Careers: Partners

Gould & Ratner appreciates and understands that making a significant job change is a monumental decision — one that affects your career, your clients and your personal life.

The professionals at Gould & Ratner strive to make that transition as seamless as possible. From our management to our support staff, we will facilitate every step of your lateral move. Our team of business development, training, operational and financial professionals will work with you from the time you decide to join us, to ensure a smooth transition for you and your clients into the firm. These professionals will meet with you, listen to your needs, concerns, and preferences, ensuring a natural integration.

We want to be certain that lateral partners feel that they have been heard and their points are appreciated and fully considered, recognizing a mutual end goal of a successful and flourishing practice.

The partners who co-chair our lateral hiring program were lateral partners themselves: “We strive to make a new partner’s transition and integration as seamless as possible,” says co-hiring partner Joe Marzo. “Our lawyers and staff are there to support you from the first day. All new attorneys meet with our business development, IT, operations and personnel professionals in advance, removing much of the strain of a new venture. We do everything possible to allow you, as a new partner to get off to a running start.”

8 Reasons to Join Gould & Ratner

1

A diverse and rewarding caseload

Our work with clients is as sophisticated and complex as the mega firms, but our focus on tailored service is something only a smaller firm like ours can deliver.

2

Practice unification

Our smaller size and streamlined structure encourages internal networking and cross selling amongst different practice areas and lawyers.

3

Investment in your success

We provide our colleagues with the training, professional development, mentorship and advancement tools necessary for a thriving legal career.

4

Excellent support

From our extremely experienced paralegals and skilled practice assistants, to technology and business development resources, our staff goes above-and-beyond.

5

Integrating you and your clients

We know changing firms is a big deal, and we are committed to making your transition as efficient and seamless as possible so that you can resume your practice.

6

A culture of inclusion and collegiality

G&R employees support and respect each other. Our inclusion committee frequently plans firm wide events and initiatives to encourage a sense of community. Our glass offices, open floorplan and breadth of collaborative space are ideal for team building.

7

An impressive list of perks

We offer a comprehensive benefits package, fun and modern workspace and frequent wellness initiatives— to name a few.

8

A focus on social responsibility

From our pro bono work with Habitat for Humanity, to our support of a different charitable organization every Friday, if it’s important to our people, it’s important to us.

50+

experienced attorneys

13

our midwest "best of the best" ranking

11

key service areas

2,500+

valued client relationships

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What Our Clients Say

"I thank your firm for a job well done. We have relied on your expertise, but more importantly, we trusted your friendship. Working with you is fun- you’re amazing souls, with witty and good-natured personalities."

President, technology company

Testimonial Image
What Our Clients Say

"Gould & Ratner lawyers provided immense value from the initial contract discussion through the conclusion of our project. they were always engaged, took great pride and ownership in making sure our project was a success."

CEO, transportation manufacturer

Why I Chose Gould & Ratner

Exceeding My Expectations

Partner
Litigation Practice

In making my lateral move, I wanted to ensure that the new firm I joined was in line with my long-term professional goals. I was impressed with the lawyers I met in my initial interviews – they had varied litigation backgrounds, some had been at the firm for years, and others were laterals, like me, who had found a home here. They described the practice (and firm) as a collegial environment, and I quickly became convinced that Gould & Ratner would be a great fit for me.

The first thing that really struck me, was the longevity of the firm’s relationships. Our clients have been clients for years and refer family and friends consistently, such that we are often representing families and their businesses over several generations. In addition to the client relationships that span decades, both attorneys and staff have been a part of the organization for years, some since the beginning of their careers. In today’s world, it was unique to hear that people wanted to stay here.

Gould & Ratner has exceeded my expectations in supporting my professional endeavors and practice. They encourage my marketing activities and to maintain my own client relationships. Other partners have been very helpful in cross-selling our various practice areas. The firm’s participation in Law Exchange International has been particularly important to me and my clients, and after expressing interest, I quickly became involved in the organization and acquainted with our affiliates.

