Russell-Beck

(617) 500-8670

rbeck@beckreed.com

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The Legal 500 – The Clients Guide to Law Firms

Russell Beck is a business, trade secrets, and employee mobility litigator, nationally recognized for his trade secrets and noncompete experience.

He was invited to the White House to develop guidelines for the proper use of noncompetes and has been cited as an expert on trade secrets and noncompetes by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the White House, the Treasury Department, National Public Radio, PBS, the BBC World News Service, Le Monde, and many others.

Named a “Lawyer of the Year” for 2022 by Best Lawyers and in 2019 by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, and included in the Top 10 Lawyers in Massachusetts by Super Lawyers® in 2020 and 2021, Russell is the President of the Boston Bar Foundation and has over 30 years of experience as a complex business, trade secrets, and noncompete litigator, representing clients throughout the country.

Called “one of the foremost trade secret litigators in the country,” Russell represents clients in Massachusetts and nationally, both in litigation and in the prevention and minimization of litigation and litigation risks.

A leading authority on the law of trade secrets, noncompetes, and employee mobility, Russell literally wrote the law, wrote the book, and teaches the course on noncompete law in Massachusetts. Similarly, he revised the Massachusetts Uniform Trade Secrets Act, wrote the books Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019) and Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (6th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2021), teaches the course Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law, and co-hosts a podcast on trade secrets and restrictive covenants called Fairly Competing.

  • In 2016, he was invited to the White House to participate in working group discussions that led to the development by the White House of a Call to Action on noncompetes. (He was the only private practice lawyer to participate in those discussions.)
  • He was asked to draft one of the first two noncompete bills filed in Massachusetts. For the next decade, he advised several Massachusetts legislators on potential trade secrets and noncompete legislation, drafted or revised many of the proposed noncompete bills (including most of the language in the law that became effective on October 1, 2018), modified the trade secrets bill (which became law effective on October 1, 2018), and provided advice to Former Governor Duval Patrick’s Administration about its proposed noncompete and trade secrets bill.
  • He has assisted a United States Senator on proposed noncompete legislation.

He has been quoted and his work cited in The Wall Street JournalThe New York TimesThe Boston GlobeThe Boston HeraldFortune, CNBC, and Le Monde, as well as by the White House and the United States Treasury Department. He has also been interviewed on PBS NewshourOn Point (NPR/WBUR), Weekend Edition (NPR), and NECN News, and was featured in the cover story of Super Lawyers New England Magazine.

Russell has prepared several widely used resources:

Russell also founded and chaired Foley & Lardner LLP’s Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice and created and teaches Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law. (Boston University’s Intellectual Property program, of which Russell’s course is a part, has been ranked in the top 10 in the country by U.S. News and World Reports.)

Russell also helps clients with the preparation of noncompetition agreements, nondisclosure agreements, no-raid agreements, nonsolicitation agreements, and other restrictive covenants; the performance of trade secret audits and establishment of comprehensive trade secret protection programs; trade secret protection training; and strategizing the on-boarding and off-boarding of employees subject to restrictive covenants who are joining a client from a competitor or leaving a client to join a competitor.

In addition to his national trade secrets and noncompete litigation practice, Russell’s practice concentrates on complex business litigation, including B2B disputes, fraud and business torts, Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) claims, breach of fiduciary duty claims, employee mobility matters, lawyer (partner) mobility matters, high-tech disputes, copyright infringement litigation, trademark disputes, unfair competition claims, and breach of contract claims. He represents clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to individuals in a broad range of industries, including software, computer-related technology, pharmaceuticals, biomedical, manufacturing, wholesale distribution, retail, B2B sales and distribution, marketing, hospitality and events, real estate, insurance, financial services, legal services, expert services, health and beauty services, consulting, staffing, and many others, helping them with complex commercial litigation matters in state and federal court trials, arbitrations, and mediations, from pre-litigation through trial and appeal.

Immediately prior to founding Beck Reed Riden LLP, Russell was a partner with Foley & Lardner LLP and chair of the firm’s Trade Secret/Noncompete Practice. He previously was a partner at Epstein Becker & Green, PC, and an associate at Reynolds Rappaport & Kaplan and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. Russell was also an instructor in the Boston University Law School’s First Year Writing Program.

Russell is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA), a trial lawyer honorary society representing less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers. Selected to Super Lawyer’s Top 10 Lawyers in Massachusetts in 2020 and 2021, he has been selected as one of Super Lawyers’ Top 100 Lawyers in New England and Top 100 Lawyers in Massachusetts every year since 2011, featured in the cover story of Super Lawyers New England Magazine, and is included in Best Lawyers and Chambers and Partners, which states, “He is widely considered ‘an expert in his field.’”

