NEW YORK Sarah Berman How to Run the Marketing Department You Don’t Have

May/June 2011 /
member profile:
Sarah Berman
How to Run the Marketing
Department You Don’t Have
p 18
ala annual conference & exposition
Peanuts, Pretzels or Cookies?
p 30
To provide the broadest level of education and relevancy to law firms and
corporate legal departments of all sizes, cultures, interests, and practice areas.
{in this issue}
editor’s column
message from president
member profile
Sarah Berman
office space
Maximizing the Efficiencies of the New Office Designs
through the Effective Deployment of Support Services
new york N E W
Has Your Firm Taken the Proper Steps to
“Stay Connected”?
How to Run the Marketing Department You Don’t Have
ala annual conference & exposition
What Are You Going To Do Next? — You’re Going To
Disney World!
ala annual conference & exposition
Peanuts, Pretzels or Cookies?
ala annual conference & exposition
“Imagine the Possibilities” …and Over 2,000 ALA
Conferees Did Just That!!
sponsor spotlight
Richard Schulman
professional development
Take Advantage of Upside Potential in a Downturn
CLM Education Opportunities at the ALA Annual
Conference and Beyond
social media
Firms Cannot be Silent about Social Media Pitfalls
editor’s column
Patricia A. Genn
Schlam Stone & Dolan LLP
[email protected]
Hey Patti, why don’t you volunteer to write an article
for the newsletter? This was a question that was asked
of me a couple of years ago by two chapter friends of
mine who shall remain nameless. I was innocently
waiting for a taxi in front of the Bar Association when
they exited a labor law update seminar we had all
just attended. They somehow convinced me that I’d
do a good job writing for the newsletter and I should
definitely get involved. I guess that was the beginning
of me not being able to say “No.” I first volunteered
by writing articles about holiday parties and charity
gatherings. Then I got hooked and got more involved,
a little at a time. This is my first edition as Editor of
the New York City Chapter newsletter, and I am proud
to volunteer and hopefully keep you all interested in
reading this edition and many more to come.
Of course, writing an article is nothing compared
to getting this newsletter together. Thanks to all
the volunteers who contributed by writing articles,
proofing, suggesting ideas and, of course, those
behind the scenes who put it all together in this new
electronic format. Yes, you can easily read this edition
online or download certain articles and print them to
read while traveling. It’s all a digital age these days.
We haven’t found a way to get it on your Kindle or
Nook yet, but you never know – someday. And we
are always looking for volunteers for the Newsletter
Committee and you don’t have to be the best writer to
volunteer. We all can contribute and help each other.
So now to get back to this edition: we now have a
new chapter president – Diane Fugalli. Diane has
designated Staying Connected as her theme this year.
The Newsletter Committee has tried to make this first
edition of Diane’s year a reflection of her goals. We
took the idea of “staying connected” and gathered
articles of how members all keep connected through
networking with each other, with business partners
and within the legal community. And of course our
cover page shows the Brooklyn Bridge, which keeps
many New Yorkers connected with Manhattan. Thanks
again, Phil, for your great pictures.
One person, or in this case, a group of people, who
keep us all connected is Sarah Berman and The Berman
Group. The Berman Group has just celebrated their
first year anniversary of managing the New York City
Chapter. All those ALANYC emails you receive, and the
reminders about important dates and deadlines, are
organized by Sarah and her team on a daily basis. Be
sure to read the article written by Denise Harris about
the interview she conducted with Sarah and her team
for this newsletter.
We all know when the telephone or internet is not
working in our offices, because the lawyers come
running. It’s amazing how fast they can find you when
they can’t read their email or get that blog they need
to read right away. Be sure to read the article written
by Marc Gold of MASS Communications giving us his
insight into how we need to stay connected and how
proactive we need to be to insure that our firms keep
going forward.
Another way our offices need to stay connected is
discussed in an article written by Robert Mattern of
Mattern & Associates. Rob discusses office design,
work areas and support facilities. He goes on to
discuss flexibility and support service options.
Reading his article will definitely give you insight to
possible improvements to think about.
continued on page 4
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editor’s column
continued from page 3
Marketing is one way we keep our firms in the public
spotlight. In this edition, Nancy Lasersohn discusses
marketing steps for our firms to stay in touch with our
new and existing clients. Nancy is a marketing and
business development advisor and held an educational
session for our members earlier in May. If you didn’t
attend her session, be sure to read her article to see what
you missed. Hopefully reading articles by our speakers
will encourage you all to attend more educations sessions
in the future!
Planning a trip to hot Florida in the summer – are you
crazy? Well dozens of us were a bit crazy this past May
when we attended the ALA Educational Conference &
Exposition in Orlando, Florida. I myself have attended
numerous conferences, but I must admit Orlando was
one of the best. It was a great venue, all centralized in
one hotel, and full of networking possibilities. This was
definitely a perfect example of staying connected. All
attendees were able to connect with fellow New York
City Chapter members since so many of us attended. We
also got to reconnect with friends from other chapters as
well as make new friends along the way. Hello to my new
friend in Chicago.
We always ask our scholarship winners to write about
their experiences at the conventions and this year was no
exception. The responses from many of the scholarship
winners are priceless and very insightful. In the pages
that surround our centerfold pictures from Orlando, you
will see a montage of our members’ experiences at the
convention. Be sure not to miss Ken Knott’s article about
peanuts, pretzels and cookies and his funny adventure in
Orlando. Also be sure to read the article written by Peter
Cawley of Merrill Corporation. Merrill was the chapter’s
business partner scholarship winner this year and Peter
writes his article from the viewpoint of a vendor and how
the networking worked for him.
Of course, every newsletter edition has a sponsor
spotlight and this edition is no exception. Richard
Schulman from LAN Associates is in the spotlight this
time. Thanks to Jennifer Hoermann for volunteering to
interview Rich. Rich has been part of the technology
industry for many years and his firm keeps many of our
offices technologically connected, including mine. Where
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would we be if there wasn’t someone responsible for
making all the computers and electronic devices work
all the time for our attorneys? Be sure to read Jennifer’s
Another good article this edition is written by Ari Kaplan.
Mr. Kaplan discusses the advantages to connecting with
others and building business relationships. He believes
there is a tremendous upside potential awaiting us.
Are you smarter than a fifth grader? Educational
opportunities are some of the greatest connectors in the
ALA, as well as within our own New York City Chapter.
Again in this newsletter, Janet Fraka Casiano writes
a great article on her experiences as a Certified Legal
Manager (CLMsm), and the opportunities she discovered
while attending her first annual conference in Orlando.
Lawyers and ethics? In an article written by Stuart
Teicher, we read about a host of ways that a lawyer can
tumble over rules of professional conduct. Social media
is one of the most poplar ways of being connected in this
technological world and Stuart describes the possible
Well I hope you all enjoy this newsletter as the summer
gets underway and the temperature rises. Be sure to stay
connected with your fellow members, business partners
and this chapter throughout the summer.
And the best way to stay connected is to VOLUNTEER !!!!
Patricia A. Genn is the Office Manager at Schlam Stone &
Dolan LLP and a member of the Newsletter Committee.
She can be reached via email at [email protected]
New York City Chapter
Board of Directors
Diane Fugalli
Stacy Joyce, CLM
communications officer
Cindy B. Arnold
(212) 715-9371
[email protected]
financial officer
Nicole Williams
(212) 858-1835
[email protected]
past president
John W. Hall, III, CPA
vice presidents
Thomas P. Barone
Breda Hagan
(516) 608-4734
[email protected]
(212) 812-8337
[email protected]
(212) 701-3948
(212) 318-3408
(212) 909-3420
[email protected]
Hoffmann & Baron, LLP
Locke Lord Bissell & Liddell LLP
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP
Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP
[email protected]
Fulbright & Jaworski LLP
[email protected]
Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Patricia B. Isaacson
(212) 584-0700
[email protected]
Christobel V. Jeffrey
(212) 223-6700
[email protected]
Cynthia M. Lopez
(212) 946-9341
[email protected]
Angela M. Reade
(212) 230-2881
[email protected]
Antoinette E. Scardia
(212) 588-0800
[email protected]
Susan E. Scattergood
(212) 859-8359
[email protected]
Nikki Walters
(212) 356-0226
[email protected]
vice presidents at large
Vaneat Bellizzi
(212) 973-3413
[email protected]
Janet Fraka Casiano, CLM
Patricia A. Genn
Stephanie Roman
(212) 790-4666
(212) 344-5400
(212) 548-7050
Seeger Weiss LLP
Milberg LLP
Fragomen Del Rey Bernsen & Loewy LLP
Frommer Lawrence & Haug LLP
Kreindler & Kreindler LLP
[email protected]
[email protected]
Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP
Schlam Stone & Dolan LLP
[email protected]
McGuireWoods LLP
Patricia A. Genn
Philip J. Carvalho
Schlam Stone & Dolan LLP
[email protected]
Aero-Industrial Communications
[email protected]
assistant editor
Lisa Lindsey
publication coordinator
Sheila Shen
McKool Smith
[email protected]
Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson LLP
Cohen, Weiss and Simon LLP
Questions, comments, suggestions?
Feel free to contact our Editor at:
[email protected]
ALA New York City Chapter
[email protected]
Stacy Joyce, CLM
Locke Lord Bissell & Liddell LLP
[email protected]
CLM is a service mark of the Association of Legal Administrators
New York New York is published bi-monthly by the New York City Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA). The newsletter is
circulated to contributors, sponsors, Regional and National Representatives and more than 450 chapter members.
The newsletter committee welcomes articles, letters, suggestions and comments. Reprint requests and articles should be directed to the Editor.
Vendors interested in advertising in the newsletter should contact the Advertising Manager.
Any article or advertisement published here should not be considered an endorsement by New York New York of the opinions expressed in the
article or product advertisement. Contributing writers are asked to disclose affiliations or interests that may influence their writing position.
Copyright ©2011 by New York City Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators. “All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be
reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage
and retrieval system, without the written permission from the New York City Chapter of the ALA.”
The Association of Legal Administrators is a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the professionalism of legal administrators. ALA
Headquarters may be reached at Association of Legal Administrators, 75 Tri-State International, Suite 222, Lincolnshire, IL 60069-4435, telephone
(847) 267-1252, fax (847) 267-1329, Internet:
new york N E W
message from the president
Diane Fugalli
Hoffmann & Baron, LLP
[email protected]
Good things come to those who wait! It gives me such a
thrill to be writing to you as the new chapter president.
I have been a member of this chapter for over 20 years
and feel I have reached the top of the mountain. Over
the years, I have served the chapter in many capacities
by being on the Education Committee, Newsletter
Committee and Member Recruitment and Retention
Committee. The best is yet to come — to serve as your
new president.
chapter, which in turn enables the chapter to sponsor
wonderful events and hold educational programs via
individual sessions and the annual symposium. We all
have the same goals of keeping the chapter alive and
well by staying connected.
