News Releases

Baker Botts Elects 12-Member Partnership Class


HOUSTON, February 27, 2023 – Baker Botts, L.L.P., a leading international energy, technology and life sciences law firm, today announced the promotion of 12 lawyers to partner, effective March 1, 2023.

“Our newest partners reflect the depth of our talent and have consistently demonstrated their ability to be future owners and leaders of the firm, through their exemplary client service,” said John Martin, Managing Partner of Baker Botts. “This diverse group also highlights our commitment to the areas in which we have truly differentiated strengths.”

The members of the firm’s newest partnership class are listed below, with brief biographies that follow.

  • Adam Dawson, Litigation, Brussels
  • Sarah Dodson, Corporate, Dallas
  • Ben Gonsoulin, Litigation, Houston
  • Alex Kerr, Global Projects, London
  • Caitlin Lawrence, Corporate, Houston
  • Tommy Martin, Intellectual Property, Washington, D.C.
  • Morgan Mayne, Intellectual Property, Dallas
  • John Papaspanos, Global Projects, New York
  • Mark Speegle, Intellectual Property, Austin
  • Maggie Welsh, Intellectual Property, New York
  • Christopher Wilson, Litigation, Washington, D.C.
  • Jamie Yarbrough, Corporate, Houston

Adam Dawson, Litigation, Brussels

Adam has extensive experience in merger control and foreign investment screening. He regularly coordinates the assessment of merger and FDI filings and has represented numerous clients in merger investigations on a global basis, including in complex deals involving the negotiation of remedies with various competition authorities.

Adam has assisted many clients in competition law complaints and investigations by the European Commission. He frequently advises companies on the merits of potential Article 102 TFEU complaints, including in the technology sector, where he counsels several online platforms. Adam is also regularly called upon to guide clients on their potential exposure under Article 101 TFEU. He has helped develop effective compliance programs and frequently advises companies on their distribution and pricing policies. 

Adam has experience in a broad range of industries, including digital platforms, human and animal health, chemicals, energy, heavy machinery, packaging and air transport.

Sarah Dodson, Corporate, Dallas

Sarah has a broad corporate practice, representing public and private clients in a wide range of M&A, capital markets, private equity and complex commercial transactions. Her practice is focused on the technology, media and energy sectors, including renewables, infrastructure and the energy transition.

Sarah regularly advises management teams and private equity funds in complex mergers, acquisitions and dispositions, private equity investments and strategic business transactions, including structuring and advising on partnerships, joint ventures and other strategic collaborations. Sarah also represents issuers in public offerings and private placements of equity and debt securities, including initial public offerings, follow-on and secondary offerings and private placements. She also has significant experience advising clients on general corporate matters, including corporate governance practices and SEC and stock exchange reporting and disclosure requirements.

Ben Gonsoulin, Litigation, Houston

Ben represents clients in high-stakes, complex litigation and focuses his practice on energy, environmental, mass action, and real estate matters.

Ben has worked with a broad range of clients in the energy, chemical, power, and real estate industries in disputes involving industrial accidents and crises, environmental contamination claims, toxic tort claims, contractual claims, fraud claims, and significant personal injury, property damage, and wrongful death claims. Ben has practiced in venues across the country, representing clients in federal and state court and in arbitration proceedings. He routinely advises clients in all stages of litigation, guiding them through pre-litigation claim assessment and analysis, strategically navigating pre-trial discovery and motion practice, and advocating for his clients at trial and on appeal.

Alex Kerr, Global Projects, London

Alex’s practice is focused on energy project development and commodity trading. On the project development side, Alex advises both governments and sponsors on LNG, hydrogen and cross-border pipeline projects. Currently, Alex is advising the Government of Tanzania and Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation on the planned multi-train onshore LNG liquefaction project to be developed in the south of Tanzania.

In terms of commodity trading, Alex advises clients on agreements for the sale and purchase of LNG, pipeline gas and hydrogen. He has in-depth experience of drafting and negotiating long-term sale and purchase agreements, master sales agreements, and short-term / spot trades.

Alex also has in-house experience, having been seconded to several clients prior to joining Baker Botts, including the upstream legal department of ExxonMobil. In 2021 and 2022, Alex was named a "Rising Star" in Oil & Gas by The Legal 500 UK.

Caitlin Lawrence, Corporate, Houston

Caitlin advises publicly and privately held corporate borrowers and issuers, private equity funds, credit funds, mezzanine funds and commercial banks in commercial lending, direct lending and other complex financial transactions. Her experience includes syndicated loans, reserve-based and asset-based facilities, sustainability-linked facilities, acquisition financings, mezzanine facilities, direct lending, restructurings and other structured financings.

She represents clients in a variety of industries, including energy, manufacturing, media and infrastructure. Caitlin's energy industry experience includes matters involving oil and gas exploration and production, midstream, oilfield services, distribution, storage and transportation, clean energy, sustainability and retail.

Tommy Martin, Intellectual Property, Washington, D.C.

