Whether as a creditor or prospective debtor, navigating the complexities of insolvency can be both challenging and stressful. For more than 30 years, Judith Elkin has provided Haynes and Boone clients with creative advice on restructurings and insolvencies in the U.S. and around the world. Judy is as comfortable in a U.S. boardroom and courtroom as she is in a Paris conference room. Judy has served as trusted advisor and counsel to major global financial institutions, assisting them in collecting billions of dollars of obligations due to them and defending major litigation asserted against them. Judy has also counseled debtors in various industries, ranging from oil and gas, coal, airlines, fashion and real estate, enabling them to restructure their operations and capital structure. She has appeared in trial and appellate courts around the country.
Judy has worked on some of the largest, most contentious and most complex insolvency cases. She is one of 18 people approved by the bankruptcy court to mediate significant mortgage indemnification claims of Lehman Brothers. She has been retained by Credit Agricole to protect its claims in cases such as Enron, Calpine, MF Global and SemGroup. In Enron, Judy was responsible for coordinating Credit Agricole’s claims in the proceedings pending in the U.S. and Europe, as well as representing the bank as co-chair of the Unsecured Creditors’ Committee. In SemGroup, she negotiated Credit Agricole’s participation as a debtor in possession lender and successfully defended the bank in litigation challenging its position as a swap lender, resulting in a global settlement as part of a confirmation hearing conducted simultaneously in the U.S. and Canada. She defended major avoidance litigation brought against Goldman Sachs arising from the Extended Stay bankruptcy. Judy has also represented the foreign representatives of foreign debtors seeking the protections of Chapter 15 in the U.S.
Judy recognizes that even the largest corporate client is made of up people who have a vested interest in the successful, practical and cost-effective resolution of financial problems. Her global view and experience in the trenches on cross-border insolvency matters has led her to be both a prolific writer and a sought after speaker internationally. She has spoken on lender liability issues in Tokyo, the insolvency of hedge funds in Dublin and distressed M&A in Sao Paulo. Judy has served as chair of the International Bar Association’s Insolvency Section, chair of the International Women’s Insolvency & Restructuring Confederation (IWIRC), chair of the ABA Litigation Section Bankruptcy & Insolvency Committee and vice-chair of the ABA International Section Secured Transaction & Insolvency Committee. She also serves as a delegate for several non-governmental organizations to the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL).
Judy is most proud of her work with IWIRC, a global mentoring and networking organization for women in the insolvency professions. As a founding member in 1993, she contributed to the growth of the organization from 30 women meeting in a basement conference room in a Toronto hotel to nearly 1500 members with more than 45 networks worldwide. In 2013, Judy was the recipient of IWIRC’s Melnik Award for Outstanding IWIRC Member.
When not working on behalf of her human clients, Judy is an advocate for the rights of animals. She worked with the NYS Bar Association Animal Law Committee preparing analyses of proposed legislation for submission to the NYS legislature, is on the board of directors of her local humane society and is a Patron of the Wildlife Conservation Society as well as a former board member and officer of the Dallas Zoological Society. Judy's work and love of travel has taken her to over 100 countries and all seven continents. Judy believes that through travel we develop a better appreciation and understanding of our shared values which is vital to successful cross border insolvency dispute resolution.