In New York, the attorney general's office was for much of the 1990s a distant third choice for ambitious young lawyers interested in public service, behind the Manhattan district attorney and the U.S. attorney. Dennis Vacco was more interested in patronage than pedigree; one of his top appointees failed the bar several times. But Spitzer has surrounded himself with high-powered talent. David D. Brown IV, the current chief of the Investment Protection Bureau, was recruited from a top legal post at Goldman, Sachs. And now Wall Street firms are paying him the ultimate compliment by poaching his attorneys. Brown's predecessor, Eic Dinallo, last August was hired by Morgan Stanley as managing director of regulatory affairs.