Since my arrival, I have had occasion to work on a variety of cases with clients from different industries. My colleagues and I are often in each other’s offices or office common areas, discussing strategies and ideas with each other. I feel comfortable stopping by the offices of senior level partners in other practice areas when one of my matters requires their expertise.

Our location is also a manifestation of who we are as a firm. Our new space in a building that has been part of the Chicago skyline since the 1920s, mirrors our perfect combination of tradition and modernity. Our people show this same balance, and I am proud to be a member of this organization.

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A Welcoming Culture

Partner
Corporate Practice

From day one, I was impressed by the overwhelming amount of support and collegiality within the firm. The lawyers and staff were genuinely interested in integrating me and my practice.

Rather than throwing lateral partners into the deep end to see how we swim, Gould & Ratner ensures their new attorneys have the resources and support they need in order to be successful. Since my arrival, I have not experienced any of the negative traits that are common in some other firms, where attorneys act as silos or are perpetually in competition with each other. Here, our practice teams are more focused on collaborating, cross selling and helping one another.

Gould & Ratner is also incredibly efficient. There is no bureaucracy here; the firm is here to help you build your practice, not waste your time. While you are provided all of the resources you need (and then some), the firm also isn’t wasteful or focused on extravagent offerings that don’t ultimately benefit lawyers or clients. Less pointless overhead means that we can outcompete larger, less economical firms when it comes to rates.

Gould & Ratner has long history of serving sophisticated clients in complex matters. This firm provides the perfect opportunity to work with top tier clients and attorneys, but with all of the benefits of a midsize firm setting.

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Supporting My Professional Growth

Partner
Litigation

I began my career at Gould & Ratner after my first year of law school as a law clerk, eager to learn but unsure as to exactly what direction I wanted my legal career to take upon graduation. Within one summer at Gould & Ratner, not only did I find and learn about my desired practice area, but I also discovered how important the culture of a firm was to me. Even as a law clerk, Gould & Ratner embraced me as one of their own, providing me with ample hands on opportunities to learn and grow my skill set, and involved me in various firm events where I got to know the Gould & Ratner family. Together, the collegial environment of Gould & Ratner and the genuine interest that everyone at Gould & Ratner took in my professional growth over the two years that I was a law clerk made the decision to join the firm as an associate upon graduation an easy one.

Now, almost seven years later, I can confidently say that Gould & Ratner remains the right choice for me. From the welcoming feeling that I get whenever I walk into a partner’s office to discuss a matter, to the investment the firm has made in my professional development, to the lasting relationships that I have formed with members of the firm, Gould & Ratner has exceeded my expectations and remained true to the culture that was depicted to me at my very first interview.

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Seeking An Opportunity That Would Challenge Me

Partner
Corporate

I joined Gould & Ratner because I was seeking an opportunity that would challenge me, expand my legal practice and provide me with exposure to complex transactions. I was pleasantly surprised when I joined as a lateral hire, as I was immediately exposed to a broad range of industries and legal issues. Our corporate practice in particular is committed to training attorneys to see all angles of transactions and act as business advisors. We are encouraged to think “outside-the-box” to provide creative solutions for our clients.

Gould & Ratner has also provided me with incredible and dedicated mentors who are invested in the professional development and growth of their associates. The firm supports and provides resources to its associates to develop expertise in specialty areas of interest. The culture at Gould & Ratner promotes a collegial atmosphere and comradery amongst colleagues, which makes the firm a truly unique place.

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Hiring Contacts

Available Partner/Of Counsel Positions

Corporate Partner

Job Description

Gould & Ratner LLP is seeking a Partner to join its Corporate Practice. The ideal candidate will have significant experience with transactional and corporate governance matters, including mergers and acquisitions, corporate structure (formation and reorganization), corporate contracts (operating agreements, license agreements, employment/compensation agreements, service contacts, buy/sell agreements, distribution agreements etc.), joint ventures, divestitures, venture capital and private equity, technology transactions, and corporate finance/bank lending. 

