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/////RAINMAKERS 2011


President and Managing Partner Rodey, Dickason, Sloan, Akin & Robb, P. Albuquerque and Sante Fe, NM


New Mexico is a small state, says Chuck Vigil. A lot here depends on reputation and word of mouth referrals. As a rainmaking employ- ment defense attorney at the same business and litigation fi rm for the entirety of his career and a past president of the State Bar of New Mexico (2005), he has proven himself to clients. “I came to Rodey in 1989 and never left,” says Vigil.

Years Practicing:

22 Area of Practice: Employment; Commercial Litigation & Professional Liability

President and Founding Partner, Murthy Law Firm Owings Mills, MD


Years Practicing:

“I have benefi ted from the help I have received from my partners. Also, the fi rm has a fl at and broad management structure. It’s a team eff ort and most business development is done at the practice group and department level. And because we work as teams, everyone gets to know the clients. “As president and managing director, my job is to look at

the bigger picture, to work on the strategic level. As the face of the fi rm I engage in a lot of activities that help generate business for the fi rm as a whole, and, of course, I strive to generate business with regard to my own practice.” Vigil’s New Mexico roots reach back over two hundred

years. His father was the fi rst in the family to attend college and made certain his children did the same. After earning a B.A. in business, Vigil (whose siblings include a neurosurgeon, neurologist and a Ph.D. professor in chemi- cal engineering) went on to graduate from the University of Michigan Law School. Sometime in the future, Vigil would like to serve as an

appellate judge or teach at a law school, but he has no cer- tain plans. Typically throughout his career, opportunities have presented themselves and Vigil has made sure to seize them. He expects he will know when the time is right.


Twenty-fi ve years ago in India, says Sheela Murthy, law was not the favored career track. “Growing up I was encouraged to be a doctor or an engineer, but I insisted on doing what I loved most—fi ghting for justice and rights for the downtrodden which meant being an attorney,” Murthy says. After graduating from college and law school in Bangalore, she headed to the U.S. for an LL.M from Harvard Law School. Happy with her new home and valuing the free- doms and opportunities here, Murthy decided to remain in the States where, despite the lawyer jokes, legal practitioners were generally appreciated. Murthy’s practice area is exclusively U.S. immigration law.

23 Area of Practice: Immigration

Her very successful 20-attorney fi rm represents small- and mid-sized companies, Fortune 500 companies, as well as individuals going through the immigration process. She cred- its her success to a genuine passion for the work. “When I’m with a client it’s as if I’m focused on a family member who’s in trouble. It’s not about the business, and I think clients can sense that dedication.” Prior to founding her eponymous fi rm, Murthy prac-

ticed corporate and real estate law at large fi rms in New York and Baltimore. During those years she was most happy when she was occasionally given an immigration case. “When I’m doing immigration, I feel that I’m mak- ing diff erences for people—opening doors for them and providing them with opportunities. T is is why I went to law school in the fi rst place.” As a young associate, Murthy was mystifi ed by all the

schmoozing and backslapping. Intuitively she realized that for her success would come by fi nding meaning in her work: “I didn’t go into law for the money. Becoming a rainmaker has been one of the biggest surprises of my life.”


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