Struggling under the demands of life as an associate in a big law firm, Elihu Gordis and Jay B. Horowitz left Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom in 1995 with the idea of setting up for others what they had not found for themselves: a reliable temporary placement agency that would allow associates to step off the treadmill without sending their lives into upheaval.

They have accomplished that, aided by excellent timing and a weakening of law firms’ long-ingrained stigma against using temps. Their firm, Strategic Legal Resources, now supplies lawyers and paralegals for the peak and specialty staffing needs of a host of New York firms. And with support from the national staffing chain StaffMark Inc., which bought the firm last year, Messrs. Gordis and Horowitz have plans to add offices in Chicago and London to an existing outpost in New Jersey.

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