Candidates can look forward to a practice that will include handling all aspects of complex and sophisticated deals and transactions for clients of all sizes and across industries. This is an excellent opportunity for an attorney who is highly motivated and seeking a positive career trajectory. We are seeking an attorney who is interested in business development and being part of the Firm’s overall succession plan.

Please note that this role allows a flexible work schedule with a hybrid remote/in-office presence.

Additional Requirements

  • Experience working with angel investors, investment syndicates, and venture capital firms to assist in the formation of special purpose vehicles, investment clubs, and venture capital funds, is a plus (but not required). 
  • Ability to lead, negotiate, manage and close complex transactions, as well as draft material deal agreements and documents.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills. The ideal candidate will be an integral part of the team and will have the confidence and demeanor to interact and build relationships with the Firm’s clients. This attorney will serve as business advisor to clients, guiding them in a full range of legal matters throughout their life cycle.
  • Portable book of business not required.
  • A degree or background in business or finance is a plus.
  • Candidates must be currently licensed in Illinois or licensed in another state with a UBE score that qualifies in Illinois for comity, be eligible to waive in, or be willing to sit for an upcoming IL bar exam (open to relocation candidates that meet these requirements).

About Our Corporate Practice

Gould & Ratner’s Corporate Practice provides clients with sophisticated legal and business advice in areas ranging from business formation through business succession or the sale of a company. We counsel institutions, executive teams, funds, prominent family business owners and entrepreneurs on a variety of complex domestic and foreign transactions and business law issues including:

  • Legal entity formation, reorganization and governance
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Joint ventures and strategic alliances
  • Private equity, venture capital and debt/financing  
  • Operating agreements
  • Licensing agreements
  • Executive, employment and compensation arrangements

Our Private Equity and Venture Capital Practice is unique among Chicago law firms, with a skilled and experienced team of corporate lawyers who work closely with some of the nation's largest and most prestigious private equity funds and venture capital firms, as well as numerous entrepreneurs, startups, emerging companies and closely held businesses.

Representing funds, investors in funds, family offices and other dynamic businesses, our team has extensive experience in negotiating and documenting their investment in private companies, including early stage, growth stage, later stage, recapitalizations, workouts and management buyouts. Our experience includes representing these clients as lead investors, as well as in structuring and executing platform, add-on and other acquisition and sale transactions. We also represent a large number of funds, founders and management teams in connection with venture capital financings. 

G&R’s clients span a variety of industries, including: technology and media, high-tech manufacturing, transportation, automotive sales and distribution, consulting and professional services, software design and development, digital marketing and strategy, consumer packaged goods, banking and financial services, sports and entertainment, health life sciences, ESG, environmental and social consciousness, clean energy technology, cryptocurrency and blockchain. 

About Gould & Ratner

Gould & Ratner is an 80-year old Chicago law firm with a team of over 50 attorneys, representing Fortune 500 corporations, closely held businesses, financial institutions, entrepreneurs and family businesses in diverse and complex matters throughout the world. Our team consists of a deep bench of sophisticated and experienced attorneys that provide exceptional legal services while affording our clients the benefits of working with an agile and entrepreneurial-minded team of result-oriented, well-rounded professionals.

In this ever-changing and complex world, Gould & Ratner remains one of the few truly mid-size law firms in Chicago. Thus, while our work is as sophisticated and complex as the mega firms, our focus on tailored service is something only a smaller firm like ours can deliver. This allows us the unique ability to employ our multi-faceted approach to legal service for clients of every size and in every industry. For example, our attorneys handled the $800 million redevelopment of Chicago’s Old Post Office and the $840 million purchase of the Sears (now Willis) Tower. We have handled more than $10 billion in corporate transactions in the past decade and argued cases before a number of appellate forums, including the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the Illinois Appellate and Supreme Courts.

Additional Highlights 

  • Opportunity to step into meaningful client relationships and be a key component of the Firm’s succession plan. 
  • Emphasis on professional and business development.
  • Low turnover, collegial and collaborative environment.
  • Health care, life and disability insurance.
  • Competitive compensation, benefits package and a generous 401k plan.
  • Employee discounts and wellness programs.
  • Hybrid in-office/remote role based. 

