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    January 13, 2009  
Old Republic - left tile

800 business executives—and counting. That's how many have signed up for tonight's Bisnow “Back to Business Total Schmoozarama.” Thanks to presenting sponsor Cardinal Bank. Open bar and dinner buffet, Park at Fourteenth. Crazy low price. Sign up now!

It was a “game changing year” for Sonnenschein, according to chairman Elliott Portnoy (based in DC, we caught up earlier this week), not least because the firm added 100 capital markets and financial institutions lawyers in NY and DC from the now-dissolved Thatcher Profit. He tells us '09 closed with the best year-end collection in over a decade.
Sonnenschein chairman Elliott Portnoy

Elliott, who two years ago became the youngest chairman in Sonnenschein’s history, says the recession energized his firm to become more lean; the result: improved margins and a year-over-year increase in net income. The ACC’s Value Challenge also prompted changes: “We've moved away from the billable hour in nearly every part of the firm…and law school class year and billable hours have become dramatically less important in calculating associate compensation.” Fixed fees, he tells us, are getting more play because they incentivize efficiency and lead to increased communication with clients, who (apparently) use more adjectives when they’re not being charged by the minute.

Lockton - in-text or righ
Sonnenschein chairman Elliott Portnoy

Elliott's looking to grow the 120-lawyer and policy professional DC office along with its other 12 offices but says Sonnenschein passed on most laterals (even candidates with large books of business): “Our focus isn’t on size, so much as finding the right people for key industry sectors.” Judging by some of the DC-based practice groups he tells us he’s most excited about—energy, political intelligence, healthcare and life sciences, cyber security, litigation, public policy, corporate, telecom, antitrust and regulated industries— (perhaps we should’ve asked him what doesn't excite him?) he’s looking for ace-lawyers with rarefied skills sets that enable them to go beyond the traditional call of duty.

Apatoff (Legal & Tech) -


Why did we snap 700 Sixth St. in Gallery Place? Well, Sutherland just signed a 15-year lease at the 156k sq. ft building; it's not moving until Jan. 1, 2013, but it's currently considering RFPs from a wide range of architecture and interior design firms. Sutherland’s been in three buildings in the 1200 block of Penn and wanted to consolidate. Your publisher was once a summer associate at its 1666 K office before most of you were born, so he notes a pattern of eastern migration; maybe they’ll make it to NoMa and even RFK someday.


O’Melveny Intellectual Property and Technology attorney Paul Zinnedein

We recently synced up with the latest addition to O’Melveny’s Intellectual Property and Technology practice, Paul Zinnedein. Paul tells us his previous job, in-house telecom counsel for Samsung, led him to develop a taste for kimchi that now rivals his passion for IP trial work. At Samsung, Paul says he was on the road 6-7 months out of the year. Now he’s looking forward to capitalizing on his global (presumably digital) rolodex, and tackling high-stakes complex litigation with colleagues that he regards as “the best of the best.”

O’Melveny Intellectual Property and Technology attorney Paul Zinnedein

Is that an original Roy Lichtenstein, or a 30x10 ft lithograph? Either way, Paul now has license (but not a patent) to claim that he’s on the right side of (art) history. Paul says he’s already working on two cases in the ITC, one in the Netherlands, and another in England’s High Court. Even though he’s extremely busy, Paul hasn’t lost track of his priorities. The irrefutable evidence: He tells us he’s coming to the Total Shmoozarama we’re hosting tonight at The Park. 


January 13 - Bisnow Back to Business Total Schmoozarama - Park at Fourteenth - 6-8pm - Network with top level business execs, enjoy open bar, and gourmet buffet. Crazy low price. Join us!

January 14 - Tech Council of Maryland - Health Care Reform - For anyone in the business community who is interested in networking and learning about what health care reform means to them and their business. 7:30-9am - Bethesda Country Club. Info

Arent Fox (Smart)
Reznick (Building)
Old Republic
Akridge (Half St)

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