Breaking and associated brands will be offline for scheduled maintenance Friday Feb. 26 9 PM US EST to Saturday Feb. 27 6 AM EST. We apologize for the inconvenience.


Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
Palo Alto, Calif.-based Cooley Godward plans to close its Kirkland, Wash., office this month following the departure of two partners to San Francisco-based Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe. Christopher Wright and Laurie Smiley, who were the sole partners in Cooley’s Kirkland outpost, jumped to Orrick’s Seattle office Monday, along with associate Eric Scott Carnell. Four associates remain in Cooley’s Kirkland office. “We will likely just wind up that office,” probably this month, said Mark Pitchford, Cooley’s chief operating officer. “Our view is the Pacific Northwest has been hit particularly hard by the [economic] decline over the last 18 to 24 months.” Cooley Chairman Stephen Neal indicated in a firmwide e-mail in November that the Kirkland office might close. Announcing a layoff of associates and staff, Neal said the firm’s management committee and partners in Kirkland “agreed to pursue strategic alternatives for that office.” Cooley opened the office in 1998 to take advantage of the region’s technology sector. At its height in early 2001, Pitchford said it had 15 to 18 lawyers. In June, the firm laid off five associates and five staff members in the Kirkland outpost. Several other Bay Area firms also set up shop in the Seattle area, including Palo Alto-based Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati and Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich, Menlo Park, Calif.-based Venture Law Group, San Francisco’s Heller Ehrman White & McAuliffe, and Orrick. Orrick opened a small office in 1999 to service its public finance clients. It was able to expand in the region with the addition of Stephen Graham, a 25-year veteran of Seattle’s Perkins Coie who brought his corporate practice of public and startup companies to Orrick. The Orrick outpost now has 20 attorneys. Wright, who helped Cooley launch the Kirkland office and served as partner in charge, said Orrick’s success in the region was what made him decide to join the firm. “Orrick was among the strongest Seattle offices for the kind of sophisticated legal work we do,” he said. “It had achieved critical mass, which frankly was the problem at Cooley — we never got over the hump.” Wright joined Cooley from Seattle’s Foster Pepper & Shefelman. His practice focuses on emerging companies in capital formation, business and technology acquisitions and mergers and strategic alliances, as well as representation of venture capitalists. Smiley, who joined Cooley in 2001 from Seattle’s Stoel Rives, focuses on corporate law, securities, mergers and acquisitions and finance. The clients joining them at Orrick include Talisma Corp., Inc. and Vulcan Northwest Inc., the investment company of Microsoft Corp. co-founder Paul Allen.

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.