I have made many friends within the chapter, and these
people have supported me and helped me to become the
best that I can. Hopefully with the support of everyone,
great things can be accomplished.
Executive Committee
President-Elect and Awards Chair, Stacy Joyce,
who has recently been the newsletter editor and is
still that committee’s advisor, will continue to work
tirelessly to make the chapter all that it can be. She
has a strong work ethic and her attention to detail is
impeccable. Stacy is in charge of submitting our awards
to ALA Headquarters so that we can compete with
other chapters around the country and show them the
wonderful achievements the chapter has made.
We hope to provide many avenues for all our members.
Last year we launched our electronic newsletter which
won a first place award at the ALA Annual Conference &
Exposition. This year we will launch a new website, so
be on the lookout! In education, we are starting to plan
our annual symposium which will be held on November
10. We recently began another successful year with
Sarah Berman of The Berman Group and her tireless
employees, Sheila Shen and James Melnichok. They were
a tremendous assistance to the chapter last year and we
look forward to working with them in the coming year.
All good things to help us stay connected.
My theme for this year is Staying Connected. The
New York City Chapter is the largest chapter in the
Association of Legal Administrators. It takes a great
many people to make a great chapter, and we are lucky
enough to have many dedicated volunteer chapter
members. Additionally, we have a large number of
business partners who give their time and money to the
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I am delighted to introduce your 2011-2012 Board of
Directors and Committee Chairs who are ready to take up
the reins and serve the chapter.
Cindy Arnold begins her one year term on the Executive
Board as Communications Officer and continues as one
of the Symposium Committee Co-Chairs. This is the
second time Cindy has served on the Executive Board,
and her energy and efforts will be a great help.
Nicole Williams begins her two year term as Financial
Officer. She has been working diligently on the website
as Website Committee Chair. She also served as CoChair of the Community Services Committee, which has
raised a tremendous amount of money for charity. We
look forward to having her as part of the Executive
Past-President John Hall worked hard last year to make
the chapter grow and prosper. He saved the chapter a
great deal of money, and helped make it possible for 40
scholarship winners to attend the 2011 ALA Conference
& Exposition in Orlando. John will serve as advisor to
the President and as Nominating Committee Chair. As
such, he will be looking for the next President-Elect,
Communications Officer and future members of our
board for next year’s ballot.
Board of Directors
Thomas P. Barone, a new board member and also a
returnee, having served a few years ago as the Financial
Officer. We are lucky to have Tom back on the board as
his experience and talent are a welcome addition. Tom
is the Special Events Committee Chair.
Breda Hagan, having previously served as a Vice
President at Large returns to the board as a Vice
President and is Co-Chair of both the BPAC and Business
Partner Committee. Along with her other two co-chairs,
the chapter expects great things to happen.
Patricia B. Isaacson, begins her second year on the
board for a two year term. Pat has been a tremendous
asset to the board, working tirelessly as Co-Chair to both
the BPAC and Business Partner Committee. Additionally,
Pat is Co-Chair of the Education Committee and leads the
Small Firm Section. A busy lady!
Christobel V. Jeffrey, begins her two year term on
the board. Chris previously served on the board as
Communications Officer. She is presently one of the
Co-Chairs of the Symposium Committee and is also
a Co-Chair of the Luncheon Committee. Her varied
background brings a wealth of knowledge to the board.
Cynthia M. Lopez, returning for another two year term
is one of the Co-Chairs of both the BPAC and Business
Partner Committees for the second year. Cynthia’s
dedication to this committee has made it very successful.
Cynthia’s rapport with the business partners is beyond
belief. We look forward to her continuing efforts to
make these committees to continue to grow and prosper.
Angela M. Reade, returning for the second year of a
two year term, is Co-Chair of the Luncheon Committee.
She is diligent in finding great luncheon venues and
speakers. She will use her experience, hard work and
dedication on the committee to prove that you should
not miss any luncheons.
Antoinette E. Scardia, is finishing her last year of a two
year term and will continue her efforts as Chair of the
Mid-Size Firm Section. In addition, Annette will again
chair the Bar and Media Relations Committee, which we
have high hopes for in the future. She is a dedicated
board member, and her hard work and input on the
board is immeasurable.
Susan E. Scattergood, begins her second year of a
two year term on the board. She will continue to use
her great insight and ideas as Co-Chair of the Education
Committee and Co-Chair of the Large Firm Section. Last
year, Susan contributed a great deal to the board and we
look forward to new contributions.
Nikki Walters, returns as a board member for a
one year term serving as Co-Chair of the Community
Services Committee. She has worked on this committee
for some time, and all the events have been very
successful. Nikki has wonderful connections and has
gone overboard in getting us venues to make this a very
successful committee.
Vaneat Bellizzi, is a new member to the board. Vaneat
brings passion and enthusiasm to the board, and will
be a new ray of sunshine to the board. She will be cochairing the Community Services Committee.
Janet Fraka Casiano, CLM, is a new member to the
board, but not new to the chapter. Janet has been CoChair of the CLM Committee for several years. The board
is lucky to have her join in the capacity of Co-Chair of
Membership Recruitment and Retention Committee.
Patricia A. Genn, is a returning board member, and is the
new editor of our award winning newsletter, New York | |
New York. Patti is known throughout the chapter for her
dedication and hard work. We are looking forward to her
continued contributions to the board this year.
Stephanie Roman, a new member of the board this
year. She is also a returnee after serving a few years ago
on the board. We welcome Stephanie back as Co-Chair
of the Special Events Committee. Her expertise and
commitment will be a great addition to this committee.
The Berman Group, our Chapter Managers, are starting
their second year. Sarah Berman, Sheila Shen and
James Melnichok have done an outstanding job for
the chapter and we are glad that they are part of the
organization. We look to working with them and having
a successful new year.
continued on page 8
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presidents message
continued from page 7
The other devoted members who are part of our team are:
CLM Certification Co-Chairs:
Mimi Demars, CLM and Bronya Vygodskaya, CLM
Leadership Mentoring Co-Chairs: Henry Macchiaroli,
Fran Voulo-Romani, Nadia Wagner
New Member Mentoring and Hospitality Chair:
Lucille Shyti
Large Firm Section Co-Chair:
Marjorie Stein
Newsletter Assistant Editor:
Lisa Lindsey
Special Events Committee Co-Chair:
David Glicksman
Symposium Committee Co-Chair:
Francine Lahm
new york N E W
Staying connected for me is what it is all about. I look
forward to connecting with each and every one of you.
This is a great chapter – let’s keep it that way. Get
involved in whatever capacity you want, from serving on
a committee to writing an article for our award winning
newsletter, or just support our luncheons, meetings and
special events. WE WANT YOU!!!!!
Diane Fugalli, is the President of the New York City
Chapter of the Association of Legal Administrators and
Office Manager of Hoffmann & Baron, LLP. She can be
reached at [email protected]
member profile
Sarah Berman (and Sheila Shen too)
The Berman Group
[email protected]
A little over one year ago, after the arduous process
of reviewing requests for proposals (“RFP’s”), followed
by interviewing association management companies,
ALANYC retained The Berman Group to manage the
chapter. Yes, we administrators literally needed an
administrator to run our professional organization.
While the faces of Sarah Berman, founder and president
of The Berman Group, and Sheila Shen, the chapter
representative, have become staples at our chapter
events, what is not seen is the additional leadership and
staff of The Berman Group working behind the scenes
to keep everything running seamlessly, and keeping
our chapter members connected. We (the Newsletter
Committee) thought it would be interesting for our
members to know a little about the firm and the people
that are managing it.
Sarah Berman came to New York for college and majored
in Urban Planning. After college, Sarah worked in the
field of communications for two small marketing firms,
first in textiles and then nine years specializing in real
estate communications. Knowing that she “enjoyed
marketing and serving many diverse clients,” she decided
to make an attempt to pursue what she found joy in. Five
years ago, knowing it was a risk, but feeling the need to
push herself out of her comfort zone, Sarah decided to
create something on her own. Hence, the birth of The
Berman Group, which she founded in December 2005.
At its birth, Sarah described The Berman Group as being a
“full service marketing firm, serving business-to-business
clients.” In five-plus years, The Berman Group has grown
from two employees to 22 employees. As a matter of
fact, at the time of this interview, The Berman Group was
completing its third move to accommodate its growing
After start-up, The Berman Group’s initial client portfolio
included trade associations, real estate, construction and
law firms. Years later, these sectors remain the strong
client base of the Berman firm. Many of the clients that
began with them in their infancy remain their clients
With its successful client portfolio, and having established
itself as a strong marketing firm, The Berman Group
decided to venture from traditional marketing to
association management services. Winning the contract
to work with ALANYC was an “incredible honor and
turning point for the Berman firm,” says Sarah. When
the Berman firm submitted their RFP, they thought that
actually being chosen was a long shot. After they were
chosen, Sarah stated that the internal conversation went
something like this, “Wow! ALA is such a prestigious
organization, of the most competent professionals!”
Sarah believes that having expanded The Berman Group
scope from traditional marketing services, to include
association management services and the ALA Chapter
Management role was an incredibly positive turning point
for her organization. The Berman Group has learned a
great deal from the organization and its leadership, in
addition to making great friends. The relationship has led
to understanding the legal industry much better than they
ever could have before taking on this assignment.
While Sarah is at the helm, Sheila Shen has been working
tirelessly responding to the never-ending needs of the
various chapter committees, committee chairs and the
day-to-day operations of chapter needs. If you were
continued on page 10
new york N E W
member profile
continued from page 9
fortunate to attend the 2011 ALA Annual Conference
& Exposition, you saw Sheila quietly and seamlessly
handling the needs of the chapter on-site, while making
sure chapter members in Orlando were all connected.
Sheila initially came to The Berman Group as an intern
out of NYU. From the beginning, Sarah pegged her as an
incredibly bright multitasker, with a real understanding
of the business and the firm culture, and the business
acumen of someone twice her age. Upon graduation from
college, Sheila went from intern to full-time employee at
The Berman Group. Like Sarah, Sheila’s energy and level
of detail to the needs of our chapter is profound.
Sarah really believes that ALANYC “appointing the firm
as its association management team was a milestone,
pointing the firm in a new direction while establishing
great business relationships with law firm leaders within
the legal community.”
Conversing with Sarah about the firm she has created,
you can just hear the passion that she has for The Berman
Group, its staff and its clients. This passion is the
undercurrent that runs through The Berman Group.
Sarah prides herself on finding talented and loyal
designers and account executives that are energetic and
passionate about their role at The Berman Group; several
of them have been with the firm from its beginning.
Sarah believes the success of her company is steeped in
the fact that they “sustain and nurture existing [client]
Sarah’s hope is that “[The Berman Group] will continue
to have an opportunity to serve new organizations.
