Uplifting experience

Life at Clifford Chance is full of ups and downs – quite literally.
When it emerged that the firm’s New York-based global head of securities Kevin Kelley was leaving, Clifford Chance’s management understandably scrabbled to stop his departure.

Unfortunately, Kelley’s new home was Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, which it turns out shares the same office block as Clifford Chance in the Met Life Building at 200 Park Avenue.

Tulkinghorn is told that, as Kelley swung between staying at Clifford Chance or going to Gibson Dunn, the lift between the firms’ was racing up and down like nobody’s business.

At one point it seemed as if Clifford Chance had persuaded the securities star to stay, even to the extent that on a Thursday evening two members of the firm’s management team flew out from London for a celebratory dinner.

What a shame, then, that by the next day Kelley had changed his mind again, and by the following week was taking the lift to Gibson Dunn’s office and not Clifford Chance’s.

Thank goodness that Clifford Chance is due to move premises in New York during the summer, thereby avoiding what would surely have been many embarrassing silences in the elevator.