James Burns to assume managing partner role at Genova Burns; Angelo Genova to remain as chairman

Co-founder James Burns will assume the role of managing partner of Genova Burns, succeeding co-founder Angelo Genova, who will continue in his role as chairman, the Newark-based firm announced Tuesday morning.

The change in roles is part of an overall restructuring at the firm, which will set the stage for the firm’s transition and succession to next-level partners in the management and trajectory of the firm, the co-founders said.

Additional changes include Partners Rebecca Moll Freed and Rajiv Parikh being elevated to top leadership roles on the firm’s Management Committee, while Partners Dina Mastellone and Jennifer Mazawey will be added to the Management Committee.

Burns, who has been integral to the firm’s leadership from its inception, will now turn his focus to the day-to-day management of the firm.

“I am looking forward to leading our firm into the next chapter of our growth, specifically the prospect of implementing forward-thinking innovations in practice management and related initiatives, with the goal of propelling the firm towards even greater profitability and success of this last year, benefitted of course by the stellar performance and the sound financial footing we have experienced under Angelo’ s leadership,” he said.

“We are looking forward to ushering in a new era of firm management, while continuing under the steady guide of Angelo’s strategic leadership and client development initiatives.”

Burns said the firm’s commitment to diversity is evident in the new management structure — and that the firm is committed to identifying and developing diverse leaders as part of its succession and continuity planning.

The firm looks forward to adopting and enacting measures shifting its management to the next generation of leaders in the firm, he said.

Moll Freed, who leads the firm’s Corporate Political Activity and Energy practices, is heavily involved with her community, having multiple roles on boards and nonprofits.

Moll Freed has been recognized by many outside groups not only for her achievements, but also for helping create opportunities for other women in the legal profession and beyond. She said she hopes her fresh approach to management will invigorate a newer generation of attorneys.

“I am looking forward to stepping into this role in the firm that I have called home for almost two decades,” she said. “Genova Burns has always helped me cultivate my professional areas of interest and this step continues down the path.”

Parikh also is widely known and lauded for his work. Parikh assumes a leadership role on the heels of being recognized by the South Asian Bar Association as Lawyer of the Year.

Parikh, who has served as general counsel to the New Jersey Democratic Party and numerous public officials and political figures for the last six years, has a reputation for having his finger on the pulse of the state and the inner workings of the legal community.

“Having spent the predominance of my legal career with the firm, I am eager to join my colleagues in leading Genova Burns into a new chapter,” he said.