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Practical Law Interviews David Walden

“Careers in Law” is a feature published in the Practical Law journal to offer insight into different paths and opportunities for lawyers. In April 2024, Practical Law interviewed David Walden, E.P. Dine’s co-CEO, about legal recruiting.1

David offered practical information about what it takes to succeed as a legal search strategist and discussed how he designed his own professional arc with a combination of planning, research, and curiosity. 

He also answered questions about what helps lawyers succeed, whether they choose to transition to new roles or build security in a current position, and what factors lead toward firm growth. 

Career Planning Advice

You don’t have to be interested in joining the search profession to benefit from David’s interview. At its core, his experience in career consulting means he’s a deft hand at helping lawyers explore choices and invest in their own success and happiness. 

He advises lawyers to: 

  • Network – “I cannot emphasize this enough. To some, networking comes naturally. To others, it is a necessary evil because it is difficult for them and they do not enjoy doing it. But the reality is that … most professionals, including attorneys, who transition to different roles credit networking for their successful career transitions.”
  • Anchor for a long-term opportunity – “I would generally advise against taking a demanding job when you know that you are probably not going to love it. Rather, even if you cannot find exactly what you want when you want it, at least try to find something that puts you on the right path.” 
  • Look for unexpected opportunities – David’s switch to recruiting started with curiosity over a recruiter who sought him out. Instead of the job offer at hand, he questioned the recruiter, met with the firm’s partner, and recognized a good fit with his values and goals.
  • Mentorship – “Seek out a career mentor … they can give you guidance along the way and help you to put the long-term arc of your career into perspective. Someone more experienced can help you to anticipate career decisions that you will eventually have to make … [and] … the potential challenges and rewards that lie ahead in the career you have chosen.”
  • Prepare for change – The speed of technological and cultural shifts means that building connections with younger colleagues is critical to adapting to change. 

Tips for Succeeding as a Legal Search Recruiter

David’s interview provides an insider view of the hard and soft skills critical to working in his field. Key background elements that he’s drawn from in his current career include: 

  • An early focus on the business application of a legal education
  • Hands-on experience as a practicing attorney 
  • Entrepreneurial experience with multiple ventures

Additionally, he notes that success in executive recruitment requires: 

  • An outgoing nature
  • Good listening and empathy skills 
  • Patience to cultivate long-term relationships rather than transactional exchanges

David recommends that anyone considering a career in the legal search field: 

  • Build a strong professional network
  • Consider the entrepreneurial nature of the work
  • Interview current legal search recruiters

David also welcomed direct contact with him—you can connect by calling 212-355-7689, through email at, or via LinkedIn.

Read the complete Practical Law interview here


  1. Reuters Practical Law The Journal. Careers in Law: David Walden, E.P. Dine, Inc.

At E.P. Dine, we are committed to delivering content that is not only relevant and insightful but also rooted in professional integrity and expertise. To achieve this, every article published on the E.P. Dine blog undergoes a meticulous review process by qualified professionals with deep knowledge and experience in the legal field and legal recruitment.

David Walden


As Co-CEO of E.P. Dine and leader of the Law Firm Practice Group, David is a premier legal career strategist and search industry expert to law firm executives and partners throughout the United States. His clients, among the world's finest law firms, engage him when seeking the highest standard of excellence in their search efforts and hiring initiatives.

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