Dorsey Names Longtime Atty. Cutler Managing Partner

Ken Cutler, who joined the firm almost 40 years ago, will serve a three-year term as managing partner; he succeeds Marianne Short, who’s leaving for UnitedHealth Group on January 1.

Minneapolis-based law firm Dorsey & Whitney, LLP, said Monday that its policy committee has appointed Ken Cutler to serve as managing partner.
Cutler, who joined the firm in 1974, succeeds current Managing Partner Marianne Short, who will become executive vice president and chief legal officer at Minnetonka-based UnitedHealth Group, Inc., on January 1. (UnitedHealth Group announced Short’s appointment last month.)
Cutler, who will also begin his new position the first day of next year, will serve a three-year term as managing partner, according to Dorsey. He is a partner in the firm’s corporate group—and he has more than 35 years of experience with mergers and acquisitions, emerging-growth companies, venture capital financing, and representing both public and private companies on general corporate matters, financing transactions, and public offerings. He’s also a member of the firm’s management committee, where he serves as partner-in-charge for transactions, meaning that he’s responsible for the firm’s transactional practices around the globe.
“Ken Cutler is a superb lawyer and a natural leader,” Bill Berens, chair of the firm’s policy committee, said in a prepared statement. “We are confident that he will be able to build on Dorsey’s strong global platform and ensure the firm’s continued success in pursuing our client-service mission and strategic goals.”
Law firms like Dorsey typically elect an existing partner to serve as managing partner, rather than seeking talent from outside the firm, Dorsey spokesman Bob Kleiber told Twin Cities Business last month, adding that Dorsey has more than 270 partners worldwide. (Dorsey is Minnesota’s second-largest law firm based on licensed attorneys in the state, of whom there were 244 as of April 30.)
“We have worked with Ken for over 13 years and can attest to the fact that Ken is a fine lawyer and a proven leader both at Dorsey and in the community,” Chris Heim, CEO of 2ndWave Software, said in a statement. “He will make a great managing partner for a great law firm.”
Short, who served as Dorsey’s managing partner for five years, was the first woman to serve in that role—and under her leadership, the firm was recognized as a leading law firm for women. She co-chairs Dorsey’s appellate and health litigation practice groups, and the firm said Monday that UnitedHealth is one of its long-time clients.