Alumni Spotlight: James “Jay” R. Nuttall

Jay Nuttall is the managing partner at Steptoe & Johnson LLP’s Chicago office.  He is an experienced patent litigator engaged in furthering client trust and delivering tailored legal solutions.  His professional excellence is nationally recognized in rankings by Chambers USAIAM Patent 1000Super Lawyers, and Law Bulletin Publishing Company.

Over the span of a twenty-year career, Jay accumulated substantial trial experience in a broad range of technologies, including telecommunications, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, electronic systems and methods, software, lighting, and chemical processes.  His motivation to master new subject matters at this stage remains as strong as when his legal practice began.

Jay started his career at an intellectual property boutique firm where he performed patent prosecution, patent litigation, portfolio management, and client counseling.  Jay quickly gravitated towards litigation and was fortunate early on to have significant trial opportunities, including litigating numerous patent matters and gaining tremendous trial experience.  His early professional work helped Jay develop court room proficiency and client management skills that led to accelerated partnership.  Jay is now nationally recognized as a leading intellectual property trial attorney and is noted for successfully implementing creative strategies to meet client’s business objectives.

He earned a JD from Loyola University Chicago School of Law and a BS in engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

How have your responsibilities grown as a leader in your organization?
I am heavily involved in firm management, serving on the firm’s executive committee and as the managing partner of the Chicago office.  In my executive committee role, I help the firm develop and execute its worldwide strategy, recruit and retain partners and associates, continue to grow the firm’s revenue and profits, and provide unparalleled legal services to our clients.

In my managing partner role, I help expand and maintain client relationships, manage all of the attorneys and staff, and grow the Chicago office.  I enjoy working with the attorneys and staff at the firm to create a positive and successful working environment.  I believe working with a great team that works well together is essential to meeting client’s needs and the firm’s continued success.

What qualities make Loyola graduates attractive to employers?
Loyola attracts a specific type of student.  They possess a good work ethic, a positive attitude, and the ability to perform great legal work.  Loyola imbues great students with the pragmatic legal skills to become excellent lawyers.

Loyola provides its students with an excellent legal writing, persuasive argument, and advocacy education that translates well into the real world.  Loyola graduates are able to apply these core skills and immediately provide law firms with attorneys that can provide exceptional work and value for clients.

How does Loyola prepare students for intellectual property legal practice?
Loyola provides outstanding patent and trademark courses that not only teach the law, but provide necessary practical knowledge and training.  Loyola’s intellectual property offerings are significantly better than many schools that offer “certificates.”  The quality of the teaching and training from the faculty paired with the Loyola student work ethic and intellect produces excellent attorneys who perform well in the fast-paced, competitive intellectual property practice area.  These are the qualities that we look for when hiring associates, not whether someone has an intellectual property certificate.

Additionally, the Loyola Patent Interview Program and the specialized IP legal writing seminar present students with unique forums for exposure to intellectual property topics.  This increased awareness provides a solid starting point for motivated graduates.

What law school class provided the longest lasting benefit to your career?
Civil Procedure taught by Dean Michael Kaufman.  His vocal inflection and extremely unique examples created an indelible mental impression that leaves International Shoeand other civil procedure lessons reverberating in my head even after all these years.

Interviewed by: Ted Mahan, Juris Doctor Candidate

Originally posted on 1/22/2018 on the Law School Admissions blog.