- HCLN Welcome
- For the Record - Justin Scott '04
- Profile of John Soroko '73 via The Pennsylvania Lawyer
- Law Blotter
- Events and Additional News
- PDF of Current Edition for Download
Daniel Render ’06 — Dan is an Associate in the corporate and sports law group at Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP in Chicago, where his practice primarily focuses on representing professional sports teams and their owners in various commercial transactions, including financing, sponsorship agreements, and licensing transactions.
In this issue’s featured interview with Justin Scott ’04, Justin spoke with HCLN’s interviewer Taylor Cross ’18 about the importance of networking to his legal career and how his experience at Haverford has played an integral role in helping him develop his network.
I would like to echo Justin’s points. Aside from the friendships made and knowledge gained at Haverford, an often underrated and overlooked aspect of the experience and “membership” in the Haverford club is the impact that it can have on all of our ability to network.
For me personally, I have a number of close Haverford friends that have made crucial introductions for me and have given me their time and their advice over the years.
But in addition to this, if I ever run into a fellow Haverford alum, even someone who I don’t know well, there is an instant real connection that goes beyond what I see when my friends, family, or acquaintances that went to other larger schools meet alumni from their alma maters. I can recall numerous times when I have met or been on the phone with another attorney, client or clients, and it comes up that I went to Haverford. Instantly the other person’s tone and demeanor towards me changes in a way that indicates that I have already made it through some initial stage of vetting; that the other person automatically assumes that I possess a certain amount of intelligence, trustworthiness and character. And I have found this to be true with people that went to Haverford but also with people that did not go Haverford.
It is of course all of our responsibility to do our part to uphold this reputation and continue to enhance it through our actions. But it’s a heckuva starting point!
Interview with Justin Scott '04 — Justin is the founder of Scott Employment Law, P.C., a boutique employment litigation firm in Decatur, GA, representing both companies and individuals in employment disputes. He handles a wide range of employment cases, and has substantial experience litigating both individual and class/collective claims on both sides of the bar.
I noticed that you went to Emory University School of Law. How did you end up in Atlanta?
I grew up in Connecticut, and I came down to Atlanta because Emory is one of the schools that let me in. Leaving the Northeast was initially somewhat of a culture shock, but Atlanta is very cosmopolitan. I got a job right out of Emory down here, worked in Atlanta for seven years, then I went out to California for a few years, and now I’m back.
You recently started your own law firm. Can you describe what that has been like?
I started my own firm, Scott Employment Law, about five months ago. It’s a big change from what I’ve been doing most of my career. I had previously worked for a variety of different firms, including giant international law firms, most recently Paul Hastings. There are a lot of the perks that go along with being a big firm lawyer, but what your targets are, the cases you are working on, and who you are working with is largely dictated by the powers that be, and somewhat outside of your control. That said, in many ways, I had a great experience as a big firm lawyer, and learned a great deal. I traveled all over the country for cases, was involved in some large-scale discovery warfare involving a substantial number of depositions, and litigated multiple cases to trial.
But I’ve always wanted to strike on my own and it was in March that I filed my Articles of Incorporation. It’s been a lot of running around, working on content for the website, networking, getting referrals, and making sure that our name is out there properly, so that people can know who we are and that they can find us if they need help. I’m now involved in all facets of the firm, instead of what I used to do, which was just focus on my cases. Paul Hastings definitely wasn’t interested in my design ideas for their website. So it’s been a much different experience than a large law firm, and has been very exciting. I have a lot more control over the cases I take on and I get to decide the firm’s direction and what it is that I want to accomplish.
How did you start working in employment law? Was that always something you were always thinking of doing?
I knew I wanted to be in litigation, but other than that I had no specific direction. My first year in law school I got connected with Ashe Rafuse & Hill, an employment firm in Atlanta. I started working with them and was lucky enough to get a job offer after my second year of clerkship. I’ve been litigating employment cases ever since.
Would you say that there are specific challenges working in employment law?
Well, maybe the good and the bad is that it is very personality driven. The cases are very much built on people’s independent personalities, their work performance and their interactions with one another. I find it very interesting because, in employment law, you deal with allegations of harassment or discrimination, which are extremely personal issues for everyone involved. And because the cases are so personal to people, often times, when I handle plaintiffs’ cases, I have to somewhat play the dual role of therapist. You know people are going through life-changing circumstances and you have to be able to give them the proper amount of attention while simultaneously litigating on their behalf.
One of the challenging things about working in a location within the Eleventh Circuit is that it is more of an employer friendly jurisdiction than some others, especially compared to a place like California. I have to frequently explain to people that just because you were treated unfairly does not mean that you have an employment claim. It can be somewhat difficult to be the first one to tell them that just because your boss doesn’t like you and terminated you for no reason does not necessarily mean that you have a viable claim.
