Human Resources and Law

Law firm elects managing partner for Grand Rapids

July 25, 2018
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Robert Stead
Robert Stead. Courtesy Barnes & Thornburg

A local law office has a new leader.

Robert Stead was named the managing partner of Barnes & Thornburg’s Grand Rapids office, effective July 1.

Stead was selected by his fellow partners from the firm’s 14 offices throughout the country.

He succeeds Robert Sikkel, who is a 30-year veteran in labor and employment law. Sikkel will continue to represent and counsel employers on workforces and business operations at the Grand Rapids office.

“Bob Sikkel exemplifies firm stewardship and was a recognized leader of this office even before he took this post,” Stead said. “My goal is to maintain our upward trajectory, where we’re drawing the best legal talent in western Michigan, who aspire to serve industry-leading clients with a value-focused model.”

As managing partner in Grand Rapids, Stead will be accountable for the growth and performance of the office, which has 28 attorneys. He will also represent the Grand Rapids office on Barnes & Thornburg's management committee.

Stead's background

Stead is a partner in the firm’s corporate law practice and co-chairs its agriculture and food practice.

He will continue to focus his practice on mergers and acquisitions, financial transactions and tax-related matters. He represents buyers and sellers in mergers, acquisitions and disposition transactions.

Stead is a member of the American Bar Association, where he serves on the Committee on S Corporations and Committee on Closely Held Businesses in the taxation section, as well as the Committee on Negotiated Acquisitions in the business law section. He is a also member of the State Bar of Michigan’s taxation section and the Grand Rapids Bar Association.

He is a 1980 graduate of the University of Michigan with a degree in business administration. He received a J.D. from Wayne State University in 1984 and an LL.M in taxation from the New York University School of Law in 1986.

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