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Introducing Stephen Damato

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Stephen Damato (image by Lateral Link)

These are difficult occasions for the authorized career — and difficult occasions in authorized recruiting as effectively. In response to a current survey by the Nationwide Affiliation for Regulation Placement (NALP), roughly 70 % of companies have decreased their lateral affiliate hiring within the three-month interval from March via Might, whereas 40 % have decreased their lateral companion hiring (in comparison with the identical interval final 12 months).

In mild of the state of the lateral market, right here at Lateral Link we really feel very lucky to be fairly busy — so busy, the truth is, that we are literally rising versus contracting. Right this moment I’d wish to introduce you to one of many latest members of our crew: Stephen Damato, a Director primarily based out of our Washington, D.C. workplace.

I requested Matt Rosenberg — the Principal who manages the D.C. area for Lateral Link, who interviewed many different candidates earlier than hiring Stephen — what he discovered compelling about Stephen’s background and trainings and certifications.

“I employed Stephen due to his monitor document of success,” Matt defined. “Stephen graduated from Georgetown Regulation, cum laude, earlier than working towards at Jones Day and Gunderson Dettmer. As well as, it was necessary to the expansion of our D.C. workplace to have somebody with a company/M&A background. We’re thrilled Stephen has chosen to affix our crew, and that I imagine he can be a really profitable recruiter.”

And why did Stephen resolve to affix Lateral Link? Final week, I interviewed Stephen by telephone, and we mentioned this amongst multiple different topics.

DL: Howdy, Stephen, and welcome to Lateral Link! It’s nice to have you ever aboard. By means of introduction, are you able to inform us a bit about your self?

SD: I grew up in Northwest D.C., what place my fiancée and that I at present dwell, and that I went to highschool right here too, at Georgetown Day Faculty (GDS). I did my undergraduate work at UPenn, what place I studied Spanish and Economics. I wasn’t certain of what I needed to do after commencement, however I had all the time been fascinated with regulation — partly due to the work of my father [Joseph Damato], a companion at Seyfarth Shaw — so I went straight via to regulation college at Georgetown.

What I loved most at Georgetown Regulation was attending to know my classmates. I used to be very social throughout regulation college, and that I be in contact with lots of my regulation college buddies to this present day.

DL: Like lots of your classmates, you joined a high regulation agency after graduating. What follow space did you decide, and why?

SD: I moved as much as New York to work for Jones Day, what place I targeted on mergers and acquisitions. I used to be drawn to M&A piece due to its collaborative facet. It’s fairly social as Biglaw goes, calling on you to work not simply together with your M&A colleagues however with specialists throughout a variety of fields.

I loved attending to know my colleagues at Jones Day, and I actually worth these relationships on a private {and professional} degree. And that I felt that my approach — treating individuals with respect, offering considerate and sensible recommendation, staying calm, and sustaining a optimistic outlook — helped make me a profitable lawyer.

DL: And you then made a lateral transfer — good preparation to your new profession as a recruiter. What prompted your switch?

SD: My then-girlfriend, now fiancée, bought accepted to Harvard Regulation Faculty, so we determined to maneuver to Boston. I noticed the transfer in cities as a possibility to discover a unique follow space and broaden my company follow, so I lateraled to Gunderson Dettmer, what place I targeted on rising firms and enterprise capital (EC/VC) work.

Once more, my favourite a part of the work was constructing relationships. Gunderson was additionally an incredible place to work, and by nature the offers have been smaller, typically simply me and a companion, so I bought to know my purchasers very effectively.

DL: Which brings us to right now, and your entry into the world of authorized recruiting. What has led you to affix this business?

SD: This previous spring, after 4 years in Biglaw, I knew I needed to come back dwelling to D.C., what place I grew up. My fiancée and that I met right here, earlier than we moved to New York after which to Boston, and we knew we needed to cool down right here. And as soon as once more, I felt the transfer in cities was a pure time for a profession transition.

I loved my time at each Jones Day and Gunderson, however as I mirrored on my profession, I spotted that the day-to-day work of being a transactional lawyer wasn’t for me over the long run — and that what I discovered most fulfilling about my time in follow was the constructing of relationships. So authorized recruiting, a subject pushed by relationships, appeared like a pure match.

Recruiting would additionally enable me to leverage my authorized coaching and expertise. I went to an important regulation college, I labored at two amazing companies in two totally different follow areas, I had publicity to a few totally different authorized markets, and that I had lateraled myself. I completely perceive the mindset of attorneys in non-public follow and the issues which might be necessary when taking inventory of 1’s profession and assessing easy methods to capitalize on improvement possibilities and pursue future success and happiness. Recruiting would enable me to attract upon all of my data and networks, in a subject what place I’d take pleasure in my day-to-day work and be capable to add worth.

DL: Your considering makes good sense — and explains why so lots of Lateral Link’s recruiters have backgrounds like yours. Why did you select Lateral Link?

SD: I reached out to numerous high search companies, each nationwide and native, and spoke with many recruiters at totally different locations. I had developed relationships with a number of recruiters throughout my time as an affiliate, which I enormously valued — I discovered speaking to recruiters to be useful in understanding the market and the possibilities on the market — and so I reached again out to them, together with others.

I selected to affix Lateral Link for a number of totally different causes. First, I used to be drawn to the tradition and values of Lateral Link — its emphasis on respect, integrity, diversity, and giving back. Second, I simply linked up so effectively with everybody I spoke with on the firm; I felt that each single individual I spoke with was somebody I might belief and luxuriate in spending time with. Third, I really feel superb in regards to the state of the corporate — the way it’s thriving and rising throughout this difficult time, when many different recruiting companies are retrenching.

DL: Certainly. We really feel very lucky to be doing effectively proper now — and really lucky to have you ever be a part of us. Welcome once more, Stephen — and that I sit up for assembly you in individual, hopefully sooner quite than later!

Ed. be aware: That is the newest installment in a collection of posts from Lateral Link’s crew of professional contributors. This put up is by David Lat, a Managing Director within the New York workplace, what place he focuses on inserting high associates, companions, and companion teams into preeminent regulation companies across the nation.


Lateral Link is among the top-rated worldwide authorized recruiting companies. With over 14 places of work worldwide, Lateral Link focuses on inserting attorneys on the most prestigious regulation companies and corporations on this planet. Managed by former working towards attorneys from high regulation faculties, Lateral Link has a practice of hiring legal professionals to execute the lateral leaps of working towards attorneys. Click on here to seek out out extra about us.

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