With this month marking the 40th anniversary of Squire Patton Boggs’ Phoenix office, it is clear it has grown in tandem with the firm, reflecting a collaborative, entrepreneurial spirit. Squire Patton Boggs is a full-service firm providing insight at the point where law, business and government meet. A multidisciplinary team of more than 1,500 lawyers across 44 offices in 19 countries provides seamless service that operates on any scale – locally or globally – and encompassing virtually every matter, jurisdiction and market.
The Phoenix office was established October 1, 1979. From its humble beginning as a one-lawyer office focused predominantly on public finance, the Phoenix office now counts 37 lawyers serving as a “one-stop shop” for regional, national and international clients in widely diverse practice areas.
“We’ve always enjoyed the benefits of a global platform as well as strong local relationships. However, the addition of a preeminent public policy team when we merged with lobbying powerhouse Patton Boggs a few years ago was a true game-changer,” said Managing Partner Pedro Miranda.
The Phoenix office’s client base is as expansive as its international reach. Clients range from Fortune 100 and FTSE 100 corporations to startups and developers to municipalities, as well as state and federal governments and agencies.
Rick Stilgenbauer, public policy advisor, explained, “We focus on a range of Arizona, national and international issues and help clients assess, in advance or in real time, what government policies could affect their business interests.” With 15 years of experience in government relations, Stilgenbauer most recently served as director of Arizona Operations and Outreach for the late, former U.S. Senator John McCain.
Squire Patton Boggs’ global Public Policy Practice added former U.S. Congressmen Joseph Crowley (D-NY) and Bill Shuster (RPA) in February 2019. Their addition enhances the firm’s unrivalled bipartisan credentials that already include former Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH), Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-MS), Senator John Breaux (D-LA), Representative Jack Kingston (R-GA), Secretary of Transportation Rodney Slater (D-AR) and a deep roster of experienced professionals spanning major capitals across six continents. The Phoenix office has provided its clients and local commerce organizations with access to high-profile policy influencers through a number of initiatives over the years.
Brad Wright, partner, added, “Understanding the changing policy landscape is key to long-term business success. Our top-level experience and networks help clients fine-tune their risk strategies and shape the environments in which they operate.”
COLLABORATION AND COLLEGIALITY
When asked to describe the culture at Squire Patton Boggs, litigation partner, Brian Cabianca, explained, “The collaborative nature of our office and our firm is what has allowed us to provide clients with top caliber services across all practices and geographies. Our genuinely collegiate culture emphasizes working together to best serve our clients’ interests here in Phoenix and across the globe.”
Corporate partner Jaime Daddona elaborated, “As cross-border trade, investment and collaboration continue to accelerate, our practice has become increasingly globalized to keep pace. Squire Patton Boggs’ global platform allows me to partner with clients doing business in a complex and interconnected global market, while accessing the best industry and subject-matter legal specialists who can practice seamlessly across jurisdictions. It is wonderful to be in the desert oasis of Phoenix while servicing clients both far and near.
“For example,” added Daddona, “at one point recently, much of our Phoenix corporate team was engaged on transactions in the United States, London, Paris, Tokyo, Sydney and Auckland, proving that our ‘One Firm’ platform is an innovative, efficient and cost-effective way of meeting our clients’ needs wherever and whenever.”
DYNAMIC, VIBRANT PLACE TO WORK
The Phoenix office is a dynamic, vibrant place to work as evidenced by its selection among Phoenix Business Journal’s Best Places to Work for three consecutive years. The office composition is of established lawyers whose successes have shaped the office the past four decades, and a strong, diverse team that is poised to be the next generation of leaders.
“Our commitment to our core values and to each other will result in a thriving office that is a vital component of the firm’s overall success,” said Miranda.
These core values that emphasize a strong commitment to professional development, to diversity and to the community have made Squire Patton Boggs a place where lawyers want to practice and clients want to seek legal, business and policy guidance on the issues that matter most to them.
COMMITMENT TO PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Another aspect of Squire Patton Boggs’ culture is its investment in creating and offering resources to lawyers and staff – at every level – that support and advance their professional and personal goals. Development opportunities include formal and informal mentoring programs, learning and skill training courses (such as webinars, CLE courses, workshops). We have a dedicated year-long onboarding process for new laterals which ensures they transition and integrate into the firm with ease. Other areas of firm support include sponsoring employees’ continuing education, certification courses and professional memberships.
