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2024 DIVERSITY DATABASE PREMIUM SPONSOR Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP

Our Survey Says


Even with its international reach and reputation, Cleary gives associates the feel of a down-to-earth neighborhood law firm. In the firm’s competitive hiring process, personality fit counts as much as academic performance. Work settings are friendly and laid back, while social events are plentiful but not overwhelming—it’s possible for people to have personal lives. Partners are respectful to associates, welcome their contributions, and provide useful feedback. Cleary seems to do training and mentoring well, with many levels of each available, including on-the-job tutelage. Lateral hires feel welcomed and trained well, though more efforts to integrate them socially would be nice. Work assignments are substantive and cutting edge, and associates are encouraged to push themselves and take on more responsibility. Practice group staffers make sure tasks are spread evenly among associates, though some work is assigned based on experience and familiarity. Clearly suggests a 1,950-hour “target” of billable work each year, without it being a strict requirement, and associates are plenty busy. Lockstep salaries and bonuses match the market and are paid regardless of hours billed. Firm technology is above average, and the firm has embraced improvements in the area of e-discovery. The firm has established some solid wellness programs, but many associates would prefer fewer hours and more time for personal lives. Cleary’s pro bono coordinator does a great job encouraging pro bono work, the hours for which count completely as billable. There have been improvements in supporting diverse individuals, especially regarding affinity groups networking events; unfortunately, ethnic diversity is lacking in the partnership ranks. Though partnership may be difficult to attain, internal counsel positions are available and external moves in-house and to the government are popular.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP

One Liberty Plaza
New York, NY 10006
Phone: (212) 225-2000

Firm Stats

Managing Partner: Michael A. Gerstenzang
Hiring Partners: Kyle Harris (NY), Daniel Culley (DC), Benet O’Reilly (CA)
Total No. Attorneys (2024):
1K - 1.5K
No. of Partners Named 2024:

Base Salary

1st year: $225,000
2nd year: $235,000
3rd year: $260,000
4th year: $310,000
5th year: $365,000
6th year: $390,000
7th year: $435,000
8th year: $445,000
Summer Associate: $4,327.92/week

Employment Contact

Donna M. Harris
Director of Legal Recruiting—U.S.
(212) 225-3170

No. of U.S. Offices: 4

No. of International Offices: 12

Major Office Locations

New York, NY (HQ)
Washington, DC
San Francisco, CA
Palo Alto, CA I
Abu Dhabi
Hong Kong
São Paulo

Major Departments

Banking and Financial Institutions
Capital Markets
Corporate Governance
Debt Finance
Executive Compensation and Employee Benefits
Intellectual Property
International Trade and Investment
Litigation and Arbitration
Mergers, Acquisitions and Joint Ventures
Private Equity
Private Funds
Project Finance and Infrastructure
Public International Law
Real Estate
Sovereign Governments and International Institutions
Structured Finance
White Collar Defense and Investigations
*See firm website for complete list of practice areas and industries.