Phillip Durham is a partner in the Chicago and New York offices of Holland & Knight and leader of the Asset Finance Group. His practice focuses on domestic and cross-border asset-based financing, leasing, acquisitions, sales and securitizations, with a particular emphasis on global aviation and equipment finance.

Mr. Durham's client roster includes some of the biggest names in aviation and equipment finance for which he has handled billions of dollars of transactions around the globe, including numerous deal of the year award winners. Mr. Durham regularly represents these clients in connection with all manner of equipment operating leases, equipment sales and acquisitions, asset-backed financings, credit facilities and capital markets offerings, such as portfolio securitizations and asset-backed bond issuances. Mr. Durham also has significant experience in negotiating restructurings of equipment finance transactions and assisting with foreclosures, repossessions and the remarketing of aircraft, aircraft engines and aircraft spare parts in jurisdictions all over the world.

Mr. Durham has had numerous speaking engagements, from addressing the Colombian financial services industry in Bogotá (with respect of secured transaction reforms), to speaking at the Latin American Airfinance conference in Rio de Janeiro, to presenting multiple times at the Cape Town Academic Conference at Oxford University. Mr. Durham is the current Secretary General of the Mining, Agricultural and Construction Equipment Working Group and has been actively involved in the development of a 4th Protocol to the Cape Town Convention covering mining, agricultural and construction equipment. His depth and breadth of experience in aviation finance transactions in Latin America also led to him being appointed to co-direct the annual Euromoney School of Aviation Finance in Latin America. Closer to home, Mr. Durham is the former chairman of the American Bar Association's Aircraft Financing Subcommittee and a member of the Executive Committee of the Legal Advisory Panel of the Aviation Working Group.

Pending admission to the Illinois Bar; admitted to the New York, California and Nebraska Bar and practicing under the supervision of lawyers licensed to practice in Illinois.


  • University of Iowa College of Law, J.D.
  • Creighton University, B.A.
Bar Admissions/Licenses
  • California
  • Nebraska
  • New York
  • American College of Commercial Finance Lawyers, Fellow
  • American Bar Association, Aircraft Financing Subcommittee, Former Chair
  • Aviation Working Group, Legal Advisory Panel, Executive Committee
  • Mining, Agricultural and Construction Equipment Working Group, Secretary General
  • Wings Club
  • International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading
  • American Bar Association, Business Section and Air and Space Law Forum, Aircraft Finance and Contracts Division
  • Legal Services for Entrepreneurs, Advisory Board, 2004-2011
Honors & Awards
  • Chambers Global – The World's Leading Lawyers for Business guide, Asset Finance, 2020-2024
  • Chambers USA – America's Leading Business Lawyers guide, Transportation: Aviation: Finance, 2012-2024
  • The Legal 500 USA, Asset Finance and Leasing, 2012, 2014-2017; Aviation and Air Travel: Finance, 2018-2022; Leading Lawyer, Transport: Aviation and Air Travel – Finance, 2021-2024
  • The Legal 500 Latin America, Banking and Finance, 2016-2024
  • The Best of the Best Global, Aviation, Legal Media Group's Expert Guides, 2020, 2022
  • The Best of the Best USA, Aviation, Legal Media Group's Expert Guides, 2014, 2016-2018, 2020, 2022
  • Global Airline Restructuring Deal of the Year, Airfinance Journal, 2022
  • Asia-Pacific Deal of the Year, Airfinance Journal, 2021
  • Airline Restructuring Deal of the Year, Airfinance Journal, 2021
  • Restructuring Deal of the Year, Aviation 100 Deals of the Year Awards, Airline Economics, 2021
  • Asia-Pacific Restructuring Deal of the Year, Aviation 100 Deals of the Year Awards, Airline Economics, 2021
  • Who's Who Legal: Transport, Aviation Finance, 2017-2021, Thought Leader, USA, 2023
  • Holland & Knight Pro Bono All-Star, 2021
  • Guide to the World's Leading Aviation Lawyers, Legal Media Group's Expert Guides, 2013-2020
  • Transportation Law Rising Star, Law360, 2017
  • Client Choice Award: Aviation – New York, 2016
  • Aviation ABS Deal of the Year, Global Transport Finance, 2015
  • Debt Deal of the Year, Airline Economics, 2015
  • North American Deal of the Year, Airfinance Journal, 2015
  • Rising Star, New York Super Lawyers magazine, 2013-2018
  • Aviation Finance Law Rising Star, Airfinance Journal, 2012
  • Rising Star, Northern California Super Lawyers magazine, 2011, 2012
  • Capital Markets Deal of the Year, Airfinance Journal, 2011
  • Aviation Deal of the Year, Jane's Transport Finance, 2006
  • Order of the Coif
  • Alan I. Widiss Faculty Scholar Award for Outstanding and Distinctive Scholarly Paper
  • Iowa Law Review, Articles Editor


Speaking Engagements