Biden's pick for the Department of Homeland Security raked in millions at WilmerHale advising Blackstone, Airbnb, PNC, and others

Alejandro Mayorkas

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Alejandro Mayorkas, who is President-elect Joe Biden’s pick to lead the Department of Homeland Security, made $3.3 million at WilmerHale last year advising clients like Blackstone Group, Airbnb and PNC, according to a newly filed ethics disclosure.

Mayorkas, who is leaving the partnership at WilmerHale to join the Biden administration, has reported compensation above average for equity partners at the Big Law firm, according to figures published by the American Lawyer, which put the firm’s 2019 profits per partner at $2.3 million. WilmerHale has billed him on its website as a “counselor and litigator for companies facing their most significant and sensitive matters.” 

Mayorkas’s ethics disclosure, posted online Wednesday morning, also lists several of his clients over the past two years. They include Airbnb, Blackstone, PNC Financial Services Group, Cisco Systems, the Clorox Co, Deutsche Telekom, Intuit, and MGM Resorts or their affiliates, among many other well-known consumer brands and financial firms.

He also represented some lesser-known figures, including the film and television production company Harmony Gold USA and members of the Agrama family that owns it, apparently in litigation related to an IRS audit. He counseled Abt Associates, a consulting and research firm. He also reported being paid by Twitter to represent Gabriel Strickler, its former chief communications officer.

He also worked for two major government contractors, including the weapons manufacturer Northrup Grumman and Leidos Holdings, which paid Mayorkas for work he did for Mission Support Alliance. That entity is described on a government website as a joint venture working on cleaning up a decommissioned nuclear power site.

Mayorkas, who was a deputy secretary at DHS during the Obama administration, moved to WilmerHale in late 2016. 

SEE ALSO: Government lawyers had a harder time landing a cushy partner role at a big law firm in 2020. Here are the 12 hires that turned heads.

SEE ALSO: Here’s how exit paths to Big Law — and a partner-sized paycheck — for Trump administration lawyers are shaping up right now

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