TheCorporateCounsel.net

January 28, 2022

Goodbye to All That

Pardon me for using this blog to share some personal news, but it’s kind of a big deal – at least for me. You see, today is my final day at Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP, the law firm I’ve worked at since I graduated from law school 35 years ago. They say that “time flies,” and while I’ve had many days that seemed to drag on forever during my legal career (I’m looking at you, Bowne & Donnelley), that expression sure seems apt when you’re looking through the rearview mirror.

I guess I expected to feel a little more wistful about resigning, but I think I don’t feel that way primarily because this is my second try at it. When Broc & Nathan Brill offered me a position here back in 2016, I actually resigned, but the firm was going through some other transitions and asked me to stay on. Now, I think we’ve both agreed that I’ve reached my expiration date!

Anyway, I’ll certainly miss my colleagues at Calfee. It’s a great firm, and I wish them all the best. But I am not sad to go. Through no fault of my own, I stumbled onto the best job in the world five and a half years ago.¬† I’m incredibly grateful to Nathan and Broc for giving me that opportunity, and to all of my colleagues, past and present, for making this such a great place to work. I hope to have the chance to work with everyone here for a long time to come.

There’s something else I’m looking forward to as I leave my law firm, and that’s saying goodbye to the knot in my stomach that’s been there for 35 years. I think most of you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you’re a securities lawyer, you learn fast that you’re working without a net. Your entire career is based on your reputation, and when it comes to preserving it, you’re only as good as the last thing you screwed up.

You get used to making high-stakes judgment calls on a shot clock, even though you often don’t have all the information you need. It comes with the job, but it also comes with a price – and the knot in your stomach that never completely goes away is a big part of that price. Hopefully, my colleagues and I are able to come up with some things that help loosen the knot in your stomach every now and again.

So, what are my parting words for my friends and colleagues at the law firm where I’ve spent my entire professional career? Heh-heh, you know, I’ve always wanted to do this, and I know they’d all be disappointed in me if I didn’t – take it away, Edith!

John Jenkins