DC Pulse

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    Yoga Lawyer: A Way of Being In The (Legal) World

    More than a decade ago, a stressful job and a pile of physical ailments prompted attorney Cindy Pensoneau to take a deep dive into yoga. Today, she continues to work as both a lawyer and as a yoga teacher, illustrating the growing role that the ancient mind-body practice can play in improving attorney mental health.

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    GCs Help Companies Close The Gap On Mental Health Efforts

    While they wait for their companies to implement more wellness policies that reach the root causes of employees’ stress and burnout, some general counsel and chief legal officers are filling the gap to help their law teams feel more supported.

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    Here's Why This GC Went Public With Her Bipolar Diagnosis

    Kelly Rentzel, who has held several general counsel positions throughout her career, largely credits her law degree for giving her the confidence to talk publicly about her bipolar diagnosis — which is something she had contemplated for two decades before taking the initial steps that ultimately led her to a lectern.

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    Womble Bond Promotes UK Partner To Innovation Chief

    Womble Bond Dickinson in the U.K. has elevated partner and head of innovation Sam Dixon to chief innovation officer, the transatlantic law firm announced earlier this week.

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    JAMS Adds Sidley Partner, Ex-FDA Chief Counsel In DC

    The arbitration and dispute resolution services group JAMS has hired a long time Sidley Austin LLP partner, whose wealth of experience in public service includes serving as one of the top attorneys in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and experience as the leader of a U.S. Department of Justice office focused on dispute resolution, the group announced Tuesday.

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    SEC Vet Joins NC Firm 'Reinventing' White Collar

    The former assistant secretary of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Christina Zaroulis Milnor, has left government service after more than a decade to launch a Washington, D.C., office for North Carolina-based Cranfill Sumner LLP alongside two firm partners who say they are reinventing traditional white collar work, the firm announced Wednesday.

  • Justices Told Error Admission Merits Respect In Capital Case

    Attorneys general from across the country implored the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday to give the "utmost" deference to Oklahoma's confession that prosecutorial misconduct led to the wrongful conviction of a death row inmate and to overturn a state court ruling that rebuffed the admission and upheld the conviction.

  • $626M Fee Award In BCBS Deal Is Unjust, High Court Told

    A member of the class that settled multidistrict litigation with Blue Cross Blue Shield for $2.67 billion over anti-competitive practices has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to take up his challenge to the $626 million attorney fees award in the settlement, arguing the Eleventh Circuit's approval of the award runs counter to high court precedent.

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    Dechert Adds Wilson Sonsini, Ex-SEC Crypto Expert In DC

    A cryptocurrency and financial technology attorney who spent nearly six years with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has left his most-recent role as a partner with Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC to join Dechert LLP in Washington, D.C., the firm announced Tuesday.

  • ABA Knocks Down 'Implausible' Data Breach Class Action

    The American Bar Association members suing the organization over a data breach have not identified any security measures the ABA failed to take, a New York federal judge said Tuesday when nixing what the organization called the members' "implausible" proposed class action.

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    FDA Vet Brings Regulatory, Compliance Expertise To Sidley

    Sidley Austin LLP on Monday announced the addition of a longtime U.S. Food and Drug Administration attorney, touting his regulatory and compliance expertise connected to drugs, biologics, medical devices, food, cosmetics and tobacco.

  • DC Bar Prosecutors Say Jeffrey Clark 'Betrayed His Oath'

    Attorney disciplinary authorities in Washington, D.C., have urged an ethics hearing committee to recommend disbarring former U.S. Department of Justice official Jeffrey Clark, saying he "betrayed his oath" to the Constitution by aiding former President Donald Trump's efforts to undermine the 2020 elections, and "is not fit to be a member of the District of Columbia Bar."

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    Squire Patton Taps Leader For New Insurance Disputes Group

    Squire Patton Boggs LLP has created a new practice that brings together its long-standing dispute work for insurance companies, naming a partner who represents some of the largest U.S. insurance companies to lead the new practice, the firm said Tuesday.

