chair of the Risk Management Committee and Chair of the Hiring Committee.



  • Labor & Employment Appeals
  • Employment Law & Litigation
  • Compensation & Benefits

Luciano Vella Associate Labor & Employment Appeals, Employment Law & Litigation


Luciano Vella, associate in the Milan office, is a member of the employment law and litigation practice.

Luciano is specialized in employment and labor law as well as in agency matters, trade union law and employment litigation, providing legal assistance to Italian and foreign companies. In addition, he has a specific expertise in the Italian system of health and safety in workplaces.

He is author of numerous articles in the field of labor law published in trade magazines.

Graduated from the University of Pisa in 2015 with honors, he was admitted to the Italian bar in 2018.



  • Technology Companies Group
  • Corporate
  • Corporate Governance
  • Equity Capital Markets
  • M&A and Private Equity
  • Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

Stephen Venuto Partner Technology Companies Group, Corporate

Silicon Valley; San Francisco

Stephen Venuto, a partner who works out of both the Silicon Valley and San Francisco offices, is a member of the Technology Companies group. His practice focuses on advising high-growth technology and media companies and their founders, advisors and investors.

Steve was Facebook’s first lawyer and is widely recognized as one of the leading startup lawyers in the country. The American Lawyer recently named him “Dealmaker of the Year”, recognizing his corporate work and representation of Instagram in its sale to Facebook, and quoting a prominent board member as saying that Steve “is an outstanding lawyer, but he’s also an outstanding business partner . . . someone who cares about everybody [who's] involved in a company.” The Daily Journal has named him to its list of Top 100 Lawyers in California (chosen regardless of specialty), and, separately, to its inaugural Top Emerging Companies Lawyers list.

Numerous standout technology companies and their founders have turned to Steve for representation including Asana, Bleacher Report, Facebook, Getaround, Instagram, Ooma (NYSE), Pinterest, ResearchGate, and Warby Parker. Steve provides general corporate legal counseling and represents companies at all stages of their life-cycle.