Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan partner Charles Eskridge III, nominated for the Texas federal trial bench, reported earning more than $5 million in partner compensation from the law firm since 2017, according to newly released financial disclosure reports.
Eskridge reported earning $2.3 million in 2018, up slightly from $2.2 million in 2017, according to the disclosure provided by the Senate Judiciary Committee. Average partner compensation at Quinn Emanuel last year was $3.5 million, ninth highest among Am Law 100 firms, according to a review conducted by affiliated publication The American Lawyer.
Eskridge’s disclosure offers a rare look into compensation at Quinn Emanuel given the scarcity of court and federal agency nominees Trump has drawn from the firm. Veteran appellate lawyer Christopher Landau, the Trump administration’s pick for U.S. ambassador to Mexico, reported earning $3 million at Quinn Emanuel, according to his financial disclosure. Landau left Kirkland & Ellis for Quinn Emanuel in March 2018.
Eskridge, who was nominated to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas in May, has been a partner at Quinn Emanuel since 2015. He joined the firm’s Houston office from Susman Godfrey, where he had been a partner since 1997 after arriving as an associate there.
Eskridge clerked for Justice Byron White during the 1991-1992 term, and clerked for Judge Charles Clark on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit a year earlier. The Texas Lawyer honored Eskridge as a “40 under 40″ rising star in 2001.
Eskridge declined to comment Wednesday. He appeared last week for his confirmation hearing at the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Eskridge joined the Houston chapter of the Federalist Society in 2018. He reported receiving $2,000 in both 2017 and in 2018 in honoraria from the Federalist Society.
Eskridge has spoken about the Magna Carta and its ties to the Constitution and Bill of Rights at various Federalist Society events. Eskridge also participated in an event titled “Originalist Hamilton: The Musical and the Constitution,” speaking at Georgetown Law and the Colorado Lawyers Chapter in 2018 and 2019.
The theme fits within Eskridge’s teachings as an adjunct professor at the University of Houston Law Center, a job he plans to keep, according to his Senate questionnaire.
“I anticipate continuing to teach and lecture at the University of Houston Law Center and Pepperdine University School of Law,” Eskridge said in the questionnaire. “I would accept invitations to do so at other law schools to the extent time permitted. l have agreed to teach my class on Origins of the Federal Constitution in Spring 2020 at the University of Houston Law Center.”
Eskridge has litigated complex commercial matters in federal and state courts, according to his questionnaire and law firm bio.
In 2018, he was part of a Quinn Emanuel team that won a $622 million arbitration award against Petrobras on behalf of client Vantage Drilling. The breach-of-contract case included allegations of bribery and an offshore drill ship that costs more than $500,000 per day to lease.
“I have represented both plaintiffs and defendants without a particular emphasis on behalf of either,” Eskridge told the senators. “I have represented individuals, including classes of individuals, against corporations and government entities. I have defended corporations against claims by individuals, including classes of individuals. And I have represented corporations in disputes with other corporations, and individuals in disputes with other individuals.”