Sean  Burke

"Sigmund Burke"

Founding Partner

“When are you going to get a real job?”

—Girlfriend’s mom. My mom. Most moms.

When did Sean first exhibit a proclivity towards guiding others’ life choices? Growing up, Burke attended 4 elementary, 2 junior high, and 4 high schools. A self-proclaimed nerd, he developed a habit of taking other outcasts under his wing and giving them life advice—little things, like, “You know, you should change your hairstyle,” or “Damn, man, those pants.” Records of his success rate during this period have unfortunately proven difficult to access.

Weird. Did he outgrow this youthful habit? Not really. Case in point: while attending USC’s Gould School of Law, Sean became an early TiVo adopter. He was so enthusiastic about the technology that he convinced USC’s Dean (Dean Bice!) to try it out as well, not just because it was, well, cool, but because he believed it would make the Dean’s life better. A year later, he received a letter from the Dean and his wife, thanking him for his advice and “passionate advocacy.” Whether it’s people or digital revolutions, Sean has always championed what he believed in most.

So Sean was a practicing lawyer? Yes he was. After graduating law school, Sean spent four years at a Northern California boutique, specializing in commercial litigation with a focus on IP. He left the firm, first to serve as VP of Business Development for a Los Angeles-based fashion company, then later as the General Counsel for an entertainment startup.

Why would he give up the law? That’s crazy. Maybe. Or maybe it was fate. The first time Burke met with a legal recruiter, the recruiter offered to hire him. He turned him down, because recruiting had been described to him as nothing but cold-calling and headhunting. Years later, in New York, Burke met with another recruiter, who explained to him that great recruiters weren’t dead-eyed sharks and that he’d personally become friends with many of his clients. Sean had an epiphany: if he transitioned, he wouldn’t be a headhunter, he’d be more like an agent. After all, what is a recruiter if not an agent for nerds?

He launched Whistler Partners to provide lawyers looking to take their next step the kind of support he wishes he’d had as a young attorney. Sean has an eye for intelligence and a visceral sense of cultural fit. Those qualities, and his admitted romantic streak, have produced one very simple philosophy: don’t be a headhunter, be a matchmaker.

Favorite Place to Travel: Buenos Aires. It wants to be Italy but is more like a haunted ghost town yearning for a glorious past it never had.

Favorite Historical Moment: Anything reflecting a particularly bizarre zeitgeist. After the Bolshevik revolution, for instance, Trotsky arrived via train to negotiate peace with Germany and when the Secretary of State came to greet him at the station, he was distributing “THE REVOLUTION IS COMING” flyers to all the German foot soldiers.

Worst Job: Lawyer. Just kidding… kind of.

 

In-House Digital Media Counsel @ Media Startup

Disruptors for good

Head of Legal @ Woman-Led E-Commerce Startup

Known Name in E-Com

In-House Associate Counsel @ Security System Startup

Technology Meets Security

In-House Corporate Counsel @ Aerospace Data Startup

Sky's the Limit

Big Money Job at a Cutting Edge Biotech

Drugs are Fun!

Futures Trading Compliance @ Crypto Trading Platform

The Brand Name in Crypto

Switch to FinTech from Finance @ AmLaw 100 Law Firm

FinTech Fix

Associate General Counsel @ Fashion Holding Company

Fashion Meets Funding

Corporate M&A Counsel @ E-Commerce Unicorn

Career Launcher

In-House Counsel @ Series C FinTech Company

Cutting-Edge Digital Trading

Switch from Finance to General Corporate @ Media & Entertainment Boutique

From Wall Street to Hollywood

Emerging Companies Capital Markets Associate @ Startups Focused Firm

Pivot to Cooler Clients

PE M&A Partner Day 1 @ Top Growth Equity Practice

Title & Platform - Walk in as Partner

Legal Counsel @ The Trevor Project (Nonprofit for LGBTQ Youth)

Make a Difference

EXCLUSIVE: Head of FinTech @ Financial Institution Client

The Pinnacle of FinTech

In-House Tech Transactions Attorney @ Venture Fund

VC with a Vision

Senior In-House Counsel @ Digital Health Leader

Not Your Grandma's Healthcare

In-House Commercial Transactions Attorney @ Digital Health Leader

Healthcare Meets Tech

In-House Life Science Corporate Counsel @ Pharmaceutical Company

Future of Pharma

Exclusive: ECVC Associate at Elite Firm's LA Office

Best Partner Opportunity in SoCal

In-House Corporate Counsel at Venture Fund

VC Meets FinTech

Startup & Media Associate @ Arts & Entertainment-Focused Boutique

Très Chic

Director of Business & Legal @ Media Streaming Company

Binge Worthy

Privacy Counsel @ International Gaming Company

The Next Big Thing in Gaming

IP & Tech Litigation opp at a Silicon Valley tech Firm

The Move Before You Go In House

Privacy Partner @ Bay Area AmLaw 50 Firm

Plug and Play

Biotech Late Stage/Cap Markets Partner

Use Your Expertise

Business & Legal Affairs @ AdTech Market Leader

Digital Giants

In-House FinTech Bankruptcy Counsel

Can bankruptcy lawyers go in-house? YES!

Senior In-house Counsel @ Edgy FinTech Shop

Global Platform

The Right Bankruptcy & Reorganization Practice For You

Restructuring Your Own Career

Legal Recruiter

New York or Los Angeles

 

WHEN YOUR DREAM JOB BECOMES AVAILABLE, WE'LL BE IN TOUCH.
SIGN UP TO HEAR FROM US