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Blank Rome Welcomes Three-Partner Employee Benefits Team in Philadelphia

Blank Rome LLP is pleased to announce that Jonathan A. Clark, Andrew J. Rudolph, and Michael A. Kadlec have joined the Firm as partners in the Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation practice, of which Mr. Clark has been named chair. The employee benefits team joins Blank Rome’s Philadelphia office from Pepper Hamilton LLP where Mr. Clark served as co-chair of the Employee Benefits practice group.

“We couldn’t be more excited to have such an outstanding employee benefits team come on board. As a nationally recognized team, Jonathan, Andy, and Michael have nearly 70 years of combined experience counseling employers on their welfare, fringe benefit, and retirement plans, among other compensation matters,” said Alan J. Hoffman, the Firm’s Chairman and Managing Partner. “Between their vast experience in the benefits plan industry and their deep knowledge of the private and public sectors, this team will greatly enhance our existing employee benefits capabilities, as well as our labor and employment, corporate securities, private equity, and finance offerings, among others.”

Mr. Clark has extensive experience counseling clients across a wide range of employee benefits and executive compensation matters, including issues stemming from transactions such as plan asset transfers, management investment in leveraged buyouts, employee stock ownership plans (“ESOPs”), and other employee-ownership vehicles. With regard to his work on behalf of boards of directors and executives, he’s provided counsel on change of control, equity-based compensation arrangements—including stock option, restricted stock, and phantom stock programs—stay bonuses, severance and transaction bonus programs, and related analyses of the application of securities law rules, listing requirements, golden parachutes, and million dollar cap rules. Mr. Clark also provides advice on the design, implementation, operation, and termination of qualified retirement plans. Additionally, he counsels private equity funds, as well as nonprofit organizations, including educational institutions and large hospital organizations, on benefits and compensation matters.

“We’re thrilled to be joining Blank Rome as a group, as Andy, Mike, and I have spent the majority of our careers working together,” said Mr. Clark. “Blank Rome is a well-established firm that has undergone significant and strategic expansion over the past several years. With its recent growth, particularly in New York and Washington, D.C., the Firm identified a need for additional support in the employee benefits and compensation arena, and I am excited to join at this time and have the opportunity to help expand the practice at Blank Rome. The Firm is known for its strength in management and collegiality, and we’re excited to be a part of this collaborative culture.”

For more than 30 years, Mr. Rudolph has advised large employers on employee benefits, executive compensation, and related tax and corporate law issues. For the last 10 years, his focus has been on using benefits and compensation as a strategic tool for larger employers to manage recruitment, retention, and rewards. Mr. Rudolph has counseled clients through several business cycles as well as in restructurings, acquisitions, and dispositions that have allowed his clients to become market leaders within their industries. This includes counsel during the acquisition process on benefits and compensation issues, as well as integrating the acquired business onto the buyer’s benefit platform after the closing. Additionally, Mr. Rudolph has helped clients plan for and integrate qualified and nonqualified retirement, health and welfare, and incentive compensation programs in connection with numerous public company transactions. He’s helped clients design, implement, and terminate ESOPs, and has represented employers and executives in connection with change-in-control, severance, and golden parachute agreements.

Mr. Kadlec focuses his practice on the design and drafting of qualified and non-qualified retirement and welfare benefit plans; employee benefits and executive compensation aspects of corporate mergers and acquisitions; public corporation executive compensation disclosures; design and drafting of equity compensation arrangements; and the negotiation and drafting of employment and separation agreements. He has experience representing a variety of clients, including international publicly traded corporations, private equity funds, privately held entities, large tax-exempt organizations, and executives.

“Employers, whether public or private, will need guidance as they navigate the likely changes to existing labor and employment laws under a new U.S. administration and new labor secretary. This highly regarded team, along with our existing benefits attorneys, including Dan Morgan and Art Bachman, has the experience and know-how our clients will need to manage these expected changes,” said Cory G. Jacobs, Chair of Blank Rome's Tax, Benefits, and Private Client practice group.

Mr. Clark received his J.D., cum laude, from the University of Chicago Law School. He received a B.A. in Economics from Johns Hopkins University. He also serves as co-chair of the Pension Committee for the Philadelphia Bar Association.

Mr. Rudolph received his J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania Law School where he was an editor for the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. He received a B.A., cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Rudolph previously served as an adjunct faculty member at Temple University Beasley School of Law. He is also a member of the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel. Furthermore, Mr. Rudolph worked on the development committee for one of the summer camps supported by the Union for Reform Judaism, and has worked with Chapel Haven, an organization that supports young adults with developmental disabilities, and their families.

Mr. Kadlec received his J.D. from Temple University School of Law. He received a B.S. in Finance from the University of Delaware. Mr. Kadlec is also a member of the Pension Committee for the Philadelphia Bar Association.