Applicants should submit their resume to Arielle Pankowski (Attorney Recruiter) at apankowski@gouldratner.com. Please feel free to contact Arielle with any questions at (312) 899-1631. 

Gould & Ratner is an equal opportunity employer committed to a culturally diverse workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, creed, medical condition including pregnancy, disability, genetic information, gender identity and expression, marriage or parental status, sexual orientation, or Veteran’s status.

Emerging Companies & Venture Capital Partner

Job Description

Gould & Ratner LLP is seeking an Emerging Companies & Venture Capital Partner to join its Corporate Practice. The ideal candidate will have significant experience working with early stage and growth stage companies, founders and venture capital firms and the ability to act as lead attorney on a range of EC/VC transactions.

In addition, the ideal candidate will have:

  • Strong experience with M&A transactions in the technology and venture capital spaces.
  • Familiarity with convertible debt, preferred equity issuances and related financing tools.
  • Fund formation experience, including experience structuring funds, management entities and carried interest holding structures.
  • Familiarity with regulatory matters facing funds and issuers, including the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, The Securities Act of 1933, Reg D safe-harbors and state blue sky law compliance.
  • Familiarity and experience with the forms published by the National Venture Capital Association.
  • Understanding of the issues facing clients whose primary asset is intellectual property, including IP ownership, IP development, licensing agreements, tax matters, employee matters and similar concepts.
  • Experience with the ESG, clean-technology, blockchain, Web 3 and cryptocurrency spaces is a plus.

Candidates can look forward to a practice that will include handling all aspects of complex and sophisticated deals and transactions for clients of all sizes and across industries. This is an excellent opportunity for an attorney who is highly motivated and seeking a positive career trajectory. We are seeking an attorney who is interested in business development and being part of the Firm’s overall succession plan.

Please note that this role allows a flexible work schedule with a hybrid remote/in-office presence or a fully remote schedule for attorneys located outside of Chicago.

Additional Requirements

  • Experience drafting transaction agreements and documents with efficiency and clarity, negotiating deal terms, managing transaction closings and processes, and providing thorough factual and legal research and analysis.
  • Ability to lead, negotiate, manage and close complex transactions.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills. The ideal candidate will be an integral part of the team, and will have the confidence and demeanor to interact and build relationships with the Firm’s clients. This attorney will serve as business advisor to clients, guiding them in a full range of legal matters throughout their life cycle.
  • Portable book of business is preferred, but not required.
  • Candidates must be currently licensed in Illinois or licensed in another state with a UBE score that qualifies in Illinois for comity, be eligible to waive in, or be willing to sit for an upcoming IL bar exam (open to relocation candidates that meet these requirements).

About Gould & Ratner

Gould & Ratner is an 80-year old Chicago law firm with a team of over 50 attorneys, representing Fortune 500 corporations, closely held businesses, financial institutions, entrepreneurs and family businesses in diverse and complex matters throughout the world. Our team consists of a deep bench of sophisticated and experienced attorneys that provide exceptional legal services while affording our clients the benefits of working with an agile and entrepreneurial-minded team of result-oriented, well-rounded professionals.

In this ever-changing and complex world, Gould & Ratner remains one of the few truly mid-size law firms in Chicago. Thus, while our work is as sophisticated and complex as the mega firms, our focus on tailored service is something only a smaller firm like ours can deliver. This allows us the unique ability to employ our multi-faceted approach to legal service for clients of every size and in every industry. For example, our attorneys handled the $800 million redevelopment of Chicago’s Old Post Office and the $840 million purchase of the Sears (now Willis) Tower. We have handled more than $10 billion in corporate transactions in the past decade and argued cases before a number of appellate forums, including the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the Illinois Appellate and Supreme Courts.

