My very first day at Munger Tolles, I was asked to work on a major class action arbitration with Malcolm Heinicke and Martin Bern. For two years, I ran the day-to-day operations on the case – I did everything from digging through the documents to traveling around the world to take depositions. When it was time to go to trial, I knew the client and the facts very well, so I had the opportunity to cross-examine more than a dozen witnesses, put on key direct examination witnesses and deliver part of the closing argument. After a three-month trial, we won the case.
This initial trial experience paved the way for me to serve as first chair, or lead counsel, defending the University of California in a highly publicized privacy lawsuit. With the full support of Brad Phillips, I worked on every stage of the case, from the motion to dismiss and summary judgment argument through mediation and depositions – ultimately representing the University at trial. During the process I also got to work with the press that covered every day of the trial.
I enjoyed having the opportunity to pull the case together and present it in a way that was digestible and persuasive to a jury. It was a great feeling to sit at counsel table during the plaintiff’s closing argument knowing I could respond to every point because I was so immersed in the case – and setting it all out for the jury during closing argument was so much fun! After less than an hour of deliberation, the jury ruled in our favor.
I feel very lucky to have had these opportunities as an associate. In law school, I was really involved in mock trial and knew trial work was something I wanted to do. In these cases, and many others, I’ve had the opportunity to shape and execute case strategy from day one – which is exactly why I came to Munger Tolles.