Law Firms

Firm Tops in N.Y. Associate Satisfaction

Patterson Belknap Webb has earned seventh place on American Lawyer’s A-List for associate satisfaction, the highest of any New York law firm.

At the same time, the firm scored 199 out of 200 points on pro bono. Every lawyer has volunteered for pro bono or public service work since 2004, and every partner has done so since 2002.

Partner Lisa Cleary, who manages the pro bono program, says the 180-lawyer firm benefits by its smaller size, American Lawyer reports. She can quickly match lawyers to pro bono requests, e-mailed monthly to the firm by groups such as The Legal Aid Society of New York and New York Lawyers for the Public Interest.

The program also helps the firm attract associates, the magazine explains. It keeps them in part through its extensive development program that allows young lawyers to chart their development.

Balancing these areas with the quest for revenue can be difficult, outgoing managing partner Rochelle Korman tells American Lawyer. “The biggest challenge for us is economic, because competition for business is fierce,” she says. “But we also don’t want to become a sweatshop.”

This year the firm’s revenue per lawyer grew by only $5,000 to $825,000, sending the firm from from 32nd to 44th place on the AmLaw 200 list.

The American Lawyer’s A-List includes firms that earn handsome profits while also promoting pro bono service and collegiality.

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