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Dinsmore Adds Three Am Law 100 Attorneys to San Diego Office

July 13, 2017
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP continued the expansion of its San Diego office with the hiring of three high-profile attorneys from Ballard Spahr LLP. Partners Mikel Bistrow and Christopher Celentino have joined Dinsmore’s business restructuring practice along with of counsel retired Judge Peter Bowie.

The addition of Bistrow, Celentino and Bowie has increased the size of Dinsmore’s San Diego office from four attorneys to 13 in just two years.

“Mikel, Chris and Judge Bowie are all highly regarded in their field and bring extensive experience to our firm,” said Joe Leventhal, San Diego office managing partner. “Our growth reflects client demand for top-level legal work and excellent client service at reasonable rates. This is an exciting time for our office.”

Dinsmore’s new attorneys consistently rank at the top of their profession for their work in bankruptcy, business reorganizations and financial transactions. Celentino, who was the managing partner of Ballard Spahr’s San Diego office, said joining Dinsmore was a natural fit.

“Dinsmore’s strong leadership, coupled with its commitment to client service and the sense of camaraderie among the firm’s attorneys made it the perfect fit for us,” Celentino said. “We hope to be a catalyst for continued growth in the Southern California market.”

Celentino, Bistrow and Bowie’s vast experience in bankruptcy and insolvency restructuring and litigation, as well as Bistrow’s expertise in finance and UCC matters, adds additional components to the firm’s growing practice areas in San Diego, which also include IP opinion and prosecution, IP licensing and enforcement, employment and commercial litigation, among others.

“Dinsmore is committed to evolving and adding more services to meet the ever-growing needs of our clients,” said Managing Partner and Chairman George Vincent. “I’m proud that in such a short time our San Diego office has grown to the point where it’s attracting the likes of sought-after attorneys like Chris, Mikel and Judge Bowie. I believe that speaks volumes about the work we are doing.”

Dinsmore & Shohl LLP is one of the largest national firms with a presence in San Diego and was recently ranked 129 on the American Lawyer 200 list of top grossing firms in the U.S.

Mikel R. Bistrow focuses on commercial finance and lending, real and personal property secured transactions, Uniform Commercial Code, creditors’ collection and related remedies, bankruptcy, insolvency, and workouts. In her finance practice, Bistrow represents lenders and borrowers in documenting and negotiating real and personal property loans and secured transactions, including revolving lines of credit, asset-based loans, securitized credits, and construction financing. Bistrow is a nationally known speaker on bankruptcy, finance and UCC Article 9 issues. She is a founding member of the San Diego Bankruptcy Forum and is certified in business bankruptcy law by the American Board of Certification. Bistrow earned her J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.

Christopher Celentino focuses his practice in the areas of creditors’ rights, fiduciary services litigation, business reorganization and workouts, and insolvency and bankruptcy law. Celentino's bankruptcy practice emphasizes representation of creditors in chapter 7, 11 and 13 cases, as well as representation of court-appointed trustees in chapter 7 and chapter 11 cases. Celentino has a significant knowledge in mechanic's lien law and construction litigation matters, as well as family law and related dissolution matters. His creditors’ rights practice emphasizes representing lenders and borrowers in workout and restructuring of commercial loans, secured transactions, and lease transactions, and pursuit of creditors’ remedies in commercial litigation matters. Mr. Celentino is certified as a business bankruptcy specialist by the American Board of Certification and is a past president of the California Bankruptcy Forum, the leading professional organization for Bankruptcy Lawyers in the State of California. Celentino earned his J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center.

Peter W. Bowie, former Chief Judge of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of California, spent 27 years on the bench. A skilled mediator, Judge Bowie has successfully resolved several vigorously contested, large fee application disputes, and other important cases. Before joining the bench, he served in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of California for 14 years, the last six as Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney, overseeing operations of the criminal and civil divisions. Earlier in his career, he served as a trial attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice, where he was hired through the Department’s prestigious Honors Program. Judge Bowie served on the Review Department of the State Bar Court concerned with attorney discipline, and in 1995 he was appointed by U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist to the Codes of Conduct Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States.