Lanny Davis’ D.C. boutique law firm said this week that it had inked a formal alliance with Jeffrey Verdon, an Orange County, California, lawyer who handles estate planning and asset protection for affluent clients.
Verdon has operated his eponymous firm, Jeffrey M. Verdon Law Group, for the last 30 years. He said he plans to continue running his own firm during his affiliation with Davis Goldberg & Galper, where his title will be of counsel.
“I don’t work at the firm,” Verdon said Wednesday of his work for Davis and his partners, who specialize in crisis response. “We call upon Lanny and his partners to evaluate opportunities and problems that arise from time to time.”
Verdon said he has had an informal relationship with Davis for “a number of years” and described Davis as a “very important component” of his own practice, particularly because of Davis’ ability to settle cases out of court and to “have the media examine the other party” in any given controversy.
Verdon declined to discuss specific matters he had worked on with Davis or identify who any of their shared clients are or have been. Verdon noted that Davis’ team has represented a clientele ranging from countries to corporations to Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former lawyer, who was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment Wednesday.
Verdon said that he did not know whether Cohen was formally a client of Davis’ law firm or of Davis’ separate public relations shop.
Davis Goldberg does not share much information about itself online—the firm’s website remains “under construction” approximately two years after it launched. The press release announcing Wednesday’s affiliation addition lists four total partners: Adam Goldberg, formerly an associate special counsel in President Bill Clinton’s White House; Joshua Galper, who worked alongside Goldberg and Davis at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe and Patton Boggs; and Eleanor McManus, a former CNN producer who garnered headlines last year in accusing media personality Mark Halperin of sexual harassment. [Following a series of accusations against Halperin, some of Halperin's benefactors, including NBC and MSNBC, severed ties with him and he acknowledged engaging in “aggressive and crude” behavior.]
After working at CNN for ten years, including as senior producer for “Larry King Live,” McManus has worked with Davis in various places since 2010. She is also a co-founder of Press Forward, a group aiming to improve newsroom culture by promoting inclusiveness, fairness, and human decency.
Davis, Goldberg, Galper and McManus are also co-founders and partners of Trident DMG, a crisis management and public relations shop formed alongside the law firm in 2016. Verdon said he was not working with Trident DMG and did not know whether Davis’ law firm had similar relationships with other lawyers as of counsel.
Davis didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. “Jeff is a strategic addition to our firm, and it’s an honor to have him as of counsel,” he said in a prepared statement. “Our practices share synergies and common concerns about protecting the reputations of clients.”
When asked in 2016 why Davis was forming another firm after becoming a septuagenarian, Davis told The American Lawyer, “I have a second wife of 31 years and an 18-year-old senior in high school and an 11-year-old to put through college. I figure I’ll be writing tuition checks at least until I’m 84.”
Wednesday is Davis’ birthday. He is 73.