Big Law Comes to Miami – Scores Grads and Faculty for Sports, Entertainment Law Group

Miami has been on the move as a global, emerging tech and financial hub, and this wave of growth has extended into the legal marketplace as powerhouse firms make their way to South Florida.
Big Law Comes to Miami – Scores Grads and Faculty for Sports, Entertainment Law Group
Greg Fritzius, Ally Levy, Chuck Baker, Irwin Raij, Taylor Larson, Greg Levy

Sidley Austin LLP has led the trend, announcing in May it would expand with a Miami office and open a new entertainment/sports division and looked to graduates and faculty of Miami Law’s Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law LL.M. program to form a core of this practice. 

Recent joint degree graduates Ally Levy and Max Budowsky, both J.D./EASL LL.M. ’22, are associates and join Greg Fritzius, J.D./LL.M. ’21, who moved over from Jones Day, to the Miami office. Taylor Larson, J.D. ’22, will join the Los Angeles office to support the Entertainment, Sports, and Media group.

Two of Miami Law’s prominent faculty – Charles “Chuck” Baker and Irwin Raij – join Sidley as partners and co-chairs of its Entertainment, Sports, and Media industry group. Baker has joined in New York, and Raij has joined in Miami. They were previously co-chairs of the Sports Industry Group at O’Melveny & Myers LLP.

"After having had Chuck and Irwin as adjunct professors in two of my favorite EASL classes, it is exciting to have the opportunity to work for them and join the incredible team they’re building at Sidley Austin. I am eager to start my legal career under the guidance of two mentors and industry leaders and would have not been here had it not been for the training and network I built in the Miami Law EASL Program," says Levy.

Available only at Miami Law and taught by prominent faculty and practicing attorneys and guided by a team of advisors who are a who’s who in the sports and entertainment worlds, students in the Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law LL.M. focus on areas of law that in today’s world are expanding, converging, and at times, intersecting. Hands-on, practical learning teaches high-value skills that can provide the tipping point for attorneys contending for jobs in very competitive areas.

“We are excited to bring on Irwin and Chuck with their complementary, destination practices in the sports and media world,” said alumna Yvette Ostolaza, B.A. ’85 and J.D. ’92, chair of Sidley’s management committee.

Greg Levy, director of the LL.M. agrees, "The EASL program at Miami Law is incredibly fortunate to benefit from the participation of distinguished practitioners as advisors and adjunct faculty. Chuck and Irwin have been supporters of the program since day 1 and contribute to our approach of practical-skills training for students.

"Their capstone course, 'Purchase and Sale of a Minor League Baseball Team,' simulates a deal to buy or sell a team over the next 6-weeks to include weekly check-ins with their senior partners which include comments on their draft asset purchase agreement. The course continues to be one of the most practical and engaging courses in the Program preparing our students for practice under the guidance of industry leaders. We are so thrilled that Sidley Austin is opening a Miami office and that Chuck and Irwin are leading the Entertainment, Sports and Media group. We look forward to many more collaborations."

Ostolaza noted, “Combined with our strong M&A, private equity, real estate, and finance practices, they will be aligned with our broader entertainment practice in the rapidly growing sports and media industry.”

Chuck Baker, Co-chair of Sidley’s Entertainment, Sports and Media practice commented, "We’ve had an incredible experience advising and teaching in the Miami Law EASL Program which is among the best sports and entertainment law programs in the world. Our teaching has reaffirmed the strength of the students in the EASL Program, and the practical skills curriculum provides the graduates with outstanding training to enter the practice.”

Irwin Raij, his Co-chair, added, “We are thrilled to welcome Ally Levy, Max Budowsky, Greg Fritzius and Taylor Larson to Sidley Austin and look forward to continuing to collaborate with the EASL Program as we grow our Entertainment, Sports and Media group and build across our Miami, New York and LA offices."

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