As we’ve been reporting on layoffs, salary freezes and salary cuts, some disgruntled associates have suggested in the comments that partners should share more in the pain. Well, they are. In addition to PPP taking a hit due to revenue declining, de-equitizing partners now seems to be an option (and is rumored to have already happened at Jenner & Block, for example).
Barton J. Winokur, chairman and CEO of Dechert, is stepping up to the pain plate voluntarily. The firm has laid off attorneys and staff in the past few months, but firm leaders have taken a hit too. Winokur, for example, is taking a $1 million pay cut, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer:
Winokur disclosed the self-imposed pay cut, actually a reduction in his draw from firm profits, at a super-secret gathering of big-firm leaders organized by Thomson Reuters in Pebble Beach, Calif., in late April.
Typically, there is no press at this yearly conclave. An absence of publicity ensures its near-invisibility – and the candor of law-firm leaders, which Winokur apparently supplied in abundance.
In addition to his salary cut, Winokur emphasized that other Dechert leaders had taken similar hits.
The Inquirer points out though that Winokur took home $8 million the year before. But, hey, a 12 percent pay cut is still pretty substantial. And $1 million will probably be a larger percentage of his total take home this year as it’s not likely to be as good as last year. The first fiscal quarter was an ugly one.
Law Review: A law-firm CEO cuts his own pay [Philadelphia Inquirer]