That aside, most importantly, our goal for the future
has always been to maintain our existing relationships
and to continue to earn the respect of the organizations
and industries we serve.” This has been the key to The
Berman Group’s success in the past, and Sarah is very
proud of The Berman Group team. Their clients always
know one thing about The Berman Group which is that
above all, they care. Sarah believes caring goes a long
way in building lasting relationships.
Business aside, Sarah does have a family life. She is
married and the mother to 5- year-old daughter, Ellie,
and 3-year-old son Benjamin aka Ben. (Yes, Ellie and
The Berman Group were born in close proximity to each
other). While she has given birth to an enterprising
business that she is incredibly proud of, Sarah Berman’s
greatest joy is her children.
Denise A. Harris, who conducted this interview, is the
Legal Administrator at Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP
and can be reached at [email protected]
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new york N E W
Has Your Firm Taken the Proper Steps to “Stay Connected”?
Marc Gold
MASS Communications
[email protected]
Staying connected has many meanings as it relates to
law firms. When I hear those words, I immediately
think about voice and data services for our clients.
That’s probably because I have worked in the
telecommunications industry for 14 years.
Anyone who knows anything about the telecom industry
is aware of the furious pace of innovation and the everchanging technology needs of businesses. The most
prominent trend the telecommunications world has seen
in recent years is the immense demand for additional
Larger data pipes are needed to:
1. Surf the Internet faster
2. Utilize VoIP (voice over internet protocol), SIP (session
initiation protocol), hosted and “cloud” services
3. Download or stream audio and video files
4. Communicate seamlessly between multiple locations
5. Conduct video conferencing sessions
6. Back-up servers to a remote data center
As firms become more dependent on their data
connectivity, the responsibility of service providers is
to ensure that bandwidth is available to their customers
when they need it. I am sure you’ve heard the term
“disaster recovery,” which Wikipedia defines as: “the
process, policies and procedures related to preparing for
recovery or continuation of technology infrastructure
critical to an organization after a natural or humaninduced disaster. Disaster recovery is a subset of
business continuity.”
On the surface this makes good sense and every
firm should have a business continuity plan in place.
However, what if there was a way to prevent a disaster
from becoming service affecting?
Many organizations have already put disaster prevention
measures in place such as:
1. Ordering redundant circuits from different carriers
with automatic fail-over
2. Installing diverse networking equipment
3. Provisioning services over different media such as
fiber, copper and cable
4. Utilizing multiple entrance ways into the client’s
building, when available
The key is to eliminate or minimize common elements
leading into your office, thereby eliminating as many
single points of failure as possible.
How Prepared is your Firm?
Another key step to ensuring that your firm stays
connected is proactive monitoring. All of your data
circuits should be monitored 24/7/365 by your provider.
This would alert you to the slightest irregularity and
allow for immediate steps to be taken to diagnose and
resolve potentially service-affecting issues. More often
than not, proactive monitoring helps to identify and
resolve issues before service is affected, allowing you
to “stay connected” continuously. Are your services
proactively monitored?
continued on page 14
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continued from page 12
Aside from connectivity, there are many questions
regarding a firm’s telecommunication services, not the
least of which is: When is the appropriate time to review
your organization’s voice and data services? Here are a
few of the events that typically trigger this review:
3. Are you concerned that your costs are too high
because you haven’t “shopped” in a while? As
technology continues to evolve, the cost to provide
state of the art services has decreased. Therefore
you might be overpaying for outdated technology.
1. Are you moving? If so, this is the perfect time to
look at your current technology to ensure it meets
your future needs. I would recommend you engage
a professional organization as early in the process
as possible to coordinate and manage the process of
installing your voice and data services at your new
4. Are you confused by the rapid rate at which
technology changes and by all the options available
to you? If so, you are not alone. It is very difficult to
stay on top of all the changes in the telecom industry.
That is why you need to work with a professional
organization that understands your needs and can
help you make the right decisions for your firm.
2. Are your frustrated with the level of customer service
from your current provider? This seems to be a
major issue for many businesses today. As the larger
carriers continue to grow, their ability to provide
personal service to their customers often diminishes.
However, you do not need to continue to struggle.
There are a number of smaller, nimble providers,
who bring together the right technology solutions
and personal, responsive service, to optimize your
infrastructure investment.
“Staying connected” is a must for all businesses today,
especially in the field of communications. We are living in
times where the pace of global innovation is both exciting
and daunting and having the appropriate infrastructure
in your business, with the support of a suitable service
provider, is vital to your firm’s growth and success.
9:46 AM
Page 1
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office space
Maximizing the Efficiencies of the New Office Designs
through the Effective Deployment of Support Services
Robert C. Mattern
Mattern & Associates
[email protected]
Office Design: This article will focus on the structuring
of the support services to maximize the efficiency of
the new wave of the legal office environment. Areas of
focus will be deployment of multifunctional equipment,
exploration of the services that should be offered and
the concept of off-site services.
The role of support services in the new wave of law
firm space design is critical to the success of maximizing
the efficiencies and effectiveness of the new layouts.
Equally, if not more important, is the technology utilized
to support these services. The move to dedicated
conference center floors, increased usage of print and
scan technology, flex space, and the use of pod type
layouts necessitates a thorough understanding of the
new role of the support services in supporting these
initiatives. Another role is the firm’s strategy on cost
recovery and the relationship with the support services.
Support Services – Defined
For the purposes of this article support services are
defined as reprographics (copy), both convenience and
centralized, color and black and white, incoming and
outgoing mail delivery, scanning, printing, convenience
scanning and “light” on-site litigation scanning usually
accomplished, but not always through the use of the
front-end portal to the firm’s network.
What is Happening Now?
Most firms are in the process of migrating from a copy
and fax world to the print and scan world. MultiFunctional Devices (MFDs) also known as Multi-
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Functional Printers (MFPs), which are “copiers” capable
of printing, copying and scanning, are slowly becoming
the backbone of the firm’s output. The biggest shift in
support services in the past two years is the explosion
of print output and the decrease in copy output. It is
our experience that a typical firm’s print volume is 200%
greater than its copy volume. Very few CFOs will dispute
the decrease in per attorney billable copy volume.
Depending upon whether the firm is capturing and
billing for printing is the key that has proved devastating
from a financial point of view. Equally important is
the continued decline in the usage of facsimile and the
subsequent increase in scan/PDF volume. Both of these
factors must be weighed in adapting support services to
the new law firm design concepts.
Dedicated Conference Center Floors
Probably the most prevalent movement in office space
design in the last two years has been the proliferation
of law firms dedicating entire floors for conference
centers. These floors are staffed with reception,
require hospitality services, have heavy audio/visual
requirements and in our experience, sporadic support
services (copy, scanning, print). While it looks good
to clients and upper management, the placement of a
dedicated support services center staffed with dedicated
personnel can be dramatic overkill and a waste of labor
What we typically recommend is one or possibly two
support services centers. Depending upon the footprint
of the floor it can be equipped with a mid-volume MFD
with facsimile functionality, color output capability
either provided via laser printer or MFD, and of course,
B&W print capability provided through the MFD or again,
a laser printer. Dedicated labor should be assigned to
the floor on an as-needed basis determined by the usage
and the functions utilizing the facility.
Flexible Work Areas
The second design feature that has had an impact on
the support services is the growth of flex zones. These
are areas on the floor that can be modified through the
use of modular workstations. Many times the zones are
divided with hard walls with doors giving the appearance
of a “normal” permanent design. These flex zones can
be configured with paralegal offices, work or war rooms,
storage areas, document prep areas, or scanning centers.
Obviously the usage will dictate the type of services that
the support services must provide, and the equipment
that should be provided. This is where the flexibility
aspect of your equipment contract comes in handy.
Under your equipment or outsourcing agreement, you
should have the ability to upgrade, downgrade or delete
equipment at your choosing without incurring lease
buyouts, early termination fees, penalties, etc.
Did you hear the joke about why a law
firm has a 100 page per minute copier
running 1,000 pages per month?
The problem is that it isn’t a joke.
Offsite Support Facilities
While on the subject of new space designs and their
impact on the support services, it is worthwhile to note
that a number of firms have relocated some of their
back office functions. They have moved accounting,
human resources, and word processing to separate
facilities located in the same or separate cities, the
suburbs, different geographic regions, or even overseas.
It should also be noted that outsourcing providers
are also offering their services in this capacity. While
this concept makes tremendous sense under the right
situation, it obviously does have limitations for quick
turnaround/on-demand functions such as reprographics
and scanning. Also, the cost for structuring services to
support these now “remote” locations may negate the
anticipated cost savings.
Flexibility is the Key
In summary, the key word for the marriage of support
services and the new office designs is flexibility.
Flexibility in the type of services provided, flexibility
in how the services are provided and flexibility in
equipment contract terms. The most efficient office
designs are worthless unless the services to support the
end-users are in place to maximize their efficiency.
Robert C. Mattern is President of Mattern & Associates
LLC, support services and cost recovery advisors that
service mid-sized and large law firms. Rob can be
reached at [email protected] or comment on
this article on their blog
Your equipment fleet, as with your labor, should be
able to be right-sized as the service and volume levels
fluctuate. Failure to do so can result in bloated per copy
labor and equipment costs.
Pod Work Areas
Another movement we are seeing in law office design is
the use of “pod” type work areas. These are groupings
of secretaries, paralegals, and attorneys that share the
same area and the same resources. These pods are
ideally suited for the sharing of one mid-volume MFD or
MFP. The strategy here should be limiting the number of
standalone laser printers which are your most expensive
form of output. In addition to the workflow benefits of
the pod design, their use also lends themselves to the
shared use of support service assets resulting in a lower
cost per attorney.
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new york N E W
How to Run the Marketing Department You Don’t Have
Nancy Lasersohn
[email protected]
Lawyers are billing time and revenue is coming in.
People in your firm are marketing — taking steps to
get business from new and existing clients. While
some large firms have more than 80+ staff supporting
marketing programs, mid-size and small firms make do
with a couple of junior people, or no one at all.
If all eyes look in your direction to help with marketing
projects, you may have to provide both strategic
direction and hands-on support to a whole range of
A great deal of what gets done under the umbrella of
marketing does not require specific marketing knowhow. An understanding of the objective and solid
organizational, research and writing skills go a long way.
The objective of marketing efforts typically is to
be considered for the work you are seeking; once
considered, to be selected to do that work; and, once
selected, to be repurchased and referred. Many
interesting questions come up around the strategy
for pursuing those goals. For example, by whom do
you want to be considered; what would it take to be
selected; and why aren’t you being repurchased? Engage
marketing people on a short-term basis to provide
guidance here. On a day-to-day basis, however, partners
mostly want project support, and the key to supporting
projects is process and templates.
