PERSONNEL FILE: Steptoe & Johnson opens first Pennsylvania office

By The West Virginia Record | Sep 1, 2010

BRIDGEPORT -- The law firm of Steptoe & Johnson officially has acquired the energy practice group of the western Pennsylvania firm of Culbertson, Weiss, Schetroma and Schug, P.C. (CWSS), opening its first Pennsylvania office and its ninth regional office.

The new office will facilitate the continued provision of legal services to Steptoe & Johnson's regional Appalachian clients. The firm also has six offices in West Virginia, and one each in Ohio and Kentucky. Plans to open a second Pennsylvania office in Southpointe (Canonsburg) later this year already are underway.

With the addition of the CWSS energy practice group, Steptoe & Johnson's Energy Team will field approximately 190 attorneys and paraprofessionals who will provide legal services to Appalachian energy industry clients throughout the nation. The firm's team of energy practitioners focuses on services to the energy sector including coal, oil and gas and renewables. Its attorneys regularly assist clients with acquisitions and divestitures, financing, due diligence reviews, permitting, title evaluation, litigation, public utility law, FERC regulatory matters, mediation and arbitration, land use challenges, and midstream legal issues.

"Establishing a physical presence in Pennsylvania was a natural decision for our firm as our Energy Team comprises one of the largest and most diverse practices in the region," stated Susan Brewer, CEO of Steptoe & Johnson.

Sharon Flanery, Steptoe & Johnson's Energy Team chair commented, "Our Energy Team currently provides legal services throughout the Appalachian Basin, including in the Marcellus shale, so our physical expansion into Pennsylvania and the addition of Managing Member Russ Schetroma and the other members of his team strengthens our ability to provide timely and cost effective legal services on target with our client's strategic objectives."

Steptoe & Johnson's energy group assists clients in competitive wholesale and retail markets to develop, operate, finance, sell, or acquire energy assets to meet their energy needs. Firm attorneys have worked in government, assisted in structuring and implementing the regulations governing competitive markets, and worked as in-house counsel for energy companies. As a result, the group brings a comprehensive perspective to complex problems and efficiently crafts value-added solutions for clients. With nearly 100 years of hands-on involvement in the energy industry, Steptoe & Johnson has acquired deep experience and valuable industry knowledge. Attorneys routinely help clients overcome challenges to major national energy initiatives and are highly skilled in transactions, regulatory work, litigation, and the environmental aspects of energy law.

Steptoe & Johnson is a regional, business-focused firm with particular strengths in energy, labor, employment and litigation. It comprises over 200 lawyers resident in nine locations throughout West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky and Pennsylvania. For more information, visit the firm's Web site at

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