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Brockelman, we believe that law firms have too many rules. Here are ours:
Work at the highest level of our profession. Think creatively and
find practical solutions. Do the right thing. Maintain our sense of
humor. Build community – with clients, with other lawyers, and with each
other. And if anyone forgets these few rules, remind them. As it
turns out, you can build and maintain a terrific law firm like this.
In the fall of 1994, after returning to
Phoenix from a stint in Congress, founding partners and longtime friends Sam Coppersmith and Andy Gordon drew up a
business plan for a new firm during a stay at a ranch in southern Arizona.
The plan required an estimate of how many hours they would need to work,
and at what rate, to pay their monthly bills. Quickly realizing that they
lacked the skills required to complete these equations, they agreed it surely
could be done, toasted their new venture with a cocktail, and launched the firm
in a spare bedroom of Sam’s house in early 1995.
From those humble
beginnings grew an internationally-acclaimed law firm with thousands of lawyers
in offices sprinkled around the globe . . . oh, wait, that’s the story of a
different firm. But we like our story better.
GROWTH & TRANSITION
Several notable events occurred in the years
immediately following the firm’s founding. Other lawyers, including
current partners Kristen Rosati and Karen Owens, left large
law firms to join forces with Sam and Andy. They helped establish the
firm’s reputation as a top health care firm and a place where many impactful
women have chosen to practice law. To this day, more than half of our
lawyers are women, and they have profoundly shaped the character of the firm.
By the end of its first
decade of existence, the firm had more than quadrupled in size. It also
had long since secured offices in a mid-town Phoenix high-rise building,
deeming the spare bedroom in Sam’s house awkward as a place of business for
nine lawyers and a support staff.
ACCELERATION INTO THE PRESENT
In its second decade, the firm’s growth
quickened; apparently, practicing law at a high level without bureaucracy is an
attractive proposition. An eclectic and diverse team took root. New
lawyers brought new practice areas, including employment law and employee
benefits. Our election and political law practice became renowned
throughout the state. Two of our friends who practiced complex commercial
litigation in other firms joined us, greatly strengthening the firm’s practice
in that area.
Now in our third decade, we are proud to
be recognized as one of the
best firms in our community. Over half the firm’s lawyers have
been recognized by Best Lawyers in America,
several as “Lawyer of the Year” in Phoenix, an honor reserved for only one
attorney in the city practicing in a specific field of law. U.S. News & World Report has named us a market
leader in an extraordinary 11 practice areas, recognition typically reserved
for firms many times our size. Along with these accolades have come the
best clients a firm could imagine, many of which have watched and participated
in the firm’s growth from its earliest days.
Through the years, our
core values have remained the same. We continue dedicating ourselves to
excellence, creativity, ethics, and community. And like Sam and Andy more
than 20 years ago, we still like to mark momentous decisions and professional
successes with beverages of the particularly enjoyable variety – although
almost never before noon.