Christopher G. Keim Elected Frantz Ward’s Inaugural Managing Partner Thumbnail

Christopher G. Keim Elected Frantz Ward’s Inaugural Managing Partner

For the first time in its 17-year history, Frantz Ward LLP is proud to announce it has created the role of Managing Partner. Partner Christopher G. Keim has been elected to lead the Cleveland-based firm of approximately 60 attorneys as its inaugural Managing Partner. Nearing the completion of his interim year in this role, Chris will serve an additional three-year term in this role.
The new Managing Partner role is an evolution of the firm’s Management Committee structure which debuted in February 2014. The Management Committee consists of three elected partners responsible for the firm’s strategic direction and its day-to-day operations for the growing needs of the firm and the expanding needs of the firm’s clients – Christopher G. Keim, Michael J. Frantz and Joel R. Hlavaty. Chris and Mike both served on the firm’s initial Management Committee and will remain in this new phase of leadership.
“The firm’s first-ever Management Committee did a great job of keeping the founding principles of the firm in the forefront,” said Mike Frantz. “We are thrilled to have Chris leading the next phase as he is ideally-suited to serve this new role devoted to the strategic growth of the firm. I am personally looking forward to working with him to achieve the firm’s goals.”
“Mike, Joel and I are completely aligned to deliver the firm’s commitment to providing legal services that places our client’s needs first,” said Chris Keim. “Our attorneys offer big firm talent in a cost-effective, approachable, easy-to-work-with environment, and we will never change that.”

Christopher Keim is a litigator that focuses his practice on civil litigation matters, including general business disputes, product liability claims, transportation law, and corporate investigations. Having started with Frantz Ward as an associate, he has an ideal vantage point to lead the firm’s nearly 60 attorneys. Chris is passionate about helping clients solve their problems and building long-term client relationships, whether this involves successfully advocating on their behalf in trial or helping them avoid the courtroom. Chris practices law because as early as the sixth grade he knew he wanted to be in the courtroom and help people. He realized his dream early in his career as a Cuyahoga County Assistant Prosecutor which brings a valuable government perspective to his practice. In his role as prosecutor, he was involved in adult felony cases, including white collar crime, drug trafficking and capital murders. He also led corporate investigations and investigations into criminal enterprises. Chris has extensive experience in successfully defending businesses through trial and arbitration throughout the U.S., with over seventy-five bench and jury trials to date. This includes representing closely held and publicly traded companies and their insurers in routine and catastrophic litigation involving the design, manufacture, and installation of their products. Chris has a J.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Law and a B.S. from The Ohio State University.

Joel Hlavaty focuses his practice on the representation of management in all phases of labor relations and employment litigation. He routinely advises employers on all aspects of their relationships with employees, as well as with respect to matters concerning litigation prevention and human resources management, and he regularly defends them in federal and state courts of all jurisdictions on claims arising under the various federal and state labor and employment laws. Joel additionally represents employers with respect to complaints and charges filed with the EEOC and OCRC, NLRB, and SERB, and with OSHA and the DOL, as well as with health care and ERISA issues and complaints, and collective bargaining issues and strike disputes. Joel also serves as Chair of the Frantz Ward Diversity & Inclusion Committee. He has a J.D., with Honors, from the University of Akron School of Law and a B.A., with Honors, from John Carroll University.
Michael Frantz devotes his practice to the exclusive representation of employers and their management teams in dealing with the full range of labor and employment issues. He has represented employers in contract negotiations with virtually every major union in the U.S. and Canada. Throughout his career he has focused on representing health care and higher education institutions, as well as manufacturing companies and service organizations. Mike’s practice also includes serving as outside general counsel for a number of his clients. He also serves as a member of the Board of Directors or in other corporate positions for many clients. Nothing gives Mike greater satisfaction as a lawyer than to become known as a trusted advisor to those clients. Mike has a J.D. from Georgetown University and a B.A., magna cum laude, from the University of Notre Dame.

Related professionals