November 4, 2018 at 11:01 pm EDT | by Peter Rosenstein
Comings & Goings
Jonathan Barrio, gay news, Washington Blade

The ‘Comings & Goings’ column chronicles important life changes of Blade readers.

The Comings & Goings column is about sharing the professional successes of our community. We want to recognize those landing new jobs, new clients for their business, joining boards of organizations and other achievements. Please share your successes with us at

Donna Wilson, gay news, Washington Blade

Donna Wilson (Photo by Donna Wilson)

Congratulations to Donna Wilson, CEO and managing partner-elect at Manatt, Phelps, and Phillips, LLP, an AmLaw 125 firm with offices from coast to coast. Upon being named Wilson said, “Being elected as Manatt’s next CEO and managing partner, and following in the footsteps of Bill Quicksilver, is an honor I hold in the highest regard. Manatt is a special place, inclusive and collaborative, innovative and entrepreneurial with a focus on providing quality services and becoming essential to our clients. There’s something unique here. You can call it Manatt-itude, which is this sense of pride in who we are, where we came from and where we’re going. We’re proud of our colleagues, our clients, and our commitments. I am thrilled and privileged to be given the opportunity to lead such an impressive group of people, to continue building on our values and achieving our goals.”

Wilson is nationally recognized for her high-profile work on behalf of clients facing litigation and government enforcement actions, with a focus on both highly regulated industries and the privacy and data security space. Her extensive crisis and risk management experience, coupled with her broad subject matter knowledge and precedent-setting litigation experience, make her highly valued by in-house counsel, the C-level suite, and boards in preemptively mitigating risk, and navigating those risks that become full-blown exposure.

As the chair of Manatt’s privacy and data security business group and co-chair of its financial services practice, Wilson has been widely recognized for her leadership, most recently being selected again as one of the Top 100 Women Lawyers in California by the Daily Journal, and recognized as one of the Top 500 Leading Lawyers in America by Lawdragon 500. In addition, until her term as CEO and managing partner officially begins on July 1, 2019, she will continue to serve as a member of Manatt’s board of directors and the firm’s compensation committee. An active member of the LGBT Bar, Wilson is well known as an advocate for diversity and inclusion.

After law school, she clerked for the late Honorable David R. Thompson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Diego, as well as to the late Honorable Stanley S. Brotman of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey.

Wilson is admitted to practice in the state of California and the District of Columbia and to practice before the Supreme Court of California, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, U.S. District Court, Southern, Eastern, Central and Northern Districts of California.

She received her bachelor’s at the George Washington University and her J.D. from the University of Virginia, where she was also Order of the Coif Member, Managing Board, Virginia Law Review.

Congratulations also to Ben Finzel whose firm RENEWPR won its first public affairs award. They won a Cleanie Award on behalf of their client the Carbon Capture Coalition.

This marks the inaugural year for the The Cleanie Awards. The program is the first comprehensive awards program exclusive to the cleantech industry. They set out to recognize innovation excellence, business leadership and superior outreach campaigns.

The Cleanies aspire to identify the unsung movers and shakers in the industry, from the top of the Fortune 100 list to hot startups, pioneering individuals and high impact advocates. They believe this recognition program will generate visibility for innovators and disruptors who are creating life (and planet) changing solutions.

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