The latest collection of moves within the profession:
From government to private sector:
* George Bundy Smith, former judge on the New York Court of Appeals — the state’s highest court (duh) — to Chadbourne & Parke, as a litigation partner.
* “A little ditty, about Jack and Diane”: M&A lawyer Jack Bodner, bankruptcy lawyer Dianne Coffino, and bankruptcy lawyer Ben Hoch, to Covington & Burling (NY), from Dewey Ballantine. We hear that this trio is “extraordinarily nice.”
Dewey Ballantine is in the process of merging with Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe — a combination that has been delayed (and might possibly fall apart).
Covington will soon unveil plans for new office space in the fancy, Renzo Piano-designed New York Times building. It may be the coolest move since the Skaddenites got to shack up with the Conde Nasties (but there are probably fewer hotties among the ink-stained wretches of the Times than the staffers of Vogue).
* Duane Morris launches its Baltimore office by snagging three partners and an of counsel from DLA Piper: Jay Gordon Cohen, Keli Isaacson, George Nemphos, and Wilbert Sirota (of counsel).
On the Comeback Trail?
* You can’t keep a good woman down: Star Jones, the prosecutor turned television personality, is doing a radio show (after getting booted from “The View”). Good luck, Star!
Star Jones: a star reborn? [Miami Herald]
At Last, Star Jones Reynolds’ Dramatic Comeback! [Gawker]
NY Lawyers Switching Firms [NYLawyer.com]
Firm Opens Baltimore Office With Raid [NYLawyer.com]
Three More Walk Away From Dewey [WSJ Law Blog]
- Celebrities, Chadbourne & Parke, Covington & Burling, Dewey Ballantine, Law Firm Mergers, Musical Chairs, Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe, State Judges
The latest collection of moves within the profession:
- 3rd Circuit, Clerkships, Columbia Law School, Cravath, Department of Justice, Federalist Society, Kids, New Jersey, Office of Legal Policy, Pets, Pictures, Religion, Samuel Alito, SCOTUS, SCOTUS Clerks Are Fair Game, Supreme Court, Supreme Court Clerks, UVA Law
Sorry it has taken us so long. As promised months ago, we now begin our series profiling current Supreme Court clerks (aka the “October Term 2006″ or “OT 2006″ law clerks).
We’ll be going chambers by chambers, starting with the most junior justice. Here are the four law clerks to Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr.:
1. Michael S. Lee (BYU ’97/Benson (D. Utah)/Alito)
2. Christopher J. Paolella (Harvard ’99/Alito)
3. Matthew A. Schwartz (Columbia ’03/Alito)
4. Gordon D. Todd (UVA ’00/Beam)
As a member of the Alito extended family explained to us, here’s the key to understanding the Alito chambers: 3:1. This golden ratio perfectly captures the demographics of the OT 2006 Alito clerks. Consider:
1. Familial status: three are married with children, one is not (Chris Paolella — married, but no kids yet).
2. Undergraduate institution: three are Princetonians, one is not (Michael Lee — BYU).
3. Prior Alito clerkship: three previously clerked for then-Judge Alito on the Third Circuit, one did not (Gordon Todd).
4. Religious affiliation: three are Christian,* one is not (Matthew Schwartz — he’s Jewish).
5. College debate: three were gods of the parliamentary debate circuit, and former presidents of the American Parliamentary Debate Assocation (APDA); one was not (Michael Lee).
But we wouldn’t want such commonalities to overshadow the individuality of these gents. Check out our profiles of Messrs. Lee, Paolella, Schwartz, and Todd — after the jump.
* Mitt Romney footnote: Michael Lee is Mormon, which we consider to be Christian. Presidential candidate Romney hopes that evangelical Christians voting in the Republican primaries will agree with us.
We hear that Andrew Cuomo, New York’s incoming Attorney General, will be announcing some of his top appointments very soon — perhaps as early as this afternoon.
Since Eliot Spitzer reinvigorated the New York AG’s office, then used it as a vehicle to the Governor’s Mansion, the office’s profile and prestige have increased. Positions within it have become much more desirable.
It will be interesting to see Cuomo’s picks. We’ll keep you posted.
(Cuomo, of course, comes from a prominent family of lawyers. His father, former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, is now at Willkie Farr & Gallagher. His brother, Fordham Law grad Chris Cuomo, just joined ABC’s Good Morning America, after serving as a legal correspondent for the network.)
