Founders

Photo by Andy McMillan
Founders
Image of Steven Naifeh

Steven Naifeh

Image of Gregory White Smith

Gregory White Smith

Best Lawyers was founded by Steven Naifeh and the late Gregory White Smith, both graduates of the Harvard Law School, class of 1977. Before turning to publishing and writing, Mr. Naifeh worked as an intern in the office of Congressman Charlie Wilson, as a docent at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and worked as an associate attorney at Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy in New York. Mr. Smith worked at Morrison & Foerster in San Fancisco.

Together, they wrote 12 nonfiction books including four national bestsellers. Their book Jackson Pollock: An American Saga won the Pulitzer Prize for biography in 1991 and was a finalist for the National Book Award. Most recently, their biography Van Gogh: the Life was published by Random house in October 2011.

In 2014, Smith passed away after battling a rare brain tumor over the course of the past four decades. Naifeh continued to oversee Best Lawyers for several more years. On May 9, 2018, Naifeh shared his plans for retirement from Best Lawyers in a joint announcement that Best Lawyers had also been acquired by Levine Leichtman Capital Partners ("LLCP.")

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