Nixon Peabody adds a team of four litigation partners to its Los Angeles office bolstering its labor and employment and general litigation bench strength and trial capabilities

March 28, 2022

Media Relations Manager
Courtney DeMesme-Anders

Los Angeles, CA. Nixon Peabody LLP is in growth mode on the West Coast, expanding its Los Angeles office with the arrival of four new partners: Complex Disputes partner Carlos Becerra, and Labor & Employment partners Richard J. Frey, Robert H. Pepple, and David M. Prager.

The arrival of this partner group marks the latest in a series of lateral moves that support the firm’s focus on attracting top talent to join Nixon Peabody’s team. Earlier this month, NP’s Los Angeles office welcomed entertainment attorney Carron Joan Mitchell, an NP alum who returned to the firm as partner. And in 2021, Intellectual Property partners Erica Van Loon and Andrew Choung and Corporate partner Michael Lawhead joined NP LA. In addition, several prominent attorneys have joined the Los Angeles office over the past year as counsel, including S. Desmond Jui (Intellectual Property), Joshua Pollack (Intellectual Property), Jean Yu (Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation), Farrah Usmani (Entertainment), and Richard Shamos (Corporate).

Entrepreneurial and innovative, this new team of partners brings particular skill sets focused on key industries in the Los Angeles area, including healthcare and entertainment, and they will bring that deep industry knowledge to NP clients. “While each litigation attorney in this group has a different area of emphasis, they make up a tight-knit team that brings excellent collaboration across our firm’s West Coast Labor & Employment and Complex Disputes practices," said Sonia Nayak, managing partner of Nixon Peabody’s Los Angeles office. “We are thrilled to welcome Carlos, David, Richard, and Robert to Nixon Peabody as we continue to grow in California.”

Carlos Becerra, Complex Disputes

Carlos is an accomplished litigator, trial attorney, and strategic advisor, focusing his robust transactional and litigation practice on advising clients in the healthcare, entertainment, and financial services sectors on complex business, intellectual property, and employment-related issues. He frequently represents clients in high-stakes business disputes, including executive mobility, breach of fiduciary duty, and business divorce-related matters. He also works with hedge funds and private equity firms, providing advice on regulatory market, litigation developments, and divisive operational support for key assets. At Nixon Peabody, Carlos will help lead the complex disputes practice in Southern California. In addition to serving as the deputy co-president for the Southern California region of the Hispanic National Bar Association, Carlos is a charter member and officer of the Red Shoe Society, a young professionals group created to support the Ronald McDonald House. He earned his JD from the University of California, Hastings College of Law and his BS from the University of California, San Diego.

Richard J. Frey, Labor & Employment

Richard is a first chair trial lawyer and boardroom advisor. He focuses his practice on labor and employment challenges faced by corporations and individuals. He has experience in trade secret and employee mobility cases involving insurance brokerages, talent agents, banks, and private equity firms, and unfair competition litigation, including litigation involving non-compete agreements. He has litigated cases in both state and federal courts, and is skilled in defending commercial class actions as well as wage and hour, and shareholder derivative class actions. In addition to his significant experience in trade secret and unfair competition litigation, Richard frequently defends commercial class actions against alleged violations of the California Business and Professions Code § 17200, wage and hour, and shareholder derivative class actions. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Children’s Burn Foundation. Richard earned his JD from Pepperdine University School of Law and his BA from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Robert H. Pepple, Labor & Employment

Working across numerous industries, including entertainment, healthcare, manufacturing, retail, and telecommunications, Robert regularly litigates and advises corporations and individuals on human resource issues, non-competes, trade secrets, and many other aspects of California and federal employment laws. Robert has been a leader in developing innovative litigation tools that bring powerful solutions to clients for forensic time care audits, responding to discovery, and assessing damages for wage and hour class actions. His clients include corporations of all sizes and individuals in numerous industries, such as entertainment, healthcare, staffing agency, manufacturing, retail, and telecommunications. Robert is actively engaged in his community and is a member of Magic Castle and the California Freemasons. He earned his JD from the University of California, Los Angeles, and his BA from Pomona College.

David M. Prager, Labor & Employment

David is a thoughtful and creative litigator who represents large and middle-market employers, focusing on unfair competition, non-compete, and trade secret matters, as well as defending discrimination and harassment cases. As a trusted advisor to clients, he regularly provides counsel to companies on personnel issues such as employee hiring, discipline, termination, accommodation, leaves of absence, and wage and hour compliance. David also serves as the president and as a member of the Board of Directors of the L.A. LEGGERS, one of the largest nonprofit marathon training and distance running organizations in California. David earned his JD from the University of California, Hastings College of Law, cum laude, and his BS and BA from the University of California, San Diego.

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