Yesterday we posted the female nominees for America’s hottest law librarian. But we know it’s the men you really want to see. From an email:
We’re all waiting for the male nominees with bated breath. I’m sure there’s a Daniel Craig hiding in a row of US Reports somewhere….
We’ll let you be the judge. The hot male law librarians are a smaller group than the women. But there are still some impressive contenders in the bunch, despite its modest size.
You can check them out, in all of their masculine-yet-bookish glory, after the jump.
We have more associate base salary information, from different Dechert offices around the country, to share with you. Alas, these pay scales aren’t as interesting as the Dechert DC memo, which announced what one commenter described as “a caste system” within that office.
But some of you did request compensation information for Dechert offices other than D.C. and Philadelphia. So here it is.
Check out the tables, if you’re interested, after the jump.
Not all practice groups are created equal. Some law firm groups are flagships, oozing revenue and prestige. They’re touted to law students in glossy recruiting brochures and bragged about in interviews with the media.
Other groups are basically just deadweight. The firm would shed them if it could — if not for the need to please a major institutional client, or to show respect to an aging name partner.
If you’re an associate in a favored group — at our former home, Ed Herlihy’s FIG guys were the “green berets” of M&A — you’re on a rocket ship to partnership. And if you’re in a loss leader of a practice group, your days are numbered.
But Biglaw shops generally PRETEND that all practice groups are on the same footing. It’s a genteel fiction. You may work in a sexy and lucrative practice area, and your fellow associate two doors down may work in a backwater. But you both get the same pay and benefits.
Not so in the Washington office of Dechert. The firm just announced a “differential pay scale” that they concede in their memo is “unusual.” Under that scale, “FSG Associates” — associates in Dechert’s prestigious financial services practice group — earn higher salaries than their non-FSG colleagues, starting in year three ($175K to $170K). By the time they reach their eighth year, FSG associates are earning $30,000 more than their non-FSG counterparts ($280K to $250K).
We reprint the Dechert memo after the jump.
Here’s an open thread for discussion of associate pay raise developments in general. The last Skaddenfreude thread we created, which you can access by clicking here, can now be devoted entirely to clerkship bonuses.
We can verify the accuracy of the Dechert base salary news. A squished version of the Dechert memo appears after the jump.
At the White House:
* On the heels of Christopher Oprison and Cheryl Stanton, former Wilmer Hale partner Paul Eckert joins the White House Counsel’s Office. Lateral Moves:
* Nicholas H. Politan, to Gibson Dunn & Crutcher (NY), from Bingham McCutchen, where he served as co-head of the project and structured finance group.
(Wild guess: He’s the son of former federal judge Nicholas H. Politan (D.N.J.).)
* IP litigator Duane David-Hough, to Fish & Richardson, from Ropes & Gray (NY).
A few more moves, plus links, after the jump.
A few moves within the legal profession worth noting: Legal Academia:
* Tax law professor Neil Buchanan, to GW, from Rutgers-Newark, effective January 2007. (Gavel Bang: TaxProf Blog.) Lateral Law Firm Moves:
* Corporate lawyer Carey Schreiber, to Winston & Strawn, from Dewey Ballantine.
* Corporate lawyer Jeffrey Katz, to Dechert (as a partner), from Milbank Tweed (where he was a senior attorney). New Partners:
* King & Spalding has named twelve new partners. Have a friend who was up this year? See if they made it by reviewing the firm’s press release.
Although they don’t involve moves, while we’re on the subject of law firm employment (and King & Spalding), here are two interesting items from the WSJ Law Blog:
This will take effect as of 2008, when Richard Hays takes over as Alston & Bird’s managing partner. Robert Hays is currently chair of King & Spalding. See alsohere.
2. Spurned Orrick Associate Sues Firm: “At the same time that it’s talking merger with Dewey Ballantine, west-coast powerhouse Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe is defending a suit by a former associate who claims the firm fraudulently promised to make him a partner.”
The only noteworthy moves today come from Texas. Oh well, at least yesterday was busy. Lateral Moves:
* Corporate lawyers Paul Bishop, T. Alan Harris, Annette Trip, and Don Wood, to Sutherland Asbill & Brennan (Houston), from Locke Liddell & Sapp.
* A pair of Geralds — Gerald Pels, and Gerald Higdon — to Sutherland Asbill (energy and environmental), from Locke Liddell & Sapp. New Partners/Principals:
* Dechert (Austin): Intellectual property lawyer Steven Daniels.
* Baker & McKenzie (Dallas): Litigator Elizabeth Yingling. Lone Star Lawyers On the Move [NYLawyer.com] Women on the Move [Dallas Business Journal]
* Global trade lawyers Duane Layton, Sydney Mintzer and Jeffrey Lowe, to Mayer Brown, from Miller & Chevalier.
* Bankruptcy lawyer Stephen Gallagher, to Venable LLP, from LeClair Ryan PC.