Do you have any goals for yourself personally or for your firm going forward?
Yes, the key is establishing a reputation for good work product, so one thing that is paramount in my mind is to establish a reputation for my firm and not just me. I want to ensure that my firm is putting out excellent work product. And I’d like to grow; I’d like to have attorneys working at the firm to whom I can delegate work. My plan is to eventually open up a California office, in either San Francisco or San Diego.
How would you say Haverford or your undergrad experience influenced your career? How has Haverford impacted your life?
First and foremost, it gave me a lot of great connections. I have remained close with a lot of my Haverford friends throughout the years. Some of those friends are now attorneys. For example, Brendan Palfreyman ’05, has this really interesting practice where he provides advice and counseling and, I believe, engages in some litigation regarding IP issues concerning breweries. And I have a friend, Matt Begley ’04, who also went to Haverford and is now a lawyer in Houston. Haverford was great for helping to establish my network. And all of the writing and research I did as a history major was directly applicable.
You went straight to law school from Haverford. Is that something you knew you always wanted to do?
It may have been better to take a year off, but I wanted to get going. Some people have found that taking a year off worked for them, but I didn’t feel like I wanted to wait.
What are your favorite hobbies?
I love playing basketball. For years and years and years I’ve played in the lawyers’ league. They have a somewhat lower level of skill but a very high level of competitiveness.
Did you play basketball at Haverford?
I was on the varsity team for a couple of years and then I played on intramural teams because the varsity team expected me to be in the weight room at 6:00 a.m.
What advice would you give a current Haverford student considering applying to law school?
I would say the most important thing is if you are going to choose the law as a career, other than working hard to ensure you’ve got the grades for admittance, is to make sure to maintain the connections that you develop at Haverford and along the way. Those connections will be very important moving forward.
Interviewer: Taylor Cross ’18 is a recent graduate from Simi Valley, CA. As an undergraduate, she was a member of the women's soccer team and the Pre-Law Society. Taylor completed her B.S. in economics with a minor in computer science. She is now pursuing her J.D. at Belmont University in Nashville, TN.
Would you like the HCLN community to know more about your time at Haverford, and career trajectory since graduation? Consider submitting your own editorial to be featured in the next newsletter. Contact Ben Shechtman '08 for more information.
Profile of Duane Morris Chairman Emeritus John J. Soroko
Even now, John Soroko relishes telling the story about a law school classmate’s long-ago flash of insight — and what it said about the world of corporate law firms.
It happened serendipitously, as these things often do, as the pair was leaving a lecture hall at New York University Law School. There, Soroko was taking an evening course on securities litigation taught by the legendary law firm leader Martin Lipton.
Lipton required the first- and second-year associates at his firm to take the course. After the class ended for the evening, a line of limousines formed on the street outside to whisk the young lawyers away. But they weren’t going home.
“He [Lipton] was rather busy, to say the least, so he taught at night,” Soroko recalled. “There were stretch limos parked along Washington Square [outside the lecture hall] and my friend, who was more worldly wise than I said, ‘John, the most important thing for you to understand is that those limos are not there to take those lawyers home. It’s only 10 o’clock and there are still many more hours of work to be done.’ ”
The following year, in 1977, Soroko joined the Philadelphia law firm of Duane Morris as a firstyear associate. On the day that Soroko started, Duane Morris had 70 lawyers and rarely strayed from the confines of the mid-Atlantic region, where its clients were based. Corporate law moved at a more measured pace then. Lawyers worked hard, as the example of Martin Lipton and his associates attested, but the competition was only then beginning to intensify.
Now, more than 40 years later, the world of corporate law has been transformed. Duane
Morris has grown tenfold and its geographic footprint has stretched beyond southeastern Pennsylvania to California, the Midwest and multiple locations in Asia. Peer firms have grown similarly.
Soroko, who stepped down as chairman of the firm on Jan. 2, has had a ringside seat as that transformation played out and indeed has been instrumental in many of the changes.
Those changes track to a great extent the seismic upheavals that have coursed through the world of Big Law for the past generation. Big firms have become complex, multinational businesses where talent comes and goes, and profitability is measured, with laser-like focus, down to the level of the individual lawyer.
“I started my career at the firm and I believe I was the 70th lawyer,” said Soroko. “I’ve often told people that it has been interesting to have a career at a firm where over the years the only thing to have changed is that we’ve added a zero; we’ve gone from 70 lawyers to 700.”
Soroko, whose bespoke pinstripe suits and dry sense of humor are well-recognized trademarks within the Philadelphia legal community, had the advantage of starting as a first year, just as those changes were gathering momentum.