In 2019, Russell was named a Lawyer of the Year for 2018 by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, and, in 2021, was named a “Lawyer of the Year, Litigation – Labor and Employment, Boston” for 2022 by Best Lawyers.

And, his work is recognized by The Legal 500 United States, helping Beck Reed Riden to be the only small firm selected for inclusion in the Trade Secrets rankings. Some of the testimonials provide: “Russell Beck is one of the foremost trade secret litigators in the country,” Russell’s approach to litigation also differentiates him from competitors. Although his firm is small, he can litigate with anyone and can do so in a cost-effective manner. His results for his clients speak for themselves.

Russell is a trained mediator.

In addition to the countless mediations he has handled for his clients over the course of more than 30 years, Russell serves as a mediator on commercial matters, including disputes involving trade secrets, noncompetes and other restrictive covenants, and trademarks, as well as other business disputes.

Russell authored the chapter, ADR for CEOs – What General Counsel Need to Know About Drafting ADR or Mediation Provisions in Contracts, for the book, ADR Law Insights – Top ADR Lawyers Share What They Knew Best (ExecSense, Inc. 2012).

Russell currently holds the following positions:

  • President of the Boston Bar Foundation
  • Founding Steering Committee Member of the Sedona Conference’s Trade Secrets Working Group
  • Member of the American Intellectual Property Law Association’s Legislation Committee
  • Member of the Boston Bar Foundation’s Board of Trustees and Executive Committee
  • Fellow in the Boston Bar Foundation’s Society of Fellows

In addition, Russell has previously served in the following roles:

  • Chair and vice chair of the American Intellectual Property Law Association’s Trade Secrets Committee
  • Vice chair of the American Intellectual Property Law Association’s Trade Secrets Litigation Subcommittee (of the Trade Secrets Committee)
  • Chair of the American Intellectual Property Law Association’s Legislation Subcommittee (of the Trade Secrets Committee)
  • Co-chair of the Boston Patent Law Association’s Trade Secret Committee
  • Co-chair of the Boston Bar Association’s Intellectual Property Section
  • Member of the Boston Bar Association Council and Executive Committee
  • Co-chair of the Boston Bar Association Strategic Planning Committee
  • Co-chair of the Boston Bar Association Annual Meeting Committee
  • Member and co-chair of the Boston Bar Foundation John & Abigail Adams Benefit steering committee
  • Secretary of the Committee on Legal Assistance at the Association of the Bar of the City of New York
  • Town of Marblehead Planning Board member
  • Ethics committee member of the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital
  • Volunteer alumni interviewer for the Tufts University admissions program
  • Chair and co-chair of Foley & Lardner’s Boston office pro bono committee and a member of the national pro bono committee.

In addition to administering the award-winning Fair Competition Law blog, Russell writes, lectures, and is quoted or cited in connection with various intellectual property and other legal issues, including enforcement and defense of noncompete agreements, protection of trade secrets, trademark disputes, copyright issues, arbitration, and mediation. Recent representative presentations and publications include:

Business Litigation

Trade Secrets Litigation & Counseling 

Noncompete Litigation & Counseling 

Unfair Competition Litigation & Counseling

Employee Mobility Litigation & Counseling

Lawyer Mobility Litigation & Counseling

Trademark Litigation

Copyright Litigation

Arbitration

Mediation

Appeals

J.D., Boston University School of Law  (magna cum laude, 1989)

B.S., Tufts University (computer science, 1986)

Chambers USA (for trade secrets and noncompetes)

Lawyer of the Year, Litigation – Labor and Employment, Boston (2022) (awarded 2021 by Best Lawyers)

Lawyer of the Year (2018) (awarded 2019 by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly)

The Legal 500 Leading Lawyer for Trade Secrets

Top 10 Lawyers in Massachusetts, Super Lawyers® (2020, 2021)

Top 100 Lawyers in New England, Super Lawyers® (all years since 2011)

Top 100 Lawyers in Massachusetts, Super Lawyers® (2011-present)

Massachusetts Super Lawyers® (an honor received by only 5% of Massachusetts attorneys, 2005-present)

Best Lawyers

Litigation Counsel of America, Fellow

Martindale Hubble, AV rated (highest possible rating)

Avvo Rating 10/Superb

Up and Coming Litigator, Benchmark Legal (2008)

Law Review, Boston University School of Law

Carl H. Hitchner Mentor of the Year Award

Massachusetts

New York

U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the District of Wisconsin

Boston Bar Association

American Intellectual Property Law Association