Materials, lawyer biographies and practice descriptions
are in constant demand for pitches, proposals and
informal meetings. Put them in one place in one format,
use a consistent naming taxonomy and give each an
owner who is responsible for content. Read them. The
biggest roadblock to fast turnaround is that they have
become incoherent because too much information has
been layered-on. De-layer and narrow each document
so it can be combined easily with others. Use this master
document, not whatever was included in the last pitch.
Much of this content will find its way to the website. In
some firms, the information is brief and terse, in others,
long and verbose. There is no one way to approach
materials, but bear in mind the function the material
will serve: websites are used by people scanning their
options. In the processing of selecting counsel, shoppers
first will winnow the field of those who have been
recommended. Not enough information available on the
web is a common reason for eliminating someone from
Many lawyers think that a compilation of biographies
and practice descriptions is a proposal, when it is just
a qualification statement. A proposal is a customized
document to show your understanding of the client’s
needs and the logic of your approach to addressing
it. It does not take marketing staff to write a good
proposal. In fact, marketing staff generally do not have
the substantive knowledge to prepare one well. Give the
lawyers a basic template to follow and cover:
(1) understanding of the project’s objectives;
(2) discussion of critical business/legal issues;
(3) ability to address those issues;
(4) prior experience and value added;
(5) experience of the team;
continued on page 20
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DTI is a true end-to-end facilities management company providing traditional mail, copy, fax and hospitality.
This combined with DTI’s litigation service solutions for the creation of a “less-paper” environment using
scanning and imaging technology, outstanding customer service and a keen understanding of the best
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continued from page 18
(6) reason to choose your firm;
(7) ability to provide a reliable budget;
(8) efficiency at project management and knowledge
management; and
(9) we are ready to go and want to work with you.
Requests for Proposals (RFPs): they are worse than
holiday cards in terms of bad projects, mostly because
they demand a lot of work when clients are really just
looking for a reason to stay the course or get a discount.
Most small firms get a pass from corporate clients when
it comes to RFPs; it is not necessary to go through the
process in order to get work. Mid-size firms may have
to dance. The advice — do not spend the time on RFPs
unless you clearly have the inside track and a key client
decision-maker is rooting for you. The price proposal
matters more than the substance, once you meet the
basic competency standards.
Many large firms have purchased customer relationship
management (CRM) systems, and very few are happy
about that. A CRM system is not necessary, but a good
mailing list is. Outlook can handle most needs. Be
selective about what gets on the firm’s master list — i.e.,
do not include all contacts. Ask each partner to focus
on 20 clients, 20 prospects and 20 referral sources and
get that information right. Use a basic coding system to
identify their likely areas of interest, and reach out to
contacts regularly to remind them that you exist (prompt
“recall”) and do solid work. This helps with the goal of
being considered to address their future needs.
Expensive content management systems underlying
websites are also common in large firms to manage
voluminous, inter-related content on the Internet. A
functional, impressive website can be created with a
basic CMS or even on a WordPress platform, which is
free and useful for search engine optimization. Similarly,
expensive brochures are unnecessary. Ask a designer
to produce attractive templates and train a staff person
to use a graphics program to produce nice looking
practice descriptions and other promotional materials.
Announcements — use them not just to transmit data but
also as mini-brochures to let your network know about
the firm’s capabilities and undertakings. Send out both
hard copy and electronic versions. People remember
tangible items more than what comes across in a quick
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email. Newsletters take too long to produce and
information goes stale while you are in the production
process. One page of strong, relevant content is more
impactful than eight pages of assorted materials.
Communicate relevant information often and use your
mailing list codes to focus the distribution. Events are
great, but people need a lot of incentive to leave the
comforts of home and office. Make sure the content is
powerful; pre-test relevance with the people you want
most to attract, and rely on detailed checklists to get the
specifics right.
Do you need a social media program? There are more
important marketing projects, but if someone wants
to create a Facebook page, form a LinkedIn group,
or publish white papers via blog, go ahead. Monitor
content and keep it current.
Hire trainers to work with lawyers on presentation and
communications skills. Give lawyers a bibliography of
articles to read to improve sales know-how. Distribute
copies of How to Work a Room and Consultative Selling.
Retain a public relations firm if you really have a steady
stream of good content or see a crisis in the offing.
The best strategic insight you can provide comes from a
client database linked to the finance and opening entry
systems. What gets measured gets managed and there
are several key indicators of the health and nature of
the business from a marketing perspective. One is client
loyalty measured by the market share the firm has with
each client and the number and scope of new mandates.
Second is information on the changing contours of the
practice — the kinds of clients who are buying each
type of service the firm offers. Compiling and reporting
this information should focus partners on trends and
patterns and prompt them to evaluate what is desirable,
actionable and sustainable about the data they see.
Partners generally can tell you down to the dollar how
they are doing with utilization and realization. These
other factors get to longer-term viability and market
Focus on the basics – keep and grow the clients you
have; have a clear sense of the targets you want. Align
efforts to be relevant to both, and sustain them. It takes
time and repetition to create awareness and build the
case for change — a reason to move to your firm. Rely
on templates and processes to run a turnkey operation,
and, by reporting out key indicators of marketing
performance, guide partners to be selective and strategic
about how they spend their time and resources.
Adapted from a presentation to the New York City Chapter
of the Association of Legal Administrators, May 2011
Nancy Lasersohn works with law and consulting firms
on marketing strategy and client development. She
headed marketing at Dechert LLP and White & Case
LLP and earlier worked with management, economic
and accounting firms on marketing and communications
programs. She is based in New York City. Nancy can be
reached at [email protected]
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new york N E W
ala annual conference & exposition
What Are You Going To Do Next? — You’re Going To Disney World!
This year the New York City Chapter was fortunate
enough to award many scholarships to members to
attend the ALA Annual Conference and Exposition
in Orlando, Florida. Below are some great reviews:
provided them with no-holes-barred answers, which
we were told they appreciated. The thing what I took
away from the Coffee and Connections session, was
that vendors are okay with hearing “no,” as opposed
to “maybe.” Hearing “no” frees them up to move on to
other possible prospects, and sometimes that is a relief.”
“I enjoyed the networking opportunities and the
& Dolan LLP Denise A. Harris, Legal Administrator, Pachulski Stang
keynote sessions. My sessions were Schlam
[email protected]
Ziehl & Jones LLP
enlightening, giving me a new perspective
on my day-today challenges.”
“It’s been quite a while since I have been able to attend
Teresa M. Brown, Manager of Document Processing and
the national conference, so I was very happy to be a
After Hours Support, Ropes & Gray LLP
recipient of one of the chapter’s scholarships this year. I
once again found it to be a very worthwhile experience.
“I was a happy recipient of an ALANYC scholarship
There is always something new to learn and it was also a
to attend the conference, little aware that I would
great opportunity to make new friendships, both within
soon accept a new position. This conference proved
our own chapter and elsewhere. Thanks again to the
especially helpful this year as I had a chance to get the
New York City Chapter!”
word out about my joining a new firm, Wilson Sonsini
Diana Magno, HR/Office Administrator, Boies, Schiller &
Goodrich Rosati, but also to make contacts with business
Flexner LLP
partners who serve my new firm. The chance to meet
them all in the exhibit hall was fortuitous. At the same
“The conference was FANTASTIC this year. The classes
time, I altered my choices of education sessions and
were awesome, food was great and having everything
found so many in which I learned about areas of law firm
in one place was the best. The Florida Chapter did an
management necessary for me in my new firm. Finally,
outstanding job organizing this conference. Best meal
all my colleagues that were in Orlando, having heard
was the Sunday Brunch with Peter Manzi (City National),
about open positions in my firm, have been helping me
Rosemary Farrell (Arenson Furniture), Timothy Horigan
find candidates. It all happened there!”
and Scott Paster of Océ.”
Constance Cosner, NY Office Manager, Wilson Sonsini
Donna Saccone, Office Administrator, Lester Schwab Katz
Goodrich & Rosati
& Dwyer LLP
“In addition to the great sessions I attended, I obtained
“I was extremely happy to have attended my first annual
some great information from a Canadian member who
conference. The educational sessions and networking
shared valuable advice for accepting invoice payments
opportunities were phenomenal. The vendor-sponsored
online from clients.”
events were a lot of fun too. A beautiful venue, fantastic
Kathleen Deering, Billing and Collection Manager,
weather, a good time was had by all. I was even lucky
Kenyon & Kenyon LLP
enough to win one of the vendor’s prizes.”
Elizabeth A. Gratt, Office Administrator, Quirk and
“I enjoyed the vast array of educational opportunities
Bakalor, P.C.
from classes and vendors alike, which sometimes
made it difficult to choose a class. I especially enjoyed
“The conference had great networking opportunities,
participating in the Coffee and Connections Forum. This
business partner exhibits and education classes.
was a great forum where vendors got to ask the hard
Everything I needed in one place!”
and fast (yes it was like speed dating) questions about
Frances R. Voulo-Romani, Director of Administration,
how to serve administrators better. Mary Ellen Dolan
Lankler Siffert & Wohl LLP
(New Jersey Chapter) and I were teamed together. We
Patricia A. Genn
continued on page 24
new york N E W
Stacy Joyce
Rita Thompson & The Region 1 Team
Catherine Massey &
Sharon Quaintance
Orlando Conference
new york N E W
Fran Voulo-Romani,
Nellie Lefteratos &
Nadia Wagner
Orlando Conference
Irene Cohen &
Rickie Abrams
Diane Fugalli &
Lani Marrero
Christobel Jeffrey, Cynthia Lopez,
Donna Saccone, Denise Harris,
Stacy Joyce & Lani Marrero
new york N E W
ala annual conference & exposition
continued from page 23
“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the New York
City Chapter for giving me the opportunity to attend
the ALA national conference in Orlando last week. I
thoroughly enjoyed this year’s conference, especially
because it was self-contained at the Marriott. It enabled
me to attend sessions with ease and not be stressed
about making a shuttle bus to get there on time. For me,
all the technology sessions I attended were extremely
informative. As always, I walked away from the
conference having more knowledge, meeting wonderful
new people and strengthening old friendships.”
Irene Cohen, Office Manager, Beldock Levine & Hoffman
“The 2011 conference in Orlando was a wonderful
experience for me as a first time attendee and scholarship
recipient. Although I am part of the New York City
Chapter, I realize I do not attend enough of the regular
meetings and events and this was a chance for me to
not only meet other ALA members outside of New York,
but also a chance for me to get to know those within my
chapter. In addition, the sessions were wonderful and
hopefully I am able to show my firm the benefit of my
attendance so that they will support my attendance in the
future. Thanks so much to the New York City Chapter for
giving me this great experience.”
Jennifer Hoermann, Office Manager, Cohen Tauber
Spievack & Wagner PC
“One of the best sessions I attended was the one
given by Michael Short of Hildebrandt Baker Robbins.