When Soroko got out of law school in 1977, corporate firms functioned as a practical matter like local monopolies. Lawyers—as well as clients— rarely left. Jumping ship to join another law firm simply didn't happen. Firms rarely ranged far outside the cities where they were located. For young lawyers, there was a paucity of information, no legal press to speak of, no job boards, no U.S. News rankings, no ABA postgraduate employment statistics and little in the way of campus recruiting. Soroko heard about Duane Morris from a friend, whose father had been a client.
“The entire universe of information about law firms was the following: Every firm would send a four- or five-page letter to the law school placement office, and the placement office would put that in a binder and anything else other law students were telling you was your sole information,” Soroko said.
For much of his career, Soroko has been known as a top corporate and securities litigator, but he has also had more than a glancing contact with government. He represented state court judges in 2006 when the Legislature rescinded a judicial pay hike, persuading the state Supreme Court to reinstate the pay increases. He’s also known for offbeat witticisms and a subtle, absurdist sense of humor that puts both colleagues and clients at ease.
Born in New York City, Soroko moved at the age of 6 with his parents to a gentleman’s farm in Bucks County, where he was raised. His father was an oral surgeon; his mother, a former fashion designer. Bucks County was a world apart in those days, a deeply rural enclave as far removed in some ways from nearby Philadelphia as a small town in Iowa might have been.
He’s now fully ensconced in the city, though, and lives in the Chestnut Hill section with his wife Cameron and their 18-year-olddaughter Lilly. He particularly enjoys leading tours of the historic areas around Independence Hall for out-of-town friends.
An influential figure in Republican politics, Soroko serves as co-chair of a judicial selection committee that screens candidates for federal district court. Under Soroko, the Judiciary Nomination Advisory Commission for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania has helped place a half-dozen nominees on the bench. He’s also wrapping up a term as president judge of the Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline, which enforces ethics rules for state court judges.
Soroko spent the early years of his career as a litigator, but began moving into management in 2002 when he became chair of the litigation practice group, after the preceding chair, Michael Baylson, was nominated to serve on the federal district court in Philadelphia.
Several years later, he was named vice chairman of the firm, serving as understudy to chairman Sheldon Bonovitz, who was then in the middle of a tear of acquisitions and lateral recruiting that would add hundreds of lawyers to the firm. Soroko took over as chairman in 2008, after Bonovitz concluded his term.
That is when the world turned upside down. The onset of the Great Recession triggered an unprecedented retrenchment in the legal marketplace. Where firms once had been accustomed to comfortable rate increases year over year, legal revenues for key practices crashed. Layoffs were widespread, some firms cancelled summer programs; others told first years not to show up. Writ large, there was a sense of crisis in many firms.
Yet his colleagues say Soroko brought the right temperament for those turbulent times. He kept borrowing to a minimum but also made opportunistic expansions by recruiting top lawyers from firms that had fallen on hard times.
“How he handled [the industry downturn] was with incredible calmness and good humor, and that is really hard to do,” said Matthew Taylor, who succeeded Soroko as chairman in January. “He was the perfect person to be chairman … in those turbulent times because he was so calm and reassuring.”
Given the depths of the recession, the firm that Soroko took over from Bonovitz in 2008 faced an entirely new set of challenges. While the preceding decade had been one of galloping growth, the signature issue facing big law firms after the financial collapse was overcapacity — many firms simply had too many lawyers.
Out of the question was the perennial strategy of expanding on the assumption that clients’ needs for legal services would grow automatically year after year. So Soroko set out to recruit lawyers with profitable practices. He picked up a construction law practice from Thelen Reid in New York and then, in a prescient move, engineered a deal in which 60 top lawyers from the once-lustrous Philadelphia firm of Wolf Block, which had dissolved, joined Duane Morris.
He also set about expanding the firm’s international practices. Under Soroko, the firm opened or expanded offices in Myanmar, Singapore and Taiwan with the idea of finding legal markets poised for growth but without the frenzied competition that goes with high-profile offices in mainland China, where the big firms in the U.S. and Europe want to be.
In the end, the impact of the crisis on Duane Morris was minimal; there were no lawyer layoffs and only modest staff trims. Revenue during the 2008 cycle was flat but began growing robustly the following year. Soroko made the decision that year not to cancel the firm’s annual retreat, a cost-cutting measure that many other firms had instituted. The idea was to send a message to the partners that the firm was on solid footing and that there were reasons for optimism.
So confident was Soroko about the performance of the firm during his tenure that he approached Harvard Business School with a proposal that the school dig into the firm’s operations for the purposes of a case study. Professor Heidi Gardner said she would do the study, but as a condition insisted on having access to the firm’s financials and wide access for her and members of her research team to the firm.
