Orrick is committed to supporting veterans and their spouses in our hiring, in the career development of our attorneys, and in advocating for the veteran community through our pro bono efforts. We have been proactive in carrying out this goal. When we wanted to hire veterans who are lawyers but couldn’t find a venue to source experienced attorneys, we created one. Our annual Veterans’ Legal Career Fair – the first and only of its kind in the United States – is one of the many ways we work with the legal community to support the women and men who have served our country.
We also have an active Veterans' Forum to support our own vets, led by Nikiforos Mathews, who served as a Judge Advocate in the U.S. Army Reserve, and Matthew Reeder, who served as a Marine Corps prosecutor. And we are performing innovative pro bono work on such issues as discharge upgrades for veterans separated from the military due to PTSD.
Orrick’s Veterans Forum comprises partners, counsel, associates and staff who have served, in active duty or the reserves, in any branch of the military or national guard worldwide.
The Veterans Forum serves as a firmwide, global community for veterans. Its goals are to:
Veterans’ Legal Career Fair
Our Veterans’ Legal Career Fair is the only legal career fair in the United States devoted exclusively to veterans, active-duty service members preparing for a transition out of the military, and military spouses. Since we launched this annual event in 2015, we have helped over 500 active service members and veterans connect with top legal employers such as Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, Deloitte, the Central Intelligence Agency, Bank of America, Juniper Networks, the Department of Homeland Security and Goldman Sachs.
Active duty service members travel from U.S. military installations around the world, joining veterans and their spouses in Washington, D.C., to participate in a full day of interviews, panel discussions and an open career fair. Over 40 employers from across the U.S., including law firms, corporate legal departments and government agencies, participate each year. One attendee, who received an offer, said, “This fair really is making a difference in the lives of attendees – and I can say that now from personal experience.”
Our commitment to recruiting veteran talent includes staff roles as well. We partner with Hire a Hero, the leading job board and employment resource for veterans and military spouses, and encourage qualified candidates to apply for positions with us.
Advocating for Veterans
Our pro bono representation of veterans is some of our most important work. We’ve helped many clients petition the Department of Defense for discharge upgrades, which is a key step toward getting their lives on track. In one case, our team established new precedent for vets who seek benefits for pain-related disabilities. Now these vets can receive benefits after decades of government refusal to issue them. Another pro bono team helped define what constitutes “in the line of duty,” securing benefits for our client after a 15-year fight. We also helped two military veterans obtain increases in benefits for ongoing conditions resulting from sexual assaults while in the military.
This work continues through our collaboration with the New York County Lawyers’ Association to create an innovative program to help veterans suffering from PTSD to upgrade the characterization of their discharge and obtain important medical and other veterans’ benefits.
Together with the National LGBT Bar Association, our lawyers successfully represented three transgender veterans who petitioned the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy to modify military records to reflect their correct names and identities. The executive director of the National LGBT Bar called the outcome a “life-changing victory.”
In London, we are advising Company of Makers, which funds workshops for ex-service personnel and their families who are acclimating to civilian life, on a new lease for their building.
Our Community and Law School Partners
We partner with many other organizations that serve veterans, including:
We helped found and continue to counsel others, including:
We also work with law schools: