From a reader who uses MySpace (no, not a 14-year-old girl in Manassas):
Totally random, and not necessarily newsworthy, but the attached MySpace profile appeared randomly on my “cool new people” list when I logged in.
(Random spam like this, in the form of fake profiles — usually of attractive women from ex-Soviet republics, but apparently now of people who follow Charney v. S&C — is one of the many reasons we prefer Facebook.) facebook is better than myspace group [Facebook]
Poor guy. When you see a résumé from Aaron Charney next spring, before you toss it in the circular file, please double check: Are you sure it’s from the right — or wrong, as the case may be — Aaron Charney?
In other Charney news, Keeping Up With Jonas has created a Charney v. S&C Superstar Poll. To cast your vote, click here. (We know how we’re voting, but we’ll keep it to ourselves.) Aaron Charney [Facebook] Charney v. Sullivan & Cromwell Superstar Poll [Keeping Up With Jonas]
As we’ve mentionedbefore, our interest in Charney v. Sullivan & Cromwell is flagging somewhat. It has been a while since the last salacious accusation, and now the case is starting to look like any other civil action — motion practice, discovery, etc.
Been there, done that. Yawn.
(Wake us up when Alexandra Korry gets deposed. Now THAT is gonna be good — although we’ll have to pray for a leaked transcript, since presumably it will be covered by a confidentiality order.)
On Friday, Charney filed his opposition to S&C’s Motion to Dismiss. Taking a page from Judge Jacobs’s (unopened) book, we haven’t bothered to read it. But here are three bloggers who have:
We realize that not everyone has been following Charney v. Sullivan & Cromwell, the salacious case filed by former S&C associate Aaron Charney (at right), alleging anti-gay discrimination and retaliation by his extremely prestigious (and profitable) former firm. But for those of you who are interested in this matter, today we have a special treat.
Remember Gera Grinberg — the former colleague of Aaron Charney who some partners suspected was in an “unnatural relationship” with Charney? Grinberg, who nolonger works at S&C, is a critical figure in this case. But he has been an elusive figure to followers of this litigation. We’ve seen no pictures, and we know few facts about him.
Finally, after months of mystery, we’ve gotten our hands on a photograph of him. It’s kinda old, but hey, it’s better than nothing.
Check it out, after the jump.
LEWW is ashamed to admit that we have not followed the Charney versus Sullivan & Cromwell lawsuit with the attention it so richly deserves. Fortunately, there are other bloggers who’ve got you (and us) covered regarding coverage and analysis of this complex affair in Lat’s absence. Keeping Up With Jonas has a nice capsule summary of the three orders issued by Judge Fried in the matter yesterday, with links to the orders.
And Professor Art Leonard has this more detailed write-up.
Judge Fried denied without explanation a motion by Gera Grinberg’s attorney to have Grinberg’s deposition transcripts unsealed. Writes Leonard:
Attorney Grinberg worked closely with Aaron Charney as a fellow associate at S&C on a variety of client matters, and their close working relationship seems to have sparked the incidents upon which Charney bases his lawsuit. Grinberg was present at the meeting between Charney and S&C partners Vince DiBlasi and David Braff on January 31, the day before S&C discharged and sued Charney.
There is considerable dispute between Charney and S&C about what was said at that meeting, with Charney claiming that the only written record, which would back up his account, was made by Grinberg, who then turned his notes over to his attorney at that time for safekeeping. Charney has alleged that the Grinberg notes were improperly destroyed as part of a conspiracy between S&C and Edward Gallion, a lawyer S&C had retained to represent Grinberg. Amidst the skirmishing over motions to dismiss, Grinberg submitted to a deposition focused on what occurred at that meeting, but the transcript of the deposition has been sealed, and S&C’s lawyers criticized Charney for relying on and referring to that testimony in his amended complaint.
Leonard also reports that Grinberg, who was placed on paid leave by S&C, is no longer listed on the firm website.
Sullivan and Cromwell partner Sharon L. Nelles filed a notice of appearance yesterday in the Aaron Charney v. Sullivan and Cromwell case.
Do we overuse the term “fabulous” around here? Oh maybe. But Sharon Nelles has been certified as “fabulous,” by the mainstream media:
Perhaps most important point about this development, Ms. Nelles was selected by The American Lawyer as one of “The Young Litigators Fab 50″ — 50 litigators under 45 who are expected to be “leading the field for years to come.” Since this case will be around for a long time, a very long time, Sullivan was smart to select a lawyer predicted to have staying power.
We’ve only skimmed Sullivan & Cromwell’s latest Motion to Dismiss, filed just yesterday in the (in)famous case of Charney v. Sullivan & Cromwell. We haven’t had the chance to write up detailed thoughts on it.
