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March 1, 2018

Hartford, CT (March 1, 2018)…Murtha Cullina LLP is pleased to announce that Partners Heather O. Berchem, Anthony P. Gangemi, Robert E. Kaelin, Bruce L. McDermott, Patricia E. Reilly, Joseph B. Schwartz and Ryan M. Suerth have been named James W. Cooper Fellows of the Connecticut Bar Foundation.

The Connecticut Bar Foundation James W. Cooper Fellows Program was established to honor the leading members of the legal community in Connecticut, to promote a better understanding of the legal profession and the judicial system, and to explore ways to improve the State’s administration of justice. Membership in the Fellows is by invitation only. 

Heather O. Berchem is the Chair of the Firm’s Long Term Care Practice Group. She advises nursing homes, assisted living communities, CCRCs, hospitals, and home health care and hospice agencies on a wide range of regulatory, compliance, risk management and reimbursement issues. Heather serves as counsel to the Connecticut Association of Health Care Facilities and the Connecticut Assisted Living Association. Heather received her B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley and her law degree from Boston University School of Law.

Anthony P. Gangemi is the Chair of the Firm’s Intellectual Property Practice Group.  Tony's practice includes counseling on many aspects of IP, including IP licensing, portfolio development and management, IP commercialization, and due diligence relating to client sales and acquisitions.  He counsels clients on these aspects in all areas of IP including patent, trademark, copyright, and trade secrets matters.  He received his B.S. and M.S. degrees from Colorado School of Mines and his J.D. and LL.M from Franklin Pierce Law Center. 

Robert E. Kaelin is the Chair of the Firm’s Bankruptcy & Creditors’ Rights Practice Group and the Co-Chair of the Community Banking Practice Group.  Bob represents clients in the areas of commercial litigation and bankruptcy. Bob’s bankruptcy practice includes representing Creditors Committees in chapter 11 proceedings in Connecticut as well as creditors in chapter 7 or 11 proceedings around the country.  He received his B.A. from Miami University and his J.D. from Duke University School of Law. 

Bruce L. McDermott is the Chair of the Firm’s Renewable Energy Practice Group. His practice includes energy, public utility, environmental and infrastructure law including litigation, transactional and regulatory representation and counseling.  He received his B.A. from Lafayette College, his J.D. from Case Western Reserve University and his LL.M from Pace University School of Law. 

Patricia E. Reilly is the Chair of the Firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Group.  She is an experienced litigator who represents clients in a wide range of cases including employment discrimination and related torts, non-compete and restrictive covenants, wage and hour, breach of contract, unfair trade practices, and business disputes. In addition to maintaining a thriving litigation practice, Tricia counsels clients on a variety of employment-related issues.

Joseph B. Schwartz is Co-Chair of the Firm’s Municipal Practice Group. He represents clients in the areas of municipal and land use litigation, general commercial litigation and commercial foreclosure matters. Joe received his B.A. from George Washington University and his J.D. from the University of Connecticut Law School. 

Ryan M. Suerth is a member of the Litigation Department and the Insurance Recovery and Risk Management Practice Groups. He handles insurance claim disputes in the Northeast, and throughout the country.  Ryan received his B.A. from Pepperdine University, his M.B.A from the University of Connecticut and his J.D. from Southwestern Law School. 

About Murtha Cullina LLP

With more than 105 attorneys in six offices throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts and New York, Murtha Cullina LLP offers a full range of legal services to meet the local, regional and national needs of our clients. Our practice encompasses litigation, regulatory and transactional representation of businesses, governmental units, non-profit organizations and individuals. Core practice areas include litigation, insurance recovery, labor and employment, bankruptcy and creditors’ rights, construction, energy, health care, trusts and estates, affordable housing, real estate, land use and retail and hospitality. 

Murtha Cullina is the exclusive member firm in Connecticut for Lex Mundi – the world’s leading network of independent law firms with in-depth experience in 100+ countries worldwide; and the exclusive Connecticut member firm of State Law Resources, an international network of independent law firms. For more information, visit

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