Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP has boosted its presence in the entertainment industry with the addition of attorneys Kelly Crabb and Rick Kopenhefer.

Crabb joined Sheppard Mullin’s downtown L.A. office; Kopenhefer joined the firm’s Century City office. Both joined earlier this month as partners.

Crabb, who practiced at Morrison & Foerster LLP for 14 years before joining Sheppard Mullin, has served as legal counsel in connection with three Olympic Games, including the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

Crabb said he had thought about moving to a new firm for some time, and opted to join Sheppard Mullin because of its reputation in entertainment circles.

“I didn’t jump real quickly,” Crabb said. “I was looking to be at a firm where the platform in the entertainment space was strong. And Sheppard has exactly the kind of practice I was looking for.”

Crabb handles legal matters for motion picture and television producers, technology-based entertainment companies and the recording industry. He also handles Olympics-related work, advising a company that’s using speed skater Apolo Ohno as an endorser.

Kopenhefer, who practiced at McDermott Will & Emery LLP for 12 years before joining Sheppard Mullin, specializes in labor and employment issues as they relate to the entertainment industry. He represents film producers and distributors dealing with guild-related matters, including accounting and payment of residuals.

“I wanted to go to a firm that has a strong entertainment practice and a strong labor practice,” Kopenhefer said.

Regulating Securities

Attorney Cliff Hyatt has joined Foley & Lardner LLP’s downtown L.A. office, adding to the firm’s growing roster of litigators with Securities and Exchange Commission experience.

Hyatt is the third partner with experience working for the SEC to join Milwaukee-based Foley in the past 12 months. He joined Foley earlier this month from Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP, where he practiced for more than four years.

Hyatt said he joined Foley because the firm is focusing more on securities-related regulation and litigation as the federal government looks to regulate Wall Street.

“I don’t think we know yet what the new regulatory scheme will look like for brokerage firms and banks,” Hyatt said. “But they are going to need counselors and advisers who understand the markets and regulatory scheme.”

Hyatt represents financial institutions, investment advisers, hedge funds and public companies in matters before the SEC, New York Stock Exchange and state securities agencies. Hyatt spent 11 years working for the SEC before entering private practice in 2002. He also worked on Wall Street.


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