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Career Center Survey Results: Top Partners to Work For – California (Part 2)

David Thomas, of Wilson Sonsini, and Kelly Richardson, of Latham & Watkins.

The East Coast is freezing right now. New York is bitterly cold, and D.C. is even getting snow. So let’s head out to the West Coast, where the weather is warmer — and where associates are thrilled to be working with some superb partners.

Earlier this week, we presented ten California partners whom our readers nominated as being great to work for.  We continue our coverage today with eight additional partners who earn this distinction. They hail from some of the country’s preeminent law firms: DLA Piper, Baker & McKenzie, Latham & Watkins, Holland & Knight, Jones Day, Wilson Sonsini, Knobbe Martens, and Paul Hastings.

Let’s find out who made the list….

Richard Mendelson. A corporate partner and co-chair of DLA Piper’s Real Estate Restructuring and Loan Workouts Practice Group, Mendelson received the highest marks in all survey categories.

Ali Mojdehi.  Mojdehi, a Baker & McKenzie bankruptcy partner, sets the bar for his firm in all survey categories.

Kelly Richardson.  Richardson, a Latham & Watkins litigation partner, “is extremely knowledgeable in his field (due in part to his engineering background) and works as hard as anyone in the firm to keep clients happy, and yet he is extremely cognizant of his role as a mentor to the young attorneys that work with him as well as the associates’ own schedules and personal considerations.”  Additionally, one associate says “the most important reason why I will go to bat for Kelly is that if I end up working a late night or weekend I know that Kelly will be there with me — he isn’t the type to grind an associate down so he can go play.”

Bruce Ross.  Associates are lining up to work for Ross, a trusts and estates litigation partner and co-chair of Holland & Knight’s Private Wealth Services Dispute Resolution Team, because he “literally wrote the book on probate in California and his experience in the practice area is unparalleled.  He gets high-profile work and gives all of his associates, even his junior ones, a high amount of responsibility right away.  He is respectful of personal time and rarely impedes on weekends unless absolutely necessary.  He regularly sits down with associates and provides feedback.  It doesn’t hurt that he is also one of the most approachable people in the firm.    During the slow-down he happily fed work to associates from other groups as their workloads lightened and likely saved many jobs.  He is the anti-big firm partner and has been a pleasure to work with.”

Rich Ruben.  A Jones Day litigation partner, Ruben is “very hands-off – [he] trusts associates and lets them run with things, but is always available to answer questions or help with problems.”

David Thomas.  Thomas, a Wilson Sonsini employee benefits and compensation partner, received the highest ratings in all survey categories.

Jeff Van Hoosear.  A Knobbe Martens intellectual property partner, Van Hoosear sets the bar for the firm in all survey categories.

James Zapp.  An associate describes Zapp, a litigation partner and co-chair of Paul Hastings‘s Employment Law practice, “exactly what you want a partner to be.”  Namely, he is “smart and deeply knowledgeable, but willing to share that knowledge and give early responsibility.”  For example, “he takes associates to trial with him and he gives them major responsibility.

Next week we will wrap up our coverage of the top partners to work for in some of the smaller legal markets.  If you are at a firm with partners whom you don’t enjoy working for and you are considering a transition, let Lateral Link help you make a lateral move.

Earlier: Career Center Survey Results: Top Partners to Work For – California (Part 1)