One Shell Plaza, 910 Louisiana Street | Houston | TX | 77002
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Based in downtown Houston, Texas Baker Botts L.L.P. is a major international firm, employing around 725 lawyers, serving many celebrated clients, amongst them many Fortune 100 companies and significant number of energy related clients.
Founded in 1840, the firm has a long prominent history and counted amongst the oldest law firms in the U.S. and a reputation of serving its clients with the highest ethical and professional standards, with a strong commitment to their business needs.
The firm has offices in 13 cities around the world allowing it offer seamless service in the most collegial association among its attorneys and staff members.
The firm's vision for the future was expressively stated by erstwhile partner Judge Hiram Garwood, who stated: "I have always thought of it, not as a mere temporary association of individuals, however pleasant or however profitable, but as a permanent institution, just as Harvard or the Bank of England is an institution."
Given its current stature, there is little doubt that Baker Botts lawyers have added to the impressive accomplishments of the firm's founders, have been a major asset to the city of Houston, raking up political connections, advising Presidents during times of war and founding the Texas Law Review.
The firm has a long cherished history that ranks it second amongst the oldest firms in the United States, West of the Mississippi. It was founded by Peter Gray in 1866, along with Colonel W.B. Botts. Judge James A. Baker joined in 1887 naming it Gray, Botts & Baker. The name Gray was dropped later when he joined the Supreme Court of Texas and the name was changed to Baker & Botts.
The firm drew considerable early business from the railroads that were beginning to be built in the country. Several other things happened that combined to give the firm huge business and countrywide recognition.
The hurricane that struck and destroyed Texas biggest city in 1990 forced businesses to move to Houston and the following year oil was discovered near Houston that brought many companies in its wake. They relied on the firm for their legal counsel.
The firm experienced remarkable growth after the World War II. In 1945 it has 42 layers, working from one location and had no departments. By 1986 it had offices in Houston, Washington, Dallas and Austin and 136 partners, 173 associates and a total staff of 885.In 2004, the firm grew to nearly 700 lawyers, with International offices in Moscow, London, Baku and Riyadh.
Currently apart from its domestic offices, in Houston, Austin, Dallas, New York, Washington and Palo Alto it has opened offices in Abu Dhabi, Beijing, Hong Kong, Dubai and Riyadh.
Areas of practice
Labor and Employment
Waste and Redemption
Life Sciences Practices
State and Local Tax
Throughout its history, the firm has handled many significant, high-profile matters for its clients. Some of the more recent significant cases include:
In August 2012 In Enbridge Pipelines (East Texas) L.P. v. Avinger Timber, the Texas Supreme Court reversed a $20,955,000 condemnation judgment against Enbridge Pipelines (East Texas) L.P. and remanded the case for a new trial.
In August 2012 In Reeder v. Wood County Energy, LLC, et al., the Texas Supreme Court, in a unanimous opinion authored by Justice Dale Wainwright, held that the exculpatory clause in a 1989 AAPL model form joint operating agreement exempts an operator from liability for its activities unless its conduct amounts to gross negligence or willful misconduct.
On July 16, 2012, U.S. District Judge Ann D. Montgomery, in Minneapolis, denied plaintiffs' motion for class certification in an antitrust suit against Baker Botts client C&S Wholesale Grocers, Inc. and SuperValu Inc.
Baker Botts lawyer Omar Alaniz has been selected as the 2012 recipient of the Sandra Day O'Connor Award for Professional Service. Alaniz is the twelfth lawyer to receive this award since its creation in 2001.
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Awards and recognitions
Baker Botts is time and again finds itself ranked amongst the top law firms of the country. Its lawyers also find mention and are recognized among the best practitioners worldwide.
Some of its recent awards and recognitions are as follows:
Ranked first amongst the best law firms nationwide, in energy, oil and gas by Vault for 2012.
Ranked first amongst the best law firms nationwide, in Clean Technology and Renewable Energy by Vault for 2012.
Ranked the best law firm in Texas by Vault 20102.
Who's Who Legal names Baker Botts as '2012 Texas Firm Of The Year.'
In 2011, the Business Committee for the Arts named it as one of the best companies supporting the arts in the United States.
In 2011 a BTI Client Service Survey cited Baker Botts as best in class A List member. The firm was one amongst 30 firms to earn this distinction based on a survey of general counsels at Fortune 1000 companies.
The Global Competition Review 2011 listed the firm as 'Recommended" for being one of the leading firms for government antitrust.
Baker Botts transaction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline was selected as the deal of the decade 2000-2010 by Infrastructure Journal in 2011.
Baker Botts Qurayyah Independent Power project was selected for creativity in securing multi-sourced financing for the project by Project Finance Magazine 2011.
Baker Botts places great value on incoming law students. The firm employs talented law students. The firm selects from the highest-ranking graduates amongst the topmost law schools in the country.
