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Just a reminder that the 2010 summer associate survey results have been incorporated into the Summer Associate Program sections within each of the Firm Snapshots. So be sure to visit the Career Center, where you’ll find inside information about the summer programs at all the major law firms. Here are some examples:

  • Lunches at this firm are limited to 10 “traditional” lunches budgeted at $65 each, and 20 “casual” lunches budgeted at $15 each.  But if the wining and dining, long hours, and BlackBerrys aren’t your thing, the firm gives a few summer associates the opportunity to spend an additional four to six weeks on a public service project at their full firm salary.
  • With 93% of summer associates receiving offers in 2009, no start date deferrals, a summer associate weekend retreat on Catalina Island, and a trip to Disneyland, this firm has its summer associates feeling like they’re summering at the happiest Biglaw firm on earth.
  • Unsociable types need not apply to this firm, which summer associates confirm lives up to its “very social” and “fratty” reputation.  In addition to a full calendar of after-work events, a summer associate weekend retreat is held in Beverly Hills for more socializing, schmoozing, and a bit of training.
  • Summer associates who share the same entrepreneurial spirit as this firm will thrive in the free-market assignment system, where summers are in control of their workload and who they work with, and have no qualms about needing to “reach out to attorneys for assignments, mentorship and feedback.”
  • Summer associates have to “[b]e prepared to be on top of [their] game all the time” at this firm, where social events are as equally important as work product quality.

For information on summer programs and associate life at all the top firms, visit the Career Center.

Today Am Law released an exhaustive report about female equity partners at major law firms — equity partners, not to be confused with non-equity partners (who are really glorified associates that firms slap with the “partner” label in order to look good when folks like BBLP or Jezebel come calling). The numbers aren’t going to surprise any woman who is seriously considering a career in law.

But just because they’re not surprising doesn’t make them any less depressing. From the report:

The data compiled for this first systematic look at the issue is presented below. When we reviewed it, two numbers immediately jumped out. First, women make up only 17 percent of partners at the firms we surveyed, even though they have represented about 51 percent of law school graduates in the last 20 years. Second, of the women partners who work at multi-tier firms, 45 percent have equity status. In comparison, 62 percent of the male partners at these firms have equity.

Retention issue much? At 17 percent, you’re talking about a serious glass ceiling sitting on top of women at major law firms. With spikes pointing downard. And holes so small you can’t possibly fit squeeze through them if you are carrying any extra weight, or a baby….

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Last week, we asked for possible captions for this strange photo:

Vote for your favorite from the eight funny finalists, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Caption Contest Finalists: ‘Linen Closet Associates’”

Earlier this week, Conor Friedersdorf, writing for The Atlantic, poured a big bottle of haterade all over the legal profession. More specifically, he criticized the way “Ivy League” lawyers are recruited, and the “palpable sense of entitlement” they exhibit even when they don’t take Biglaw bucks and instead work for the government. Here’s the set up:

The details of how elite law and business consulting firms recruit astonish me every time I hear them. Even getting an interview often requires attending an Ivy League professional school or a very few top tier equivalents. Folks who succeed in that round are invited to spend a summer working at the firm, the most sane aspect of the process.

But subsequently, they participate in sell events where they’re plied with food and alcohol in the most lavish settings imaginable: five star resort hotels, fine cigar bars, the priciest restaurants.

And here’s the money shot, one that is careening around the legal blogosphere like Billy Joel trying to get back from the Hamptons before the hurricane hits:

Though it isn’t defensible, it is unsurprising that a lot of people who eschew offers to work at these firms, favoring public sector work instead, imagine that they are making an enormous personal sacrifice by taking government work. The palpable sense of entitlement some of these public sector folks exude is owed partly to how few of “our best and brightest” do eschew the big firm route (due partly to increasing debt levels among today’s graduates, no doubt).

Really? You want to do this now? You want to talk smack about the people on the bottom rung of this totem pole, while willfully ignoring the clients, partners, law schools, and state governments that generate huge sums of wealth off the backs of the palpably entitled?