Michael spoke about Critical Issues Facing Law Firms
Today. Michael is a very engaging speaker and included
attendees for a lively, interactive, discussion. It was
interesting to hear about the pace of the economic
recovery, review the demand growth by practices, and
understand how realization rates have declined over the
past few years and why. Owner and client succession
planning is critical and this session was a “wake up
call” to those firms that are not focusing on these very
important and timely topics. Also, it was interesting to
note that only one in four associates actually want to
follow the track to partnership. That in the coming years
we will see more segmentation, and the pendulum of
client relationships is clearly in the client’s favor right
now. We can maintain control of our firm’s destiny only
if we are paying attention to the client’s needs and being
new york N E W
pro-active about seeking new business opportunities. It
was a very enlightening session.”
Elizabeth Kennedy Browne, Director of Administration,
Covington & Burling LLP
“The annual conference provided networking, education
sessions and a time to meet and discuss your firm’s needs
on a less rigid schedule with our business partners. In
addition to spending time with other ALA members, the
highlight was meeting Joy Harrison-Abiola from Lagos,
Nigeria, and discussing the differences in practicing
law in Nigeria and that of the United States. The entire
conference was well organized and the sessions that I
attended provided me with updates and information that
will enhance my performance on the job. ALA, thank
Mary Kirnon, Chief Financial Officer, Jones Hirsch
Connors & Bull P.C.
“Good things come to those who wait. I have been an
ALA member for approximately 18 years (don’t know
the exact number) and have never been afforded the
opportunity to attend the national conference. I didn’t
know what I was missing! The flexibility of the course
structure, the educational choices of the classes and the
camaraderie of my peers made the days I spent at the
conference very rewarding. I especially gained insight
into my specialized work as a corporate legal department
manager when I had the rare opportunity to participate in
a roundtable discussion with many of my peers. Overall,
a very positive experience and one I would recommend
to anyone who has never had the chance to attend.”
Francine E. Lahm, Office Manager & Systems
Administrator, Unilever United States, Inc.
“Great networking! I had a couple really good classes and
all this without embarrassing the chapter.”
Lani Marrero, Manager of Facilities, Harris Beach PLLC
“This is my first time attending the national conference
and I was blown away. Not only did I connect with
my New York City colleagues, but I had the pleasure of
meeting members from all over the United States. The
keynote speaker, Dan Heath, was on point when he
discussed how to change things when change is hard.
The sessions I attended were great, especially the session
dealing with 60 Technology Tips in 60 Minutes presented
by Phillip Hampton and William T. Ramsey, J.D. They
brought humor into the session that kept me engaged.
The vendors’ after parties were so much fun. I really
was able to get to know them better on a personal level.
I can go on and on and on, but my overall first time
experience was priceless. I encourage those that never
attended to at least try and attend one. Kudos to the
ALA on a job well done. Oh – I forgot. The exchange of
pins. Lots of fun!”
Nellie Lefteratos, Office Administrator,
Hartman & Craven LLP
“My favorite session was the keynote, where I learned
why I can’t resist the Ben & Jerry’s in the fridge. That
elephant eats a lot! “
Roseann S. Lentin, Director of Administration, Drinker
Biddle & Reath LLP
“This was my first time at an ALA national conference
and it was truly a great experience. For the most part I
enjoyed the educational sessions and I found the venue
to be perfect. Most of all, I enjoyed the camaraderie
that I formed with the other ALA members from around
the country. It was refreshing to share similar work
experiences with others. Cannot wait for Hawaii!!”
Lisa A. Goldberg, Director of Operations, Sadis &
Goldberg LLP
“I enjoyed the conference very much. The topics were
relevant and the speakers were excellent. It was my first
national, but won’t be my last.”
Victor L. Mann, Administrator, Wolf Haldenstein Adler
Freeman & Herz LLP
“The Orlando conference was a great time to reconnect
with many ALA members from around the nation, enjoy
some excellent educational opportunities and form
stronger bonds with our sponsor partners. Thanks to
the New York City Chapter Board for their generosity
in awarding numerous scholarships. It was wonderful
to see so many New York members enjoying their first
Nadia Wagner, Office Manager, Beveridge & Diamond PC
“My favorite classes at the ALA conference were the
roundtable/idea exchanges. In Orlando I went to an
HR idea exchange where about 40 people from all over
the United States gathered to vent — I mean, discuss
— their issues. Funny, almost all had the same issues,
no matter the size or location of their firms. We went
around the room sharing outrageous HR stories. The
most bizarre story won a prize — and it was pretty hard
to choose just one. I was sitting next to Margie Stein.
(Sorry Marge, I’m telling all.) Every time someone asked
a question, Marge would raise her hand and tell about
a book she read on the subject. After doing this 3 or 4
times, she raised her hand again and said “well, I actually
WROTE a book on this subject (along with other New
York administrators).” I confirmed to all that this was in
fact true and she got a huge applause. She was definitely
the most informative member of the group. Of course we
all got some great ideas from each other and hopefully
will keep in touch in the future. You can’t get these
experiences, though, without going to the fabulous ALA
Pamela Brown, Administrator, Davidson,
Dawson & Clark LLP
“I especially liked The New Review: Getting the Best
From Longtime Employees, the Large Firm Idea Exchange
and the two keynote speakers -- they were terrific.
Kudos to Rosemary Farrell, who helped organize an
amazing brunch and New York City Chapter dinner.
Thank you to all the organizers for their hard work – job
well done!”
James Pirone, Office Administrator, Nixon Peabody LLP
“The annual conference in Orlando, Florida, exceeded
my expectations by providing an abundance of
networking opportunities with both vendors and peers
alike; hosting fantastic educational seminars; having the
seminar in a truly beautiful resort and lastly by giving me
the opportunity to volunteer as a session manager and
allowing me to give back to the ALA, even if it’s a small
way. My experience was great and I wholeheartedly
recommend that all members experience for themselves
the annual ALA conference.”
Stephanie Ransom, CLM, Director of Administration ,
Jones Hirsch Connors & Bull P.C.
“This was my first conference and I totally enjoyed
it. The financial seminars were excellent and gave me
several ideas to implement at my firm.”
Sandra Dickerson, Controller, Brune & Richard LLP
continued on page 28
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continued from page 25
“It was a non-stop rush from 8 a.m. Monday morning
right through 10 p.m. Wednesday evening. The awards
presentation was impressive, and our chapter did very
well, even with Minnesota running away with the show.
The kickoff presentation offered great insight into the
continual internal conversation – dare I say struggle?
– between the rational mind and the emotional mind.
What followed was a series of presentations, sessions
and intellectual exchanges on topics spanning the entire
range of law firm management, so that it was incredibly
difficult to choose between them. Of the sessions I
attended, I found the Diversity Idea Exchange, Ethics in
an Online World and, Marketing Through Social Media
the most compelling, and I know they will influence my
thinking and planning in the future.”
Sarah Charton, Human Resources Manager, Smith Mazure
Director Wilkins Young & Yagerman PC
“I am still so inspired by our conference keynote address
by Dan Meath, author of Switch (someone I have to admit,
I’d never heard of before our conference) — he made it
easy to understand what we need to do to make change
easier with great visuals — stop dealing with the logic —
the ”rider” and deal with the “elephant” -- the emotions
— we all know HOW to change — we have to appeal to
the emotions for WHY so we can get the change accepted.
Thanks so much to ALANYC for the scholarship!”
Linda N. Scorsone, Director of Administration, Fulbright &
Jaworski L.L.P
“After a long, difficult, and demanding year at work, the
Orlando conference hit the perfect note for me between
education, seeing old friends, making new friends and
unwinding. Each class was better than the next, although
one of my favorites was the one on Wednesday afternoon
on social media. Just as we were learning what not to
do on Facebook and Twitter (was Andrew Weiner in the
room?), the fire alarms all went off in the hotel and 100
administrators, all of whom are fire wardens at their
firms I am sure, sat there and insisted on staying past the
alarms just to finish the class! There was a strong theme
this year on outsourcing, the economy and increasing
profitability at our law firms. I hope we can continue
these conversations. I was able to find some potential
speakers for our New York City Symposium, so stay tuned.
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A special thanks to Irene Cohen who showed me Disney
World even though I never got to see the parade. It is a
small world after all!”
Marjorie L Stein, Office Administrator,
Hogan Lovells US LLP
“How exciting it was to win a scholarship to attend
the ALA national conference in Orlando. From the
networking with many New York City Chapter members,
to meeting new friends from other ALA affiliates,
to attending so many informational seminars, the
experience was ‘priceless.’ I have already started putting
to use much of the information obtained from the many
great seminars I attended.”
Sharon L. Stewart, Administrative Manager NY/DC,
Day Pitney LLP
“I really enjoyed the two breakfast keynote speakers.
They were both great speakers and provided a lot of
insight and great ideas on how to effectively manage
people. It was great meeting colleagues from across the
United States and beyond, and it was heartening to realize
that we are all facing similar challenges. I don’t feel so
alone at my desk right now with my endless to-do list.”
Naomi Stroocik, Controller, Labaton Sucharow LLP
“This was my second time attending a national
conference. My first time was in New Orleans. This
year again, I volunteered and was chosen as a session
manager and was an assistant to Patti Genn for another.
I loved that the New York City Chapter provided so many
scholarships and we had the highest rate of attendees!
Granted, Wisconsin and Minnesota racked up more
awards than we did on Chapter Awards Night, but then
again we won four out of the five we entered and it’s only
fare to give others a chance. Thanks to Konica Minolta
(Kevin O’Sullivan) for the cocktail party they held for us
after the Welcome Reception. The chapter dinner was
superb, the food and ambiance of the venue excellent
(even my husband who attended raved about the food)!
Kudos to the minds behind that. The networking, sessions
and vendor expositions were good for me. Overall I think
the entire conference was a success. I got acquainted
with new people and ran into some people that I had met
before at other conferences, which is always nice. If I or
any of you are lucky, fortunate, or rich enough — I hope
to see you in Hawaii, next year at national!”
Vaneat Bellizzi, Controller/Director of Office
Administration, Kreindler & Kreindler LLP
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ala annual conference & exposition
Peanuts, Pretzels or Cookies?
Kenneth Knott
Proskauer Rose LLP
[email protected]
Yes, those were our choices on Delta Flight 1885 from
LaGuardia to Orlando. Maybe a better title would be,
“Mickey, Minnie and Goofy,” because the airplane was
laden with pint-sized Disney visitors. As the airplane
began cruising down the runway, one such elated Mickey
fan, glowing with enthusiasm, yelled out “10-9-8-7,”
and finished his countdown bellowing “blast off” as the
plane left the tarmac. Talk about perfect timing! I heard
an excited adult behind me joining in the perkiness.
Turning around, I saw Marjorie Stein ardently awaiting
her first trip to Disney World.
As the airplane ascended the passengers were all pressed
against the back of their seats as if by a strong force.