The firm has an established set of core attributes that they seek in candidates. These attributes include self-confidence, dedication and commitment to excellence. Other talents that can grow with the progress of time are creative problem solving and relationship building.
Baker Botts nurtures these core attributes through their training and development programs.
For the firm diversity is the means to weave a stronger fabric. It is committed to nurturing diversity at the workplace, bringing together its viewpoints, experience of the years and its competence, making the firm more resourceful, efficient and successful.
It is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and does not stand for discrimination in any form, be it based on race, color, ethnicity, gender, religion, nationality or any other category.
Its contributions to diversity were recognized in 2010 when it received the Minority Corporate Counsel Association's Thomas L. Sager Award for the South/Southwest Region for demonstrating sustained commitment to improve the advancement of minority lawyers.
For their unflagging diversity efforts Baker Botts is consistently ranked amongst the top law firms for diversity. Amongst specific feathers in its cap, are being ranked four times amongst the top 100 law firms for Diversity, receiving a perfect score of 100, for two consecutive years in 2009 and 2010 on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation's Corporate Index and Best Places to Work Survey.
The Baker Botts Global Women's Forum, established to foster networking, mentoring and professional development among women at the firm, has four objectives, recruitment, retention, development and promotion of women lawyers.
Summer associate program
The Baker Botts Summer Associate program creates a factual working atmosphere for the associates who work under the supervision of experienced lawyers, guided by a strong mentoring program. A chosen team of partners and associates advise, guide and offer critiques of the work done, ensuring that the associates are exposed to more people and practice areas and get an idea of what Baker Botts is all about.
A unique feature of the program is the Baker Weekend hosted by the firm that brings summer associates and lawyers from each of its six offices within the country and gets them to interact with one another in an environment that helps build and strengthen relationships across the firm.
During the weekend events include panel discussions, presentations and detailed sessions specific to the department that provide valuable insight into the firm's traditions, practices and management.
A much looked forward to highlight of the Baker Weekend is a keynote address by the Honorable James A. Baker III, the 61st Secretary of State of America and Senior partner at the firm.
Baker Botts provides a competitive salary for its employees. Salaries and benefits for associates and summer associates match those of its peer firms. The firm is keenly aware of the need to support associates seeking to balance a professional career with family responsibilities.
Associate base salary for the first year is $125,000.
401(k)/IRA/Other Retirement Plan
Bar Association Fees
Business Casual Dress Code
Domestic Partner Benefits
Employee Assistance Program
Family/Dependent Care Leave
Flexible Spending Account/Pre-Tax Option
Long-term Disability Insurance
Short-term Disability Insurance
Technology (Laptop, PDA, etc.)
Benefits Package: The firm provides medical, dental, life, accidental death and long-term disability insurance. In addition to these the firm also offers a competitive 401(k) plan in which all employees are welcome to participate from day one of their employment. The firm also provides an Employee Assistance Program, a confidential service that provides counseling to employees and their families. Along with 10 national paid holidays, Botts Baker provides associates with three weeks of vacation each year.
Working for the Baker Botts.
Lawyers at Baker Botts are skilful, accomplished and expected to be proficient in their specific skills. They must be able to apply their skills to further the firm's reputation and excel in delivering legal services of the highest quality and excellence in consonance with their client's most complex business issues.
Lawyers are providing with engaging work and entrusted with responsibility almost from the first day of work. Lawyers can expect to work in a dynamic global environment, where the highest professional and ethical standards are maintained.
New lawyers can advance their careers through on-the-job training, a healthy mentoring program, internal and external professional development opportunities are provided to the new recruits.
Apart from work the firm encourages its lawyers to a have life of their own outside of the workplace, be it pursuing a hobby, performing community service or just spending time with the family.
The firm has a history that goes back 170 years, of glorious accomplishment and proud heritage and would like to see its lawyers add to the firms standing and stature. The firm is proud of its clients and its values and culture are very important to them.
The firm has always followed a policy of giving back to the community from which it has gained so much. Helping those who need their services guides them in their commitment and each year, Baker Botts provides thousands of hours of pro bono legal services to many causes that include, civil right cases, death penalty cases, family law issues, constitutional law issues and community development.
The firm influences it lawyers to contribute to the firm's pro bono work and treat it just as they would other paying clients, providing them of their best services with full resources of the firm and the same level of commitment and excellence. It motivates its lawyers to consider pro-bono work as enriching as working for fee-paying clients.
It is estimated that the firm spends almost 50,000 hours on pro bono work each year. Changing lives forever, assisting in getting the innocent off death rows, putting children back in schools and giving families another chance at life.
In 2010 the firm reunited a Salvadoran woman, with her family, after nearly three years, after she escaped from the clutches of trafficking ring. Baker Botts managed to get her a visa and other requisite paperwork that helped her be back, safe and secure, amidst her family.
A center serving persons with mental retardation was put up for sale by the City of Houston. The firm successfully defended it, preventing the sale. It would have disrupted the lives of nearly a thousand mentally challenged people and their families.
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