The firm agreed and even permitted her to sit in on partner compensation meetings. In the case study, published later that year, Gardner concluded the firm had managed to preserve an atmosphere of teamwork and consensus through a combination of sophisticated analytics; a flattened, more democratic organizational structure and a compensation system that rewarded both generators of work and those who did it. So the emphasis wasn’t entirely on rainmakers; there were rewards for lawyers who offered to pitch in, even if it was someone else’s engagement.
The case study noted how members of the firm’s compensation committee “discuss all of the person’s contributions in detail, from any mentoring roles taken to the person’s ability to generate new business, market the firm, or assume administrative roles, and any other value the person added. In this way, the system was evidence-based and data-driven, yet extremely high-touch.”
Throughout all of this, Soroko focused mostly on running the firm with less time devoted to his litigation practice.
“I wasn’t practicing per se, but certainly keeping my hand in things,” he said. “What I analogize it to is if you are an engineer who becomes CEO of a widget company sometimes you have to go down to the shop floor and check out the making of widgets, particularly if clients are complaining about the widgets.”
Now that he has concluded his term as chairman, Soroko will be returning to his corporate and securities litigation practice. And he anticipates returning to the courtroom fray, fully intending to advise clients and try cases.
“Well, it’s like riding a bicycle, I guess,” he said. “In addition, when you are heading a large organization full of lawyers and dealing with lawyers and their clients and all the issues that swirl around a law firm, you are using your lawyering skills and your diplomacy skills and your political skills every day. You can’t say everything is brand new, but it is a little bit like you are learning to use certain muscles that you have not used in a little while.”
Chris Mondics is a freelance journalist and author based in Philadelphia. In earlier assignments, he was the legal affairs writer for The Philadelphia Inquirer from 2007 through 2017, and had been a Washington correspondent for the newspaper for a decade before that. He focuses much of his work on legal and national security issues, as well as politics and the economy.
Zac Arbitman ’09, associate at Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check in Radnor, PA, has been named a "rising star" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Class Action/Mass Torts.
Richard Bazelon ’65, founding partner of Bazelon Less & Feldman in Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Business Litigation.
Emily Bock ’11, an assistant defender at the Defender Association of Philadelphia, spoke at The Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Public Policy Forum at Haverford in March on a panel discussing Criminal Justice Policy and Incarceration.
John Bramlette ’00, executive vice president, Amateur Baseball & Growth at Ripken Baseball and a 2005 graduate of The George Washington University School of Law, was recently featured in the press in connection with Ripken Baseball’s partnership with Giant Food, the leading greater Washington, D.C., regional grocery chain. Ripken Baseball and Giant Food led five free baseball clinics for youths throughout the region this summer.
Ben Buchwalter ’08 has joined Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP in Menlo Park, CA, as managing associate in the firm’s Employment Law and Litigation practice. Ben joined Orrick after spending three years with Baker McKenzie, and after completing a clerkship at the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada.
Emily Chazen ’18 will be attending Harvard Law School and Harvard Divinity School this fall. Emily was recently featured in a “Where They’re Headed” piece on the Haverford website.
Caitlin Coslett ’05, shareholder at Berger & Montague, P.C. in Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "rising star" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Antitrust Litigation. Caitlin, who works on complex litigation including antitrust, environmental, and mass tort matters, was named a shareholder at the firm in January.
Kyle Danish ’89, partner at Van Ness Feldman LLP in Washington, D.C., spoke at The Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Public Policy Forum at Haverford in March on a panel discussing Environmental Policy.
Simran Kaur Dang ’97, senior counsel at The Sikh Coalition, was featured in the Winter 2018 Haverford Magazine. "In the immediate aftermath of 9/11, Sikhs, Muslims, people from the Middle East, and other minorities in the United States increasingly found themselves victims of an angry backlash. Alarmed by those attacks, volunteers including Dang formed The Sikh Coalition to educate and advocate for civil rights and justice."
Steven Drizin ’83, a clinical professor at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law and whose key role in representing Brendan Dassey, a central figure in the Netflix docuseries “Making a Murderer,” was honored with the Haverford Award for Service to Humanity during Alumni Weekend 2018. Drizin's work will be featured even more prominently later this year in Season Two of "Making a Murderer."
Stephen Eisdorfer ’71, partner at Hill Wallack LLP in Princeton, NJ, made his solo debut at Carnegie Hall this Fall in the MasterVoices production of the Gershwin musical “Of Thee I Sing” in the role of Justice of the Supreme Court.Eldora Ellison ’88, partner in the Biotechnology/Chemical and Litigation Practice Groups at Sterne, Kessler, Goldstein & Fox in Washington, D.C., was honored with the Haverford College Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award for Outstanding Contributions in a Profession during Alumni Weekend 2018. Eldora earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry and molecular and cell biology from Cornell University in 1993 and a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1999.
