Remember the iconic advertisement asking, “What becomes a legend most?”
For lawyers, it’s greatness at winning iconic trials, bringing litigation that reshapes industries or saves lives and making deals that change the course of industry.
Lawdragon annually recognizes Legends of the legal industry who have 10 times been honored with the acclaimed Lawdragon 500 recognition.
This year’s class of 31 stars of the legal world includes Oklahoma City bombing prosecutor Beth Wilkinson; the first female presiding partner of one of America’s quintessential law firms, Faiza Saeed; and a Texas litigation star who rose to run the U.S. contingent of one of the world’s largest law firms, Linda Addison.
There are men, as well, led by recent White House Counsel Ty Cobb, who faced down daily constitutional crisis between President Donald Trump and Special Counsel Robert Mueller; one of the nation’s foremost rainmakers and white-collar ace, Nicholas Gravante; and a plaintiffs lawyer who was co-lead counsel in the largest class action ever, against Big Tobacco, and is now taking on the Opiod crisis, Steve Berman.
While most practice in New York and Washington, D.C., they practice from Orlando to Seattle, include two U.S. Supreme Court justices and a few of the best lawyers to ever argue before them. We proudly present to you the 2018 Lawdragon Legends, who also will be featured in this year’s annual magazine in the fall. You can also view the full list of Legends from 2015 to the present.
A litigator who has excelled in all manner of complex cases, Addison also has left an indelible imprint on her firm from her tenure as managing partner of the U.S. practice.
This former federal prosecutor has been a bedrock of Wachtell’s litigation corps for his skillful handling of white-collar and regulatory matters.
The fearless Berman has amassed billions upon billions of dollars in recoveries for injured investors, employees and consumers in many high-profile class actions.
A former CEO of his firm, Bochner has enjoyed a legendary career advising many of the world’s most famous and transformative companies in IPOs and other transactions.
Boutrous is an amazingly adept litigator, one of the nation’s best in any trial or appellate arena with a penchant for high-profile wins across a vast array of legal areas.
For more than three decades, the leader of Sullivan & Cromwell’s litigation practice has built a stellar track record – whether in court or behind the scenes on the most sensitive civil and criminal matters.
Among the most powerful entertainment lawyers to ever practice, Branca has always boasted an unparalleled roster of music clients from the Rolling Stones to Michael Jackson.
Buergel achieved elite status as a litigator through amazing results for financial institutions facing securities claims as well as scrutiny by the Department of Justice and the SEC.
The head of Skadden’s Boston office excels at defending class actions and other complex civil litigation across a range of industries, including healthcare and pharmaceutical.
The highly acclaimed former Solicitor General under President Bush, from 2005 to 2008, has an incredible track record in nearly 100 cases argued before the Supreme Court.
President Trump made a wise move in choosing Cobb, who had spent three decades at Hogan Lovells, as his special counsel – a tenture that may ultimately prove to have been too brief.
A talented trial lawyer and the leader of the nation’s best insurance recovery practice, Cohen has recovered more than $5B for clients.
Boies Schiller has benefited from Dyer’s litigation skills from its earliest days – a tireless and tenacious advocate who has handled many of the firm’s biggest cases.
The renowned firm co-founder and expert in Delaware law is one of the nation’s most accomplished litigators in securities actions on behalf of wronged investors.
A trial lawyer’s trial lawyer, Gravante can net massive plaintiffs’ verdicts, defend against bet-the-company claims and kill a prosecution before you hear about it.
It’s nearly impossible to find a more reliable antitrust litigator than Isaacson, who has successfully handled several of the most high-profile cases in the past two decades.
The remarkably accomplished Klein may be the most sought after employment lawyer in the U.S. among corporations, talent agencies and sports franchises looking to resolve their most sensitive issues.
The firm co-founder and former clerk to Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor has amassed a phenomenal appellate record between government service and private practice.
A past president of the American Bar Association, Lamm has remained at the top of the legal profession in the area of international arbitration, litigation and trade proceedings.
Molo should be on the short-list for any company or individual facing a big case, having excelled in the full gamut of complex civil cases to high-profile criminal matters.
Francis Patrick Murphy
A passionate advocate for injured plaintiffs and their families, Murphy has done immeasurable good over nearly four decades with more than 50 verdicts and settlements over $1M.
One of the firm’s stalwart corporate partners handling its elite roster of clients, Saeed became Cravath’s first-ever woman presiding partner in January 2017.
The co-founder and name partner has spent a career outmaneuvering opponents in court and has been an undeniable master at successfully handling international arbitrations.
The leader of Skadden’s New York M&A Group has a standout deal list – an endless string of massive transactions for the world’s top companies and funds.
The reputation of Robins Kaplan as one of the nation’s elite trial firms has been built in no small part on this consistent heavyweight who anchors the firm’s Los Angeles office.
Silk is simply unbeatable at helping institutional clients assess their potential claims and then pursuing them aggressively, with billions of dollars in recoveries under his belt.
The London-born, Oxford and Harvard Law-educated Slifkin heads Cravath’s esteemed litigation group and has been a dominant force in securities, antitrust and general commercial cases for decades.
Judges on any court would benefit from the diverse legal positions that Sotomayor held on her way to becoming the first Hispanic justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.
In his own (mostly) silent and stubborn way, Thomas has become a determined intellectual force on the bench with carefully crafted conservative opinions.
A former award-winning federal prosecutor who worked on the Oklahoma City bombing case, Wilkinson has long since been one of the top bet-the-company trial lawyers in the land.
Williams is a true legend in Delaware’s tight but elite corporate bar as the most trusted of advisors for corporations, their officers and directors.
About the author: Katrina Dewey (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the founder and CEO of Lawdragon, which she and her partners created as the new media company for the world’s lawyers. She has written about lawyers and legal affairs for 30 years, and is a noted legal editor, creator of numerous lawyer recognition guides and expert on lawyer branding. She is based in Venice, Calif., and New York. She is also the founder of Lawdragon Campus, which covers law students and law schools. View our staff page.