As of May 1, 2013, the firm had 196 partners. More than one-third of our partners have served in two or more of the firm's offices, and 88 partners are currently based in our offices outside the United States. The firm remains dedicated to strengthening our practice primarily through internal growth – approximately 90% of our current partners joined the firm as associates.
We strive to admit to the partnership lawyers who have demonstrated the qualities of character, leadership, intelligence and legal skills that will enable them to contribute significantly to the firm’s practice over the long term, irrespective of the immediate needs of particular practice areas. Candidates for partnership are considered by the entire firm, as opposed to being “nominated” or selected by a department or practice group. To promote the full application of the firm’s resources to best serve our clients’ needs, all partners share in firm income solely on the basis of seniority, and financial information is available to all partners.
The partnership operates as a participatory democracy. Partners as a whole decide important firm matters, while committees of partners and counsel under the guidance of the managing partner conduct the day-to-day management of the firm. Committee memberships rotate every three years, with partners typically not serving consecutive terms. All partners act on the admission of new partners and counsel and on the election of the managing partner. Most of our retired partners serve as senior counsel to the firm, continuing to attend meetings and other firm functions.
Associates actively participate in a number of important committees in various offices, including the mentoring committee, the committee on diversity issues, the community legal assistance committee, the information technology committee, the recruiting committee and the summer program committee.