THE FIRM This large, well-rounded firm excels in the real estate arena and maintains a strong presence in both Kansas City and St. Louis. It offers a depth of resources in lending, leasing and tax credit work and is also highly sought for its expertise in corporate portfolio management and private partnership development. The group services a wide range of clients in various industries, working particularly closely with agricultural businesses. It recently advised a developer on a complex revitalization of a number of buildings, involving state revenue bonds and tax credit components.
Sources say: "A first-class firm which provides advice and work product that is on a par, and often exceeds, that of the 'top' law firms in the country. They provide fast, professional service at a great price. I am consistently impressed with this firm and recommend them to everyone I can."
KEY INDIVIDUALS Cochair David Fenley is highly knowledgeable and experienced in commercial development projects and real estate financing. He is widely regarded as "a very capable and active player locally" and has been involved in several recent high-profile development projects in Kansas City.
The "talented and smart up-and-comer" John Crossley stands out for development matters, purchase and sale transactional work, as well as leasing negotiations. He took the lead advising Cerner on land purchase contracts and development agreements regarding its proposed bioresearch facility development in Kansas.
St. Louis-based Gregory Smith is a leading real estate lawyer in Missouri for private partnerships, redevelopment projects and government relations. "I have been impressed by his 'off the top of his head' knowledge and effectiveness," one client asserted. He has recently been named managing partner of the firm.
John McNearney focuses on advising various financial institutions and lenders on commercial real estate transactions and loans. He is acclaimed as a "very detailed and knowledgeable lawyer who understands the business."
Craig Biesterfeld is noted for his expertise in the commercial development area where he focuses particularly on leasing, zoning and land use, as well as acquisition and financing. He recently advised a couple of leading clients on redevelopment negotiations.
The highly-regarded Gary Feder advises on zoning work and comes particularly recommended for his work on public and private partnership matters.
Richard Feldman is the firm's primary corporate real estate attorney, assisting corporates on property portfolio management. In addition, he is also highly sought for assistance with construction projects and real estate developments.
Kathleen Mueller has a well-rounded real estate practice, regularly handling property-related acquisitions, dispositions, development and financing for corporates, developers and banks.
Melissa Smith-Groff is a very active and competent player in the St. Louis corporate real estate market. She advises clients on the gamut of real estate matters, including acquisition and sale, development, leasing and finance, as well as corporate portfolio management. Highlights include handling Covidien's nationwide property portfolio and advising on all its real estate needs throughout the country.
David Linenbroker is best known for his real estate development-related work and he is praised by sources for his meticulousness and dedication. "He is extremely knowledgeable about real estate, provides top-notch advice and is a joy to work with," one client enthused. He is noted for his recent work advising the Saint Louis Art Museum on all aspects of its Forest Park facilities expansion project, involving contracts, negotiations and financing.