It was a variety of factors, but among the most important, were the people. I met with numerous attorneys at the firm before joining Herrick and I had also represented clients opposite Herrick over the years. On each occasion I witnessed the respect the Herrick attorneys had for one another as well for everyone else they encountered, whether on the same side of the table or the opposite. Since my practice focuses on creating complex partnerships and joint ventures, it is important for me to be part of a culture that engenders collaboration and deal-making. I felt that I’d find that at Herrick, and I haven’t looked back since. As luck would have it, five weeks after joining the firm, our offices were effectively shut down due to the pandemic. Because of the amazing group of attorneys at Herrick, we did not miss a beat. I developed important relationships with everyone at the firm (albeit remotely), and working together with the team, we continued to provide the superb service our clients expect.
I came to Herrick primarily because I was looking for a platform to branch out into a wider array of transactional work. I am the type of person that thrives on learning, and I need new challenges to feel fulfilled professionally. Coming from a small boutique tax firm, my practice had become limited to REIT compliance and private real estate development transactions. I was excited by the opportunity to work with attorneys in different departments and across the multitude of practice areas that Herrick offers.
My move to Herrick has far exceeded my professional expectations. The transactions I have worked on here have broadened my experience to now include, among other things, securities offerings, sophisticated cross-border REIT structurings, mergers and acquisitions and fund formations across business sectors such as private equity, healthcare, professional sports, and commercial lending.
I started my career as an associate in the real estate department of a mid-sized NJ general practice firm, and while I look back fondly at my experience and the connections I made there, I am still grateful to the recruiter who called me and told me about the opening for a mid-level real estate associate at Herrick.
I knew that Herrick’s real estate department was one of the top real estate groups in the city and that the attorneys handled complex, large real estate deals in NYC and beyond for an impressive and diverse client base. As a junior associate, I wasn’t doing much of that work at my prior firm, so I was excited about the opportunity to be a part of those types of deals at Herrick. I also wanted to be based out of the Newark office, and Herrick made that work, too, with the assurance that being in Newark with few real estate folks would not be an issue in terms of my career development and advancement.
Despite being brand new, when I arrived at Herrick my decision to switch firms was reaffirmed not only by the exciting deals that I was assigned to right from the outset, but also by the people with whom I was able to work with. All outstanding attorneys and practiced in their niches, they took interest in me not only as an attorney but also as a person. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Prior to coming to Herrick, I had worked in both smaller boutique firms as well as larger global firms.
In my experience, the smaller firms had interesting clients mixed with a high level of personal service. However, the larger firms usually had the more complicated and engaging work that provided novel intellectual challenges. I wanted to find a firm that provided both – the longstanding personal relationships combined with the sophisticated legal issues – and Herrick has a perfect balance of the two. As a result of the age and history of the firm, there is an impressive roster of institutional, long-established estate planning clients alongside a healthy mix of entrepreneurs and first generational wealth who bring contemporary issues and challenges.
Early on in law school I knew I wanted to go into private practice. However, I was concerned about not finding the right fit and was very careful in selecting a firm where I knew I could grow professionally and build a career. I did my due diligence before joining Herrick and thought Herrick met my criteria. From my first visit to its office in midtown, I knew it was going to be a second home. Even after twelve years, my view of Herrick has not changed. The doors are always open. We see smiling faces while walking through the hallways. Associates are encouraged to ask questions, to challenge the status quo, to find and create solutions and to succeed by thinking outside of the box. Now I am proud to include Herrick as a part of my life story - that I was born to Chinese parents in Venezuela, that I immigrated to the United States without speaking the language, that I was fortunate enough to attend a great college with a full scholarship and that today I serve as a partner at a prestigious law firm.
Beyond Herrick’s strong reputation as a high-caliber mid-sized firm, I was particularly intrigued to learn that the Firm was focused on enhancing its complex financial litigation capabilities. That fit well with my existing clients and experience. And the growth of this group (the Restructuring and Finance Litigation Group) seemed like an opportunity I couldn’t pass up.
The people are also ultimately what really attracted me to Herrick. There was a real sense of camaraderie among the lawyers and cohesiveness across the practices. This was demonstrated by the broad mix of lawyers that I met throughout the interview process. It was clear this mindset was a core part of the Firm’s culture and went beyond just the recruiting process—this is how Herrick approaches client service, business development and marketing, professional development, and beyond.
I was most attracted to Herrick’s litigation practice, particularly the broad range of services representing a very diverse client roster.
While other firms prefer their associates and partners to specialize in one subfield, Herrick provides opportunities to expand your competency in numerous practice areas. For example, my practice covers complex commercial litigation involving financial transactions, employment counseling and litigation, and real estate litigation involving commercial and high-end residential real estate across the country. Associates also have greater responsibilities on cases because Herrick encourages them to handle oral arguments, appeals, and depositions early in their careers. These opportunities are not often afforded to junior associates in other firms, and I benefitted from them tremendously as an associate.
The firm’s reputation for being one of the top real estate groups in the city, combined with its complex real estate work and diverse client base, made it an obvious career move. The supportive culture and dedication to the professional development of the attorneys is exceedingly valuable and continues to be a huge component of my practice. Herrick is a true mid-sized firm with a wealth of experience and history in real estate. We are able to provide high-touch client service as well as the experience to handle complex and hairy transactions. That’s what Herrick does best. Additionally, because of our relationships with so much of the real estate industry, we are able to play matchmaker on deals – introducing our clients to our contacts to solve challenges and make deals happen. Whether it’s joint venture partners, sources of financing, brokers and other real estate services, we add value to these client relationships in ways many firms cannot.
It wasn’t that I was unhappy or unsettled at my prior firm. Quite the opposite, I wasn’t looking to make a change. But in Herrick I just recognized that, if I was going to do more and be more as a lawyer, Herrick was that opportunity. I transitioned from being a senior associate to being a partner, at a new firm, responsible for helping to run the Condominium and Cooperative Law practice group. So there was, and remains, a lot to learn. At Herrick I’ve received the support, the patience, and the room to grow into my profession and be successful.
Shortly after I joined Herrick as counsel (after having spent my career to that point at a "mega firm"), I was introduced to one of the firm's most important corporate clients. After handling some minor litigation work for them, I pitched for and landed work representing that client in a high-profile class action involving one other defendant who was represented by another firm. It was the first matter I brought in and the partners at Herrick were delighted. At the first pre-motion conference, however, I convinced the class plaintiffs' lawyers to drop their claims against our client. When the conference was over, the federal judge turned to me and said "Well, it looks like you just talked yourself out of a lucrative representation … what are the partners at your firm going to think?" I worried the entire way back to the office wondering exactly that. I just cost the firm a good amount of revenue, and being new to the firm, I had no idea what they would say. When I informed the partners of what had happened, they not only were not upset, they were thrilled. Their entire focus was on what a great outcome this was for our client. Not one of them mentioned Herrick's lost revenue. Today, I am a proud partner at Herrick, and I know for a fact that my experience was not an aberration. Many firms say "the client comes first" but Herrick truly lives by that maxim.