Andrew Cuomo Transition 2006 [official website]
The Cuomo Family [New York Observer via WSJ Law Blog]
This doesn’t really matter much (except, of course, to the people receiving the dough). But for those of you keeping score at home, Dewey Ballantine has just announced bonuses. Surprise surprise, they’re matching market.
Well, almost matching market. The stub bonus for Class of 2006 folks was a flat $5,000.
Other notable items from the memo: (1) a requirement of 1900 hours to receive the bonus, and (2) a vague statement concerning Dewey’s possible, but now delayed, merger with Orrick:
[M}any of you have questions regarding the 2007 bonus structure and how it will be impacted should we complete a merger with Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe LLP. We have not yet reached a final determination regarding the 2007 structure, but please be assured that our objective will always be to remain competitive in the legal market place and reward our attorneys for their hard work and contributions.
Assuming that a merger with the Orrick firm does occur, we will communicate the combined firm’s associate compensation structure as soon as possible. If the merger does not occur, attorneys will be notified of the Dewey Ballantine FY 2007 hours threshold promptly.
The full Dewey Ballantine memo, after the jump.
This post has nothing to do with the morbidly obese (which we recently learned is a medical term, not a colorful insult). In fact, they should probably hang a sign out reading, “Fat people need not apply.”
“They” refers to Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton, which is launching an exciting new practice group: the Fashion and Apparel Team (“FAT”). And if it’s anything like the fashion industry itself, a BMI over 20 will kill your chances of working there.
An advertisement the firm ran during New York Fashion Week encouraged people to “Get the skinny on FAT law.” Here’s what FAT law entails:
From negotiating contracts for TV reality show “Project Runway” to fending off UGG boot knock-offs, the new group is marketing itself as the go-to firm for Los Angeles and New York’s booming fashion industries….
So far, the group’s clients include Abercrombie & Fitch Stores; Victoria’s Secret Stores; Louis Vuitton U.S.; and Gap Inc.
It also is hoping to court celebrity clients who use their famous name to launch their own perfume or clothing line — such as when pop singer and fashion icon Gwen Stefani launched a clothing line in 2003.
This may strike some of you as yet another dubious new practice group. Is there really that much synergy to be gained through aggregation of fashion-related matters?
But hey, it sure sounds fun. It beats the pants off Global Warming for “coolest newfangled practice niche.” And when that associate who really wanted to be in Government Contracts gets stuck in Fashion and Apparel, the partner can superciliously tell her:
“Oh, don’t be silly — EVERYONE wants this. Everyone wants to be US.”
Sheppard Mullin Launches Fashion and Apparel Practice Group [The Recorder via Law.com]
We love contests, and we love divas. So of course we couldn’t resist this poll.
An interesting line-up of nominees. We’re surprised that Michelle Malkin and Kathryn Lopez/K-Lo, both of whom have cult followings, aren’t doing better.
We endorse Professor Althouse — and not just because she’s the most law-oriented blogger in the mix. Why should you vote for her? She makes her case here. Money quote:
I’m not the most conservative. But I am a diva, and I am a blogress, and I can be your blogress diva, you conservative, you.
If you doubt the good professor’s diva credentials, refresh your memory by looking back on her recent “Christianist” catfight with Andrew Sullivan. Or our all-time favorite Althouse-cation, a battle with liberal feminist bloggers that was triggered by this innocent little post.
Voting Begins for Grande Conservative Blogress Diva [Gay Patriot]
Grande Conservative Blogress Diva — 2007 Nominees [Gay Patriot]
Rein in your enthusiasm no longer [Althouse]
Grande Conservative Blogress Diva 2007 [Althouse]
The latest bonus news comes from Kirkland & Ellis. Like Wachtell, K&E is sui generis. Kirkland associate bonuses are individualized, rather than lockstep by class, so they’re harder to get a handle on.
As alluded to by this comment, there’s a Magic Table — closely guarded, not even seen by the firm’s (non-share) partners — setting forth the various bonus ranges. The range that you fall into depends upon your seniority, your hours billed, and your rating — below class, with class, above class, etc.
For more details, check out this comprehensive explanation (courtesy of generic fungible item).
Some ballpark figures have been appearing on the message boards. And the numbers, if true, look good for K&E associates. A general observation from the detailed summary:
It seems this year that an average-billing junior associate [at Kirkland & Ellis] gets about $10-15K over market (the firm’s billable-hours average is about 2050). An average-billing midlevel-to-senior associate gets at least $20K-$30K over market. [T]he precise accuracy of numbers is hard to verify as it is based on a collection of data points and not the full grid.
