When eBay Inc.’s deputy general counsel went searching for a skilled U.S. Supreme Court advocate who could persuade the justices to adopt its view of a major patent infringement challenge last term, one name consistently appeared on every recommendations list: Carter G. Phillips of Sidley Austin.

“One of the things I knew would be important was: We wanted a Supreme Court advocate who was obviously easy to work with and who could effectively work and coordinate with our trial counsel, which was Skadden, Arps, [Slate, Meagher & Flom],” recalled eBay’s Jay Monahan. “I felt both were critical to our success. It was immediately clear to me Carter could do that and, in fact, did.”