March 3, 2021
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP is pleased to announce that the partnership has elected Barbara Becker as the firm’s next Chair and Managing Partner, effective May 1, 2021. She succeeds Ken Doran, who has served as Chairman and Managing Partner since 2002.
Becker is a corporate partner in Gibson Dunn’s New York office and is widely recognized as one of the elite mergers and acquisitions lawyers in the United States. For over a decade, Becker has served as Co-Chair of the firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions Practice Group, which includes 400 lawyers around the world. She has represented leading companies, such as Accenture, Kraft Heinz, Merck, News Corp, PepsiCo and VMware, among others, in some of their most important corporate matters.
In addition to leading the firm’s global M&A practice, Becker has held a wide range of firm leadership positions. Among other firm responsibilities, Becker serves as a member of the firmwide Executive Committee, and she created and leads the firmwide Diversity Committee.
Becker has long been a deeply committed advocate for diversity and inclusion – within the firm and beyond – and will be the first woman to lead Gibson Dunn since its inception in 1890.
“I am grateful and honored by the trust my partners have placed in me,” said Becker. “I am looking forward to tackling these new challenges head on. My priorities will be continuing Gibson Dunn’s track record of success through maintaining the growth of our global platform and safeguarding our culture of teamwork and collegiality. It is our culture that distinguishes us and allows us to work seamlessly and collaboratively across offices and practices to best serve our clients.”
“As the first woman to lead the firm, Barbara’s election is a momentous point in our firm’s history. She is absolutely the right person to succeed me, and she will be an exemplary leader of Gibson Dunn,” said Doran. “Barbara has a deep and abiding commitment to our culture, which is based on teamwork, collegiality, collaboration and mutual respect. She is highly regarded and respected by her fellow partners, not only because she built an extremely successful M&A practice, but also because of her unqualified commitment to diversity and inclusion.”
About Barbara Becker
In her corporate practice, Becker advises companies on all significant business and legal issues, including mergers and acquisitions (including domestic and cross-border), spin-offs, joint ventures and general corporate matters. She also advises boards of directors and special committees of public companies. She has extensive experience in the consumer/retail, technology, healthcare and industrial industries.
Becker is widely regarded as one of the elite M&A lawyers in the United States, including by Chambers USA, Chambers Global, The Legal 500 US, The Deal’s “Women in M&A,” The National Law Journal, Law360, and Crain’s New York Business.
Becker serves on the Board of Trustees of the New York University School of Law, where she also serves as an adjunct professor. She also serves as the Chair of the Mergers, Acquisitions & Corporate Control Contests Committee of the New York City Bar.
Becker received her law degree from New York University School of Law and her undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She lives in New York City with her husband and has four children.