John W. Kelly
New York Law School, 2012
I could talk for days about the numerous multi-million dollar disputes, the always interesting (and often soap-opera like) stories that lead to such disputes, and the surprising level of responsibility that I was given early on in my career at Starn O’Toole Marcus & Fisher. The challenging work, exciting high stakes cases, and early responsibility, however, are all surpassed by one thing—the people. To say that SOM&F offers a collegial atmosphere would be an understatement. Laughter often fills the hallways, and people can regularly be seen smiling or sneaking in a joke even in the face of a pressing deadline. This is possible because everyone knows that they can rely on one another to get the job done. Having a first class team significantly reduces the stress that often accompanies life as a young attorney, and makes every day enjoyable.
The directors are always willing to take time out of their busy schedules to assist the young associates with whatever issue they might be facing, whether it is a difficult research assignment or a question about developing your own book of business. More importantly, this open door policy is reciprocal. SOM&F’s directors regularly seek out the associates’ views on the case at hand, and often include associates in “high level” strategy discussions with the client. Such open discussions provide the associates not only with a clear understanding of the often complex cases that they are working on, but also provides for an early understanding of the actual complexities of commercial transactions and litigation—something that is completely lost on many young attorneys who spend their first several years reviewing documents.
Many firms in town will boast that they handle interesting cases, have an impressive client list, and have impressive offices. When looking for a place to build a career, however, the most important thing is the people. I can easily say that the team at Starn O’Toole Marcus & Fisher is the best.