Professional development is essential for empowering the next generation of firm leaders with the tools for long-term success. U.S. associates are invited to Squire Patton Boggs University (SPBU) where they receive training on a number of subjects, including: confidentiality, ethics, time management, billing, and what to expect as a first-year associate, in addition to offering mentoring and networking opportunities.
“I’ve been a walking billboard for this firm since the day I started,” said Alexis Montano, associate. “I immediately knew this was the place for me. From day one – as a first-year associate – I was provided with opportunities to work with clients and attorneys from across the firm which validated for me that my colleagues trusted my judgment and saw me as a valued member of the team. We have an office managing partner who believes in us and ensures we get the experience and opportunities we need to successfully grow and develop in our legal careers.”
COMMITMENT TO DIVERSITY
As a global law firm, diversity comes naturally to Squire Patton Boggs. Rather than a loose confederation of offices and practices, it functions as a single unit, composed of people from various countries, cultures and backgrounds. Diversity is also reflected throughout firm leadership, with 50 percent of the Global Board members being women or ethnically diverse, and with 34 percent of all global leadership positions being held by women.
“One of the things that makes me most proud about working at Squire Patton Boggs is its dedication to providing a diverse workplace. We bring a variety of different people from various backgrounds together, and develop the best legal solutions to business problems for our clients by creating an inclusive environment that fosters productivity and profitability across our firm,” said Miranda.
“The firm is committed to recruiting, training, advancing, and supporting its women lawyers, providing the platform and global connections necessary for the most sophisticated and challenging legal work, without sacrificing work-life balance,” said partner Laura Lawless. “We recognize that legal practice is a marathon, not a sprint, and provide mentoring, alternative work schedules, and accommodations to our women lawyers, particularly those with young families, so that the firm and its clients can continue to benefit from their extraordinary talent and insight. This supportive collaboration among partners, colleagues, and staff has enabled me – a single mother of two young children – and many others to balance our personal lives with the needs and interests of our clients, as the firm is continually enriched by the unique perspective a truly diverse group of lawyers provides.”
Squire Patton Boggs has long recognized inclusion and diversity as a core strength of the firm and fundamental to its success. Yale Law Women selected the firm as a 2019 Top Ten Firm for Gender Diversity, recognizing it as a nationwide leader for its commitment and policies for inclusion and diversity. The firm was named to Working Mother magazine’s 2019 Best Law Firms for Women, an annual list highlighting 60 firms that utilize best practices in recruiting, retaining, promoting and developing women lawyers. Additionally, the firm achieved a 100 percent rating in the 2019 Corporate Equality Index, published by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, for the 11th consecutive year.
COMMITMENT TO THE COMMUNITY
Connection to, and commitment to, the Phoenix community is a top priority for the office. The Phoenix lawyers are active not only within the local and international bar organizations, but also in many professional, charitable and civic organizations.
Miranda noted, “We believe that it is of the utmost importance to be active in the community. Phoenix has grown to be fifth largest city in the United States; much of that growth is in part, thanks to the outstanding state and city business organizations that we strongly support, such as the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, Arizona Chamber of Commerce, Chandler Chamber of Commerce and the Arizona Sports & Tourism Authority, just to name a few.”
He also added, “It is a pleasure to be involved with the arts and various charities, as well. I am on the board of the Herberger Theater and countless of our lawyers and business staff generously give their time, talents and financial resources to causes that are near and dear to their hearts. We are fully committed to giving back to the place we are proud to call home and are honored to take an active part in shaping a positive future for The Valley of the Sun.”
LOOKING TO THE FUTURE
The natural question that comes up whenever a milestone like a 40th anniversary passes is, “What’s next?” Miranda responded, “As we enter the next chapter in our history, we are focusing on expansion in three primary areas: client relationships, recruitment and revenue. Our goal is to continue to be a leading law firm in Arizona and the ‘go-to’ firm for established and emerging companies and for government bodies in our state and region, as well as the most desirable practice destination for new and seasoned lawyers.”
Though Squire Patton Boggs, as well as the Phoenix office, has undergone extraordinary growth over its history, the firm continues to exemplify the commitment to legal excellence, professionalism and civic and social commitment that its founders established many years ago.