The new downtown offices of Salt Lake law firm Kirton, McConkie & Poelman were dedicated Tuesday during an afternoon open house on the 17th and 18th floors of the Eagle Gate Tower, 60 East South Temple, the 37-year-old firm's new home.
Founder and Chairman Wilford W. Kirton Jr. welcomed guests in the 18th floor lobby. They included President Gordon B. Hinckley, first counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; President Thomas S. Monson, second counselor in the First Presidency; President Howard W. Hunter of the Quorum of the Twelve and other members of the Twelve, and numerous other VIP guests and well-wishers.Kirton, who is general counsel for the LDS Church, said law firms seem to take on a "unique personality" that reflects its clients and such is the case with KM&P, which became the church's law firm 27 years ago.
But KM&P has added nearly 100 other clients to its roster over the years, said Kirton, including financial institutions, school boards, hospitals, public utilities and businesses.
Kirton told the gathering he hoped the various clients were comfortable with one another and expressed his gratitude that none had ever asked the firm to "overreach someone else's rights" in their representation.
President Hinckley, who gave the dedicatory prayer for the new facilities, congratulated the firm on the move, expressing his belief that Eagle Gate Tower is the finest office building in the city.
"We're grateful you're here," he said, joking that "Twenty-seven years is a long time" for a law firm and its clients to get along with each other.
President Hinckley said that if he had one word to describe the relationship the church has had with KM&P it would be "integrity."
He pointed out that clients often develop a relationship with their lawyers in which the attorneys are trusted with their client's well being, resources and, on occasion, even their lives. Kirton, McConkie & Poelman has demonstrated the integrity necessary to earn that confidence, he said.
Kirton is past chairman of the American Bar Association's Lawyers, Title, Guaranty Fund Committee and a recognized expert in title matters.
Oscar W. McConkie Jr., vice chairman of the board, served as president of the Utah State Senate in 1965-66. He also served as president of the Utah State Board of Education from 1983-85.
B. Lloyd Poelman, president of the firm and master of ceremonies for the dedication, has extensive experience in litigation and governmental matters, having served as top aide to a U.S. congressman.
Designer for the 26,000 square feet of office space leased by KM&P in Eagle Gate Tower was Babcock Pace, Salt Lake City. Contractor was Utah Construction and Development. Zions Securities Corp. owns and leases the building.
Prior to the dedication, KM&P spokesman Gregory S. Bell noted that the firm's 45 attorneys work in many areas of the law.
"Over half of the firm's work involves business and real estate," said Bell. "Our new location emphasizes our position as a major player in the future business development in Salt Lake City and Utah. Our expertise and work ethic enable us to assist and contribute substantially to the growth and enhancement of the state's business environment."