Fine. Let me take off my glasses, and we’ll step outside…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The World Hates Lawyers: Mainstream Media Manages to Criticize Biglaw Summers AND Public Sector Lawyers in the Same Breath”

Before we go hard-core with the lawyerly nuptials, we must mention a couple of recent Vows columns that are worth a look. First, this offbeat pair had three children together before finally deciding, at the ages of 63 and 39, to tie the knot. And the geriatric groom sounds way too horny: “I lusted after Nina, and still do, in a very primal way.” Yuck. If you’re over 40 and not John Slattery, Pierce Brosnan, or Captain Jean-Luc Picard, we don’t want to hear about your primal lust.

Then there’s this uncomfortable write-up, in which the couple cheerfully airs a story that makes the groom sound like a massive cad at best (he “shacked up” with someone else while she was studying abroad and failed to mention that detail in the cheesy love letters he was sending her). “I’m still pretty incredulous that she’s with me,” says the wannabe-player groom. So are we.

On to this week’s slate of newlyweds, which we believe sets a new record for number of Harvard and Yale degrees:

1. Anne Catherine Savage and Zachary Podolsky

2. Elena Lalli and Guillermo Coronado

3. Caroline Lopez and Nicholas Miranda

4. Alexandra Denniston and Caleb Schillinger

Read more about these couples — and vote for your favorite — after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Legal Eagle Wedding Watch: Badgered”

Yesterday we wrote about Madam Justice Lori Douglas, a Canadian judge in Manitoba who, in her pre-robescent days, apparently posed for nude pictures — while engaged in such activities as bondage, sex toy play, and oral sex. These photographs apparently made their way on to an interracial porn website called (without Douglas’s knowledge or consent, according to her husband — who claims he posted the pics during a bout with depression).

The pictures came to light when an ethics complaint was filed against Justice Douglas and her husband, matrimonial lawyer Jack King. A former client of King, an African-Canadian gentleman by the name of Alex Chapman, claims that King sexually harassed him by showing him the porn pics of Lori Douglas and encouraging him (Chapman) to have sexual relations with Douglas. According to Chapman, King suffers not just from depression but from “Jungle Fever”: he is titillated by African-Canadian men getting it on with white women.

Justice Douglas did not comment to CBC News, which broke the story. But she has taken other action in the wake of the scandal….

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“If you build it, he will come.”

– Voice heard by Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams

Writing a book, blog, article or white paper are all great ways to get noticed and build relationships in the legal industry. Unfortunately, practicing lawyers confront great demands on their time, and even though they have good intentions, the work of creating this type of content is often delegated to associates or put off altogether. Part of the problem is that writing blog posts and articles is a loss leader. You spend too much time writing without business coming in, and soon enough you’ll be out of business.

Here is where social media and email marketing comes in. Every article and piece of content you create no longer has just one life. Now it can easily have nine. Hopefully one of these nine lives will give you the extra motivation to start writing more.

Life 1: Blog.

The law blog is your home base for all your new content. Creating blog posts on a regular basis is the single most powerful tool for business development in the online world. The search engines love fresh content, and once you have enough content on your blog, you will create a steady flow of traffic to your site….

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* In honor of 90210 day, here’s a law-related story about a high school teacher who made beautiful music with his female students. Too bad this didn’t happen on the show — he’d be a lot hotter. [Belleville News Democrat]

* The worst hangover ever: realizing that you lost a $1.3M painting while you were wasted. [Associated Press]

* If they want to live, the members of the Pacific Justice Institute had better not question the Governator’s action — or inaction — regarding Proposition 8. [WSJ Law Blog]

* Holy Xenu! With $1,000 a day fines, Scientology is making this lawyer one sad thetan. [St. Petersburg Times]

* Why involve the Second Circuit when even Kool & The Gang know that ladies’ night is constitutional? [New York Daily News]

* In the rap world, it’s all about the benjamins, baby… until you need a hip replacement. [NBC New York]

* The Discovery Channel thinks that the world is just awesome, but James Lee didn’t share the same sentiments. Too soon? [CNN Justice]

If you are a current midlevel associate at a top firm, that means you survived the worst of the Biglaw layoffs. In fact, it probably means you survived while friends and colleagues were having their careers ruined.

That should make you happy, right? Not according to the American Lawyer’s annual midlevel associate survey. The results, released this morning, show that midlevel associates are anything but satisfied with their careers. From the report:

Many people would consider Am Law 200 midlevel associates to be extremely fortunate. While thousands of their colleagues lost jobs, these young lawyers are gainfully employed with salaries in the six figures. The midlevels tell us that they survived the recession in part because of the quality of their work, and that they aren’t worried about losing their jobs going forward. And even though revenue and profits dipped at the majority of their firms, relative to other industries, Big Law wasn’t hit as hard during the recession. In many ways, once their student loans are paid off, midlevel associates’ prospects seem bright.

