I read today that SF has lost its last hometown chairman to NYC:
Matthew Larrabee, chairman of Heller Ehrman, will move to the firm’s New York office this month, the Recorder reports. Larrabee told the publication the change is a strategic plus. “We’ve been focused on building out a truly national platform,” he said. “That means growth in New York and D.C. for us right now.”
Other than the food, shopping and theatre I am confused by the AmLaw 50 trend of disassociating with your home town roots for a NYC zip code or the new “National” title.
Humor me. I know that the firm location label was originally ascribed by American Lawyer via a headcount formula, but the trend itself has been embraced in recent years by the firms themselves.
I get the whole “NYC firms make more money” and “NYC is the center of finance,” but what does relocating the chair of the firm, or the main office, say to your home town, or, better yet, to your attorneys in the now demoted “home” office? It can’t all be client driven? If so, our firm should relocate to Hartford or Boston today.
Working next door to the original “LA Law” building, I have to wonder, where have all the LA law firms gone?
Latham describes itself as a “full-service international powerhouse;” Gibson Dunn references their “global reach.” I do give two thumbs up to O’Melveny for touting their LA history. As a 3rd generation Angeleno, I love the old photos. Too bad you have to dig deep to find the references (Go Dodgers!)
American Lawyer only identifies two of our hometown favorites as Los Angeles firms: Quinn Emmanuel and Sheppard Mullin. But, for how long?
Of the Top 50 AmLaw firms, the breakdown of firm location is:
National – 23
New York – 13
International – 3
Houston – 3
Boston – 2
Atlanta, LA, SF, Chicago, Milwaukee, Richmond – 1 each
So, come on, just between us: What does Wall Street have over Figueroa, Avenue of the Stars, Fremont or Market Streets?
Is this payback for the Dodgers and Giants? It’s been 50 years already.