It appears that lots of things are going up in smoke out west. From Blogonaut:
Two weeks ago the 700-lawyer San Francisco firm announced 65 staff were laid off. Now Heller has lost two leading and loyal partners to rival firms.
Patricia Gillette, a co-chairwoman of Heller Ehrman’s the labor and employment practice has defected to Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe along with another labor partner and four associates, the Recorder reports.
This defection in San Francisco comes at the same time that Jerry Marks, Heller’s Los Angeles managing partner and a well-known securities litigator, is jetting for Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy.
Not good news. A slowdown in work, staff layoffs, and partner defections are the hallmarks of a law firm implosion. They’ve foreshadowed the demises of several firms over the years, such as Brobeck and Testa Hurwitz.
Remember how the Heller Ehrman summer associates were grumpy over not getting paid at the $160K level? At this rate, they should be grateful to have somewhere to go after graduation.
Speaking of the Heller Ehrman summers, we have a summer associate story not previously posted, after the jump.
As you may recall, in honor of Aquagirl, we present our summer associate stories according to a superhero theme:
Superhero name: The Rake
Special power: Ability to find new and innovative ways to spend time not working.
Summered: Heller Ehrman, summer 2007
Claim to fame: Organized a mid-day poker game at the office with fellow summer associates. As with any poker game, it would not be complete without some alcohol. He was also skilled in his use of technology as he left a paper trail of e-mail invitations to many other co-workers.
What happened to him: Not clear — if we find out, we’ll note it here.
Heller Ehrman Showing Signs of Distress [Blogonaut]
Heller’s L.A. Chief May Be Headed to Milbank [Cal Law / Legal Pad]
Key Heller Partners Jump Ship [The Recorder (subscription)]
Earlier: The Heller Ehrman Layoffs: Don’t Believe the Spin?