But that’s not how they see it. Maybe it’s the posttraumatic stress syndrome from watching so many associates and law firm staffers get the ax, but the midlevels who survived the great purge aren’t feeling particularly fortunate. In fact, they seem downright cranky.

Survivor’s guilt? Not bloody likely. The result are probably due to people working harder than they were before the recession for less pay and job security than they had before the recession. Add in the fact that their secretaries have probably been fired (and so the partners now treat them like paralegals), and the fact that they’re more likely to get struck by a bolt of lightning than make partner, and you can see why these people are a little disappointed with the way things have turned out.

I’ll pause now so all the members of the Lost Generation can comment on how they would change places with these disgruntled midlevels faster than one can ask “would you like fries with that”…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The Am Law Mid-Level Survey Is Out: And (Surprise) Mid-Levels Are Still Unhappy”

* If your Westlaw database isn’t working right, this might explain why. [3 Geeks and a Law Blog]

* Kashmir Hill examines the case of a Maryland woman who was banned from Facebook — and is now suing the company over it. [Forbes]

* Immigration lawyer Lavi Soloway rates the White House and Congress’s efforts at immigration reform — and his verdict is not kind. [Soloway]

* Jane Genova was not a fan of today’s post by “Juggalo Law” about Caroline Giuliani. [Law and More]

* A Round Tuit’s weekly review of legal blogging, covering the meaning of friendship in the legal blogosphere, a debunking of a poorly-constructed study of public and private criminal defense, and some good advice for incoming 1Ls. [Infamy or Praise]

* Gilt Groupe’s special menswear sale for Above the Law readers ends tomorrow — so act now, or your purchase may be time-barred. [Gilt Man]

Ra the Sun God could be seeking revenge on the Hebrews

The new school year is off to a rocky start at Cardozo and NYU Law. One school is dealing with a rash of anti-Semitism, while the other can’t seem to execute basic building maintenance.

If you had to guess which school was dealing with hate speech against Jews, you’d guess Cardozo, right? Since Cardozo is the law school for Yeshiva University, it would be at least logical if anti-Semites focused their energies there. But you’d be wrong; never assume hate-mongers are able to form and execute logical thoughts. This year’s early anti-Semitism is happening at NYU, as the New York Post reports:

The NYPD Hate Crimes task force is investigating an anti-Semitic scrawl at NYU Law.

Cleaning staff found “Damn Orthodox Jews” scrawled in a first-floor men’s room at 40 Washington Square South at 1:45 p.m. Monday.

Cops are poring over surveillance videos.

Forty Washington Square South is the address of the main NYU Law building. It’s probably not the #1 address where Orthodox Jews gather to learn about the law, but expecting a graffiti-scrawling hatemonger to be able to grasp even basic facts is like asking a dog to know not to lick his ass in public.

Meanwhile, the New York City law school most strongly associated with Orthodox Jews is dealing with an altogether different kind of oppression….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Anti-Semitism and the Sun God Ra Afflict New York Area Law Schools”

Up in Canada, judges have no problem with cameras in the courtroom. As Canadian Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin explained in a recent discussion with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Canada’s high court has had cameras in the courtroom for over 20 years, and they haven’t caused any problems. [FN1]

Some Canadian judges don’t have a problem with cameras outside the courtroom, either. As reported by CBC News, naked photographs of a senior judge from Canada engaging in bondage, playing with sex toys and performing oral sex were previously posted on the internet. These nude pictures are now part of ethics complaints filed in July against the judge, Lori Douglas, associate chief justice of Manitoba Court of Queen’s Bench, and her husband, Winnipeg family lawyer Jack King.

And the pics are just the tip of the iceberg. The complainant, a 44-year-old computer specialist named Alexander Chapman, claims that Jack King, Chapman’s lawyer at the time, sexually harassed Chapman by pressuring him to have sex with King’s wife, Lori Douglas (still a lawyer at the time).

So… many… questions. Let’s learn more — plus ogle a bigger and better photo of Madam Justice Douglas….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Judge of the Day: Oh, Oh, Oh… Canada!”

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