Six Cozen O’Connor Lawyers Named 2023 “Lawyers of the Year” by Best Lawyers

Monday, August 22, 2022

PHILADELPHIA, August 22, 2022 — Cozen O’Connor is proud to announce that six of the firm’s lawyers have been recognized as “Lawyers of the Year” in their respective practices by Best Lawyers in America. This award is conferred by Best Lawyers. A description of the selection methodology can be found here. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

To earn this distinction, these six lawyers received the highest annual ratings from peer attorneys in their respective practices nationwide — for excellence in their legal abilities, professionalism, and integrity. Only one lawyer is recognized as the “Lawyer of the Year” for each practice area and location.

In addition, 210 Cozen O’Connor lawyers have been selected as Best Lawyers, including the six “Lawyers of the Year” and 65 lawyers named “Ones to Watch.”

Cozen O’Connor’s “Lawyers of the Year” include:

Geoffrey D. Ferrer focuses on U.S. and non-U.S. flag shipping matters and all aspects of asset-based lending, including ship and aircraft finance and equipment leasing. He routinely advises vessel owners and operators, as well as financial institutions in connection with U.S., Marshall Island, Liberian, and Vanuatu maritime and corporate laws. He also provides maritime advice in connection with shipping-related mergers and acquisitions, as well as securities offerings. In addition, he represents clients in maritime lien and mortgage enforcement actions, as well as in marine casualty and general commercial disputes.

James W. Forsyth primarily works with business and corporate tax matters and the taxation of pass-through entities. He represents publicly and privately held enterprises in analyzing the federal, state, and local income tax consequences of corporate transactions, including corporate reorganizations, divisions, debt restructurings, joint ventures, and other business transactions. Jim devotes a significant amount of his practice to resolving taxpayer disputes with the IRS and with the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue. He particularly enjoys working with business clients to develop the practical solutions that will help them achieve their financial and operational goals.

J. Bruce Maffeo is a former federal and state prosecutor who has practiced criminal law for more than 35 years. During that time, he has tried virtually every type of criminal case - from securities fraud to murder and has represented individuals ranging from celebrities to indigent clients as a member of the Criminal Justice Act panel of the Southern District of New York. Bruce also routinely conducts internal investigations for various companies and labor unions involving workplace behavior. He also served for ten years as the Ethical Practices Officer for AFSCME District Council 37, New York City’s largest municipal union, where he was responsible for investigating allegations of financial and other forms of impropriety among that union’s 120,000 members and officers.

Suzanne Mayes is co-chair of both Cozen O’Connor’s Business Law Department and Public & Project Finance Practice Group. She focuses her practice on municipal and project finance, particularly in the areas of economic development, transportation, public works, education, senior living, and housing. She is an active member of numerous government and nonprofit boards and is a founding member of Ladies First, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing educational and networking opportunities for female public finance professionals in the Mid-Atlantic region. She is serving her third term on the firm’s Board of Directors and is also a member of the management committee.

Jason M. Shargel has more than 40 years of experience in the private practice of corporate and securities law. Having begun his career in the SEC's Enforcement Division, Jason's practice includes mergers and acquisitions, as well as the representation of issuers and funds in venture capital, growth capital, and other private equity financings. He has also represented issuers in a wide variety of public and private offerings of debt and equity securities.

Anna Wermuth serves as the vice-chair of Cozen O’Connor’s national Labor & Employment Department, where she has been integral to the growth and success of the firm’s L&E practice. Working out of the Chicago office, employers engage her to represent them in high-stakes, high-profile labor and employment litigation before state and federal courts and administrative agencies. She is also widely recognized as a “go-to” legal resource for institutions of higher education, representing prestigious colleges and universities in leading collective bargaining negotiations and labor arbitrations, developing employee-engagement strategies for union-organizing campaigns, and litigating a myriad of faculty, staff, and student matters.

About Cozen O’Connor

Established in 1970 and ranked among the top 100 law firms in America, Cozen O’Connor has more than 825 attorneys who help clients manage risk and make better business decisions. The firm counsels clients on their most sophisticated legal matters in all areas of the law, including litigation, corporate, and regulatory law. Representing a broad array of leading global corporations and middle market companies, Cozen O’Connor services its clients’ needs through 32 offices across two continents.

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