Company: Greenberg Traurig LLP
Location: New York, New York, United States
Michael Donald Burrows, Shareholder at Greenberg Traurig LLP, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Lawyers for dedication, achievements, and leadership in the legal profession.
Mr. Burrows graduated from Williams College in 1967 and served in the United States Marine Corps from 1968-1970. He graduated from New York Law School in 1973 and joined Baker & McKenzie the same year. He was the managing partner of Baker & McKenzie’s New York office and a member of the firm’s international Executive Committee. In 1999, he joined Winston and Strawn, where he was a member of that firm’s Executive Committee and Chairman of the Litigation Department of the New York Office. In 2004, Mr. Burrows became a shareholder with Greenberg Traurig, LLP where he continues his practice today.
Mr. Burrows is admitted to practice in New York and before the United States District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He was admitted to the United States Supreme Court in 1981. He maintains his memberships with the American Bar Association and the New York State Bar Association. Mr. Burrows is the co-author of “The Practice of International Litigation” (Trans Jur. Pub. 1992).
In 1979, Mr. Burrows was part of a team that represented American oil service companies against the National Iranian Oil Company during the Iran hostage crisis and in the early 2000s, Mr. Burrows successfully represented Russian and Latvian interests in some of the first U.S. lawsuits following the dissolution of the Soviet Union. He addressed the Russian State Duma on concepts of jurisdiction over non-U.S. parties and has advised lawyers from numerous foreign countries regarding esoteric procedural aspects of U.S. law.
Mr. Burrows attributes his success to a good mentor (“unparalleled,” he says), and hard work. “Nine times out of ten, the side that is best prepared will win at trial — and even before,” he says. “You can’t work hard enough and you can’t make mistakes… they’re almost always fatal.” Mr. Burrows says he has had good clients, “the best,” he says. “You have to love this business for reasons other than money. Money will never pay for the disruption to your life and for the time lost and disquiet of being a litigator.”
We asked Mr. Burrows, after such a long career, if he had a favorite case, the best decision, or the biggest win? He said it was his first jury trial – defending, pro bono, a Japanese husband and wife who owned a tiny restaurant that was just making ends meet in mid-town New York from the onslaught of a vicious landlord. “A four-day trial,” he said, “with an amount at issue of just over $4,000.”
“That’s a long time ago,” we remarked. “Did you win?”
“If I lost,” he replied, “I would have picked another case to be my favorite.”
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