Ellen Brotman is a Member of Griesing Law, LLC and Chair of the Firm’s White Collar Crime and Criminal Investigation practice group.
What do you focus on?
My practice focuses primarily on government investigations and white collar criminal defense and representation of attorneys before the Disciplinary Board of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
What do you see on the horizon?
Last year, the Department of Justice issued a Memorandum to United States Attorneys’ Offices mandating an emphasis on the prosecution of individual corporate officers and employees involved in corporate wrongdoing. This has shifted the landscape when corporations are being investigated for either misfeasance or malfeasance. Among other things, it has created a need for corporations to hire separate counsel for individuals earlier in the investigation. It has also created a need to be more cautious in the conduct of internal investigations. While this potentially could mean more cost for in-house counsel, it also provides opportunities to do more focused and productive investigations with the use of experienced boutique counsel representing individuals earlier in the process.
Ellen has defended a wide variety of criminal cases, including political and public corruption, corporate securities fraud, tax fraud, money laundering, currency structuring and other white collar crimes involving complex trial, sentencing and appellate issues. She is a Certified Compliance and Ethics Professional (CCEP), having received certification from the Society of Corporate Compliance & Ethics (SCCE) Academy in September 2010.
Prior to joining the Firm, Ellen was a partner at both Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP and Carroll & Brotman, where she defended criminal cases in federal courts and represented professionals in state disciplinary proceedings. From 1995 to 1998, as an assistant federal defender with the Defender Association of Philadelphia, Ellen provided criminal defense for indigent clients in federal court at trial and appellate levels. Before coming to Philadelphia, she served as a law clerk to Hon. Lee P. Gagliardi, United States District Judge, Southern District of New York.
Ellen is a sought after and frequent speaker on the subjects of criminal defense and professional responsibility related matters. She also serves on the board of directors of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, is on the Executive Committee of the Federal Bar Association’s Criminal Law Committee, and is a member of the ABA’s Criminal Justice Section, Long Range Planning Committee, and a co-chair of the ABA’s Criminal Justice Section Defense Function Sub-Committee. Ellen has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America and Pennsylvania SuperLawyers and been acknowledged on The Legal Intelligencer’s Women of the Year. Ellen graduated magna cum laude from the University of Albany and received her juris doctor from Albany Law School at Union University where she served as note and comment editor of the Albany Law Review.
Ellen is also on the Board of Directors of the People’s Emergency Center, a non-profit agency that assists homeless women, teen girls and their children in Pennsylvania achieve financial independence through a holistic approach of education, housing, and community support.