Tommy’s practice centers around complex patent and trade secret litigation before the International Trade Commission (ITC), U.S district courts, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. He represents clients in all phases of pre-trial, trial, post-trial and appeal, as well as before the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

He is a registered patent attorney who has counseled clients in all phases of patent prosecution, including post-grant prosecution before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). Tommy also counsels clients on patent portfolio development, management and enforcement. This includes counseling emerging tech companies at all stages of funding and development.

Tommy has a mechanical engineering degree, and prior to attending law school he worked as a mechanical engineer for the Norfolk Naval Shipyard. He served as a lead engineer on aircraft carrier overhaul projects with a focus on steam and hydraulic power in aircraft launch and recovery systems.

Morgan Mayne, Intellectual Property, Dallas

Morgan works on a range of intellectual property matters, with an emphasis on complex patent litigation. She has represented both patent owners and accused infringers in U.S. district courts across the country, including the popular Eastern and Western Districts of Texas, and before the ITC. Morgan’s litigation experience has involved a wide variety of technologies, including telecommunications, video technology, semiconductors, memory devices, network and software security, location technology, and flight control systems. She also has substantial experience litigating inter partes review proceedings before the PTAB and has had a high success rate in preventing institution for patent owners, and the institution of IPR on behalf of accused infringers.

In addition to patent litigation, Morgan has experience in patent prosecution matters relating to various technologies, including software, financial services, cryptocurrency, telecommunications, and semiconductor and other electronics hardware, as well as mechanical structures. She has a degree in electrical engineering.

John Papaspanos, Global Projects, New York

John focuses his practice on U.S. domestic and international project and other complex financing transactions across energy and infrastructure sectors, including significant experience with renewable and conventional energy project financings, equity (including tax equity) transactions, acquisition financings, and complex and novel commodities transactions for energy and infrastructure projects. 

He regularly represents private equity sponsors, developers, independent power producers, public and private companies, lenders, investment banks, financial institutions and equity investors on complex and novel project finance and other transactions, including a broad variety of renewable energy, conventional energy, commodities financing and infrastructure transactions.

He is a former Fulbright Scholar in Thessaloniki, Greece, who researched energy policy and geopolitics under the supervision of an energy expert for the European Commission.  He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce and the Hellenic Lawyers Association.

Mark Speegle, Intellectual Property, Austin

Mark is an experienced intellectual property litigator, experienced in all areas of litigation.  Mark has applied his technical background in physics to cases in a range of fields, including semiconductor devices, consumer and commercial electronics, unmanned aircraft, medical devices, mechanical appliances, backend sales software, and online commerce platforms.  He has worked on patent cases in courts across the country—from California to Texas to Massachusetts—and he has helped clients achieve successful results in jury trials, both as a plaintiff and as a defendant.

In addition to his deep litigation experience, Mark has helped clients of all sizes address IP needs out of court.  This includes helping early stage companies develop a beginning patent portfolio, helping mid-sized companies navigate complex IP risks in emerging markets, and helping large companies evaluate portfolio licenses to standard essential patents.

Maggie Welsh, Intellectual Property, New York

Maggie is an experienced patent litigator who represents clients in district courts, the PTAB and the ITC. With an engineering background, Maggie works with clients covering a broad range of technologies, including electronics, automotive, energy, semiconductors and medical devices. 

Maggie’s patent practice also includes patent prosecution and technology transactions, where she advises a range of companies from start-ups to multinational corporations. Maggie is currently co-chair of the Publication Committee for the New York Intellectual Property Law Association (NYIPLA). Most recently, Maggie assisted a global manufacturing company through a complex patent infringement case with several related inter partes reviews. 

Christopher Wilson, Litigation, Washington, D.C.

Christopher focuses on civil antitrust, intellectual property, and other complex commercial actions. He has extensive experience in representing litigants from complaint filing through trial, as well as in advising corporate clients on a variety of antitrust and compliance issues. He has represented and advised clients in a number of industries, including industrial manufacturing, telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, retail, and healthcare manufacturing.

Christopher has been a key member of legal teams for Fortune 500 clients defending against Sherman Act class action claims, including in cases that were granted favorable judgments at the motion to dismiss and summary judgment stages.

Jamie Yarbrough, Corporate, Houston

Jamie’s practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings, corporate governance, takeover defense and general corporate matters. He represents issuers, underwriters and selling shareholders in public offerings (including IPOs and shelf registrations), Rule 144A transactions, PIPE transactions and other private placements. He has assisted many clients in the analysis of their takeover defense planning and the consideration of "poison pill" rights plans. He also represents companies and investors in private equity transactions and special committees in related party transactions. In addition, he advises clients on securities compliance issues, including Exchange Act reporting.

Jamie advises clients in a variety of industries, including oil and gas exploration and production; oilfield services; offshore drilling; power and utilities; midstream and refining; chemicals; and software.

Baker Botts is an international law firm whose lawyers practice throughout a network of offices around the globe. Based on our experience and knowledge of our clients' industries, we are recognized as a leading firm in the energy, technology and life sciences sectors. Since 1840, we have provided creative and effective legal solutions for our clients while demonstrating an unrelenting commitment to excellence. For more information, please visit

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