“The law, with its tentacles extending into every aspect of modern life, has become a repository of immense power and influence in American society. And lawyers—some of them household names, others virtually anonymous—hold the key to that repository.” That’s how we put it in 1985, when The National Law Journal compiled “Profiles in Power,” our first list of the 100 most influential lawyers in the United States. We’ve repeated this survey from time to time since then, most recently in 2006, and have changed the name to “The 100 Most Influential Lawyers in America.” Every list has proven as eclectic as the first, which included figures as diverse as Griffin Bell, Roy Cohn and Vernon Jordan (and a single woman: former Ninth Circuit judge and Los Angeles attorney Shirley Hufstedler). What hasn’t changed is what we’re looking for: “the men and women who stand out from the crowd as this country’s most powerful lawyers”—the ones “who wield an extraordinary degree of power and influence.” We are turning to our readers for help compiling this list once again. Please submit the names of lawyers who have had a national influence in the law and beyond during the past six years. Merely holding an office or position of authority is not enough; we’re looking for attorneys with the demonstrated power to shape public affairs, launch industries and get big things done. Judges and nonpracticing lawyers are not eligible. Send a one-page summary of the nominee’s qualifications by February 15 to NLJsurvey@alm.com. Please include attorney’s name and “Most Influential” in subject line.
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