Michael J. Dowd Named Attorney of the Year

February 19, 2010

The monthly legal publication, California Lawyer, awarded Michael J. Dowd one of its top honors, naming him “Attorney of the Year” for his achievements in the area of securities law. This honor coincides with Dowd being elevated to a name partner at Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP. A former federal prosecutor, Dowd has served on the Firm’s Executive Committee for the last several years and played a key role in many of the Firm’s groundbreaking cases, including last year’s victories against Household International and UnitedHealth – two of the most significant results achieved in recent securities litigation.  In Household, Dowd led a trial team to a stunning jury verdict last year, following a six-week trial in Chicago.  Lead plaintiffs alleged that the finance corporation Household (now part of HSBC) and three individual defendants made false and misleading statements about the Illinois lender’s financial results and operations.

Along with Robbins Geller partners Spencer A. Burkholz, Daniel S. Drosman and Luke O. Brooks, Dowd’s Household trial team crafted a compelling case, demonstrating how Household’s CEO William Aldinger, along with other executives, violated the securities laws.  Following the trial, the Household jury returned a liability verdict and determined per-share damages for each day between March 23, 2001 and October 11, 2002.  Although the litigation is ongoing, the Household verdict is expected to yield in excess of $1 billion for the plaintiff class.

In addition to his achievements in Household, Dowd led the litigation team that obtained a record recovery of $925 million in the UnitedHealth stock options backdating scandal.  Dowd also made significant contributions to shareholder recoveries in the AOL Time Warner, WorldCom, Qwest, Vesta, U.S. West and Safeskin cases, and served as the lead trial lawyer in AT&T, which settled after two weeks of trial for $100 million.

Having served for eight years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of California, Dowd prosecuted numerous bank fraud, bribery, money laundering and narcotics cases, and received the Director’s Award for Superior Performance as an Assistant U.S. Attorney.

Commenting on his award, Dowd said, “I was honored to receive a CLAY award, but Household was a team effort. Spence Burkholz, Dan Drosman and Luke Brooks were critical players in achieving this result.  Our Firm moved over twenty lawyers, paralegals and support staff to Chicago. In my view, our entire team shares this award.”

California Lawyer, a Daily Journal publication, is the nation’s leading legal magazine, covering the country’s most dynamic and talked about legal market. The California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year Awards recognize lawyers throughout the state whose legal work made a profound impact in 2009.  The awards recognize 27 accomplishments in 17 areas of legal practice.

To view the CLAY Awards article, please see the link below.

2010 California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year Awards


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