Gary D. LeClair has stepped down as chief executive officer of LeClairRyan a year earlier than originally announced but will remain as the firm’s chairman.
Last August, the firm described a two-year transition plan in which Chief Practice Officer David C. Freinberg would succeed LeClair as CEO. LeClair said last week that the timetable was intended as a “not-later-than date.”
“It was a combination of David being ready and the time being right,” LeClair said of the decision to make the change effective July 1.
Freinberg has headed the firm’s 75-employee office in Newark, N.J., and will be based there.
LeClair said he no longer considers the firm as one with a base in Richmond or even Virginia. “That’s critical to our strategy” of creating a nationwide presence, he added.
He said he expects to work fulltime on expanding that reach and on managing his corporate and venture capital practice. The firm has 21 offices and LeClair has said he is looking for a foothold in Florida and Texas.