University of Notre Dame, BBA Accounting
University of Iowa College of Law, JD
Iowa Association of CPAs (retired status)
Illinois & Illinois Bars (retired status)
Arthur Andersen & Co.
Katten Muchin & Zavis
Jenner & Block, LLP
Holland & Knight, LLP
After college, Mike joined Arthur Andersen as a junior auditor. After two years, he enrolled in law school. After obtaining his degree and passing the bar, Mike decided to return to Andersen to specialize in forensic accounting and the esoteric field of government contract claims. One day, Andersen sent him to a midsize law firm then known as Katten Muchin Gitles Zavis Pearl & Galler. That assignment led to a unique job offer. Mike has been linked to law firms ever since.
Katten made him their first CFO, later their first COO, then a partner although he had no client responsibilities or billable hour requirements. His job was to manage the business of the law firm. During his tenure, Katten grew from 70 lawyers in Chicago to over 400 spanning six offices. He later was Chief Operating Officer at Jenner & Block, LLP and Global CFO at Holland & Knight LLP, where the accounting department supported over 1,100 lawyers across 18 US and international offices. 4L’s goal in 2011 was to support 1,100 lawyers eventually, albeit practicing in many separate law firms. 4L achieved that goal in 2021.
KNOWN FOR: (1) Bringing clarity to complex financial and strategic issues so lawyers can easily digest them, e.g., a multimedia presentation entitled Non-resident State Income Taxes, the board game [patent pending]; (2) Excessive use of semi-colons and footnotes; (3) A non-traditional sense of humor.
BLOCKS HE’S BEEN AROUND: Old Town & Wicker Park (Chicago); 16th Arrondissement (Paris).
MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW: I’m a plagiarized author. An article published by two accounting professors in a leading business journal lifted major portions of my student-authored law review article. After discovering the article by accident, I was both disappointed and thrilled – disappointed they deleted most of the 263 footnotes, but thrilled that someone other than my mother read my original work.
WHEN HE’S NOT WORKING: Sorry, I don’t understand the question.
QUOTE: I solve problems for lawyers. It is a calling. Somebody needs to do it.