Type: News
Date: 11/16/2011

Chester Willcox & Saxbe to Merge with Taft - Taft Continues Strategic Regional Expansion

The regional law firm Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP announced today that it will strengthen its client service capacities in Columbus by merging with Chester Willcox & Saxbe, LLP at the start of the year.  The firms will operate under the Taft name.   

The merger, approved by partnerships of both firms and effective January 2, 2012, will bring the total number of Columbus-based Taft attorneys to 42.  Post merger, Taft will have more than 330 attorneys focused in nearly 70 practice areas across virtually every industry.   Taft and Chester Willcox & Saxbe, founded in 1885 and 1884 respectively, have storied histories.

The Taft firm’s history includes two U.S. Senators, a U.S. Secretary of Commerce and the principal author of the federal Taft Hartley Act.  Chester Willcox & Saxbe partners have included Jack Chester, Special Counsel to President Richard Nixon during the Watergate investigation, and Bill Saxbe, who served as a U.S. Senator from Ohio, U.S. Attorney General and U.S. Ambassador to India. 

"We are thrilled to have the lawyers and staff of Chester Willcox & Saxbe join Taft.  The business and cultural fit is perfect for us and is expected to accelerate our continued growth in Columbus, a key market for Taft.  In addition to outstanding litigation, business, labor & employment and private client practices, Chester Willcox & Saxbe will provide an experienced, sophisticated energy practice that is already very active and expected to grow," said Thomas Terp, Taft's Chairman and Managing Partner.
Leading the Columbus office as Co-Partners-In-Charge will be David Johnson and Charles R. “Rocky” Saxbe.  Johnson has led Taft’s Columbus office since 1983 as Partner-In-Charge, and Saxbe currently serves as Managing Partner of Chester Willcox & Saxbe.   

“With this merger, we become part of a strong regional firm with seven offices in four states.  It's not just about size; the merger gives us greater resources and more tools to better serve our clients.  Two historic Ohio firms are now joining together to continue their traditions of service to clients and our community," Saxbe said. 

Taft’s merger with Chester Willcox & Saxbe strengthens its presence in Ohio’s capital city and is consistent with the firm’s mission to be one of the preeminent law firms in the country.  

"We already have many friends among the lawyers of Chester Willcox & Saxbe, and look forward to being professional colleagues.  Our firms share important core values:  service to our clients and our communities as a first principle; a team approach to meeting client needs; and collegiality and mutual respect within the firm.  All that we have in common has created honest excitement about practicing law together in the future," Johnson said. 

Continued Growth
As client needs continue to grow more complex and time sensitive, Taft’s expansion strategy reflects the increasing importance of meeting those needs with a deep, cost-effective, full-service platform.   As Taft continues to focus its efforts toward this end, Chester Willcox & Saxbe coincidentally embarked upon a strategic planning process during late spring that also emphasized growth to better serve its clients.  When the two firms entered into merger discussions this summer, there was a quick realization that both firms would be stronger together.  

In 2008, Taft merged with Sommer Barnard in Indianapolis, Ind., and Kahn Kleinman in Cleveland, Ohio.  In addition to offices throughout Ohio and Indiana, Taft has offices in northern Kentucky and Phoenix, Ariz.  

About Taft
Taft is a regional law firm with seven offices in four states:  Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus and Dayton, Ohio; Indianapolis, Indiana; Northern Kentucky; and Phoenix, Arizona. The firm practices across a wide range of industries, in virtually every area of law, including: Business and Finance; Litigation; Labor and Employment; Intellectual Property; Business Restructuring; Bankruptcy and Creditors' Rights; Environmental; Health and Life Sciences; Private Client Services; Real Estate; and Tax law.

With a proven track record of experience since 1885, the firm offers breadth and depth of legal expertise coupled with a trusted business perspective, helping its clients, big and small, regionally, nationally and internationally, in reaching their goals. For more information, visit www.taftlaw.com.

About Chester Willcox & Saxbe
Established in 1884, Chester Willcox & Saxbe, LLP is a full-service Columbus law firm with a business orientation designed to meet the needs of its corporate and individual clients, regardless of size.   The firm’s practice areas include litigation and appeals, associations, business and corporate law, campaign and election law, construction law, employment and labor law, entertainment law, environmental law, estate planning, family business law, probate law, family law, government, real estate and land use, regulated industries, municipal law, taxation, trademark and university and college law. http://www.cwslaw.com

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