All the youngsters on the plane thought they were on
a roller coaster ride and started yelling “wheee”. I
grumbled to myself, “only 2 hours and 29 minutes before
we land. Where is the DAMN drink cart?”
With sanity barely scarred, we arrived at the charming
sprawling Marriott World Resort welcoming us with
symbolic arms to a relaxing sojourn. I checked into
my room opened my laptop to see what I might have
missed in the last couple of hours. I tried to connect
to the internet only to find that there was a $14.95 plus
tax charge per day to use the internet. I then called the
hotel operator who told me there was another option:
for $15.95 per day I could log in to the internet and get
a free bottle of water each day. Free bottle of water!
“Gee, this is my lucky day.” On the other hand, my
sarcasm about the free water evanesced when I saw the
prices of the water from the mini-bar.
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I decided to pass on the internet, and instead, checked
out the snacks in the mini-bar. I picked up each item. My
wife reminded me that because the tray on which they
sat was pressure sensitive, we were charged each time
we shifted an item. She said “We’ve only been here 2
hours and we already owe them over $90 in mini-bar
charges. I decided to do something less expensive and
unpack my suitcase. As I was hanging up my clothes, I
noticed the international symbol of a coat hanger with a
red line through it by the sprinkler head near the ceiling.
The notation under the sign was “coat hanger coming
into contact with sprinkler head will cause flooding.”
Suddenly, I had a strong desire to hang my blazer on
the sprinkler head. The sprinkler head sirens had my
After calling for bath towels, a coffee pot, a refill of the
mini-bar and an iron, we decided to head out and enjoy
the day. When we returned the requested items were
handed over except a hair dryer was to be found instead
of an iron.
The next day I faced a lecture on Change in the
Workplace. I thought to myself, “Here we go again,
another deadly lecture full of clichés” such as: ‘Change
comes about by evolution, not revolution’ or ‘The
likelihood of successful change is inversely related to
the magnitude of the change’ and others.” Non-plussed,
I sat near the back. I could not understand why anyone
would want to tackle a juggernaut topic and try to make
sense of it.
But Dan Heath did – make sense of it. I sat rhapsodic
for an hour and a half as he calmly explained the age
old Pascal maxim, “the heart has its reasons that reason
knows nothing of.” His dramaturgical style employed
stories, pictures and anecdotes as he explained that the
“rational” and the “emotional” are often at odds. The
rational mind wants to change something; however the
emotional mind loves the comfort of the existing routine.
I have been to many ALA national conferences before, but
I gained more common sense from this one speaker than
all the others combined. Chagrined but wiser, I departed
the room at the end of the session.
Kenneth Knott is a Manager at Proskauer Rose LLP and is
a consistent contributor and a member of the Newsletter
Committee. He can be reached at [email protected]
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ala annual conference & exposition
“Imagine the Possibilities” …and Over 2,000 ALA Conferees Did Just That!!
Peter Cawley
Merrill Corporation
[email protected]
As a long term business partner of the Association of
Legal Administrators (“ALA”) and frequent attendee at
the ALA Annual Conference & Exposition, I found the
just-concluded Orlando conference (May 22 – 25, 2011) to
be one of the most informative and productive in many
The theme of the conference: “Imagine the Possibilities”
focused on knowledge management, connections to
resources and solutions, and networking. This theme
and focal points were prevalent throughout – in the
opening remarks from the chair, the key-note address,
the design and content of the educational sessions,
the exhibit hall flow, events and scheduling. The over
1,200 legal professionals attending the conference were
treated to excellent educational sessions highlighting
competencies required to more efficiently and profitably
perform their core job responsibilities.
Opening Night
This year’s conference opened with the always wellattended Sunday evening Welcome Reception, and
concluded with the Wednesday evening Grand Finale:
An Evening on Broadway. And there was plenty of good
food, fellowship and professional fuel in between.
Conferees were welcomed by Julie Brandsness, 2011
Annual Conference Committee Chair, who encouraged
us to “[look for and] bring fresh ideas back to our
workplace” as we participated in various events and
sessions before returning to our hectic and challenging
workday worlds. We were then wonderfully entertained
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by “AmeriKids,” an impressive young singing group
who wowed us all with beautifully arranged patriotic
songs that “got everyone’s juices flowing.” As tradition
dictates, the keynote speech was much anticipated,
and spot-on – chock-full of vision for “imagining
possibilities.” Renowned author, Dan Heath — coauthor of best-seller, Switch – How to Change Things
When Change is Hard — addressed a standing room
only crowd. His crisp delivery and engaging message
plumbed the depths of uniting both the rational and
emotional minds to realize dramatic results. Those
fortunate enough to attend the keynote address took in
Mr. Heath’s 3 Fundamentals for Change which are: Direct
the Rider, Motivate the Elephant, and Shape the Path.
Because analyzing problems comes quite easily, at the
same time that analyzing successes does not, Mr. Heath
also encouraged us all not to forget to “look for bright
spots.” Sage advice, even if simple. Rumor had it that
sales of his book, Switch, were quite healthy following his
very inspiring and “life changing” keynote presentation.
Excellent Format Changes
I found the entire conference easier to navigate (than
in years past), thanks to a better-designed and more
“user-friendly” daily schedule publication. Conference
organizers are to be congratulated for factoring in
so many business partners’ constructive critiques
and suggestions, which resulted in much improved
networking and face-time between client and supply
side. Business partners view their social events, like
cocktail parties or dinners, as an integral way of touching
base with prospects and clients alike. Not having
ALA sponsored events conflicting with Monday’s and
Tuesday’s business partner-hosted “parties” ensured us
greater attendance and more networking opportunities.
In short, someone at ALA listened, and the result was
greatly improved ROI potential for many attending
business partners.
Coffee Connections
An additional feature of this year’s conference further
benefiting the ALA business partners was the introduction
of Coffee & Connections – it’s a Partnership! The Fast
Track to What’s Happening in the Legal Industry. In a
“speed dating” format, legal administrators were seated
with several business partners from various companies
for a Q&A session about the daily challenges facing
the legal administrator. Every 15 minutes, different
administrators would cycle over to various business
partners and offer their perspective on a multitude of
relevant topics. This 90-minute, fast-paced exchange of
ideas was well attended and received rave reviews from
both business partners and participating administrators.
Business Matters Sessions
This year’s conference also offered business partners
unprecedented access to inquiring audience members
through several Business Matters! sessions (conveniently
located in the Exhibit Hall, during Exhibit Hall hours).
More than any previous conference, a refreshing
emphasis was placed on attendees’ participation in
presentations by business partners who were scheduled
to showcase their solutions during 30 minute long
sessions. The session I attended on cost recovery was
well presented, and was well received by the audience.
leadership to okay attendance there was a possibility
that next year’s ALA conference in Honolulu from
(April 22 – 26, 2012) would be sparsely attended. Not
the case! From all indications, responses have been
outstanding. Fueled by reasonable room rates and early
registration incentives, as well as the daily drawings
for two free nights at the Honolulu Hilton, Gary Uyeda,
ALA’s Honolulu Chapter Host said the chapter is very
excited and encouraged by membership enthusiasm
for the conference. Jackie Stasch, CSM, ALA Manager
of Exhibits and Sponsorship, showed me the Hawaii
Convention Center exhibit floor plan, which showed close
to 99% of the booth locations already reserved. Despite
the distance for many, with over 10,000 individuals
worldwide who make ALA their professional association,
it would be shortsighted for business partners to miss
out on an opportunity to network and showcase their
solutions to these key decision makers.
Aloha! See you in Honolulu!
Peter Cawley is Vice President of Merrill Corporation.
He can be reached at [email protected]
Exhibit Hall
The Exhibit Hall itself was large, bright, well-lit, and well
laid out to maximize traffic and booth attendance. The
aisles were unusually wide. As a “booth jockey” that can
be viewed as a plus (more room to roam) or a minus (too
much room to roam)! Regardless of your perspective,
this year’s Exhibit Hall hosted over 199 business partners
across a full spectrum of solutions, from coffee service, to
attorney billing software, to litigation support solutions.
Having a spacious Exhibit Hall in the same hotel where
the vast majority of conferees were staying was, and
always is, a real plus. Logistically it is easier on everyone,
and turbo-charges networking opportunities.
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The buzz around the Exhibit Hall, pool and bar was
“are you going to Hawaii next year?” Considering the
economy, distance and possible reluctance of firm
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sponsor spotlight
Richard Schulman
LAN Associates
[email protected]
While doing this interview I discovered a lot about
Richard Schulman and his company LAN Associates.
servers, storage, and vital information processing
applications upon which your business depends.
Richard Schulman is a founding partner of LAN
Associates and has been a part of the growing technology
industry since 1982. His focus has consistently been on
providing premium levels of service to all of his clients
and he is often heard stating, “always do the right thing.”
He has been published in many trade journals and has
lectured at numerous legal seminars over the past 20plus years.
The heart of their practice is the legal community.
With literally hundreds of law firms rewarding their
services with continuing loyalty and confidence, LAN
Associates is considered one of the foremost experts in
how information moves through and profitably serves
a legal practice. From document management to case
management, imaging and more, LAN Associates’ legal
solutions have been supporting their clients for over
20 years. Their account executives understand, value,
and appreciate the key role that legal administrators
and managing partners play in the ongoing operation of
the law firm and the issues and values that are critical
to their success. They work closely with their clients to
achieve and exceed their operational and financial goals.
Richard started his career with the Internal Revenue
Service, while he paid for and worked his way through
school. He graduated from Pace University’s downtown
campus. After graduation, he moved into a sales position
with ComputerLand. While there, he took advantage of
opportunities to fill various roles including sales, sales
management, purchasing, and service management.
This provided him with the foundation to start building
a “services first practice” with what was to become LAN
Associates. He has been the instrumental factor in
the growth of the firm; taking it from one small office
employing four people to its current state of over 40
professionals with offices up and down the east coast.
Since 1986, LAN Associates has delivered high-value
IT solutions to New York, Washington, D.C., and North
Carolina law firms and other businesses. LAN Associates
has distinguished itself as one of the industry’s leaders
by providing professional, timely service and excellence
in design and delivery of highly reliable networking
solutions, including ongoing technical support. Their
practice disciplines span from the fundamental network
infrastructure that supports your IT network to the
LAN Associates have been providing high level support
to the legal industry for over 25 years. Their fully staffed
help desk provides their clients with a high level support
staff with a complete working knowledge of the legal
desktop as well as the unique requirements of the users.
The bottom line is they have a staff that cares about
solving problems for their clients as well as the people
they strive to assist.
Rich has many responsibilities in his current position.
