Richard Hsu, Shearman & Sterling partner
Richard Hsu, Shearman & Sterling partner (Jason Doiy / The Recorder)

Richard Hsu, a popular podcaster and intellectual property partner at Shearman & Sterling in Silicon Valley, has left the Am Law 100 firm to become a managing director at Major, Lindsey & Africa in San Francisco.

The move by Hsu, who served as global head of IP transactions at Shearman & Sterling, as well as co-chair of the firm’s privacy and data protection team, will now see him focus on partner recruitment.

“I’ve been a practicing lawyer for all of my career, 25 years,” Hsu said Tuesday. “I’ve been in management. I’ve been a practice group leader. A lot of the things I’ve been doing have involved building relationships. I thought legal recruiting would be a great way to leverage that.”

One unusual relationship-building tool Hsu has at his disposal is his podcast, Hsu Untied, where he interviews lawyers—and occasionally other notable figures—about their hobbies. His guests have included former lawyer-turned-New York Times crossword editor Will Shortz; Santa Clara University School of Law professor and avid Slinky collector Eric Goldman; and fellow Shearman & Sterling alumnus Drew Shoals, now the drummer for the band Train. Hsu said he hopes to keep his podcast going now that he’s at Major Lindsey. (Click here for more Hsu interviews.)

“We are delighted to welcome Richard to our highly successful Bay Area team,” said a statement by Kirsten Vasquez, a Major Lindsey partner and executive director for law firm recruiting in Chicago. “Richard is one of the industry’s most experienced law firm partners in the Bay Area, and his unique combination of legal, media and corporate leadership experience will be a major asset for our law firm clients and the market’s most sought-after candidates in Northern California.”

Hsu joined Shearman & Sterling in April 2012 from King & Spalding. The move was brokered by a different legal recruiter, Joe Macrae at Mlegal Consulting in Houston. From 2003 to 2011, Hsu worked at the firm now known as Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, where he served as managing partner of its Silicon Valley office. He also spent several years each as a senior attorney at the Venture Law Group and as general counsel of Cyrano Sciences Inc., a Pasadena, California-based startup that developed an electronic nose.

In a blog post on professional networking website LinkedIn about his latest move, Hsu emphasized that the work he’s done throughout his career has revolved around building connections with people.

“When I graduated from Caltech as an electrical engineer, I decided to go to law school because I didn’t like the isolation of being a scientist or programmer,” Hsu wrote Tuesday. “When I was a third year associate at the law firm of Lyon & Lyon, I gave up a window office in the tallest building in downtown Los Angeles to join a venture backed company in an industrial building so that I could have a ringside seat at a startup with Nobel laureate Robert H. Grubbs.”

Hsu, who when not conducting interviews via his various media platforms worked out of Shearman & Sterling’s office in Menlo Park, California, added that when he got the opportunity to join Major Lindsey as a legal recruiter, he realized that a recruiting job “was the perfect culmination of my background, knowledge, experience, interests and relationships.”

The American Lawyer reported earlier this week on Major Lindsey expanding its legal talent management offering to law firm clients.

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