Nora Schweighart is a restructuring associate in Kirkland's Chicago office. She concentrates her practice in all aspects of corporate restructuring, bankruptcy and insolvency proceedings, representing the interests of corporate debtors as well as secured and unsecured creditors.
Since joining Kirkland, Nora has represented:
Hawker Beechcraft ― Representing Hawker Beechcraft Inc., a world-leading manufacturer of business, special mission, light attack and trainer aircraft, in its prearranged Chapter 11 cases. Hawker, which listed more than $1 billion in assets and debt at the time of filing, cited market conditions and its leveraged capital structure as primary causes for the restructuring. Prior to filing, the company reached an agreement with multiple senior secured lenders and senior bondholders on a financial restructuring plan that would equitize $2.5 billion of funded debt and avoid $125 million of annual cash interest expense.
Horizon Lines, Inc. ― Represented Horizon Lines, Inc. and its subsidiaries, the nation's leading domestic ocean shipping and integrated logistics company, in connection with successful out-of-court restructuring in April 2012, involving the completion of two transactions, one with more than 99% of Horizon's noteholders and the other with Ship Finance International Limited that resulted in the termination of certain vessel charter obligations related to Horizon's discontinued trans-Pacific service. The simultaneous transactions in April 2012 resulted in a net debt reduction of approximately $188 million, with Horizon's earnings and cash flows being further improved through the termination of $32 million in annual vessel charter obligations for leased ships and the elimination of lay-costs for idle vessels. Horizon owns or leases a fleet of 20 U.S.-flag containerships and operates five port terminals linking the continental United States with Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, Micronesia and Puerto Rico. The company provides express trans-Pacific service between the U.S. West Coast and the ports of Ningbo and Shanghai in China, manages a domestic and overseas service partner network and provides integrated, reliable and cost competitive logistics solutions. Horizon Lines, Inc., is based in Charlotte, NC, and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol HRZ.
Friendly Ice Cream Corporation ― Represented Friendly Ice Cream Corporation, which runs the restaurant chain Friendly's, in its Chapter 11 cases that substantially concluded when an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, Inc., acquired substantially all Friendly's assets. Sun's affiliate credit bid its $75 million debtor-in-possession loan and funded the $11.5 million cost of winding down the Chapter 11 cases. The court approved the sale and the Friendly's business emerged from bankruptcy on January 9, 2012, just three months after filing.
Prior to joining Kirkland, Nora represented debtors in their Chapter 11 proceedings, including:
Representation of a major automobile parts manufacturer and certain of its affiliates in all aspects of their Chapter 11 proceedings, leading to their successful reorganization.
Memberships & Affiliations
Illinois State Bar Association
American Bar Association
"Thorpe: The Ninth Circuit Weighs in on Discharge of Asbestos Liability in Bankruptcy," ABI Young and New Members Committee Newsletter, June 2012 (Co-Author).
Associate - Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (2008-2011)
Summer Associate - Skadden (2007)