He wears many hats: CEO, CFO, Business Development,
and “Trusted Advisor” – which Rich says is the most
rewarding part of his work: the day to day interaction
with his clients. “I greatly enjoy the people I work with
and take great pride in ensuring the solutions we provide
meet or exceed our clients’ needs.”
continued on page 36
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sponsor spotlight
continued from page 35
When asked to describe the accomplishment in which
he takes the most pride, with relation to his role in
his company, Rich said the following: “This is a simple
question to answer and will likely surprise you — the
growth of the company, the long lasting relationships
with our many clients, the many solutions we have
provided those same clients are all secondary to knowing
that the small company started over 25 years ago has
seen the many long-term employees grow professionally
as well as personally. I take great pride in the fact that
we have great people working together, side by side, that
would not only do anything possible for our clients, but
also for each other. One could say, as cliché as it sounds,
we are a close-knit family.”
Rich went on to reflect on his past experiences that
have prepared him for his current role: “Working for
the IRS for seven years was, of course, interesting.
ComputerLand during the microcomputer explosion in
the early 80’s peaked my interest in what was possible.
The most influential part of my life that helped me
prepare for my role? Moving out of my parents’ home
at 18, working my way through college, and traveling
through Europe gave me a greater understanding of what
was needed to succeed, tolerance and enjoyment of
people of all types, the desire to help anyone, and above
all else ‘always do the right thing’!”
LAN Associates has been a business partner with the New
York City Chapter of ALA for well over ten years as well
as many other chapters from the Carolinas through New
Jersey. LAN commends ALANYC with not only being a
great networking group, but acknowledges the charitable
work the chapter participates in is just as important and
When asked about his life outside his job, Rich was not
at a loss for words: “Other than work, which I spend a
great deal of time doing, I enjoy my family and golf. I am
fortunate to have found the perfect woman to spend my
life with. Seeing my two children continue to excel in
their lives (my daughter will be starting her studies for a
Masters of Education at Columbia Teachers College, my
son who just finished his second year in the Engineering
program at the University of Michigan - GO BLUE!) will
always be the greatest source of happiness in my life.”
Richard Schulman can be reached at
[email protected] Their firm
website is
Jennifer Hoermann, who conducted this interview, is the
Executive Director at Cohen Tauber Spievack & Wagner P.C.
We then discussed what trends, areas of focus and
challenges he foresees as most important to his
customers. Rich went on to explain that technology is
ever changing — something that makes his work even
more difficult, and at the same time just as valuable and
important to their clients. One of the latest trends of
moving into the “cloud” is currently being evaluated by
many in the legal community, and will likely continue to
evolve over the coming years. The jury is not quite back
yet as to the overall role the cloud will play in the legal
When asked about what his company is doing differently
since the onset of the current financial crisis, Rich went
on to say: “We are doing what we have done for all of
the many years of our existence. Always putting our
clients first, providing support at any time day or night,
weekend and holidays. As I mentioned before — always
‘doing the right thing’ is the one common thread that
permeates our staff each and every day.”
Putting Information Technology
to Work for People
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professional development
Take Advantage of Upside Potential in a Downturn
Ari Kaplan
The silver lining in the current faltering economy is the
renewed recognition by many in the legal community that
connecting with others is critically important. This means
that meeting people will be easier than ever if you give
them a strong enough reason to accept your invitation.
Consider their perspective, their timing and their interests.
By bridging those issues to create genuine opportunities
for interaction, administrators will set the foundation for
career and business development success.
Amass Personal Profiles
Start by profiling people in whom you are interested. This
could include prospective employers, prior employers with
whom you would like to reconnect, and mentors. Let
the meeting itself be the vehicle to create the summary
of his or her background. Simply ask for an interview,
meeting or call, and record the conversation as a
podcast (with permission, of course). Services like and are
very effective for this purpose. Administrators who use
this technique to connect with others will raise their
profile in a material way.
Recording an interview and repositioning it as a podcast
makes you appear technologically savvy and offers
tremendous benefit, whether you are helping those in
your organization to reconnect with existing clients or
searching for new opportunities. Free open-source audio
editing software is available from Audacity
Associate through Associations
If you are not comfortable with a direct cold call, then
instead of trying to meet someone at an organization, find
individuals who lead associations of which that company is
a member. Once you become familiar with the association
and its leadership, you will be able to secure personal
introductions to individuals at various organizations in
your area of interest. It is important, however, to create
relationships with those who can connect you to many
others out of genuine interest in their work and collective
Blog for Their Benefit
Search Google’s blog-specific directory (by sorting your
query results using the ‘blog’ button available in the
left-hand column of the page) to find a blog related to the
industry in which your contacts work. Ask the author(s)
of that site if you can guest post. Use that opportunity
to interview individuals in your target market and either
profile their work for that site or extensively quote their
expertise for your submission (which could be just a
paragraph or two depending on your time constraints).
Use the content you create to share ideas related to your
target market and key members of that community via
various social media platforms (LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.) as
well. You can also convert it into an article. While good
administrators are well respected, great administrators are
also well known. Many have crafted their reputations by
getting published because writing shapes one’s standing
in the community and naturally helps to expand one’s
Writers tend to meet more interesting people, develop
stronger relationships with them, and find continued
reasons to interact. They hone the fundamental
techniques that are associated with career development
continued on page 38
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professional development
continued from page 37
by concentrating on a few key points that contribute to
their publishing acumen.
your calendar. Whether it is a month or six away does not
matter; just remind yourself to keep in touch.
Master the Art of Following Up
Whether you are writing an article or focusing on general
career and business development, you will have an
exponentially greater chance at succeeding if you follow up.
Add those people with whom you would like to build a
relationship to a Google alert (, which
will inform you each time they are mentioned online. You
will then have opportunities to connect in a meaningful
fashion. Include their organization and area of interest
to the alert as well. When information in that field is
released, you will learn about it and have a reason to
Even the most respected individuals encounter rejection,
especially in their initial attempts. This rejection is usually
not a reflection of the merits of an idea or strategy; most
often, it is simply a function of poor timing. Human
instincts assign erroneous meanings and project negative
judgments on a person’s qualifications until he or she
follows up and learns the truth.
To master the art of follow-up, balance the temptation
to call or email someone ten times a day with the natural
complacency to make a single call and then give up.
Scheduling is critical. To-do lists are fine, but enhance
them by using an electronic calendaring system with
automatic reminders. If you speak with someone about
an opportunity, add a follow-up email or phone call to
Whatever your idea, there is tremendous upside potential
in the downturn. Those administrators who serve as
a resource to their network and provide guidance on
the concerns of others are certain to realize greater
opportunities to stand out.
Ari Kaplan is the author of Reinventing Professional
Services: Building Your Business in the Digital Marketplace
(Wiley, 2011). He teaches the popular lunchtime program
“Attaining and Keeping Your Seat at the Table” at ALA
chapters nationwide. Ari Kaplan can be contacted through
his website
ALA Introduces the all New
Legal Marketplace
All new from the ground up, the Legal Marketplace is your connection to a world of
products and services designed to make your life easier, and your firm more successful.
Your time is valuable. Why waste it? With a simple search in the Legal Marketplace you
will have immediate access to a variety of business partners who know your needs and can
“deliver the goods.”
Whether you’re looking for copiers or coffee, software or soap, executive portraits or
printers, the new Legal Marketplace is designed and engineered to you save time and effort.
The Legal Marketplace is:
ALA’s business partners are looking forward to serving your needs – day or night.
The Legal Marketplace, The Right Choice – Right Now!
new york N E W
CLM Education Opportunities at the ALA Annual Conference and Beyond
Janet Fraka Casiano, CLM
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP
[email protected]
Education and the ALA go hand in hand. Every session at
a national conference either satisfies a requirement for
the CLM application or adds to the extensive continuing
education required to renew CLM certification. It’s CLM
ALA members and CLMs are not just stuffy academics.
They are very lively people who care and share.
Whether from Minnesota or deep in the heart of Texas,
new ALA friends are willing to teach and they always
want to learn. The majority are eager to trade stories of
their home ALA group and just as interested in finding
out more about your chapter. I was privileged to attend
the ALA Annual Conference & Exhibition in Orlando this
year. It was my first national ALA event and due to my
love of education, I had the daily dilemma of choosing
only three or four classes from an overwhelming array of
great topics.
Hearty greetings and good cheer from business partners
in the exhibit hall added an energetic boost to each
day. And any sort of blast of energy is good because
exhaustion became a familiar companion somewhere
around the 10th hour of each day. You realize not only
how vast the convention space is, but the breadth of the
organization you are a part of. There are social events
and roundtables with service providers. Your local
chapter dinner is not to be missed. Getting up in the
morning can be hard – especially if you’re also trying to
keep a long-distance “eye” on your home office which
never sleeps even if you are out of town.
A Little History
The Association of Legal Administrators was formed forty
years ago in 1971. That was the same year that Disney
fellow started his expansion into Florida. It was also
the era of disco balls, big hair and platform shoes. The
dedicated efforts of a few firms and forward-thinking
individuals resulted in the creation of this organization
for legal professionals facing challenges in law firms
throughout the country.
There is much I was unaware of about our organization
that became obvious to me during the “first-timer”
event my first afternoon in Orlando. I thought I was
participating in a standard convention. I felt pretty
expert already, but I was quickly overwhelmed by the
scope of ALA and the quantity of chapters and the
number of members who have been volunteering for
twenty-five and thirty-plus years. This was a really big
convention! Chapter Presidents from all fifty states and
other countries, including our sister member Canada,
were there. Leadership from ALA Headquarters were
readily accessible at the bookstore and in the massive
ALA support area in the exhibition hall.
At the first-timer event we participated in a BINGO
scavenger hunt. Each attendee had to find an ALA
member with five-plus years of membership, get the
autograph of a national director or board member, find
someone who drives a hybrid car, and another who had
read all of the Twilight or Harry Potter books. It was a
great ice-breaker and fun for all.
continued on page 40
new york N E W
continued from page 39
An obvious requirement was to find someone who
attained their CLM. I was surrounded by CLMs and
wasn’t quite as unique as I expected to be. Did you
know that 48 CLMs attained certification during the past
12 months? There were many other interesting leaders
from law firms throughout the US and Canada and South
America. I found a fellow from Colombia, South America
to sign the square for an ALA member from outside North
The completed scavenger cards were separated into
bowls by region. I had a “duh” moment when I figured
out that our region includes Canada and goes west as
far as Ohio and south past Washington, D.C. There are
six regions which each have conferences and events
so members can stay connected. Our next chance
for an ALA conference will be this fall in Pittsburgh at
the Region 1 event. This promises to also be a great
educational and networking experience.
Don’t Worry if You Cannot Attend
If you don’t have the time or money to attend a regional
or national conference, you are still able to benefit.
Like Dorothy Gale, in the Wizard of Oz, you can find
the resources you need right in your own backyard.
Our ALANYC group is just the first step on the road to
discovering why the law firm across town looks more
like an Emerald City than your firm. If you aren’t on the
AskALA listserv, you are missing advice and mentoring
from some of the top leadership in the northeast. You
wil find real-time and current examples of COBRA,
FMLA, and hiring and firing. Members share vendor
recommendations and you can share your valuable tips
and meet your peers.
