OCTOBER 30, 2014 – Having guided Davis Wright Tremaine (DWT) for the past eight years, Dave Baca will be stepping down as the firm’s Managing Partner. Jeff Gray, former Partner-in-Charge of DWT’s San Francisco office, will assume the role on January 1, 2015.
During his tenure, Baca successfully led the firm through the 2008 financial crisis and its aftermath. The firm has steadily increased profitability and has successfully built or transformed a number of key practices through targeted recruiting and internal development. “One lesson we learned through the last downturn is that uncertainty in the marketplace creates opportunities to strengthen and build the platform,” said Gray. “We’re stronger today because we had the vision and resolve to get better.”
“Our success has been driven by focusing on what we do best—working efficiently and collaboratively across a portfolio of strong industry practices,” said Baca. “Two years ago, we also established the DWT De Novo innovation team to help identify ways to improve service and lower costs. Today, we partner better with our clients and do more to tailor our services to meet their particular needs.”
“Across the firm, there is a commitment to our core principles of excellence, collaboration, and engagement,” said Gray. “When your most successful partners are out in front of building the business through their work with clients, commitment to associate development, and support for diversity and inclusion initiatives, it sets a great example and is a very ‘sticky glue’ that binds us together.”
Baca will remain with the firm but will not return to full-time practice. “We have plenty of strong corporate lawyers,” he said. “I am going to be a resource to Jeff, mentor some of our up-and-coming stars, and be more active in the nonprofits I have been involved with for years. And I have a lot more fly-fishing to do.”
“Dave has set a very high bar,” said Gray. “We have no debt and a history of steady, stable growth through some turbulent times. We have a really sharp, inspiring group of associates and young partners ready to grow into leadership roles in the profession, with our clients, and in the firm. We are ambitious and I am very enthusiastic about our future.”
Gray, 49, practices in the firm’s energy and environmental group, focusing on energy regulatory matters. He has been included in the Chambers USA guide to “America’s Leading Lawyers for Business” each year since 2008, and has been listed as one of the “Best Lawyers in America” in Energy Law by Best Lawyers for the past three years. He is married to Salle Yoo, General Counsel at Uber Technologies. They serve together on the Council of The Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.
About Davis Wright Tremaine
Davis Wright Tremaine LLP is a national law firm with nine offices and approximately 500 lawyers representing clients based throughout the United States and around the world. For more information, visit www.dwt.com.