Washington, D.C. Firms

Washington, D.C. Surprisingly, the population of the District of Columbia, as of 2005 U.S. Census Bureau estimates, is only 582,049 persons. However, the Washington Metropolitan Area surpasses 5 million persons, and the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area surpasses 8 million. The global migration of professionals to DC over the past century has made meeting a native-born Washingtonian a rare occasion. If DC were a state, it would rank last in area behind Rhode Island, 50th in population ahead of Wyoming, first in population density ahead of New Jersey, and 35th in Gross State Product.

As of 2002, the federal government accounts for 27% of DC's jobs. The presence of many major government agencies, including the Department of Defense, National Institutes of Health, and the Food and Drug Administration, has led to business development both in the District itself as well as in the National Capital Region of Maryland and northern Virginia. These businesses include federal contractors (defense and civilian), numerous nonprofit organizations, law firms and lobbying firms, catering and administrative services companies, and several other industries that are sustained by the economic presence of the federal government. This arrangement makes the Washington economy virtually recession-proof relative to the rest of the country and the economy often grows during national recessions.

The gross state product of the District in 2004 was $75.264 billion. It would rank #36 if compared with the fifty states. In 2006, Expansion Magazine ranked DC among the top 10 metropolitan areas in the nation for climates favorable to business expansion. In terms of commercial office space, Washington, D.C. has the 3rd largest downtown in America behind New York City and Chicago. Of non-government employers, DC's major universities and hospitals are among the top employers with George Washington University, Georgetown University and Washington Hospital Center as the top three. Howard University and Fannie Mae round out the top five employers in DC. Washington is also a global media center. Most major news outlets have bureaus in the city and Washington is home to Black Entertainment Television, C-SPAN, National Public Radio, the Washington Post Company, and XM Satellite Radio. Washington's unique scenery makes it a popular location for film and television production.

With nearly 14 times as many lawyers as New York state, DC has the highest number of lawyers, per capita, compared to any state.

Methodology

This ranking is based on how much over 6,000 associates like their own firms. This ranking does not include prestige, salary or other factors except as they influence how much an associate enjoys working at his or her firm, and how likely said associate is to stay at his or her current firm. Associates from all law firms did not participate. Only firms with 10 or more respondents are included.

See also:

