CLEVELAND - December 15, 2011 - Thompson Hine LLP, a leading national law firm, announced today that it has elected Deborah Z. Read as its managing partner. Read will succeed David J. Hooker on May 1, 2012. Hooker, who has served in the role since 1997, will continue to be an active partner in the firm.
Read has been an integral part of building the firm and setting its strategic priorities. As managing partner she will draw upon her leadership experience within the firm as a member of its Executive Committee for the last 11 years. For the past six years, she has served as Thompson Hine's firmwide hiring partner, a role in which she oversaw all group and individual lawyer hiring and created a unique hiring and integration program. As a result of these efforts, the firm was listed as one of the top four firms with fewer than 500 lawyers for lateral partner satisfaction and integration in a survey conducted by leading consulting group Major, Lindsey & Africa. During Read's tenure as hiring partner, the firm's lateral partner program increased in size by 49 percent.
"Debbie has outstanding credentials as both a lawyer and a leader of the firm, having served in many leadership roles at Thompson Hine. Her success as our firmwide hiring partner has enabled her to engage our laterals, help grow our practice areas and understand our clients needs. She has played a vital role in our nationally recognized Women's Initiative. She excels at client service, and she will help continue our firm's focus on delivering excellent service to our clients," said Hooker. "Debbie's vision and experience make her a fantastic choice for managing partner."
Read's management experience spans all areas of the firm. She served as chair of the firm's Tax, Benefits and Planning practice and its Lawyer Personnel Committee, a firmwide committee then responsible for compensation and career development for all non-partner lawyers. She worked to ensure implementation of the firm's first parental leave policy, which is non-gender-specific, and in the 1990s, when technology supporting offsite work was less prevalent, she established an onsite Saturday childcare program for firm lawyers and staff. She was also involved in the formation of Thompson Hine's Spotlight on Women® program, the firms award-winning national women's initiative.
"It's an honor to take on the role of managing partner. We have a very talented group of lawyers with whom I am privileged to work. I look forward to building on the firms strong foundation of client service and developing ways that we can continue to innovate how we deliver our services to provide the maximum value for our clients," said Read. "Thompson Hine is an excellent firm with a long history, and we will continue to add lawyers that complement our existing expertise and enhance our geographic presence."
Read is the recipient of a number of prestigious awards, including the 2010 Northeast Ohio ATHENA award, presented annually by ATHENA International to people who assist women in realizing their leadership potential, show excellence in their business or profession, and have devoted time and energy to their communities. She is also the recipient of the 2006 YWCA Career Women of Achievement award, the 2006 Rainmakers Award (Northern Ohio Live), the 2001 Kaleidoscope Magazine Woman Who Gives Back award and the 1988 United Way Volunteer of the Year award.
Read focuses her legal practice on corporate structure and restructuring for nonprofit organizations, and tax and corporate planning for nonprofit organizations, foundations and health care organizations. She advises leading foundations and nonprofit organizations, including The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc., The Cleveland Foundation, and many operating charities, corporate and family foundations, and other nonprofit organizations. Read also serves as a volunteer adviser to a variety of charities and organizations that make up Business Volunteers Unlimited, providing them with guidance and evaluation of their legal issues.
Read's community volunteer activities have been longstanding and significant. In addition to an extensive history of leadership service with United Way Services, she currently serves on its board of directors and its Executive and Nominating Committees. Read also serves as a board member and officer for the Martha Holden Jennings Foundation, which supports K through 12 education in Ohio. She is a trustee and finance committee member of Cleveland's Playhouse Square Foundation and a former chair of the Health and Caring for All Vision Council, a public-private partnership that sponsored health care programs in Greater Cleveland.
Read is a member of The 50 Club of Cleveland and In Counsel With Women. She is a graduate of Leadership Cleveland's Class of 1999. A member of the American Bar Association Tax Law Section and District of Columbia Bar Association, Read is listed in The Best Lawyers in America.
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About Thompson Hine LLP
Established in 1911, Thompson Hine is a business law firm dedicated to providing superior client service. The firm has been recognized for ten consecutive years as a top law firm in the country for client service excellence in The BTI Client Service A-Team: Survey of Law Firm Client Service Performance. With offices in Atlanta, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Dayton, New York and Washington, D.C., Thompson Hine serves premier businesses worldwide.