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    Ex-DOJ Antitrust Atty Joins Kressin Meador As Name Partner

    A former U.S. Department of Justice official who most recently worked at Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson LLC has joined antitrust boutique Kressin Meador Powers LLC, formerly known as Kressin Meador LLC, as a name partner.

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    Return To Office Poses Pitfalls For Atty Mental Health

    As a therapist specialized in treating lawyers, Stacey Dougan hears a lot about law firm politics, addiction and the career's overwhelming demands. But lately, her clients have been bringing up a new source of anxiety: returning to the office.

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    Mid-Law Not Immune To Structural Mental Health Challenges

    Despite the common narrative that lawyers can trade higher pay for better well-being and work-life balance by moving to smaller firms, experts say that Mid-Law firms are generally facing the same industry pressures that contribute to long hours, stress and poor attorney mental health.

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    Ethics Probes Take Mental Toll On Solo, Small Firm Attorneys

    Facing a disciplinary complaint can take a toll on any attorney’s mental health. But for solo practitioners and small firm lawyers, who typically juggle all aspects of their business from handling client matters to administrative tasks like managing trust accounts, it can threaten to upend their lives.

  • A&O Shearman Names UK And US Managing Partners

    Allen & Overy LLP and Shearman & Sterling LLP named on Tuesday the partners set to lead the soon-to-be merged A&O Shearman for the U.S. and U.K. markets.

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    Kirkland Adds 2nd Funds Group From Goodwin This Year

    Kirkland & Ellis LLP has hired a group of four attorneys specializing in investment funds from Goodwin Procter LLP, the firm said Monday, following its addition of five investment funds lawyers from the same firm in February.

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    Finnegan Hires Long Time Patent Office Legal Adviser In DC

    A more-than two decade veteran of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has left the agency to return to private practice, this time in a new role with Finnegan Henderson Farabow Garrett & Dunner LLP, the firm announced Monday.

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    Immigration Firm BAL Lands 21 Attys From Seyfarth

    Immigration firm Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP is set to welcome about 90 legal professionals — including 21 attorneys — from Seyfarth Shaw LLP this summer and will open a new office in Atlanta as part of the expansion, the firm said Monday.

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    The Best Therapy For Lawyers, According To Ex-Lawyers

    Attorneys-turned-therapists say no one understands the stresses of being a lawyer like another lawyer. They also say their clients sometimes struggle at first with treatment that prioritizes feelings, mindfulness and even body awareness over the intellectualizing and rationalizing that make them successful at their jobs.

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    Orrick Adds Morgan Lewis Securities Regulatory Atty In DC

    Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP has hired a longtime Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP partner who focuses his practice on helping clients understand a myriad of securities regulations and financial laws, the firm announced Monday.

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    How Dechert's Culture Helped Its SF Leader Forge Resilience

    When his 2-month-old daughter was hospitalized with a potentially fatal condition, Dechert partner Jonathan Stott leaned on firm mentors and colleagues for strength. Now, as managing partner of the firm's San Francisco office Stott is on a mission to pay it forward and continue fostering a supportive and resilient office community.

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    Atty Alcohol Misuse: What's Worked, What Hasn't, What's Next

    In the eight years since an ABA report revealed pervasive alcohol misuse among lawyers, the legal industry has sought to address the problem. Here is a look at what’s working, what isn’t, and how legal employers can effectively address law’s problem drinking crisis going forward.

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Expert Analysis

  • How Women In Law Can Advance Toward Leadership Roles Author Photo

    Female attorneys in leadership roles inspire other women to pursue similar opportunities in a male-dominated field, and for those who aspire to lead, prioritizing collaboration, inclusivity and integrity is key, says Kim Yelkin at Foley & Lardner.

  • The Case That Took Me From Prosecutor To Defense Attorney Author Photo

    Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Moira Penza, now at Wilkinson Stekloff, recalls the challenges of her first case as a civil defense attorney — a multibillion-dollar multidistrict class action against Allergan — and the lessons she learned about building rapport in the courtroom and with co-counsel.

  • The Importance Of Legal Macroeconomics Education For Attys Author Photo

    Most legal professionals lack understanding of the macroeconomic trends unique to the legal industry, like the rising cost of law school and legal services, which contributes to an unfair and inaccessible justice system, so law school courses and continuing legal education requirements in this area are essential, says Bob Glaves at the Chicago Bar Foundation.

