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Mayer Brown strengthens Real Estate practice in New York with addition of partners Marc Shapiro and Jill Block

5 August 2014
Mayer Brown, a leading global law firm, announced today that Marc Shapiro and Jill Block have joined the firm as partners in the Real Estate practice in New York. Previously, Mr. Shapiro and Ms. Block were partners with Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman in New York.

“Marc and Jill have an excellent track record of representing lenders, investors and developers in sophisticated real estate transactions, particularly those related to real estate finance, debt restructuring and hospitality,” said Jeffrey Usow, co-leader of Mayer Brown’s global Real Estate practice. “They have a strong reputation in the global real estate community and will further enhance Mayer Brown’s ability to advise institutions, high net worth individuals and family offices from Europe, Asia, the Middle East and South America on making real estate investments in the New York market and across the US.”

Regarding their decision to join the firm, Mr. Shapiro said, “We were impressed by Mayer Brown’s strong real estate capabilities and cross-office, cross-practice integration. We are eager to leverage the firm’s collegial environment and global reach to better serve current and future clients.”

Ms. Block added, “Mayer Brown’s collaborative culture was a primary drawing card for us and we look forward to applying our experience in representing institutional lenders to contribute to the continued growth of the firm’s Real Estate practice.”

Richard Spehr, partner-in-charge of Mayer Brown’s New York office, said, “The arrival of Marc and Jill further strengthens and expands our real estate offerings in New York—a premier real estate market—and around the globe.”

Mr. Shapiro has represented clients in more than US $25 billion in financings and equity investments involving over 750 properties in 50 US states, the Caribbean, Canada, Latin America, Europe and Southeast Asia, including more than 350 hotel properties. He also has represented lenders and borrowers in more than 750 loan transactions and 200 debt restructuring transactions including structured asset dispositions, and sales and acquisitions of single asset and portfolio debt in the secondary market. Mr. Shapiro counsels owners, operators and lenders in complex purchase, sale and leasing transactions involving office, shopping center, industrial, multifamily and hospitality properties.

In 1993, Mr. Shapiro established the first securitized lending program to the hospitality industry through a US $2 billion commitment from a major Wall Street financial institution. He also has been actively involved in mezzanine lending since the earliest large mezzanine transactions of the 1990s. Mr. Shapiro earned a JD from Syracuse University College of Law and received a BA from New York University.

Ms. Block focuses her practice on representing institutional and private lenders, investors, developers and servicers in the acquisition, sale, financing and development of real estate. She has significant experience in financing hospitality properties, and has assisted several major Wall Street financial institutions in developing underwriting standards and practices for hospitality lending, including standardized documentation to facilitate securitization activities. Ms. Block served on the Document Task Force of the Commercial Mortgage Securities Association to help standardize industry documentation for securitized lending transactions. She has represented clients in over 350 hospitality transactions and over 750 commercial loan originations.

Ms. Block’s representative transactions include multi-state, multi-property portfolio financing, securitized mortgage loan origination, mezzanine financing, construction loan origination, loan participation and the sale and acquisition of commercial and hospitality properties. She earned a JD from Brooklyn Law School and received a BA from Clark University.

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