Reed Smith today welcomes a further addition to its expanding Silicon Valley office: longtime Palo Alto insider George A. Willman, who joins the firm as a partner in its Corporate & Securities Group.

Mr. Willman, who is a former software and telecommunications engineer, represents some of the Valley’s biggest and newest companies in technology transactions, patents and intellectual property counseling. Willman also brings years of experience in cleantech and renewable energy to Reed Smith’s 150-plus attorney global Energy & Natural Resources practice.

“George’s skill set is in high demand,” says Reed Smith’s Silicon Valley office managing partner, Catharina Min. “His international technology transactions practice is a fundamental ‘building block’ for our team, and we welcome the opportunity to work with him to further expand and enhance our Valley presence.”

Mr. Willman joins Reed Smith from the Palo Alto office of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, where he handled licensing, development, service, distribution, manufacturing, electronic commerce and corporate partnering agreements. He has counseled on IP issues raised by major mergers and acquisitions and IPOs. Willman is also a registered patent attorney, and he has assisted clients in obtaining patents in addition to counseling on infringement avoidance, strategic patenting, and developing U.S. and international patent portfolios.

“We expect George to make a significant contribution to the work we’re doing for our Valley clients,” said Paul Jaskot, head of the firm’s Corporate & Securities practice. “As an engineer, George speaks the language of today’s technology innovators—likewise, he also works with, and understands the DNA of entrepreneurs and angel investors, because he is one himself.”

Prior to his legal career, Willman worked as a software and telecommunications engineer for ROLM, IBM and Siemens in Silicon Valley and Munich, Germany. Willman is the founder of the Berkeley Angel Network, a group of angel investors who are alumni, faculty and former faculty of the University of California, Berkeley, which encourages and seeds start-ups.

“As my technology practice has diversified and become international in scope, I’m excited about bringing my clients onto a truly global platform,” says Mr. Willman. “I was especially attracted to Reed Smith’s focus on cross-border work in and out of its Valley office; the firm is perfectly positioned to be one of the region’s leaders.”

Mr. Willman joins other recent additions in Palo Alto, who specialize in working with technology companies with a global reach, such as Bob Stefanski, who was formerly TIBCO Software’s general counsel and a member of its founding management team; China and regional transactional specialist, Judy Deng; and Rick Horning, who joined the office from Dentons this fall.

Mr. Willman has deep ties to the Valley and Bay Area business communities, and he is an active member of the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Additionally, Willman also serves as a mentor at the Lester Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at UC Berkeley, which honored him in 2010 as a Richard H. Holton Teaching Fellow.

Mr. Willman received his J.D., cum laude, from Georgetown University Law Center, and he also holds a M.B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business, and a B.S. in Computer Systems Engineering from Stanford University.

In addition to English, Mr. Willman is fluent in German, and he holds a Certificat de Français Scientifique et Technique.


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