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Former Continental GC returns to private practice at Phillips Murrah

Phillips Murrah welcomes Eric Eissenstat as a new shareholder after serving Continental Resources as Sr. VP, General Counsel, Chief Risk Officer and Secretary for more than a decade. During his career, which includes 27 years in private practice prior to joining Continental, Eric has been a very effective and successful lawyer. He has deep trial experience and an accomplished track record. However, there is another side to him – an underlying motivation – that informs his life’s course and purpose- which is to serve others.

Eric S. Eissenstat profile

[Click photo to view attorney profile] Eric S. Eissenstat has tried 50+ cases to verdict and has extensive experience in appellate arguments and SCOTUS filings. His litigation experience in federal and state courts include landmark, novel, and impact litigation.

Eric points to the message of the parable of the Good Samaritan as a powerful motivator, which reminds us to help one another EVEN IF…. “It is what we actually do that matters,” Eric said. “Good intention without action is not worth much.”
 

He’s been doing it for his entire career.  When he was in private practice prior to joining Continental, Eric was very active in various bar associations.  He served on the Board of Governors as Chair of the Young Lawyers Division for the OBA and received the OBA’s Outstanding Young Lawyer award. He was also very active in the ABA YLD and served on the Board of the ABA Section of Antitrust. He also served in leadership positions with several civic organizations. Examples include serving as Chair for Oklahoma Lawyers for Children for many years and leadership positions with Lyric Theatre, United Way of Central Oklahoma, Leadership Oklahoma City and others. He is Past-President of the Luther Bohanon American Inn of Court, Chair-Elect of Downtown OKC, and currently serves on the boards of the YMCA, Oklahoma State University Foundation, Skyline Urban Ministry, Oklahoma Access to Justice Foundation.

Eric also brings a service-first attitude to his legal practice, where providing excellent client service is at the core of his overall approach. “I really like being a lawyer,” he said. “I like being able to serve clients, help them solve problems, and achieve great results.”

LEAVING CONTINENTAL RESOURCES

The most recent decade of Eric’s 38 years of legal practice was with Continental Resources, a publicly traded exploration and production company, headquartered in in Oklahoma City.

“You know a company so well when you’re inside, particularly when you’re General Counsel and on the Executive Team,” Eric continued.  “As a lawyer, it significantly enhanced and cemented my knowledge of how companies operate, what companies need, and the expectations companies have for their outside counsel – and how to meet those expectations.”

As General Counsel, Eric was responsible for all legal, risk, compliance, and governance issues for Continental, and collaborated with the leadership team to build and grow teams, plan and implement strategy, and efficiently empower and enable the Company to execute its strategy and accomplish its goals.

“When your only client is also your employer, you are invested in the success of the company,” he added. “You have a stake in the game, which is hard to do as outside counsel – unless you have a true service mentality.”

As far as retiring from his position at Continental, Eric mused there was never really a good time to leave, but he knew he eventually wanted to have more control and flexibility in how he spends his time. As a lawyer in private practice, he said, there are a variety of interesting matters to handle and clients to serve.

“As a lawyer with Phillips Murrah, I can volunteer again for Oklahoma Lawyers for Children. I can help on Access to Justice projects.  I can volunteer for pro bono work, work on diversity and inclusion issues, and strive to provide value and help everyone at Phillips Murrah. So, just more flexibility to be able to give back was a key reason for returning to private practice.”

Eric has very high praise for his former employer. He said the last 10+ years have taught him so much. He added his former colleagues genuinely care for each other, the work was interesting, and the company has the courage of its convictions—it stands up for what it believes. “Those are important reasons I left private practice to join Continental.”

JOINING PHILLIPS MURRAH

“That’s also why I decided to join Phillips Murrah,” Eric explained. “There is an obvious culture here of giving back and providing excellent service.  I am humbled and am so grateful to have the opportunity to join such a great law firm with great lawyers and even better people. I am looking forward to doing what I can help the firm, and everyone at the firm, succeed and help serve our clients.”

As a Shareholder at Phillips Murrah, Eric brings the same service-first passion, as well as the cumulative experience he’s gleaned over 38 years in the justice system, both in-house and in private practice.

“I enjoy practicing law,” Eric said. “I enjoy serving clients. I like working with other lawyers and the comradery at a law firm. It can be a crazy way to make a living, but I enjoy it, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to help our clients and give back to the community. It just seemed like the right time to do it. The future is very bright at Phillips Murrah.  I am looking forward with joyful anticipation to the great things we can do together.”

To view Eric S. Eissenstat’s attorney profile on Phillips Murrah’s website, click HERE.