Constangy, Brooks, Smith and Prophete, LLP is pleased to announce the opening of a new office in Chicago and to welcome a new partner to the firm’s St. Louis office.

Leading Constangy’s new Chicago office is Laura Balson, an experienced employment litigator who comes to Constangy after more than a decade at the Chicago firm of Golan Christie Taglia, LLP, where she was the chair of the employment practice group and worked primarily with clients in the staffing, healthcare, real estate, retail, professional services, and nonprofit sectors. Balson has been recognized by SuperLawyers as a rising star and is a frequent writer and speaker on employment law issues. Balson has also been recognized as an Emerging Lawyer by Leading Lawyers, which is a distinction given to less than 2% of all lawyers licensed in Illinois.

Constangy also welcomes Dean Kpere-Daibo to the firm’s St. Louis office. Kpere-Daibo comes to Constangy from the local firm of McMahon Berger P.C. He brings particular experience in traditional labor relations, including providing advice to employers during organizing efforts, counseling in arbitrations and negotiations, and representing clients before the National Labor Relations Board. Kpere-Daibo has been recognized as a “Top 40 Under 40” attorney by the National Black Lawyers Top 100, and in 2017 he was named one of the 100 Most Influential Black Professionals in St. Louis by Delux magazine. He has been a SuperLawyers rising star since 2017 and serves on the boards of local organizations including Epworth Children & Family Services and Safe Connections.

“We are excited about opening our Chicago office, and strengthening our presence in St. Louis,” said Neil H. Wasser, chair of Constangy’s executive committee. “Laura and Dean are outstanding lawyers whose experience complements the firm’s strength in the transportation, healthcare and staffing sectors.”

"I have been so impressed by the depth of knowledge and wide-ranging experience of all the Constangy attorneys I have met,” said Balson. “As employers plan for their post-pandemic workplaces, many companies will continue to navigate in-office, remote and hybrid work across multiple states. Being part of a firm with offices around the country will be a really valuable resource to guide those clients."

“I am extremely excited to join the Constangy family and assist in expanding our presence in the Midwest,” said Kpere-Daibo. “I look forward to being a part of this talented team of lawyers who use their diversity as their strength to provide exceptional legal services to clients, and who are thought leaders nationally in the legal industry.”

“As we celebrate our 75th anniversary, one of the keys to Constangy’s ongoing success has been in attracting attorneys like Dean and Laura who are the right fit with our collaborative culture, our emphasis on diversity and our commitment to above and beyond client service,” added named partner Don Prophete.


About Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP:

Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete offers a wider lens on workplace law. We have counseled employers exclusively since 1946. With offices in 17 states, we are one of the largest labor and employment law practices in the U.S. Constangy has been named as a top firm for women and minorities by organizations including Law360, the National Law Journal and Many of our more than 180 attorneys have been recognized by leading authorities such as Chambers & Partners®, Best Lawyers in America® and Martindale Hubbell. Find out more about us online at or follow us on Twitter @ConstangyLaw.

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