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necktie 2 sex doorknob Above the Law blog.jpgAn attorney sent this office-wide email to the entire Washington office of Arnold & Porter:

To: [D.C. office of Arnold & Porter]
Subject: Did you leave your tie on my chair?

I know this may sound ridiculous, however, I’m not sure how to handle this unusual situation. I don’t know where it came from, but this morning I found a tie on my chair…

If you left it here and would like it returned, please let me know. My general apologies for this interruption in your day.


Question for sender: Is your office chair all sticky today?

Here’s our latest legal celebrity sighting, for our occasional Eyes of the Law feature:

I’ve seen Alberto Gonzales walking the streets near Metro Center three times in the last month. Today he was walking with a blonde woman who was keeping a comfortable distance and not saying much. She looked like someone I should recognize, but didn’t.

Hmm… Might it have been Monica Goodling?
Or maybe not:

Alberto Gonzales Rebecca Turner Gonzales Above the Law blog.jpgI think the blonde woman may have been his wife? [Ed. note: Our source directed us to the photo at right.]

All three times have been right around the intersection of 13th and F Streets. Today he was walking west on F Street, and the last time I remember he was walking south on 13th Street. He was with someone then too, but it was a man, and so obviously not his wife. Can’t remember the time before that.

Any idea what he’s up to these days? BTW: he looks taller on TV, but then again I guess everyone does.

True; the celebrities we’ve met generally look smaller in real life. But there are some exceptions. E.g., Bill Clinton (who is taller in real life than you’d expect).
Have you seen a famous lawyer or judge out and about lately? If so, please email us. Thanks.
Update: We now think we know what Alberto Gonzales was doing in that part of town. See here.

Ballard Spahr Andrews Ingersoll LLP Above the Law blog.jpgFrom a Philadelphia tipster:

“Since you posted the Blank Rome raise, you might as well post this raise regarding Ballard Spahr as well.”

Ballard Spahr is an Am Law 100 firm. So sure, we’re happy to post their associate pay raise memo.
Check it out, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Nationwide Pay Raise Watch: Ballard Spahr Raises”

100 dollar bill Above the Law Above the Law law firm salary legal blog legal tabloid Above the Law.JPGOf course it does. Check out this post, with a handy chart, over at Empirical Legal Studies.
Here’s an excerpt from Professor Bill Henderson’s excellent analysis:

The median salary spread for a 1st year associate at a 2 -25 lawyer firm versus a 500+ firm is $77,000. When the reference group is a 51-100 lawyer law firm versus 500+, the differential is still a substantial $55,000 per year. Cumulatively, for all eight years of the associate track, the spread amounts to $631,000 for 2-25 vs. 500+ lawyer firms and $524,000 for 51-100 vs. 500+.

In other words, the bimodal distribution discussed in an earlier post appears to hold fairly steady during the first several years of a young associate’s career. In fact, most 8th year associates at firms smaller than 250 lawyers are making less than a 1st year associate at a 500+ lawyer firm.

This is just the start of a much more detailed post, in which Professor Henderson compares working hours and quality of life at big firms versus small firms. Check out the whole thing over here.
Pay and Workweek Differentials by Law Firm Size [Empirical Legal Studies]

David Otunga Sidley Austin I Love New York Above the Law blog.jpgLaw firms love free publicity. Especially law firms that have been in the news for having to pay $27.5 million to settle age discrimination claims by former partners.
Or maybe not:

David Otunga, a 2006 graduate of Harvard Law School and former associate at Sidley Austin, appeared in the first episode of I Love New York 2 on VH1 last night.

In case you’re not familiar with the show, here’s a synopsis:

“Tiffany “New York” Pollard is jumping back into the dating pool to find the man of her dreams. A fresh crop of twenty men are brought together to compete for her heart and this time the selection process has a twist….some of the chosen contestants vying for New York’s heart have been hand-picked by online users and some have been chosen by Tiffany’s outspoken mother, Sister Patterson.”

Back to our tipster:

[Otunga] was brought in as one of three or four “Mama’s Boys” (potential suitors selected by New York’s mother) and nicknamed “Punk.” He told New York that he was perfect for her, since he was an HLS grad and a lawyer at “one of the top law firms in the world.”

Unfortunately, that law firm — Sidley Austin — didn’t appreciate his appearance on the show, and the firm recently “suggested” to him that it may be in his best interest to pursue his “acting career” instead of his legal career. He’s no longer on the firm’s webpage.