Best Washington Firms to Work For

Rank Law Firm Main Office Total Midlevels Response Rate Score (0-100)
1 Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner Washington, D.C. 55 44% 90.0
2 Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice Winston-Salem 48 48% 89.0
3 Ross, Dixon & Bell Washington, D.C. 20 80% 88.0
4 Thompson Hine Cleveland 57 35% 87.4
4 Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi Minneapolis 57 37% 87.0
4 Dickstein Shapiro Morin & Oshinsky Washington, D.C. 57 49% 86.6
7 Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young Philadelphia 18 94% 86.2
8 Fish & Richardson National 76 54% 83.6
9 Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe San Francisco 102 49% 82.8
9 Thompson Coburn St. Louis 39 54% 82.8
9 Troutman Sanders Atlanta 110 40% 82.8
12 Cooley Godward Palo Alto 98 60% 81.8
13 Fulbright & Jaworski Houston 125 44% 81.2
13 Seyfarth Shaw National 88 52% 80.8
15 Vinson & Elkins Houston 124 68% 80.4
15 Powell Goldstein Atlanta 35 31% 80.0
15 Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton Los Angeles 74 39% 80.0
15 Howrey Washington, D.C. 102 61% 79.6
19 Crowell & Moring Washington, D.C. 46 46% 79.0
19 Pepper Hamilton Philadelphia 90 63% 79.0
19 Drinker Biddle & Reath Philadelphia 74 46% 78.8
19 Nixon Peabody National 78 23% 78.8
19 Buchanan Ingersoll Pittsburgh 39 77% 78.6
24 Hunton & Williams Richmond 145 42% 78.4
24 Baker Botts Houston 117 23% 77.6
24 Schiff Hardin Chicago 42 40% 77.6
27 Goodwin Procter Boston 145 65% 77.4
27 Morrison & Foerster San Francisco 167 60% 77.2
27 Porter Wright Morris & Arthur Columbus 38 58% 77.2
27 Blank Rome Philadelphia 56 34% 76.8
31 LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae National 122 49% 76.2
31 Weil, Gotshal & Manges New York 241 22% 75.8
31 Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton New York 184 19% 75.6
31 Katten Muchin Rosenman Chicago 99 85% 75.6
35 Alston & Bird Atlanta 158 24% 75.2
35 Baker & Hostetler Cleveland 83 64% 75.2
35 Manatt, Phelps & Phillips Los Angeles 31 55% 75.2
35 Venable Washington, D.C. 58 36% 75.2
35 Chadbourne & Parke New York 36 36% 75.0
35 Jones Day National 324 17% 75.0
35 Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough Columbia, South Carolina 63 38% 75.0
35 Clifford Chance International 75 36% 74.8
35 Duane Morris Philadelphia 44 68% 74.6
35 Reed Smith Pittsburgh 156 52% 74.6
45 King & Spalding Atlanta 146 50% 74.2
45 Dechert National 182 34% 73.8
45 Hogan & Hartson National 176 21% 73.8
45 Thacher Proffitt & Wood New York 57 30% 73.8
45 Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr Washington, D.C. 250 36% 73.8
50 Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman National 137 51% 73.4
50 Wiley Rein & Fielding Washington, D.C. 36 33% 73.4
50 Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker National 163 96% 73.0
50 Bryan Cave National 109 64% 72.8
50 McKenna Long & Aldridge National 46 72% 72.6
55 Kenyon & Kenyon New York 43 30% 72.4
55 DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary National 232 53% 72.2
55 Latham & Watkins National 463 32% 72.2
55 McDermott, Will & Emery National 178 32% 72.0
55 Hughes Hubbard & Reed New York 54 50% 71.8
55 Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal Chicago 78 23% 71.8
55 Sidley Austin National 283 47% 71.6
62 Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy New York 109 46% 71.2
62 Dow, Lohnes & Albertson Washington, D.C. 28 71% 71.0
64 Morgan, Lewis & Bockius National 268 47% 70.4
64 Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Nicholson Graham Pittsburgh 142 62% 70.2
64 Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom New York 371 14% 70.2
64 Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld National 120 49% 70.0
64 Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw National 181 42% 70.0
64 Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher Los Angeles 219 47% 69.8
64 Foley & Lardner Milwaukee 163 41% 69.6
71 Arent Fox Washington, D.C. 28 57% 68.8
72 Steptoe & Johnson Washington, D.C. 57 46% 68.4
72 Holland & Knight National 118 90% 68.0
72 White & Case International 150 48% 67.8
75 Winston & Strawn Chicago 141 27% 67.4
75 Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson New York 137 41% 67.2
75 Preston Gates & Ellis Seattle 47 30% 67.2
75 O'Melveny & Myers Los Angeles 244 39% 67.0
75 Kelley Drye & Warren New York 42 64% 66.6
75 Kirkland & Ellis Chicago 300 47% 66.6
81 Bingham McCutchen National 176 42% 66.2
81 Ropes & Gray Boston 194 31% 65.8
81 Proskauer Rose New York 133 36% 65.6
84 Heller Ehrman San Francisco 113 53% 65.4
84 Willkie Farr & Gallagher New York 117 30% 64.6
86 Dewey Ballantine New York 78 49% 62.8
87 Arnold & Porter Washington, D.C. 140 53% 62.0
88 Shearman & Sterling New York 162 26% 60.4
88 Sullivan & Cromwell New York 171 83% 60.4
90 Covington & Burling Washington, D.C. 125 40% 58.4
90 Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft New York 113 38% 58.0
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