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AUGUST 1, 2017 – In a major expansion of the nationally renowned media and First Amendment practice at Davis Wright Tremaine, three exceptional lawyers have joined the firm as partners in New York and Washington, D.C.
- Nathan Siegel, whose 25 years’ experience includes representing clients in many of the nation’s most high-profile media matters, including cutting-edge right of publicity cases and defamation suits brought by celebrities and political personalities.
- Katherine Bolger, who brings 20 years of experience as a litigator and counselor, having successfully represented major newspaper and book publishers, broadcast networks, and motion picture studios in a broad range of content matters.
- Rachel Strom, who has a decade of experience representing leading publishers and broadcasters in defamation, privacy, newsgathering, and copyright cases, as well as subpoena and access matters.
Both Siegel and Bolger are ranked by Chambers USA as among the top First Amendment litigators in the country and among the top practitioners of media and entertainment law in Washington, D.C., and New York, respectively. Strom is also recognized by Chambers as a “Rising Star.”
All three lawyers join the firm from the highly respected media law boutique Levine Sullivan Koch & Schulz LLP.
“These are extraordinary times for the media business and for all creators of content,” said Alexandra Nicholson, chair of the communications, media, and intellectual property practice at Davis Wright Tremaine. “I am thrilled to further strengthen our support of the media and entertainment industry, and the cause of free speech, with these three gifted lawyers in the prime of their careers.”
“Nathan, Kate, and Rachel have been well known to us over the years, as colleagues, co-counsel, and competitors,” said Jim Rosenfeld, New York-based co-chair of the Davis Wright Tremaine media practice. “We’ve seen up close their tremendous dedication to the interests of their clients and highly skilled defense of those interests. They are a powerful addition to our team.”
Mr. Siegel represents media clients in First Amendment, intellectual property, and entertainment law cases in trial and appellate courts throughout the country. He also provides pre-broadcast and pre-publication counseling to a wide range of print and web publishers, television networks, and film producers. He has successfully represented multiple major media clients such as ABC News, Tribune Company and ESPN in defamation lawsuits, and represented producers and broadcasters of reality TV programs in right of publicity cases. Over the past decade, he has represented either the broadcast media or the video game industry in every major case that tests the publicity rights of athletes in video games and television sports broadcasts.
Mr. Siegel recently won dismissal of a $13 million defamation suit filed against the producers of a high-profile documentary about gun safety by members of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, who were interviewed in the film by Katie Couric and objected to the way the film was edited. Davis Wright Tremaine was co-counsel in the case. At New York’s highest court, Mr. Siegel won dismissal last year of claims against ABC arising from filming that took place in a Manhattan hospital for the documentary series, “NY Med.”
Mr. Siegel has regularly defended the news media against government efforts to curtail or punish journalism, including representing journalists from the New York Times, NBC Los Angeles Times, and Baltimore Sun in resisting subpoenas for confidential sources. He has also obtained access to information for news organizations in high-profile criminal matters, such as the trial of “Scooter” Libby and the special prosecutor’s investigation of former President Clinton.
Prior to joining Levine Sullivan, Mr. Siegel served as in-house litigation counsel at ABC, Inc., where he supervised the defense of ABC News in the landmark Food Lion v. ABC case and many other matters. He currently serves on the Governing Committee of the ABA Forum on Communications Law and is a past president of the Defense Counsel Section of the MLRC. Mr. Siegel received his B.A. from Duke University and his J.D. from Yale Law School. He will practice in the firm’s Washington, D.C., and New York offices.
Ms. Bolger is a widely recognized expert in the field of First Amendment and defamation litigation, and a leader in reporter’s privilege cases and access matters for media outlets in New York. She regularly represents clients in efforts to open courtrooms and resist subpoenas for confidential sources, and has obtained the dismissal of dozens of high-profile defamation cases on behalf of major news organizations, authors, publishers, and professional athletes. Most recently, she has represented media entities in connection with the trial of Martin Shkreli—the “Pharma bro”—and has successfully opposed efforts by Mr. Shkreli to compel several news organizations to reveal their sources. She was also part of a Levine Sullivan team that secured the appellate reversal of a $1.85 million jury verdict in favor of former Minnesota governor and professional wrestler Jesse Ventura in a suit alleging unjust enrichment and defamation.
