Friday, May 14, 2021

Judge Ursula Ungaro leaving federal bench...

 ... for Boies Schiller.  Congratulations to Judge Ungaro and a bigger congrats to BS who land a fierce advocate for their firm.  

The news has been making the rounds for the past few days in local legal circles.  But it's finally official.  

From Reuters:

It’s never too late to blaze new trails. Just ask Senior U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro.
After 34 years on the bench in Florida, the Miami-based jurist submitted her resignation on Friday to join Boies Schiller Flexner as a partner on June 1.
She is 70 years old - and she’s not slowing down.
“I like the idea of a challenge,” Ungaro told me. “I wanted to see what it would be like with the credentials I have behind me, to see if I can build a practice and generate business and mix it up in court again.”

No doubt she will be able to mix it up in court again!  I've always liked that Judge Ungaro tells you what's on her mind.  She doesn't hold back.  It's refreshing.  For example, in classic Judge Ungaro form, not pulling any punches, she said this about her new firm:

“I’m very aware - I’m not an ostrich - that the firm has had a lot of departures,” Ungaro said. Boies Schiller, as I previously reported, saw about 60 partners exit in 2020.

“I think they have a great base to restructure,” Ungaro said. “I have all the respect in the world for David Boies and the other lawyers” including her old friend Stephen Zack, a Miami-based partner and member of the executive committee, and Stuart Singer, a fellow executive committee member who is based in Fort Lauderdale.

“I’d like to be part of the restructuring,” she said, adding that “the chemistry should be right.”

Ungaro and Zack met in the mid-1970s, when both were associates at (now defunct) Frates Floyd Pearson Stewart Richman & Greer.

“We suffered together,” joked Zack, who previously served as president of the American Bar Association.

My first assignment as an assistant federal defender was with Judge Ungaro.  She pushed young lawyers and didn't suffer fools.  I am definitely a better lawyer after my stint as a new public defender in her division.  It will be fun to watch her deal with her former colleagues when they don't grant a continuance or agree on an evidentiary point.  I'll be there for that! :)

Congrats again to Judge Ungaro!


the trialmaster said...

She will not be there very long once she sees what this firm is about. And Zack has never tried a jury trial by himself and is vastly overrated as an attorney. But to his credit he has done well with his pollical connections. Much easier than trying civil or criminal cases to juries day in and out. I see UU out after 6 months or less.

Anonymous said...

Surprised she hadnt left before. She has been bored to tears for years, and everything about her--her voice, her demeanor, her hurry up and wait sense of scheduling-- let you know that she was just "doing time."
But she was very funny. She told me during a recess at the beginning of a trial, " Mr. X, I don't think you and I are going to get along here. You think you own my courtroom, and you dont." She was right.

Anonymous said...

ok fine

Anonymous said...

She should be Exhibit A in support of a law to change SS retirement to 75.

Anonymous said...

12:35: spot on!

Anonymous said...

She has a brilliant mind and full of common sense. She definitely kept lawyers on a short leash. But completely fair and the makings of what a judge should be.