Dying to get fired?


Mark Burnett, the reality guru behind "Survivor," is trolling online for a "top-notch attorney" to compete for a chance to appear on "The Apprentice," the NBC reality program in which contestants interview with Donald Trump for a job running one of his companies.


The interviews and the infighting among the applicants can be pretty rough-and-tumble. As star turns go, we're not talking "L.A. Law" here.


There has been a dearth of lawyers among "The Apprentice" hopefuls, but the show's production department wouldn't say why it chose the L.A. Craigslist to seek out applicants.


Attorneys who think they're The Donald's kind of guy can go to the online listing or e-mail the program directly at kmcgann@markburnettprod.com.


Big Win
Kent L. Richland of Greines Martin Stein & Richland LLP recently recorded the sort of legal moment some attorneys wait a career for. The Supreme Court ruled in his favor of his client, former Playboy pinup and current TrimSpa spokesmodel Vickie Lynn Marshall, better known Anna Nicole Smith,


Marshall married law professor-turned oil magnate J. Howard Marshall II in 1994, just 14 months before he died. She claims that J. Howard intended to give her millions from his estate but was thwarted by his son, Pierce.


So, Richland is elated, right?


"I hate to say it this way, but it's more of a relief I didn't lose," Richland said. "It's very exciting. But, as part of the process of learning your case and being prepared, you know your case so well, that you convince yourself you're right. When everyone agrees with you, you think, 'Of course they agree with me.'"


The ruling was narrower than Richland had hoped, too. Justice John Paul Stevens favored an award to Marshall, but the majority of justices ruled that the case should be kicked back to lower courts for Marshall to pursue her claim.


"If Stevens' opinion had been the main one, we'd have been done," Richland said.


A federal bankruptcy judge and federal district judge in California both ruled for Marshall, and awarded her $88 million in 2002. But a Texas probate court had ruled in favor of Pierce in 2001 and a California appellate court let the probate decision stand. The Supreme Court's unanimous and precedent-making move overruled the probate court and said Marshall may proceed in quest for the money she said her husband promised her.


The appellate firm's lead partner Irving Greines is handling another case involving a high-profile client. He's representing billionaire Ron Burkle in his divorce from estranged wife Janet Burkle.


Movin' on Over
There has been a lot of movement on the legal scene this year, and there were plenty of moves at the city's most prestigious firms last week.


"I think there are definitely a lot of movements going on in the market," said Amy Mallow, principal at MallowSossin LLC, a legal recruiting firm. "I think it means that, unlike many years ago, partners are more willing to move and, to some extent, are less wedded to carrying out their full careers at the same firm."


Mallow pointed to corporate, real estate, litigation and employment as areas in which firms need more lawyers, making the market more competitive.


Last week's shifts came in those areas.


Michael Cypers former litigation co-chair at Heller Ehrman LLP, has joined Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw LLP. He will be a part of the financial services and securities practices. Cypers was an adjunct professor at the University of California's Boalt Hall School of Law, where he designed and taught one of the first securities litigation seminars in the country. He is a founding advisory board member of the Berkeley Center for Law, Business and the Economy.


Eric Rowen is leaving his position as vice chair of the real estate litigation practice at Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker LLP to chair the new western region real estate litigation practice at Greenberg Traurig LLP. He previously led Jones Day LLP's real estate litigation practice and served as president of Apollo Real Estate Advisors. Rowen has represented prominent lenders and financiers such as Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., Colony Capital LLC and Citigroup Inc. He's also been active on the developer side, with clients including Lennar Corp. and Porter Ranch Development Co.


Prominent trial lawyer Jane H. Barrett has joined Morrison & Foerster LLP along with Angela E. Dotson. Both come from major international player DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary.


"Jane and Angela will make an immediate impact for the firm and add further depth to our nationally recognized litigation practice," said Chair Keith Wetmore. Barett was the first woman to be elected to the Board of Governors of the American Bar Association. Both women have years of experience representing Fortune 500 companies.


Proskauer Rose LLP snagged Beverly Frank to be senior counsel in labor and employment and litigation matters in the entertainment industry. She comes from Manatt Phelps & Phillips.


Comings and Goings
A hearing has been set for June 9 to consider the appointment of Judge Steven C. Suzukawa of the Superior Court of Los Angeles County to the Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Four in Los Angeles. Owen Smigelski is joining Skousen & Skousen as an associate in business formation, business litigation, estate planning and intellectual property. Gibbs Giden Locher and Turner LLP has hired Emilio F. Gonzalez as an associate. Fulbright & Jaworski LLP has added five attorneys: senior associate Russell C. Trice and associates Amber M. Grayhorse, Amy M. McGinnis, Lynsey A. Mitchel and Travis S. Lovejoy.


Staff reporter Emily Bryson York can be reached at (323) 549-5225, ext. 235, or at eyork@labusinessjournal.com .

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