Robert Elwood ’82 has joined Practus, LLP in Philadelphia, PA, as partner and chief operating officer. Robert is a 1989 graduate of Boston University School of Law, where he was first in his class. Practus is a different kind of law firm focused on ending the never-ending pressure to hit billable hour targets, office bureaucracy, and opaque compensation structures. Bob notes, “Practus is expanding and we would keenly love to hire some HC lawyers in particular.”
Jon Fetterolf ’93, partner at Zuckerman Spaeder in Washington, D.C., along with Brian McMonagle of McMonagle Perri, is representing Ken Smukler, ex-aide to Congressman Bob Brady of Philadelphia, in election law-related charges against him. Jon is also an MLB-certified agent and maintains a thriving sports law practice, representing athletes and sports agencies in contract negotiations, salary arbitrations, and litigation. In February, Jon successfully represented Yolmer Sanchez, an infielder for the Chicago White Sox, in a salary arbitration hearing that resulted in Sanchez’s raise from $546,000 to $2.35 million rather than the team’s $2.1 million offer. This was Fetterolf’s fourth victory in the five salary arbitration cases he’s taken to a hearing.
Brooke Ford ’14 joined Olshan Frome Wolosky LLP in New York City as an associate in the firm’s complex commercial litigation practice. Brooke graduated from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, cum laude, in 2017.
Michael Froehlich ’97, attorney at Community Legal Services in Philadelphia, PA, was profiled in the Philadelphia Inquirer in connection with his grassroots campaign to rid his West Philadelphia neighborhood of the ubiquitous “We Buy Houses” signs that litter his community.
Laura Gavioli ’98 is a partner at McDermott Will & Emery in the firm’s Dallas, TX, office. She defends individuals and corporations in white-collar prosecutions, civil tax cases, US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) controversies and complex financial litigation. She is a 2004 graduate of Tulane University School of Law, summa cum laude.
Mark Geragos ’79, who has offices in New York, Los Angeles, and Rhode Island, is representing football players Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid in their ongoing dispute with the NFL. In October, USA Today quoted Mark’s Twitter page where he issued a statement on his clients’ behalf in response to tweets from President Trump. Slate has also profiled Mark’s representation of Kaepernick, so has ESPN, and Sports Illustrated. Also, Yahoo! published a deep dive into Mark’s career, labeling him the “legal shark” representing Kaepernick.
Peter Goldberger ’71 has been featured extensively in connection with his representation of rapper Meek Mill, whose criminal case in Philadelphia, PA, has made national headlines. Meek Mill was released in April after spending roughly five months in jail for violating a term of probation imposed in 2008. In the first seven months of 2018, Peter participated in three Pennsylvania Supreme Court petitions, two Superior Court appeals, and a Post-Conviction Relief Act petition in the trial court, all seeking removal of the trial judge and alleging that Mill’s underlying conviction was based on police perjury. Peter also currently serves as president of the Board of Directors of the ACLU of Pennsylvania. Based on his receiving the highest number of endorsements from other listed attorneys, Best Lawyers in America has named Peter “lawyer of the year” for 2019 in the category of “appellate practice” for the Philadelphia metropolitan area.
Paul H. Haagen ’72, professor of law at Duke Law School and co-director of the Center for Sports Law and Policy, has weighed in on the ongoing legal troubles surrounding the NFL and its discipline policies.
Thomas Hiscott ’92, partner at Heckscher Teillon Terrill & Sager P.C. in West Conshohocken, PA, has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Estate Planning & Probate.
David Hofstein ’73, a founding partner of the Philadelphia based domestic relations firm of Hofstein Weiner & Meyer, P.C. in Philadelphia, PA, is serving a two-year term as president of the National Foundation of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. A former adjunct lecturer at the James E. Beasley School of Law at Temple University, for over ten years he has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine and was previously recognized by Best Lawyers as the "best lawyer for family law" in Philadelphia.
Erin Kerrison ’07, assistant professor in the School of Social Welfare at the University of California, Berkeley, spoke at The Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Public Policy Forum at Haverford in March on a panel discussing Criminal Justice Policy and Incarceration. Her work extends from a legal epidemiological framework, wherein law and legal institutions operate as social determinants of health, particularly for individuals and communities marked by criminal justice intervention. Erin holds an M.A. in Criminology, Law, and Society from Villanova University and a Ph.D. in Criminology from the University of Delaware.
Ray Kresge ’81, partner at Cozen O’Connor in Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Employment & Labor.
David Kwass ’87, partner at Saltz Mongeluzzi Barrett & Bendesky in Philadelphia, PA, was named to the Top 100 of Philadelphia by Super Lawyers Magazine and a "super lawyer" for Personal Injury Products: Plaintiff.
