Nixon Peabody favours US in first promo round since Paris closure news

Nixon Peabody has become the latest US firm to announce a round of partner promotions, naming eight new female partners in a US-centric promotion round of 13.

None of the promotions were made outside of America, cementing the firm’s promise to focus on managing the business from the US after pulling the plug on its four-year old Paris office in December (18 December 2012).

The closure made the firm, which is also present in London, Hong Kong and Shanghai, one of the first to reverse the trend for launching in the French capital, with Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, Pinsent Masons and Osborne Clarke all announcing their intention to launch in Paris last year.

With the firm vowing to focus on the US its new partners are all based across the firm’s Boston, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington DC offices.

The promotions, effective from 1 February, are also spread across three departments – business and finance, litigiation and real estate, energy and community development.

Almost 60 per cent of the promoted class are women. Nixon Peabody’s focus on female partners comes days after Law Society of England and Wales president Lucy Scott-Moncrieff unveiled a series of recommendations aimed at improving gender diversity across the profession (11 January 2013).

Despite concerted efforts by some firms to improve female representation in management, Scott-Moncrieff said that the profession was hiding an “uncomfortable truth” that some are paying mere lip service to flexible working.

In the UK a study by The Lawyer revealed that female partners remain a minority at top firms, with just 23.5 per cent of all partners and 9.4 per cent of all equity partners across the UK’s largest 100 law firms by revenue being female (24 October 2012).