Selendy taps into waves of junior hiring to increase the number of attorneys

Manhattan’s Selendy Gay will be adding about 25% to its roster of attorneys this year, thanks largely to a group of graduate students joining the law firm in the fall.

According to Maria Ginzburg, the managing partner, the firm expects that “the majority” of the 26 law students who spent last summer there will return later this year as full-time first-year associates. Selendy has grown to more than 60 attorneys in the five years since its inception by focusing on junior associates.

Selendy said Thursday it hired Temidayo Aganga-Williams, who served as senior investigative adviser to the House Select Committee in the Jan. 6 attack. Aganga-Williams, who will join the firm as a partner later this month, was previously a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn.

A group of 10 Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan attorneys led by Faith Gay and Philippe Selendy formed the firm in February 2018 after retiring from the litigation powerhouse. The law firm handles a wide range of litigation for both the plaintiff and the defense as well as commercial investigations.

Economic uncertainty is likely to open up business opportunities for Selendy, even as some major law firms are shedding their workforce and exploring other connections, Ginzburg said in an interview.

“When the economy is stressed, it emphasizes corporate America’s behavior,” she said. “We’re approaching this from different angles.”

The company hired 12 employees in the first year last year. It also selectively expands its partner ranks.

Maria Ginzburg

Photo: Selendy Gay

“When we started, we hired a lot of younger employees and gave them early experience and pushed them to exceed expectations,” Ginzburg said. “We’ve focused on helping juniors get on their feet and argue cases, get in front of clients and start developing business.”

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The rapid growth comes as the lease for Selendy’s Midtown Manhattan headquarters is set to be renewed next year.

“We’re definitely thinking a lot about office space,” said Ginzburg.

Selendy’s attorneys are conducting multiple lawsuits against cryptocurrency exchanges and token issuers for the alleged sale of unregistered securities. These include a class action lawsuit against Coinbase Global Inc., which operates the largest U.S. exchange, and a separate lawsuit accusing Bitfinex exchange operators of market manipulation.

The firm has also practiced bankruptcy and related litigation. Selendy’s attorneys are representing a group of families of victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting who are suing bankrupt gunmaker Remington Outdoor Co. Inc. and a group of lenders pursuing food company TriMark USA.

Ginzburg praised the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion in recruitment. According to the firm, women make up nearly half of Selendy’s equity partners, and LGBTQ attorneys make up about a quarter of the entire list.