Elizabeth Larsson ’08, chief strategist at Larsson & Scheuritzel, P.C. in Philadelphia, PA, recently penned an article for The Legal Intelligencer titled, “The Three-Letter Word Lawyers Should Avoid Using.”
Ray Lemisch ’79, partner at Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg LLP in Wilmington, DE, and Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Bankruptcy: Business.
Alexis Leventhal ’07 joined Reed Smith, LLP as a member of the Financial Industry Group, practicing in the area of Restructuring & Bankruptcy in the firm’s Pittsburgh, PA, office. Alexis represents and advises corporate clients nationwide and internationally on bankruptcy and other insolvency matters as well as UCC issues. Prior to joining Reed Smith, Alexis served as a bankruptcy law clerk in the Western District of Pennsylvania and, prior to that, the Middle District of Florida. She is barred in both Pennsylvania and Florida.
Jeff Lichtstein ’08, associate at Cohen Tauber Spievack & Wagner P.C. in New York City, made headlines in connection with his representation of a client accusing law firm Drinker Biddle & Reath and one of its partners of improperly leaking information obtained during the partner’s time as a federal prosecutor. The suit was filed in April and is currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.
Don Liu ’83, executive vice president and chief legal and risk officer at Target, was featured in Law 360 in an interview, “15 Minutes With Target’s General Counsel.”
Richard Lyon ’68, a 1971 graduate of Harvard Law School, was honored with the Charles Perry Award this year during Alumni Weekend 2018, in recognition of his exemplary service to the College in the area of fundraising.
Matt Polesetsky ’90 is general counsel at Uproxx Media in Culver City, CA. Matt was formerly the GC for MySpace, Inc. (2005-2007) and executive vice president, general counsel at Demand Media, Inc. in Santa Monica.
Alex Moser ’08 is an associate at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett in Palo Alto, CA. Alex is a 2016 graduate of Georgetown University Law Center.
Rahul Munshi ’06, partner at Console Mattiacci LLC in Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "rising star" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Employment Litigation: Plaintiff. In addition, Rahul’s 2017 verdict in Braden v. Lockheed Martin Corp. of $51.56 million was listed as the 33rd largest jury verdict in the country for 2017, and the largest employment law verdict in any federal or state court in the year.
Roger Nober ’86, executive vice president and chief legal officer with BNSF Railway and formerly a partner at Steptoe & Johnson LLP in Washington, D.C., spoke at The Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Public Policy Forum at Haverford in March on a panel discussing Environmental Policy. From 2002 to 2006, Roger served as chairman of the United States Surface Transportation Board, having been confirmed by the Senate to the Commission and appointed by President George W. Bush as the chairman. From 1993-2002, Roger served in a variety of transportation policy-making functions in the U.S. House of Representatives and at the Department of Transportation, including serving from 1997 to 2001 as chief counsel for the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Brendan Palfreyman ’05 was elected to partner at Harris Beach PLLC in Syracuse, NY, in January.
Beth Patel ’11 completed her first year at Northeastern University School of Law where she is a Public Interest Law Scholar and served as the elected 1L representative on the Committee Against Institutionalized Racism. This summer, she completed her first legal internship at the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York City.
Daniel Render ‘06, associate at Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, recently represented Steve Kaplan in the acquisition of the MLS team, D.C. United, by an investment group led by Kaplan and Jason Levien. Daniel is a member of Katten’s sports law group and has represented a number of professional sports teams, including the Chicago Bulls, Golden State Warriors, Milwaukee Bucks, Philadelphia Union, and New York Islanders.
Jennifer Robinson (Perlberger) ’95, CEO of Purposeful Networking in Philadelphia, PA, and 1998 graduate of Villanova University School of Law, was named one of the “45 Philly Business Influencers to Follow on Twitter Right Now” by Philadelphia Magazine. Jennifer’s Twitter handle is @AreYouNetworked and her website is http://purposefulnetworking.com.
Cesar Rosado ’97 is an associate professor of law and co-director of the Institute for Law and the Workplace at Chicago-Kent College of Law. Cesar obtained his J.D. from University of Pennsylvania in 2004 and his Ph.D. in Sociology from Princeton University in 2005. He teaches Contracts, Employment Relationships, International and Comparative Labor and Employment Law, and Labor Law, and his research interests lie at the intersection of qualitative empirical research and workers’ rights.
C. Mario Russell ’87, is the director of Catholic Charities New York’s Immigrant and Refugee Services Division and professor at St. John’s University Law School.
Alan Sandals ’76, founding partner of Sandals & Associates in Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Employee Benefits.
Joel Sayres ’97, partner at Faegre Baker Daniels in Denver, CO, was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Center for Legal Inclusiveness, and to the Board of Directors of the Humane Society of Boulder Valley. Joel counsels clients in patent litigation and proceedings before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board.