About Our Corporate Practice

Gould & Ratner’s Corporate Practice provides clients with sophisticated legal and business advice in areas ranging from business formation through business succession or the sale of a company. We counsel institutions and executive teams, funds, prominent family business owners and entrepreneurs on a variety of sophisticated and complex domestic and foreign transactions and business law issues including:

  • Legal entity formation, reorganization and governance
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Joint ventures and strategic alliances
  • Private equity, venture capital, and debt/financing  
  • Operating agreements
  • Licensing agreements
  • Executive, employment, and compensation arrangements

The Private Equity and Venture Capital Practice at Gould & Ratner is unique among Chicago law firms, with a skilled and experienced team of corporate lawyers who work closely with some of the nation's largest and most prestigious private equity funds and venture capital firms, as well as numerous entrepreneurs, startups, emerging companies and closely held businesses.

Representing funds, investors in funds, family offices and other dynamic businesses, our team has extensive experience in negotiating and documenting their investment in private companies, including early stage, growth stage, later stage, recapitalizations, workouts and management buyouts. Our experience includes representing these clients as lead investors, as well as in structuring and executing platform, add-on and other acquisition and sale transactions. We also represent a large number of funds, founders and management teams in connection with venture capital financings. 

Our Emerging Companies & Venture Capital team represents leading and innovative startups (and their founders), as well as the funds that invest in them, throughout the United States. We counsel emerging growth companies throughout their lifecycle - from formation, venture and strategic financings, growth through acquisitions, joint ventures and commercial agreements, to exit transactions, such as mergers and acquisitions and initial public offerings. We have developed deep and broad expertise and relationships across many industries, including technology, high-tech manufacturing, life sciences, “clean tech,” ESG, DeFi, sports and entertainment, health life sciences, software, environmental sciences, cryptocurrency and blockchain.

Additional Highlights

  • Opportunity to step into meaningful client relationships and be a key component of the Firm’s succession plan. 
  • Emphasis on professional and business development.
  • Low turnover, collegial and collaborative environment.
  • A dynamic culture that prizes thinking outside the box.
  • Health care, life and disability insurance.
  • Competitive compensation, benefits package, and a generous 401k plan.
  • Employee discounts and wellness programs.

Applicants should submit their resume to Arielle Pankowski (Attorney Recruiter) at apankowski@gouldratner.com. Please feel free to contact Arielle with any questions at (312) 899-1631. 

Gould & Ratner is an equal opportunity employer committed to a diverse workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, creed, medical condition including pregnancy, disability, genetic information, gender identity and expression, marriage or parental status, sexual orientation, or Veteran’s status.

Real Estate Partner

Job Description

Gould & Ratner LLP is seeking a Partner to join its Real Estate Practice. The ideal candidate will have significant experience representing property owners, developers, lenders, and investors in their acquisitions, dispositions, sales, financings, leasing, and development of commercial real estate.

Candidates can look forward to a practice that will include handling all aspects of complex and sophisticated transactions for clients of all sizes and across industries. This is an excellent opportunity for an attorney who is highly motivated and seeking a positive career trajectory. We are seeking an attorney who is interested in business development and being part of the Firm’s overall succession plan.

Please note that this role allows a flexible work schedule with a hybrid remote/in-office presence.

Additional Requirements

  • Strong real estate experience in a variety of transactional matters, including commercial office and retail leasing, development, lending and financing. Candidates should also have experience handling title, survey, entity, and other real estate diligence matters. 
  • Additional experience in commercial lending and banking transactions, including commercial real estate loans, asset-based loans, or other secured credit facilities of varying types is a plus.
  • Experience in affordable housing, low income housing tax credits, or historic tax credits is also preferred but not required.
  • Experience with entitlement, zoning, and tax issues as they relate to real estate and construction transactions is also preferred.
  • Excellent writing and oral communication skills. Attention to detail, self-directed, and an ability to work efficiently on a several different matters at a time.
  • Ability to lead, negotiate, manage and close complex transactions, as well as draft material agreements and documents.
  • A drive for excellence and a willingness to take the initiative to solve problems. 
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills. The ideal candidate will be an integral part of the team, and will have the confidence and demeanor to interact and build relationships with the Firm’s clients.
  • This attorney will serve as business advisor to clients, guiding them in a full range of legal matters throughout their life cycle.
  • Portable book of business preferred, but not required.
  • Candidates must be currently licensed in Illinois or licensed in another state with a UBE score that qualifies in Illinois for comity, be eligible to waive in, or be willing to sit for an upcoming IL bar exam (open to relocation candidates that meet these requirements).

