Photo of Russell T. Gorkin

Russell T. Gorkin is an associate in the Litigation Department. Russell’s practice encompasses a broad range of complex commercial litigation matters, including product liability defense and contract disputes, across a wide variety of industries, including life sciences and pharmaceuticals, consumer goods, sports, and financial services. He has represented some of the world’s most successful and sophisticated entities and individuals in state and federal trial and appellate courts, as well as before arbitral tribunals.

Most recently, Russell helped secure a favorable settlement on behalf of an alternative investment firm alleging breach of contract and other claims against a multinational pharmaceutical company after a two-week arbitral merits hearing featuring 20 witnesses. Other notable recent or current representations include:

  • Assisting the trial team that achieved a complete defense verdict in Echeverria v. Johnson & Johnson, a product liability case arising from the plaintiff’s use of Johnson & Johnson talcum products;
  • Representing Bank of New York Mellon, Wells Fargo, and several other financial institutions in litigation arising from the Tribune Company’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing following a leveraged buyout the year before;
  • Representing Madonna in a dispute concerning the ownership of certain property, including a letter written by the late Tupac Shakur;
  • Representing several financial services clients in litigation arising from the Madoff Ponzi scheme; and
  • Counseling Major League Soccer with regard to various club and player governance issues.

Russell also maintains an active pro bono practice. He was awarded the firm’s Golden Gavel award in 2019 for his role in securing a settlement on behalf of deaf and hard of hearing probationers and parolees under the supervision of the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and Corrections by requiring the Department to, among other things, provide qualified, certified American Sign Language interpreters. The case was the first in the nation to assert the right to an ASL interpreter on behalf of probationers and parolees.

Prior to joining Proskauer, Russell served as a law clerk to the Honorable George B. Daniels at the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and, before that, to the Honorable Robin S. Rosenbaum at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

While in law school, Russell served as a Senior Editor for the Duke Journal of Constitutional Law and Public Policy, and received the Dean’s Award for Evidence. His scholarship has appeared in the Harvard Journal of Sports & Entertainment Law and the Duke Journal of Constitutional Law and Public Policy Sidebar, and has been cited in the Harvard Law Review and in an amicus curiae brief filed with the Supreme Court of the United States, among other places.

Prior to law school, Russell worked for several years as a management consultant.

Pharmaceutical drug development is expensive. One recent study estimates that the median cost to develop a new drug is $985 million, while the average is $1.3 billion. And those figures appear to be on the low end of a broad range. Others have estimated the average cost at approximately $2.5 to $3 billion, with costs increasing annually at a post-inflation rate of approximately 8.5%.

Continue Reading “Commercially Reasonable Efforts” Clauses in Drug Development Deals: What Level of Protection Do They Really Provide?