Fortunately, others have. Like Professor Art Leonard, whose comprehensive analysis — including a helpful history of this tortured case — appears here.
And Lavi Soloway, who has taken the lead on the latest Charney developments. You can access his post, collecting some of the juiciest excerpts from the motion, by clicking here.
We did obtain comment on the S&C motion from Charney’s lawyers. David Holland, an attorney who works with Michael Kennedy on the case, had this to say:
“Apparently, Sullivan & Cromwell not only represented the Nazis, but seem to have adopted Dr. Mengele’s techniques to torture the facts and law of this case.”
Well, maybe not quite. But we do find it interesting that, in the recent wave of publicity over Aaron Charney’s amended complaint, Sullivan & Cromwell’s public relations team at Sard Verbinnen reached out to us. They emailed the following statement to us:
“This is just a rehash of his original, now dismissed, complaint with the addition of some unsubstantiated allegations. We will continue to defend the Firm vigorously against these same baseless claims. Sullivan & Cromwell remains committed to fostering an inclusive workplace environment for all of its lawyers and staff and is proud of our track record of promoting diversity.”
It’s not a particularly exciting statement; but we were excited to receive it. Although they’ve been working extensively with the mainstream media over the past few months, Sard Verbinnen — which S&C hired specifically for L’Affaire Charney (a different media relations shop handles the firm’s general publicity) — had never contacted us before.
And we weren’t the only “new media” types to get the message. The PR gurus also emailed their statement to two leading Charneybloggers: Lavi Soloway and Professor Arthur Leonard.
Not to be outdone, Aaron Charney’s lawyers spoke to us on the phone. We had a quick conversation the other day with Dan Alterman, of Alterman & Boop, who had this to say:
“The amended complaint is a wonderful opportunity for us to get this case focused back on the main issues — especially the discrimination and retaliation claims.”
P.S. Please vote for Jordin Sparks in American Idol!!! Call 1-866-IDOLS-02, or text “VOTE” to 5702.
Even Professor Althouse, a diehard Blake Lewis fan, kind of agrees: “So, okay, let Jordin win. Blake will be fine. It will be better this way.”
The evolution of relationships between the genders continues. Currently, in law firms, there is an interesting conundrum; balancing the desire for a gender-blind workplace where “the best lawyer gets the work and advances” and the reality of navigating the complicated maze created by the fact that, in general, men and women do possess differences in their work styles. These variations impact who they work with, how they work, how they build professional connections and how organizations ultimately leverage, reward and recognize the talents of all.
Henry Ford sat on his workbench and sighed. A year earlier, he had personally built 13,000 Model Ts with his own hands. Fashioning lugnuts and tie rods by hand, Ford was loath to ask for help. Sure, there were things about the car that he didn’t quite understand. This explains the lack of reliable navigation systems in the Model T. But Ford persevered because he knew that unless he did everything, he could not reliably call these cars his own.
“Unless my own personal toil is responsible for it, it may as well be called a Hyundai,” Ford remarked at the time.
The preceding may sound unfamiliar because it is categorically untrue. And also monumentally stupid. Henry Ford didn’t build all those cars by hand. He had help and plenty of it. Almost exactly one hundred years ago, Henry Ford opened up the most technologically advanced assembly line the world had ever seen. Built on the premise that work can be chopped up into digestible pieces and completed by many men better than one, the line ushered in an age of unparalleled productivity.
Today, an attorney refers business because he can’t do everything the client asks of him.
There are three reasons why this is way dumber than a made-up Henry Ford story…
Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: [email protected].
Since late last year, things have been booming in Hong Kong / China in cap markets, especially Hong Kong IPOs. M&A deal flow has recently been getting a bit stronger as well. Although one can’t predict such things with any certainty, all signs are pointing to a banner entire 2014 for the top end US corporate and cap markets practices in Hong Kong / China. This is not really new news, as its been the feeling most in the market have had for a few months now and things continue to look good.
The head of our Asia practice, Evan Jowers, has been in Hong Kong for about 10 days a month (with trips every other month to both Shanghai and Bejing) for the past 7 months, and spending most of his time there meeting with senior US hiring partners at just about all the major US and UK firms there, as well as prospective candidates at all associate levels and partner levels, and when in the US, Evan works Asia hours and is regularly on the phone with such persons, as our the other members of our Asia team. Our Yuliya Vinokurova is in Hong Kong every other month and Robert is there about 5 times a year as well. While we have a solid Asia team of recruiters, Evan Jowers will spend at least some time with all of our candidates for Asia position. We have had long standing relationships, and good friendships in some cases, with hiring partners and other senior US partners in Asia for 8 years now.