Ashley Dunning and Michael Toumanoff Join Public Pensions & Investments Group in California

Nossaman News Release

San Francisco and Los Angeles, CA  (January 6, 2015) – Nossaman LLP  is pleased to announce the addition of Ashley Dunning and Michael Toumanoff  to the Firm's Public Pensions and Investments Practice Group. Ms. Dunning will be based in the Firm's San Francisco office as a Partner and Co-Chair of the Public Pensions and Investments Group, and Mr. Toumanoff will be based in the Firm's Los Angeles office as Of Counsel. Both join from Manatt Phelps & Phillips.

Ms. Dunning has 17 years of experience representing trustees and public and private entities resolving complex disputes and advising on issues involving fiduciary obligations, governance, and California's public retirement, conflict of interest, open meetings, and public records laws. Over the course of her career, she has represented the majority of public retirement systems throughout California. Ms. Dunning is the immediate past Chair of the Fiduciary and Governance Section of the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA) and recently was elected to its Executive Board.

Mr. Toumanoff has 24 years of experience providing fiduciary advice to California public retirement systems. He has written and co-written formal opinions on numerous issues regarding California public pension systems, including, in 1993, the first comprehensive opinion on the then newly enacted Proposition 162 for the State Association of County Retirement Systems (SACRS). 

"We are excited to welcome Ashley and Michael to Nossaman," said Yuliya Oryol, Co-Chair  for the Public Pensions and Investments Group and Administrative Partner for the Firm's San Francisco office. "Their extensive experience and comprehensive knowledge of the public pension and investment landscape across California, coupled with their network of contacts in the state allow them to immediately add value for clients and enhance our robust Public Pensions and Investments Group. They are a fantastic addition to the practice and the Firm, and I look forward to working with them."

Nossaman's Public Pensions and Investments Group provides a full range of legal services and strategic advice to clients who manage or advise pension plans on their real estate or alternative investment portfolio, and its public clients include some of the highest capitalized city, county, and state public employee retirement funds in California. 

"Nossaman has an outstanding reputation in the marketplace and the Firm's platform will allow me to better serve my public pension clients while working with a deep, talented team of attorneys," said Ms. Dunning. "I am very pleased to be joining the Firm, and look forward to contributing to the continued success of the Group." 

In addition to serving on the Executive Board of NAPPA, Ms. Dunning is a member of the State Association of California Retirement Systems Program Committee and sits on the Board of Directors of the Habitot Children's Museum in Berkeley, California. She is a regular speaker at public pension and investment conferences around the country, and has taught the "Ethics for Public Officials" seminar for several years at the Principles of Pension Management for Trustees conference, which is annually sponsored by the California Association of Public Retirement Systems. She earned her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of Law and her B.A, cum laude, from Yale University.

"Nossaman does exceptional work for its public pension clients," added Mr. Toumanoff. "This is a great opportunity, and I am thrilled to be joining the Firm."  

Mr. Toumanoff has served as Lead Chair of the Fiduciary and Plan Governance Section of NAPPA, as a member of its Executive Board, and is currently a member of the Emeritus Board. Over the course of his career he has spoken before SACRS, the California Association of Public Retirement Systems and the Institutional Investor Institute on various issues, including Proposition 162, system funding and conflicts of interest. He holds a J.D. from the University of California Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law and a B.A. from Harvard University.

The addition of Ms. Dunning and Mr. Toumanoff continues Nossaman's momentum in the national market. In September 2014, Artin Shaverdian joined the Firm's Los Angeles office as a partner in the Eminent Domain and Valuation Practice Group. Mr. Shaverdian has 12 years of experience as a litigator concentrating in the eminent domain/inverse condemnation, real estate, municipal, redevelopment and business law practice areas. He joined from Best Best & Krieger. In August 2014, Alex Jackins joined the Firm's Washington, DC, office as a partner in the Real Estate Practice Group. Mr. Jackins has 14 years of experience representing multinational corporations, domestic businesses, real estate investors, developers, landlords and tenants in the sale, acquisition, development and leasing of commercial properties. He joined from Seyfarth Shaw LLP. 

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