Try as it might, Stroock & Stroock & Lavan is still facing difficulties in its efforts to find a merger partner, and those difficulties are making it hard for the firm to hold onto its partners and business-side leaders, much less recruit new partners.
When we last checked in with the firm, Stroock had officially dumped its pension liabilities through a buyout. Despite that, the firm is still losing lawyers, and now its business leaders are heading to the exits as well. As noted by the New York Law Journal, the two most recent departures on the firm’s business side include Regina Robbins, director of talent acquisition, and Jessica Grayson, managing director of business development and marketing.
In an interview with the NYLJ, Robbins said leaders at Stroock told her she could “ride out” recruitment challenges their merger talks posed, pleading that she “please don’t go anywhere.” Here are some additional details:
Robbins said publicity of Stroock’s merger discussion with other firms, following the departure of 43 restructuring lawyers to Paul Hastings, made it difficult to laterally recruit new partners. Stroock previously entered some form of merger talks with several firms, including McGuireWoods, Steptoe & Johnson, Squire Patton Boggs and Nixon Peabody, but has yet to find a fit, The American Lawyer has previously reported.
“Joining Stroock, my goal was to focus on partner hiring…We were seeing a lot of success,” Robbins said. “When the information was getting out in the marketplace about the Paul Hastings group and about the merger talks, it was difficult to help the firm find partners and grow.”
“When it’s out there in the media, even though everyone knows it’s just [firms] talking, it’s enough to create questions in people’s minds,” Robbins told the NYLJ. “Even when it’s correct, it creates enough of a question mark.”
Hopefully Stroock is able to stop accumulating so many question marks as it attempts to find a new merger partner.
Stroock Loses Business-Side Leaders, as Uncertain Merger Future Poses Recruiting Challenges [New York Law Journal]
Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter and Threads or connect with her on LinkedIn.