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Latham & Watkins chairman and managing partner Robert Dell is the most admired among his law firm chief peer group, according to a new survey by legal consulting firm Edge International Inc. The San Francisco-based Dell captured about 13% of the votes in Edge’s survey of 62 managing partners. Two leaders tied for second place with about 6.5% of the votes: Regina M. Pisa, chairman and managing partner of Boston’s Goodwin Proctor and Lee I. Miller, a Chicago lawyer who is joint chief executive officer of DLA Piper. The surveyed managing partners cited several qualities of an effective law firm leader, including: a commitment to change; an ambitious agenda; the ability to persuade others in the firm to embrace his or her agenda; a capacity to address tough issues and commitment to the firm’s core values. “Our profession is not yet rife with numerous well-recognized management role models, but this survey shows that we’re evolving,” said Edge partner Patrick McKenna, who initiated the survey. Several other firm leaders were cited multiple times by their peers who responded to the survey: Cesar L. Alvarez, the Miami-based president and CEO of Greenberg Traurig; Ralph H. Baxter Jr. of San Francisco, chairman and CEO of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP; T. Kennedy Helm III of Louisville, K.Y., chairman of Stites & Harbision; Ben F. Johnson III managing partner of Atlanta-based Alston & Bird; and Keith W. Vaughan of Winston-Salem, N.C., chairman and managing member of Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice LLP. Two retired law firm heads were also admired by other survey participants: Patrick McCartan, who served as Jones Day’s managing partner from 1993 through 2003 and Bob Odle of Hogan & Hartson in Washington.

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