Alex Shahla ’07, a graduate of Pepperdine University School of Law, was featured in the "Roads Not Taken" section of the Winter 2018 Haverford Magazine. In this piece, he reflects on how his first moments on Haverford's campus as a first-year have stuck with him throughout the rest of his life. Alex is a "recovering lawyer" and his debut novel, Lying to Children, was recently published.
Mark Shaiken ’77 is a partner at Stinson Leonard Street in Denver, CO, and Kansas City, MO. Mark's practice focuses on all facets of bankruptcy, insolvency, and reorganization matters, as well as creditors' rights, including workouts, real estate foreclosures and related litigation, personal property replevins, Reg B, collections, and lender liability defense.
Ben Shechtman ’08, joined Cozen O’Connor in Philadelphia, PA, in April 2018 as an associate in the firm’s Labor & Employment Department, and has been named a "rising star" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Employment Litigation: Defense.
Alexandra Shookhoff ’06, has joined the Brooklyn Defender Services as pro bono coordinator after spending five years as an associate at Hughes Hubbard & Reed in New York City.
Christopher Smith ’08 is an associate at Gibson Dunn & Crutcher in Washington, D.C., where he practices in the firm’s Litigation Department as a member of the Energy, Regulation and Litigation and Labor and Employment Groups. Christopher is a 2014 graduate of New York University Law School.
Stephen Spaulding ’05, chief of strategy and external affairs at government watchdog Common Cause in Washington, D.C., has been quoted in numerous publications regarding ethics issues surrounding an Ohio Representative, President Trump’s payments to a longtime personal bodyguard, and John Bolton’s entry into the White House. He also talked to NPR’s On Point about the Stormy Daniels scandal and campaign finance law, and NPR’s 1A about Citizens United.
Shanin Specter ’80, founding partner of Kline & Specter in Philadelphia, PA, was again named to the Top 10 of Pennsylvania by Super Lawyers Magazine. He recently has been featured in the Legal Intelligencer in connection with several cases, including a $30 million settlement with AT&T and other companies for a technician who fell 50 feet down from a telecommunications tower and his representation of the American Beverage Association in an action on Philadelphia’s Soda Tax. Shanin is teaching tort- and trial-related courses at the University of Pennsylvania, Stanford, UC Hastings and UC Berkley.Ken Stern ’85, president of Palisades Media Ventures and former CEO of National Public Radio, was featured in the Winter 2018 Haverford Magazine. Ken is a graduate of Yale Law School.
Robert “Bob” Swift ’68, partner at Kohn Swift & Graf, P.C. in Philadelphia, PA, was spotlighted in the most recent Pennsylvania Super Lawyers edition for his long career representing individuals in human rights cases. In 1986, Bob and his firm filed the first-ever human rights class action lawsuit – Hilao v. Estate of Marcos – against the Marcos regime of the Philippines on behalf of 10,000 Filipinos tortured, summarily executed, or disappeared. In 1995, Bob secured a jury verdict on their behalf in the amount of almost $2 billion against the Marcos Estate, which was affirmed on appeal and ultimately in 1995 the class was awarded almost $2 billion. Though recovery of the verdict was unusually difficult, funds were finally distributed to 7,500 class members – by Bob personally – in 2011 and 2014. In 1995, the National Law Journal named Bob one of the 10 best trial attorneys in the U.S. Five years later, he was a finalist for the Journal’s Trial Lawyer of the Year Award. Bob has also been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Class Actions/Mass Torts.
Marc Zilversmit ’83, a criminal defense attorney in San Francisco, in 2014 obtained a reversal of Jamal Trulove’s murder conviction, after he had served 6 ½ years in custody. Jamal was eventually acquitted and exonerated and recently teamed with Neufeld Scheck & Brustin who sued the San Francisco Police Department over the police framing Jamal for the murder during their investigation. Jamal just won a $10 million verdict, which was featured in several news outlets including the San Francisco Chronicle and Newsweek. Marc’s client was so happy about getting his conviction overturned, acquitted, and then getting a judgment of $10 million, he decided to honor all of his lawyers in a new tattoo.
Marc Zucker ’81, partner at Weir & Partners LLP in Philadelphia, PA, has been named a "super lawyer" by Super Lawyers Magazine for Business Litigation.
If you have any news or would like to be included in the next edition of the Law Blotter, email Rahul Munshi ’06.
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OCTOBER, Date and Time TBA
Networking and Social Happy Hour, Philadelphia
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HOST AN EVENT - Are you or your firm interested in hosting an alumni lawyer networking, educational, or social event for your region? Contact HCLN’s liaison Liz Campbell (610) 896-1189 to express your interest and learn more about what the Office of Alumni and Parent Relations can do to help advertise the event.