Ms. Bolger, who will practice from Davis Wright Tremaine’s New York office, is incoming chair of the New York City Bar Media and Communications Committee and currently serves on the governing committee of the ABA Forum on Communications Law. She was previously co-chair of the ABA’s First Amendment and Media Litigation Committee and Women in Communications Law Committee, as well as the Entertainment Law Committee of the Media Law Resource Center (MLRC), the largest national organization of media defense counsel. She regularly appears in appellate and trial courts throughout the country, and Chambers USA reports that clients have described her as “incredibly bright, very strategic and an exceptionally strong writer” who is “a very effective litigator” and “the lawyer I would want the most in a New York state court street fight.”
Prior to joining Levine Sullivan, Ms. Bolger was a partner at Hogan Lovells, where she co-chaired the media litigation and counseling practice group. She received her B.A. from the University of Virginia and her J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School.
Ms. Strom’s practice includes representing a number of new and digital media companies, including Vice, Slate, Gimlet Media, and Townsquare. Her notable matters include serving as lead attorney in securing documents, on behalf of Newsday, that had been withheld by the Town of Oyster Bay, N.Y. Eight people have been indicted in a massive public corruption investigation in the town. Along with a Levine Sullivan partner, Ms. Strom also successfully defended Jimmy Kimmel and ABC against a misappropriation claim based on the use of the plaintiff’s image in a comedy sketch on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.”
Before joining Levine Sullivan in 2012, Ms. Strom was a litigation associate at Hogan Lovells, where she was a member of the firm’s media litigation and counseling practice group. She currently serves on the MLRC Institute’s board of trustees and is past co-chair of the MLRC’s Next Generation Media Lawyer Committee. She received her B.A. at Sarah Lawrence College and her J.D. from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, where serves as an adjunct professor. She will practice in Davis Wright Tremaine’s New York office.
Joining Davis Wright Tremaine along with the three partners are two former Levine Sullivan associates: Amy Wolf and Adam Lazier.
Ms. Wolf represents news, media, and entertainment clients in a wide range of content-related matters implicating their First Amendment and intellectual property rights. She was part of the team that represented Newsday in the Town of Oyster Bay matter. Before joining Levine Sullivan she was a litigation associate at Gibson Dunn and Davis & Gilbert, and while in law school she interned at E! Entertainment Television, where she focused on pre-publication review. Ms. Wolf earned her B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and her J.D. from University of Pennsylvania Law School.
Mr. Lazier has experience representing clients in a wide range of content-related matters. Prior to joining Levine Sullivan, he completed an LL.M. at New York University with a focus on media law and the First Amendment. He previously worked as a litigation associate at Blake, Cassels & Graydon in Toronto, specializing in media and defamation law, and served as law clerk to the Honorable J. Edgar Sexton of the Canadian Federal Court of Appeal. Mr. Lazier earned his B.A. from Queen’s University and his J.D. from University of Toronto Faculty of Law.
The media and First Amendment practice at Davis Wright Tremaine is the largest in the country and widely recognized as one of the best. Recent accolades include the following:
- In the 2017 Chambers & Partners directory, Davis Wright Tremaine was the only firm to receive a Band 1 rating (the highest possible) for Media & Entertainment law in all three of the country’s top media centers: New York, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles.
- Law360 named Davis Wright Tremaine a “Practice Group of the Year” in Media and Entertainment.
- Best Lawyers named Davis Wright Tremaine “Law Firm of the Year” in media law and copyright law.
- The firm was honored with a Freedom of the Press award by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, recognizing the media team’s decades-long commitment to supporting journalists and defending the public’s right to know.
About Davis Wright Tremaine
Davis Wright Tremaine LLP is a national law firm with more than 550 lawyers representing clients based throughout the United States and around the world. For more information, visit www.dwt.com.