About Our Real Estate Practice

A marquee service of Gould & Ratner, our Real Estate Practice supports clients with interests in some of the most desirable, iconic and innovative properties in Chicago and the United States. Gould & Ratner works with clients based in the nation’s largest real estate markets and beyond, guiding projects and deals involving commercial, office, industrial, retail, shopping center, multifamily, hospitality, and hotel properties.

The sophistication and business practicality of our full-service counsel matches the complexity of our clients’ projects and transactions. We represent property owners, developers, lenders and investors in their acquisitions, dispositions, sales, financings, leasing and development. Over the past several years, the value of our clients’ matters has ranged from $1-2 million for fast food restaurant investments, to $800 million for the redevelopment of Chicago’s Old Post Office, to $840 million for the purchase of Sears (now Willis) Tower in 2004.

In addition to representing lenders, borrowers, developers, owners, and equity investors, our full-service Real Estate Practice also counsels on entitlement, zoning, and tax issues as they relate to real estate and construction transactions. Our team includes lawyers who advise and counsel clients through every phase of complex construction matters, using a unique blend of negotiating and drafting acumen, technical expertise, construction industry experience, and courtroom-honed trial and arbitration skills.

On a day-to-day basis, our lawyers handle virtually all types of real estate transactions, including:

  • Development
  • Commercial leasing
  • Retail acquisitions and leasing projects
  • Multiparcel assemblage
  • Tax-deferred exchange transactions
  • Mixed-use transactions
  • Common-interest communities
  • Management agreements
  • Construction and mortgage financing
  • Environmental and contamination issues
  • Real estate workouts
  • Distressed assets

About Gould & Ratner

Gould & Ratner is an 80-year old Chicago law firm with a team of over 50 attorneys, representing Fortune 500 corporations, closely held businesses, financial institutions, entrepreneurs and family businesses in diverse and complex matters throughout the world. Our team consists of a deep bench of sophisticated and experienced attorneys that provide exceptional legal services while affording our clients the benefits of working with an agile and entrepreneurial-minded team of result-oriented, well-rounded professionals.

In this ever-changing and complex world, Gould & Ratner remains one of the few truly mid-size law firms in Chicago. Thus, while our work is as sophisticated and complex as the mega firms, our focus on tailored service is something only a smaller firm like ours can deliver. This allows us the unique ability to employ our multi-faceted approach to legal service for clients of every size and in every industry. For example, our attorneys handled the $800 million redevelopment of Chicago’s Old Post Office and the $840 million purchase of the Sears (now Willis) Tower. We have handled more than $10 billion in corporate transactions in the past decade and argued cases before a number of appellate forums, including the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the Illinois Appellate and Supreme Courts.

Additional Highlights

  • Opportunity to step into meaningful client relationships and be a key component of the Firm’s succession plan. 
  • Strong emphasis on business and professional development.
  • Low turnover, collegial and collaborative environment.
  • Health care, life and disability insurance.
  • Competitive compensation, benefits package, and a generous 401k plan.
  • Employee discounts and wellness programs.
  • Hybrid in-office/remote role based in our Chicago office.

Applicants should submit their resume to Arielle Pankowski (Attorney Recruiter) at apankowski@gouldratner.com. Please feel free to contact Arielle with any questions at (312) 899-1631. 

Gould & Ratner is an equal opportunity employer committed to a culturally diverse workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, creed, medical condition including pregnancy, disability, genetic information, gender identity and expression, marriage or parental status, sexual orientation, or Veteran’s status.