Lawyer Monthly Rich List – Bill Neukom
Rich List Fact:
In 2006 Neukom committed to a gift of $20 million for the planned construction of a new academic building at Stanford University’s law school. The structure, named the William H. Neukom Building and opened in 2011, is 65,000 square feet and is situated on the existing law school complex.
Worth: $850 million
Firm: K&L Gates
Known for his philanthropy throughout the industry, Bill Neukom is a corporate attorney who graduated from Stanford Law School in 1967.
He spent his first practising years working for a small firm until he was then asked to work for Microsoft, which at the time was only a small firm, not the tech giant we know today. He began there in 1985 as an employee where he built up the firms corporate law department from a small number of just 5 to an amount higher than 600, including both attorneys and support personnel. Neukom went on to become Executive Vice President at Microsoft, as well as spending 17 years as their general counsel and chief legal officer where he would spend the majority of his time sorting the company’s legal, governmental affairs and philanthropic activities.
He’s also been an investor in the San Francisco Giants. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Pacific Council on International Policy and spends the majority of his time focusing on his role as Founder & CEO of the World Justice Project, an international civil society organisation whose stated mission is to be “working to advance the rule of law around the world”.
Neukom serves on the board for multiple not-for-profit organisations such as the Asia Foundation, the Centre for Advanced Study in the Behavioural Sciences at Stanford, Ecotrust, the Hague Institute for the Internationalisation of Law, the Pacific Council on International Policy, and the William D. Ruckelshaus Center.
He and his family then went on to found the Neukom Family Foundation with his four children, the aim of which is to help not-for-profit organisations that are in the fields of health, human services, justice, education and the environment.