'We are focused on growing Baker Botts, but only with partners who share our values and goals, and have sophisticated practices. When we find partners like that, the platform and our culture “sell” themselves.'

-- Van Beckwith



Van Beckwith is the Partner in Charge of Recruiting for the firm and has a national trial practice focusing on complex class actions, environmental litigation, energy litigation, technology and intellectual property litigation and food and beverage litigation.










Culture, Future Plans Key Elements of Search for Laterals

Editor's Note: This is one in a series of Q&As with Baker Botts partners on significantly enhancing Baker Botts’ Middle East practice by combining its existing practice with the acquisition of one of the most significant practices in the Middle East.


What attracted the Firm to this group of laterals?

VB: We are constantly on the hunt for groups of partners who have practiced together for years and have the practices, cultural fit and desire that we expect of partners. This group of outstanding partners fits our culture and our platform well. The group was relatively free of conflicts and we shared several strong client relationships.


These new partners think "client service," which is a shared core value at Baker Botts. They also bring a variety of disciplines from general corporate, mergers and acquisition, oil and gas, aerospace, and construction counseling. On the disputes part of the practice, they are region leaders in counseling clients on anti-corruption and compliance and in handling international and local disputes. Those specialties match and extend our own capabilities and enhance what we offer our clients and prospective clients in the region.


How do you “sell” the Firm to lawyers in order to convince them to join?


VB: We are focused on growing Baker Botts, but only with partners who share our values and goals, and have sophisticated practices. When we find partners like that, the platform and our culture “sell” themselves. We attract partners who enjoy practicing law together and share mutual respect for each other's practices, and want to be part of a sophisticated, coordinated team, with the emphasis on both “team” and “sophisticated.” We are "one firm" that works together towards a common goal of providing valuable services to our clients' most complex legal needs. This team of fine lawyers believes in the same approach.


Will the Firm continue to seek groups of partners and individual partners?


VB: Absolutely. We are dedicating significant, senior partner and Executive Committee time to seeking out strong partners for our current domestic and international offices. We are also attuned to opportunities in new and expanding markets. Our firm has developed and grown alongside energy and technology clients in the most important oil and gas patches and technology hubs around the globe. This, and the sophistication of our practice, makes us attractive to lateral partners who want to expand their practices and belong to a team that has deep industry expertise, appreciates the value of team work and client service, and rewards individual accomplishment.

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