More after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Sidley Hates on Old People, Reality TV Stars”

bonsai tree S&C Sullivan Cromwell Above the Law blog.jpgThink of law firm recruiting as a war. America’s top law firms are engaged in a battle to the death, vying for the best young legal minds in the country. And in this war, Sullivan & Cromwell is bringing out the heavy artillery.
Sources report that S&C is sending its offerees… BONSAI TREES!!!
We asked one bonsai tree recipient to speculate on what S&C is trying to say with these gifts:

There’s no message with them (other than a “Compliments of Sullivan & Cromwell” card). Bonsai trees live a long time. Perhaps they want us to grow old with the firm?

Or maybe to “bend over” like a bonsai?
Another theory: “[M]aybe it is a test to see if we can keep them alive by the time the summer rolls around.”
Interesting. Perhaps the firm can give a special prize to the S&C summer associate with the best bonsai tree at the start of the program?
More about S&C’s odd horticultural booty, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Sullivan & Cromwell to 190K Bonsai Trees!”

* Oregon teacher sues for right to bring gun to school. [MSNBC]
* Banks scarier than criminals? [Red Tape Chronicles]
* Marion Jones returns gold medals. [ESPN]
* Hillary spars with questioner over interpretation of Senate’s Iran resolution language. [CNN PoliTic]

In case you haven’t noticed, we aren’t publishing today (even though many of you, except for the government workers among you, are probably at work). For more explanation, see this post, over at our big sibling site.
Happy Columbus Day! We’ll see you tomorrow.
Happy Columbus Day! [DealBreaker]

* Where’s tort reform when you need it? [KMBC-TV]
* Duke players sue. [New York Times]
* Record companies 1, Illegal downloaders 0 (and by 1 we mean $220,000) [Jurist]
* Saudis embrace the idea of judicial activism the rule of law. [BBC]
* Hey PETA: Leave Michael Vick alone! [Atlanta Journal-Constitution]
* Prosecutors don’t take getting caught as a predator well; first there was the guy that Dateline made kill himself in Texas, and now this guy. [ClickOn Detroit]
Update: We posted Non-Sequiturs kinda early, and these links subsequently came to our attention:
* TexasBarTube. [Legal Blog Watch]
* They like us! They really like us! [Blawg Review]
Ok, we’re off to drink beer and watch baseball, which means we’re done for the weekend (thank God, right?). You guys get Lat back next week.

Warmest congratulations to our friends Junko Ozao and Jason Choy, whose lovely wedding was written up in this week’s Vows column. Jason is an associate at Kirkland & Ellis, but Junko is a normal person, and that shortcoming cost them a spot in this week’s Legal Eagle Wedding Watch. The news will likely ruin their three-week honeymoon, but such are the ruthless decisions our readers expect LEWW to make.
Here are the six finalists (all lawyers):

1.) Amanda Trivax and Brian Burnovski
2.) Anna Skotko and Ben Vonwiller
3.) Amy Tovar and Benjamin Horwich

More about these legal eagles, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Legal Eagle Wedding Watch 9.30.07: Shall We Dance?”

Ok, here’s the final non-top-tier law graduate of the day:
Name: Leon Panetta
Law School: Santa Clara University
Current Position: Co-Director of The Leon & Sylvia Panetta Institute of Public Policy, and frequent talking head
Why He’s Our Winner: Former Congressman and White House Chief of Staff to Bill Clinton
And this winner reminds us of an honorable mention, which follows the jump.
Leon Panetta bio [Wikipedia]
The Leon & Sylvia Panetta Institute for Public Policy

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Co-Non-Top-Tier Law Graduate of the Day”

Here is the latest Job of the Week, courtesy of ATL’s career partner, Lateral Link. To refresh your recollection:

“Because Lateral Link does no cold-calling and is more efficient than traditional recruiting firms, successful candidates receive $10,000 upon placement.”

Company: Fortune 500 Tech Company
Title: Corporate Counsel, Real Estate
Location: Mountain View, CA
Description: This Fortune 500 Tech Company is seeking a Corporate Counsel, Real Estate, to focus on transactions related to expanding or constructing data centers and other facilities. Specific responsibilities include the following: draft, review and negotiate PSA’s, easements and land-use rights; and review, modify and negotiate construction agreements.
The position requires 7-10 years of experience handling complex and strategic real estate transactions on a global basis, specifically with commercial leases, real-property acquisitions
and sales, and construction agreements.
To apply for this position, please visit

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