  • Opinion

    It's Time To Hold DC Judges Accountable For Misconduct Author Photo

    On the heels of Thursday's congressional hearing on workplace protections for judiciary employees, former law clerk Aliza Shatzman recounts her experience of harassment by a D.C. Superior Court judge — and argues that the proposed Judiciary Accountability Act, which would extend vital anti-discrimination protections to federal court employees, should also include D.C. courts.

  • What ABA Student Well-Being Standards Mean For Law Firms Author Photo

    While the American Bar Association's recent amendments to its law school accreditation standards around student well-being could have gone further, legal industry employers have much to learn from the ABA's move and the well-being movement that continues to gain traction in law schools, says David Jaffe at the American University Washington College of Law.

  • Series

    Ask A Mentor: How Do I Build Rapport In New In-House Role? Author Photo

    Tim Parilla at LinkSquares explains how new in-house lawyers can start developing relationships with colleagues both within and outside their legal departments in order to expand their networks, build their brands and carve their paths to leadership positions.

  • What Attys Should Consider Before Taking On Pro Bono Work
    Excerpt from Practical Guidance
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    Piper Hoffman and Will Lowrey at Animal Outlook lay out suggestions for attorneys to maximize the value of their pro bono efforts, from crafting engagement letters to balancing workloads — and they explain how these principles can foster a more rewarding engagement for both lawyers and nonprofits.

  • 7 Ways Attys Can Improve Their LinkedIn Summaries Author Photo

    Lawyers can use LinkedIn to strengthen their thought leadership position, generate new business, explore career opportunities, and better position themselves and their firms in search results by writing a well-composed, optimized summary that demonstrates their knowledge and experience, says Guy Alvarez at Good2bSocial.

  • How Law Firms And Attys Can Combat Imposter Syndrome Author Photo

    Imposter syndrome is rampant in the legal profession, especially among lawyers from underrepresented backgrounds, leading to missed opportunities and mental health issues — but firms can provide support in numerous ways, and attorneys can use therapeutic strategies to quiet their inner critic, says Helen Pamely at Rosling King.

  • The Law Firm Qualities Partners Seek In Lateral Moves Author Photo

    In 2022, partners considering lateral moves have new priorities, and firms that hope to recruit top talent will need to communicate their strategy for growth, engage on hot issues like origination credit and diversity initiatives, and tailor their integration plans toward expanding partners’ client base, says Gloria Sandrino at Lateral Link.

  • Small Steps Can Help Employers Beat Attorney Burnout Author Photo

    Lawyers are experiencing burnout on a massive, unprecedented scale due to the pandemic, but law firms and institutional players can and should make a difference by focusing on small, practical solutions that protect their attorneys’ most precious personal resource and professional commodity — time, says Chad Sarchio, president of the District of Columbia Bar.

  • The Evolving Role Of The Law Firm Legal Secretary Author Photo

    Technological shifts during the pandemic and beyond should force firms to rethink how legal secretaries can not only better support timekeepers but also participate in elevating client service, bifurcating the role into an administrative support position and a more elevated practice support role, says Lauren Chung at HBR Consulting.

  • Series

    Ask A Mentor: How Can I Ace My Upcoming Annual Review? Author Photo

    Jennifer Rakstad at White & Case highlights how associates can emphasize achievements and seek support before, during and after their annual review, despite the pandemic’s negative effects on face time with colleagues and business development opportunities.

  • How Your Law Firm's Brand Can Convey Prestige Author Photo

    In order to be perceived as prestigious by clients and potential recruits, law firms should take their branding efforts beyond designing visual identities and address six key imperatives to differentiate themselves — from identifying intangible core strengths to delivering on promises at every interaction, says Howard Breindel at DeSantis Breindel.

  • How Dynamic Project Management Can Help Law Firms Author Photo

    Law firms looking to streamline matter management should consider tools that offer both employees and clients real-time access to documents, action items, task assignee information and more, overcoming many of the limitations of project communications via email, says Stephen Weyer at Stites & Harbison.

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