Kenneth W. Starr joined Kirkland & Ellis in February 1993 and was appointed Independent Counsel on the Whitewater matter in August 1994. From May 27, 1989 to January 20, 1993, Mr. Starr served as Solicitor General of the United States, where he argued 25 cases before the Supreme Court involving a wide range of governmental regulatory and constitutional issues of commercial importance.
Prior to taking the oath of office as Solicitor General, he served as a United States Circuit Judge, having been appointed to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on October 11, 1983. In January 1981, Judge Starr became Counselor to United States Attorney General William French Smith, a position he held until his judicial appointment. He practiced in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. with the firm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, where he was a partner in the litigation practice. The article "Kenneth Starr: Now a Lawyer and Dean" profiled his legal career leading up to his appointment as dean.
Mr. Starr recently wrote First Among Equals: The Supreme Court in American Life, a bestselling examination of the Supreme Court's influence upon American culture. He also authored an article that appeared in The Wall Street Journal, "McCain-Feingold Will Wreck American Politics," which discusses the political issues of the Bipartisan Campaign Finance Reform Act. Additionally, The Wall Street Journal published his article Uncork the Law, which encourages state legislatures to examine laws restricting interstate shipping of wine.
Mr. Starr's work for IDX Systems Corporation was highlighted in the article Long-Term Sluggers, a feature on Kirkland's IP group as a finalist for the 2003 IP Litigation Department of the Year contest.