Patrick Dunican Named on New Jersey Law Journal’s 2020 “Trailblazers” List


August 25, 2020

The New Jersey Law Journal has named Gibbons Chairman and Managing Director Patrick C. Dunican Jr. a legal industry “Trailblazer” for 2020, in its second annual feature highlighting change agents in the profession who have had noteworthy impact through their legal practices, management and policy initiatives, or technological advancements. Mr. Dunican was recognized for his unique foresight regarding comprehensive emergency planning, which has resulted in his leading a particularly well-prepared firm through unprecedented business conditions in this initial phase of the COVID-19 crisis.

Upon becoming the firm’s Chairman and Managing Director in 2004, Mr. Dunican began implementing innovations to advance Gibbons as a model 21st century law firm, supported by state-of-the-art facilities and technology, streamlined expenses, and an outstanding management team to execute, evaluate, and refine these policies and platforms. After a fire damaged Gibbons’ brand-new headquarters in 2007, he invested in additional systems and policies that, 13 years later, enabled the firm’s cohesive move to a COVID-19 mandated all-remote workforce. Mr. Dunican strategized an organization-wide reinforcement of emergency procedures to prepare for future crises. For example, he expanded the purchase, ongoing testing, and updating of laptops and remote access software licenses, ensuring that all personnel responsible for critical operations had access to one or the other. In addition, he has long supported custom flexible schedules and incentivized self-starting, independent work habits, which eased the way to an entirely remote workforce.

Beyond earning one of this year’s “Trailblazer” awards, Mr. Dunican is a nationally and internationally acknowledged legal industry leader. He has been recognized by Law360 as one of the nation’s most innovative law firm managing partners; New Jersey Law Journal as one of the state’s “Distinguished Leaders” in the legal industry; Essex County Bar Association and New Jersey Commission on Professionalism in the Law as their selection for the 2017 “Professional Lawyer of the Year Award”; NJBIZ, for its “Power 100” list of the most powerful people in New Jersey business, for ten consecutive years; and, for three straight years, ROI-NJ, for its “Influencers Power List.” He also received a 2019 Tip O’Neill Award from the Donegal County (Ireland) Council, presented annually to people of Irish background in recognition of achievements in their chosen fields and their interest in and support for Ireland and its diaspora. A litigation attorney, Mr. Dunican is listed in both the New Jersey and New York editions of Super Lawyers for business litigation and in Best Lawyers® for commercial litigation. He is a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and was named to “40 Under 40” lists in both NJBIZ and New Jersey Law Journal. In 2020, he was elected Chair of the Board of Trustees of Iona College, his alma mater.

Under Mr. Dunican’s leadership, Gibbons has become a major force in the Mid-Atlantic legal market, listed among the Am Law 200, National Law Journal’s inaugural “Midsize Hot List,” and Law360’s “New Jersey Regional Powerhouses.” His focus on marketing and branding initiatives earned Gibbons a place as the only law firm featured in Steve Adubato’s book, You Are the Brand.

No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey. A description of the selection process methodology for the awards referenced is available at