History

1948

Marshall Skadden, John Slate and Les Arps open firm.

1948 - Harry S. Truman is reelected president.

1950s

1954

Les Arps wins commendation for his work on the NY State Crime Commission's investigation into corruption on the NYC waterfront.

1951 - Color television is first introduced in the United States.

1959

Elizabeth Head, firm's first woman attorney, is hired.

Litigator Bill Meagher arrives.

1957 - Dwight D. Eisenhower begins second term as president.

1960s

1960

Firm changes name to Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom.

1961 - President John F. Kennedy establishes the Peace Corps.

1962

Skadden defends management of General Fireproofing and American Hardware.

1964 - Civil Rights Act is passed.

1965

Skadden's focus shifts from proxy fights to tender offers, and the first one involves Arcady Corporation's takeover of Electronics International Capital.

1969 - Neil Armstrong becomes the first person to set foot on the moon.

1973

Undertaking its initial geographic expansion, Skadden opens an office in Boston.

1973 - United States signs cease-fire agreement, ending the Vietnam war.

1975

An "automatic send and receive telecopier unit" (fax machine) is set up outside Bill Meagher's office for a 90-day trial period.

1978

Firm helps Mead Corp. fend off Occidental Petroleum.

1976 - Apple introduces the first personal computer.

1980s

1980

Skadden involved in many of the largest megadeals of the decade.

1981

Peggy Kerr becomes Skadden's first woman partner.

1981 - Sandra Day O'Connor becomes first woman on U.S. Supreme Court.

1985

Skadden becomes one of the nation's three largest law firms.

1987 - "Black Monday"— Dow Jones plunges 508 points.

1987

Firm opens first international office (Tokyo).

1988

Skadden Fellowship Foundation is established as the firm marks its 40th Anniversary.

1988 - Lt. Col. Oliver North indicted in Iran-Contra affair.

1989

Skadden represents the special committee of RJR Nabisco, Inc. in the largest corporate transaction in history at the time: The $25 billion leveraged buyout of RJR by Kohlberg, Kravis Roberts & Co.

1989 - The Berlin Wall is torn down.

1990s

1990

Firm represents Occidental Petroleum Corporation and American Express Company in their issuances of common stock — the year's two largest public offerings.

1990 - The Americans with Disabilities Act is passed.

1993

Skadden's offices linked by computer network, SKADNET.

1994

Skadden represents the NHL and the NBA in labor disputes with the players' association.

1993 - Computer users begin to log on to the Internet, the world's "Information Highway."

1997

Skadden helps Atlantic Richfield Company successfully settle massive litigation involving natural gas production in North America's largest oil field in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska.

1997 - Dolly the sheep is the first successfully cloned animal.

1998

The firm celebrates 50 years of service.

1999

Joe Flom named one of the preeminent "Lawyers of the Century," by The American Lawyer.

1999 - Debut of Europe's single currency.

2000s

2000

Skadden represents Warner-Lambert in the largest pharmaceutical deal in history.

2000 - Much-dreaded Y2K problem doesn't live up to the hype.

2000

Firm moves NYC headquarters to Times Square.

Skadden advises lead underwriters in MetLife Inc.'s initial public offering.

2000 - War-torn Yugoslavia celebrates its first popularly elected president.

2001

Skadden is the top-ranked firm in two inaugural National Law Journal surveys, "Who Defends Corporate America" and "Who Defends Financial America."

2001 - On September 11, terrorists destroy the World Trade Center, taking thousands of lives, and attack the Pentagon.

2001

Skadden is selected "Law Firm of 2001: The Americas" by Global Counsel 3000.

2001 - New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani is named TIME's 2001 Person of the Year.

2002

Skadden handles numerous high-profile restructurings including Kmart, NTL, US Airways and McLeodUSA.

2002 - The Sarbanes-Oxley Act ushers in a new era of corporate self-scrutiny and governance.

2003

In multidistrict litigation against underwriters of $15 billion in WorldCom bonds, Skadden secures a victory on an issue of first impression at the intersection of bankruptcy and securities laws.

2003 - United States launches military actions and maintains military presence in Iraq.

2004

Joe Flom receives the "Lifetime Achievement Award" from Chambers and The American Lawyer.

2004 - Boston Red Sox win World Series, ending an 86-year curse.

2005

Skadden's representation of China Construction Bank is the largest IPO in the world in 2005.

2005 - Hurricane Katrina ravages the Gulf Coast.

2006

For the sixth consecutive year, Skadden is named the best corporate law firm in the United States in Corporate Board Member magazine's 2006 survey of "America's Best Corporate Lawyers."

2006 - U.S. population hits 300 million mark.

2007

The firm crosses the 2,000 lawyer mark with the addition of new associates in the fall.

The American Lawyer names Skadden one of five finalists for "Litigation Department of the Year."

2007 - California Rep. Nancy Pelosi becomes the first female speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives.

2007

Skadden is first for worldwide announced transactions based on value according to Thomson's 2007 Mergers and Acquisitions Review.

2007 - In April, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closes above 13,000 for the first time in its history.

2008

Skadden opens offices in São Paulo and Shanghai.

Firm celebrates 60th anniversary and establishes program at The City College of New York to increase diversity in law schools and the legal profession.

2008 - Barack Obama wins historic U.S. presidential election.

2009

Eric J. Friedman assumes role as the third executive partner in Skadden's history.

Turnarounds & Workouts magazine notes that Skadden serves as lead counsel on five of the 10 most successful 2009 restructurings.

2009 - Nearly 100 world leaders participate in UN Summit on Climate Change in Copenhagen.

2010s

2010

Skadden successfully represents CF Industries in a long-running, three-way hostile takeover battle dubbed "The Forever War" by The New York Times.

2010 - Former Skadden Fellowship Foundation Trustee Elena Kagan becomes associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

2011

Skadden named first-ever “Law Firm of the Year” by NAACP LDF for its commitment to diversity and public service.

2011 - U.S. Navy SEALs raid Osama bin Laden’s hideout in Pakistan, ending the decade-long manhunt for the al-Qaida leader.

2012

Firm represents Alfa-Access-Renova (AAR) in the largest M&A transaction in the world in 2012: the $56 billion sale of TNK-BP, a joint venture between AAR and BP plc, to Rosneft Oil Company.

2012 - Nations in the economically beleaguered eurozone approve a second, €130 billion Greek bailout.

2013

Skadden again ranks as the No. 1 firms in the country for innovation in the legal sector in the Financial Times' annual "US Innovative Lawyers" report. We are the first firm to receive this honor twice.

2013 - The U.S. Supreme Court rules that the federal government must provide equal treatment to same-sex spouses.

2014

Skadden opens an office in Seoul.

2014 - President Obama orders the restoration of full diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba.

2015

Skadden becomes the first law firm to advise on more than $1 trillion of M&A deals in one year.

2015 - NASA confirms that liquid water flows on the surface of present-day Mars.

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