* Intellectual property litigator Daniel McCloskey, to Greenberg Traurig (of counsel), from Dechert. Internal Promotions:
* Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal: Kara Baysinger has been named lateral acquisition partner.
(When we read this item, we scratched our head and thought, “Lateral acquisition partner — huh?” The firm’s press release explains: “Baysinger, who joined the firm eight years ago, will lead a lateral hiring program designed to help Sonnenschein achieve its aggressive growth targets.”) Sharing a Class-Action Fee at Akin Gump [Washington Post] Left-Coast Lawyers On the Move [NYLawyer.com] Sonnenschein Creates Two New Management Roles [Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal]
“Small is beautiful.” That seems to be the trend with cell phones, digital cameras — and, of course, law firm names:
DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary has officially shortened its name to DLA Piper.
One of the world’s largest law firms with 3,100 lawyers, DLA Piper is the culmination of a series of mergers, beginning with the 1999 combination between Baltimore’s Piper & Marbury and Chicago’s Rudnick & Wolfe. At the beginning of last year, the firm then known as Piper Rudnick officially merged with both Palo Alto, Calif.-based Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich and British legal giant DLA, which had 1,800 lawyers.
The firm said it had always planned to shorten the name after a transitional period.
Here’s our question: Why stop there? Why not just call the firm “DLA,” “DL,” or just plain “D”? Law firms have become huge businesses; they might as well sound like them — like GM, GE, IBM, etc.
This is only the latest example of a law firm streamlining its moniker by chopping off unnecessary or unwieldy partner surnames. Some years ago, the venerable “Dechert, Price & Rhoads” turned into “Dechert” — a sign that it had arrived, like “Madonna” or “Cher.” And “Proskauer Rose Goetz & Mendelsohn” became “Proskauer Rose.” (What prompted that change? Was it to avoid any negative associations with subway shooter Bernhard Goetz?)
Sometimes firms change their names not to make them shorter, but just to avoid being the butt of jokes by opposing counsel. Take one of New Jersey’s largest law firms, Gibbons, Del Deo, Dolan, Griffinger, & Vecchione. It used to be “Crummy, Del Deo, Dolan, Griffinger, & Vecchione.” But when former Third Circuit Chief Judge John J. Gibbons (re)joined the firm, they quickly dumped “Crummy” and replaced it with “Gibbons.”
W can hardly blame for that. But we still feel bad for poor Andrew Crummy. Two Across, Eight Letters: Firm Its Shortens Name [New York Law Journal]
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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@example.com.
Deal flow has clearly picked recently up for most US associates, counsels and partners in Hong Kong/China and Singapore. We are on the phone with a lot of these folks on a daily basis, many of whom we have known for years. Further, the head of our Asia team, Evan Jowers, and Kinney’s founder and president, Robert Kinney, frequently meet in person with leading US partners in Asia to assess their needs and keep on top of the inside scoop at as many firms as possible. The need for legal recruiting help in Asia from experienced recruiters appears to be live and well. In March, Evan and Robert were in Beijing at such meetings, in April, Evan was in Hong Kong, and for half of June Evan will be in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Thus its pretty easy for us to tell when there has been an across-the-market pick up in capital markets and corporate work.
On an average day in Asia when Evan and Robert visit firms, they typically have 5 to 9 meetings a day, mostly with US partners in the market. The reason they have these meetings is not simply because Kinney makes a lot of US attorney placements in Asia and that a particular firm may have openings; instead these are just visits with friends. After years of working together as business partners, the folks at Kinney are actually these peoples’ friends. The firms Kinney work closely with in Asia (which is just about every law firm – call us if you want to know the one firm in the world we will never place anyone with again, ever, and why) look forward to the visits, or at least act like they do. After seven years in the market, many of the client partners are former associate candidates. Also, these US partners see Kinney as a very good source of market information as well, because they know how deep their contacts are in the market and how frequently they are speaking to counterparts at peer firms.
In a land that is right here and in a time that is right now, a technology has arisen so powerful that it can replace basic human document review. Is it time to bow down before our new robot overlords?
First, here’s a little story about me: my life in the legal world began as a paralegal. My first case was a GIANT patent infringement case that was already six years old and had involved as many as five companies, multiple US courts, the ITC and an international standards committee. I knew nothing about any of this.
On my first day, my supervisor (a paralegal with at least eight other cases driving her crazy) sat me down in front of a Concordance database with a 100,000+ patents and patent file histories. “Code these,” she said. I learned that “coding”, for the purposes of this exercise, meant manually typing the inventor’s name, the title of the patent, the assignee, the file date, and other objective data for each document. I worked on that project – and only that project – for at least the first six months of my job. After a week or so, time began to blur.
What I know, in retrospect and with absolutely certainty, is that as time began to blur, so did my judgment. So did my attention to detail. If you could tell me that I did not make at least one mistake a day – one inconsistent spelling, one reversed day and month, one incorrectly spaced title – I frankly would need to see your evidence. I would not believe it. The human mind is trainable but it is not a machine.
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