If you’ve ever navigated a complex transaction or high-stakes dispute without a streetwise advisor or hardened litigator who takes ownership of your problem, then you know precisely why, 25 years ago, we started this firm.
In the early 1990s and before, life as a young partner in a large law firm typically meant working long hours, attending many internal meetings, and generating a lot of money for the firm and its more senior partners. Good luck convincing the Management Committee that you deserved credit for bringing in business from a new client with whom one of its members had, after all, played golf ten years earlier.
It was from that reality which FMD was born. In 1995, four partners at a large regional firm concluded there must be a better way. They decided to gamble on their hunch that blue chip clients would be willing to break away from the decades-long practice of hiring only the big law firms for their most significant matters and would be willing instead to receive the same high level of legal representation from the same excellent lawyers but without the cost of big-firm overhead and billing rates, and worship of the billable hour.
Turns out we were right – but certainly there were those who thought we were nuts and that we would never make it. After all, no partners in a large law firm in Kentucky had ever left the mothership to form their own firm. If we may say so ourselves, it involved risk and required determination and courage.
What began as a small litigation boutique has since grown slowly and strategically to a 28 lawyer, full-service firm – large enough to benefit from the economy of scale but still small enough to be free of the undesirable features of Big Law. Litigation remains deeply rooted in our DNA, but we also maintain equally robust practices in the realms of healthcare, corporate, real estate, and finance. And after discovering another entrepreneurial big firm refugee who is the go-to bankruptcy lawyer in Indiana, we recently established an Indianapolis office.
Well, we think it’s bright. FMD will continue to evolve in response to the needs of our clients. But for the record, we think our current size is about optimum. Our offices enjoy an atmosphere of warm collegiality and even family. We don’t need name plates on our office doors or a pictorial roster. We treat everyone, no matter what their job title, as a respected professional. We do not compete with one another and instead are willing to jump in to help each other whenever and however needed. We don’t frown upon people working from home on occasion because we understand that sometimes that’s just what needs to happen. “Jeans Day” is inexplicably popular. We enjoy this amazing – and rare – firm culture because we have taken great pains to create and to preserve it. And if you take the time to look at the origins of our attorneys, you will see that whatever we are doing, it has attracted some of the nation’s top legal talent. We have been richly blessed, indeed.
To state the obvious, we are going to continue to place the utmost value on that which motivated our founders: the desire to deliver uncompromising client service in an environment built on personal relationships, mutual support, and trust.