Haverford Mock Trial was founded in 2014 by Jordan McGuffee ’18 and Nick Barile ’18. Its teams compete in the American Mock Trial Association against 650 collegiate teams across the country.
In their first ever trip to the American Mock Trial Association’s (AMTA) National Championship, Haverford’s mock trial teamended a successful year by taking 11th place (out of 48) in a tournament with much larger schools and well-established programs. The team was founded just four years ago by first-years Nick Barile ’18 and Jordan McGuffee ’18. Then seniors, now recent grads, Barile and McGuffee alongside Isabella Canelo Gordon ’18 led their seven-person A-team and two B-team members to Minneapolis, MN, where they earned 6.5 out of 12 possible wins from their four match-ups.
Because there are no divisions in mock trial that separate schools based on size, the team regularly competes against teams from universities with tens of thousands of students, as well as a wealth of resources and years of program experience. For Haverford’s three senior leaders, such an impressive finish is a gratifying end to a four-year journey of building a team from scratch.
“The weekend was phenomenal,” said McGuffee. “It was definitely a great culmination of experiences. The fact that we started this program four years ago and made it to Nationals in our senior year is very satisfying. When we got our 11th place trophy, it was definitely one of the happiest experiences I think any of us have felt.”
The road to Nationals started with a first place undefeated record at Florida State University’s Seminole Smackdown tournament after a sweep over No. 4-ranked Georgia Tech. Then, a 7-1 finish at Regionals sent the team to the Opening Round Championship Series, where they earned a 6-2 finish after sweeping the No. 15 team in the country, Fordham, at Lincoln Center, to clinch the bid to Nationals.
The team squared off against Georgia Tech, William and Mary, Rutgers, and Harvard. With three possible “win” determinations per trial, they scored a total of six wins, five losses, and one tie. According to Barile, last weekend cemented Haverford as “a powerhouse” in the national mock trial scene.
“One of the things that has also been really exciting, in addition to discovering how much we can accomplish, was also how the further we got into this, the more connected we became,” said Canelo Gordon. “We started off as six people who met in a room. Now we have an entire program of people who learn together, hang out together, and travel together.”
The team started as only six members, which is the minimum requirement to compete. Without any coaching, much of what they learned was self taught. Over the years they grew rapidly and added a second and and third team, as well as advising from Pre-Law Advisor Jennifer Barr, and coaching and networking support from lawyers Jeff Monhait ’09 and Rahul Munshi ’06. Haverford Mock Trial now boasts 32 members from all class years and hosted their own tournament last fall, the Black Squirrel Invitational.
“In 2014, when Jordan and I met [in the Coop], there was no way that I would ever have envisioned us going to Nationals this young as a program,” said Barile.
The weekend was a success not just because of its results, but also for the recognition it garnered for the team and the legacy it leaves. According to Barile, success begets success in mock trial: more tournament invites lead to more experience for members, and Haverford’s name recognition has even led to prospective students inquiring about the team.
“We got added to this really cool community of teams around the nation,” said Canelo Gordon. “There are teams who are inviting us to their tournament next year, and asking to come to ours. We’ve met all these people from around the country, and we have other college mock trial teams that are our friends.”
Much of the team’s success depends on their chemistry not just as teammates, but as friends. Even against well-coached and experienced squads, Haverford’s team boasts impressive creativity, imagination, and the ability to adapt on the fly and play off of each other’s strengths.
Said Canelo Gordon: “It’s a team and a family.”
If you are interested in attending a tournament or finding out more, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, travel, lodging, and associated competition costs are only partially covered by Students Council. To learn more about providing personal support or firm sponsorship for the team, contact Diane Wilder, Assistant Vice President for Institutional Advancement, email@example.com (610-896-1209).
Haverford's diverse and committed alumni community is a cornerstone of the CCPA’s career development and recruiting program. On a daily basis, the CCPA helps students connect with alumni to learn about career paths, gather advice for becoming a successful candidate, and connect with externships, internships, and other job opportunities. Are you interested in helping students through CCPA initiatives by contributing to the Alumni Perspectives Blog Series or participating in a Fords on Friday Alumni Career Chat? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the blog post submission form.
Disclaimer: The Haverford College Alumni Lawyers Network Newsletter is shared with alumni based on the employment information on file with the College. If you believe that your information is inaccurate, you can update any contact information online.
Dan is an associate in the corporate and sports law group at Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP in Chicago, IL, where his practice primarily focuses on representing professional sports teams and their owners in various commercial transactions, including financing, sponsorship agreements, and licensing transactions.
Questions or Comments? Contact HCLN staff liaison Liz Campbell.