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It’s been about a year since Wolf Block Schorr & Solis-Cohen partner M. Norman Goldberger has handled three somewhat full-time jobs at the firm. Aside from his business litigation practice, he served as the firm’s financial planning partner and chairman of the litigation department. When he was co-chairman of the litigation department with longtime firm attorney Jerome J. Shestack from 2003 until last year, Goldberger said the three roles were manageable. But when Shestack retired from everyday practice, Goldberger said he realized something had to give. The logical choice, he said, was to pass the litigation department torch to the vice chairwoman of the department, Dana B. Klinges. Klinges has been vice chairwoman for about five years and will take over as head of the group on April 1. She said she took on the role of vice chairwoman because she had been working in the firm’s branch offices � namely New York and Roseland, N.J. � to help with integration. Klinges’ practice focuses on complex commercial litigation in the areas of class action and major breach of contract disputes. She has also represented Pennsylvania and New Jersey in class actions involving their foster care systems. She said she plans on continuing her practice while serving as chairwoman of the department, but it remains to be seen exactly how her time will be split. Under Goldberger’s leadership, the litigation group grew from 75 attorneys in 2003 to 100 currently. Klinges said the firm wants to continue that growth, but it does not have a target number. She said she wants to build on the existing strengths in the firm’s class action, consumer fraud and securities work, as well as construction litigation. In his role as financial planning partner, Goldberger works closely with Chairman Mark L. Alderman. While he hasn’t been devoting as much attention to the role over the last few years as he would have liked, Goldberger said he now wants to help Alderman grow the firm as a whole. That could come in the form of a merger or lateral additions as well as organic growth, he said. The litigation department has grown more in the associate ranks, he said, which the firm views as a positive because it “improves” its leverage. Klinges said the group is still hiring new associates. The naming of Klinges as chairwoman is something both she and Goldberger said they think sends a positive message to current and potential Wolf Block attorneys with respect to gender issues. Klinges had worked part time at the firm for a number of years, spending from 60 to 80 percent of a normal workweek at the firm during that time. She said she made partner during one of her part-time stints, more specifically while she was in the hospital giving birth. Now that her children are older, Klinges said she could give more back to the firm. Goldberger has a 2-year-old and said it was time for him to scale back a bit. He said when he and Klinges took over the department a few years ago, they recognized that they needed to offer a more attractive work-life balance and made a concerted effort to hire more women. He said women now comprise more than 50 percent of the department and several are working part time. “Dana’s elevation is the culmination of that process,” Goldberger said. Frank D’Amore of Attorney Career Catalysts said it is fairly rare to have someone come up in the ranks who has worked part time for an extended period. He said many firms are “very aware” of the issue of retaining and promoting employees who take advantage of part-time or flextime scheduling. Firms are looking at programs, informal or formal, to re-integrate those attorneys back into the firm. D’Amore said there are clear challenges, however, that firms are facing in being successful with that re-integration process. Other than business development, training and billable-hour issues, D’Amore said there could be problems when an attorney returns to full-time status in regard to how he or she his thought of by attorneys who never took the part-time route. Working out those issues is something D’Amore said would benefit firms in the long run. “Firms that can do this well are going to have an advantage in the marketplace,” he said. Paula D. Shaffner, who herself has recently been named the vice chairwoman of Saul Ewing’s litigation department, said her firm has been very supportive of attorneys on flextime schedules. Shaffner is on the executive committee and became partner while working a flextime schedule. While neither she nor the two other women in major leadership roles at Saul Ewing � Executive Partner Jennifer K. Peterson and Philadelphia Vice Office Managing Partner Suzanne S. Mayes � ever worked part time, Shaffner said the firm made sure they could have flexible schedules that didn’t allow them to fall behind with clients or the chance for advancement. Saul Ewing takes a longer-term view, she said, when it comes to helping attorneys take leave.

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