The Kirkland system raises this question: Unless you’re a slacker, is an individualized system better than a lockstep one? Consider this pithy comment: “Kill lockstep. Firms use it to play off of our fears of getting screwed royally, and instead screw us regularly.”
If you can enlighten us further on K&E bonuses — or if you have a bootleg copy of the Magic Table — please email us, or append a comment.
Kirkland Bonus System Explained [Infirmation / Greedy NY]
Kirkland rocks [Infirmation / Greedy Chicago]
We have a weakness for the ridiculous and bizarre. So we’re finding ourselves quite taken with all these tales of law school library strangeness.
Here’s an update on yesterday’s item about the “attorney general of the United States,” at the Emory Law School library:
The “attorney general” was a homeless guy that wandered around the whole law school. I was studying in the main common area when he asked me if there were any professors who would be interested in the “largest federal lawsuit ever filed.” He also asked me to vouch for him if security came looking for him.
Apparently he had already done his shtick in the library and was chased out by the librarians. The library was locked, and students needed to swipe their ID card to get in, so a fellow student must have let him in.
I dispatched him to the floor that contained the faculty offices (and was nicely contained). Security was informed. He was discovered changing his clothes, then was escorted off the premises. Nice guy, just a little… err, very creepy.
We’re glad Emory security can tell the difference between homeless people and law professors. Given the similarities — disheveled, smelly, given to wearing ratty sports coats, talking to themselves — it’s only a matter of time before a mistake gets made.
(Oh, and speaking of homeless people…)
Earlier: What Is Up With Law School Libraries These Days?
Breaking: Mystery Smell Hits NYU Law Library!!!
- Affirmative Action, Celebrities, Constitutional Law, Environment / Environmental Law, Morning Docket, Murder, Sentencing Law
* Affirmative action not gone quite yet for Michigan schools. [AP via How Appealing]
* Convicted debutante killers not so happy at sentencing. [CNN]
* Nebraska corporate farming ban violates dormant commerce clause; Nebraska will appeal to the Supreme Court. [Jurist]
* Dracula Jr.’s a lawyer. [WSJ Law Blog]
* 13 States and DC sue EPA to get them to, you know, protect the environment. [MSNBC]
We’re logging off for a while. In the event that some firm makes a big, market-topping bonus announcement while we’re gone, please let us know in the comments.
We can’t take credit for the title of this post. Here’s an excerpt from an email we received with the subject heading, “Sidley Grinch”:
Sidley matched in New York, but the great story for them is the big f*** you they sent to associates in other offices. Not only did Sidley give associates in non-NY offices nearly half the bonus money, but they made sure everyone knows that they received less. And they try to make it seem like they were so generous last year that there was no reason to increase bonuses this year (don’t buy the “we just got started at 20k” b.s.).
The best part is that associates in the New York office had a lower hours requirement, too. Non-NY associates were strictly cut out of the bonus trough if they didn’t make 2,000 hours. New York associates could get a bonus if they worked 1,800. A great Christmas gift.
The memo, after the jump.
Lawyers often draw a distinction between their “legal persona” and their “private-life persona.” A lawyer might be a tiger in the courtroom, but a pussycat in social interactions. For more examples, see here.
Writers and bloggers sometimes also exhibit a “split personality.” A writer who is belligerent in the blogosphere might be mild-mannered in person.
There appears to be a similar divide between the “performing” and “real-life” personalities of our beloved Beyonce:
Beyoncé Knowles is known for being sexy, seductive and provocative when she performs on stage, but she says that’s not really her; that’s her alter ego Sasha.
“I wouldn’t like Sasha if I met her offstage.” Beyoncé tells Parade Magazine in an article for the upcoming issue.
She said Sasha is “too aggressive, too strong, too sassy, too sexy!
An odd question that we’ll toss out for your consideration: Which celebrity best captures your lawyering personality? Or, put another way, if a movie were being made about your legal career, who should be cast as you, and why?
A strange inquiry; not sure if we’ll get any responses. Drafting merger agreements isn’t very cinematic. But if you have any thoughts on this, please share them in the comments.
(An example: One of our favorite partners — alas, we didn’t work with her as much as we would have liked — was a magnificient blonde litigatrix. She was smart, tough, and sexy, and she was the lawyerly embodiment of Heather Locklear.)
Beyoncé On Love, Depression And Reality [CBS News]
Your legal persona versus your private-life persona [ABA Journal eReport]