Christopher Kirkham is a corporate partner in the Bay Area office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. His practice focuses on all aspects of corporate finance including the representation of private equity sponsors, commercial borrowers and financial institutions in secured and unsecured senior and mezzanine debt financing transactions and related workouts and restructurings. He also has particular experience in leveraged acquisition transactions and cross-border financings, as well as structuring distressed acquisition financings and negotiating credit facilities for investment funds. Christopher has represented buyers, targets, and financial advisers in both private and public merger and acquisition transactions. He has also advised underwriters and foreign and U.S. private issuers regarding capital markets transactions involving privately placed and U.S. registered equity and debt offerings.

Christopher has been recognized for many years as one of the leading lawyers in banking and finance in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, describing him as “commercial and practical”; “top of the charts”; and as having “good business judgment and sense of the market.” Peers describe him as a "terrific practitioner who has very deep market knowledge and exudes confidence, as he should." Clients also offer high praise for his work, with one stating: “When I tell lenders that I'm using Kirkham, they say 'great' because they know he'll be efficient." He has also been recognized by The Legal 500 U.S. for Bank Lending, IFLR1000 as "Highly Regarded" in California and for Banking and by Super Lawyers in the areas of Banking, Bankruptcy and Creditors Rights, Securities and Corporate Finance.


Thought Leadership


Co-author, “Working Through a Workout: A Practitioner's Guide from the Perspective of Private Equity Sponsors, Venture Capital Funds and Other Significant Equity Investors,” 5 Hastings Business Law Journal 101, 2009

“Busting the Administrative Trust: An Experimentalist Approach to Universal Service Administration in Telecommunications Policy,” Columbia Law Review, April 1998

“Book Review: Michael Walzer, Thick and Thin: Moral Argument at Home and Abroad,” The Journal of International Affairs, Winter 1995

Numerous reviews of E.U. legislation published in The Columbia Journal of European Law


Admissions & Qualifications

  • 2002California
  • 1999New York


  • Columbia Law SchoolJ.D.1998

    Editor, Columbia Law Review

    Editor-in-Chief, The Columbia Journal of European Law

  • Columbia UniversityM.A., International Affairs - Economics of E.U. Integration1998
    Assistant Editor, The Journal of International Affairs
  • University of York, UKB.A., Philosophy1992