How does this help with CLM? That’s the reality check.
You bring your experiences to the table. Professional
knowledge is not something that can be crammed
at the last minute or the months just before exam.
For instance, this year’s conference was my first. I
was amazed to see so many name badges with CLM
designations in addition to first-timer flags. It was
encouraging to know that I hadn’t missed as much as I
thought by pursuing my CLM designation without ever
attending an ALA conference.
At the same time, however, I found out that many
other chapters have CLM study groups and many also
new york N E W
share their presentations and practice questions. I
expanded my CLM world significantly. In addition to
the seminars held live at the conference, there are
recordings available afterwards. Click here to learn
more about purchasing an audio CD or downloading
paper presentations.
A first good site for CLM information from another region
is the Atlanta Chapter’s study group page (click here).
They have a CLM University with regular sessions on
study techniques and they offer some practice questions.
An even more intriguing group isn’t even part of a landbased chapter, but instead resides solely in cyberspace.
The Cyber Chapter has a CLM study group available for
an annual fee. Find out more about the Cyber Chapter at and check out these wonderful
links that they have available even before you become a
The Internet Keeps Us Together
As you have probably noticed, our own chapter has
been hosting very informative webinars on a variety of
topics as well as hosting our environmentally conscious
newsletter digitally. The most recent webinar for our
chapter was a prelude to the coaching seminar held in
June. Past webinars have addressed social media and
alternative work arrangements. Stay connected and
learn while you lunch in your office. offers
national webinars, and lately several of our business
partners have presented webinars on a wide range of
CLM-related and general interest topics both locally and
I learned more about the depth of the Association of
Legal Administrators than I had in over seven years
of membership by participating in only the first day’s
events at the Orlando conference. I found new and
promising links to advance CLM education. During
the awards presentation on Sunday evening ALANYC
received several prestigious awards. I was also amazed
at the innovative chapters who received recognition for
inclusion initiatives, new member events, newsletters,
fund raising events and overall chapter leadership.
New Yorkers tend to think of themselves as being
the best. I was humbled by the number of chapters
who cheered and waved flags and won a great many
awards. We are the best, but we’re also part of a
diverse and diligent organization. Take advantage of
your ALA membership. From educational opportunities
to networking luncheons, not to mention generous
mentoring, it’s only a matter of reaching out and staying
connected as our Chapter President, Diane Fugalli,
reminds us.
Janet Fraka Casiano, CLM is Office Manager at Manatt,
Phelps & Phillips, LLP. She can be reached at
[email protected]
Sleep Easy. We’re On It.
You can sleep easy at night knowing we have it covered.
We’re in the business of turning stress into worry-free days and sleep-easy nights by letting you enjoy
the benefits of outsourcing rather than worrying about your operations.
Call FSO today for a discrete, no cost, no obligation analysis and we’ll show you the FSO difference.
For more details visit our website at or contact Mitchell D. Weiner,
Chief Happiness Officer, Owner & CEO directly at 212.204.1193 or [email protected]
new york N E W
thank you to our 2010-2011 business partners
Platinum Club
Capital One Bank
IKON Office Solutions, Inc.
Empire Club
Document Technologies, Inc.
Iron Mountain
Konica Minolta Business Solutions USA, Inc.
Founders’ Club
Arenson Office Furnishings
Canon Business Solutions
City National Bank
Elite Limousine Plus, Inc.
Emergency Skills, Inc.
Forrest Solutions Group
Herbert L. Jamison & Co., L.L.C.
JPMorgan Chase Bank
LDI Color ToolBox
New York Law Journal
Océ Business Services
Peak Counsel
Steelcase, Inc.
President’s Club
ABA Retirement Funds
Atlas Consulting Services, L.L.C.
Bernard Nickels & Associates
Carol O’Neil & Associates
Central Moving & Storage Co., Inc.
Champion Courier, Inc.
Cityside Archives, LTD
Data Shredding Service, Inc.
Donnelly Mechanical Corporation
Eagle Transfer Corporation
eFax Corporate
Equitrac Corporation
Golkow Technologies
GRM Document Management
IA Interior Architects
IST Management Services, Inc.
new york N E W
Kimball Office
LAN Associates
Lease & LaBau, Inc.
Lehr Construction Corp.
MASS Communications
Mattern & Associates, L.L.C.
MCS Management Services
Merrill Corporation
mindSHIFT Technologies, Inc.
NOVA Records Management
nQueue Billback LLC
Pitney Bowes Legal Solutions
Precise Continental
Robert Half Legal
Special Counsel
Swiss Post Solutions, Inc.
Ted Moudis Associates
TransPerfect Legal Solutions
Universal Moving and Storage Co., Inc.
Vicus Partners, L.L.C.
Directors’ Club
AGL Associates
Big Apple Florist
DayBreak Legal Staffing
First Choice Staffing of NY, Inc.
Floorworks, Inc.
Globe Storage & Moving Co., Inc.
Kraft & Kennedy, Inc.
Sher-Del Transfer
Structure Tone, Inc.
Sunny’s Worldwide Chauffeured Transportation
Advertising Alliance
Bon Temps
By Invitation Only, Ltd.
Creative Management Services
Custom Staffing
Downtown Conference Center
H. Bloom
Kool Events
Nadine Bocelli & Company, Inc.
The P&A Group
SOS Flooring Solutions
The Weeks Lerman Group, L.L.C.
Yorkson Legal, Inc.
social media
Firms Cannot be Silent about Social Media Pitfalls
Stuart Teicher, Esq
[email protected]
Social media is an ethical minefield. Attorneys, firm
managers and administrators who use platforms like
Facebook and LinkedIn face a myriad of disaster areas
that must be navigated, lest they cause damage to
themselves and their firm. Some dangers are obvious
and others may be hidden, but one thing is clear — ethics
rules place a duty upon firms to warn their personnel
about the danger zones.
There are a host of ways that a lawyer could violate the
rules of professional conduct when using social media,
whether by communicating with a person represented
by counsel or improper solicitation of a potential client.
There are likewise innumerable bad moves that a nonlawyer may make, such as tweeting about a confidential
visit by a client. To insulate themselves from these
problems, many firms simply stay away from social
media; they believe they’re protected as long as they
don’t condone the use of social media in the workplace.
But silence can be dangerous because supervisory
lawyers might be running afoul of Rules of Professional
Conduct 5.1 and 5.3 if their firm fails to warn its personnel
about the ethical dangers of using social media.
Rule 5.1 sets forth the responsibilities of a supervisory
lawyer and states that lawyers who have managerial
authority in a firm must make “reasonable efforts to
ensure that the firm has in effect measures giving
reasonable assurance that all lawyers in the firm conform
to the rules of professional conduct.” Similarly, Rule
5.3 deals with the responsibilities regarding non-lawyer
assistants and states that lawyers who have managerial
authority must make “reasonable efforts to ensure
that the firm has in effect measures giving reasonable
assurance that the person’s conduct is compatible with
the professional obligations of the lawyer.” The “silent
approach” adopted by most firms seems incompatible
with those rules.
Every lawyer knows that their colleagues and support
staff are using social media on a daily basis. Thus, we
all know that each of those individuals could potentially
step on an ethical landmine at any time. Consider our
somewhat distorted logic: we know that the dangers
exist; we know that there is an ethical obligation to take
reasonable efforts to ensure that the firm takes steps to
give reasonable assurance that our people are behaving
consistent with proper standards, yet many firms
purposefully choose to remain silent about the dangers.
Again, that silence appears to be in direct contravention
of Rules 5.1 and 5.3.
It appears that the only way a firm can take “measures
that give reasonable assurance” that its personnel are
behaving in accordance with the rules when using social
media is if they actually educate those personnel about
the behaviors they should be avoiding. Thus, I believe
that in order for supervisory attorneys to comply with
the requirements of Rules 5.1 and 5.3, their firms must
provide guidance to both lawyers and non-lawyers about
the dangers of using social media both inside and outside
of the workplace.
Stuart Teicher, Esq., is a professional legal educator who
focuses on ethics law. He can be reached at
[email protected]
new york N E W
new york city chapter 2010-2011
ALA Awards Committee
Community Services and Diversity Programs
Stacy Joyce, CLM
[email protected]
(212) 812-8337
Nikki Walters, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 356-0226
Bar and Media Relations Committee
Vaneat Bellizzi, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 973-3413
Antoinette E. Scardia, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 588-0800
Business Partner Advisory Council (BPAC)
Breda Hagan, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 909-3420
Patricia B. Isaacson, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 584-0700
Patricia B. Isaacson, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 584-0700
Susan E. Scattergood, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 859-8359
Leadership Mentoring
Cynthia M. Lopez, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 946-9341
Henry Macchiaroli, CLM, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 331-0231
Business Partner Committee
Frances R. Voulo-Romani, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 921-8399
Breda Hagan, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 909-3420
Patricia B. Isaacson, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 584-0700
Nadia Wagner, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 702-5400
Luncheon Programs
Cynthia M. Lopez, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 946-9341
Angela M. Reade, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 230-2881
CLM Certification Committee
Christobel V. Jeffrey, Co-Chair
[email protected]
Janet Fraka Casiano, CLM, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 790-4666
Mimi DeMars, CLM, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 915-5298
Bronya Vygodskaya, CLM, Advisor
[email protected]
(917) 551-1335
Education Committee
new york N E W
Membership Recruitment & Retention Committee
Janet Fraka Casiano, CLM, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 790-4666
new york city chapter 2010-2011
New Member Mentoring & Hospitality
Mid-Size Firm Section
Lucy Shyti, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 600-2306
Antoinette E. Scardia, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 588-0800
Newsletter Committee
Large Firm Section
Patricia A. Genn, Editor & Chair
[email protected]
(212) 344-5400
Susan E. Scattergood, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 859-8359
Lisa T. Lindsey
[email protected]
(212) 402-9411
Marjorie L. Stein, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 918-3303
Stacy Joyce, CLM, Advisor
[email protected]
(212) 812-8337
Special Events
Nominating Committee
Thomas P. Barone, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 318-3408
John W. Hall, III, CPA, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 701-3948
David Glicksman, CLM, CPA, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(646) 432-3515
Past Presidents’ Council
Stephanie Roman, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(212) 548-7050
John W. Hall, III, CPA, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 701-3948
Region 1 Council Representative
Cindy B. Arnold
[email protected]
(212) 715-9371
Small Firm Section
Patricia B. Isaacson, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 584-0700
Symposium Committee
Cindy B. Arnold, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 715-9371
Christobel V. Jeffrey, Co-Chair
[email protected]
Francine E. Lahm, Co-Chair
[email protected]
(201) 894-2783
Website Committee
Nicole Williams, Chair
[email protected]
(212) 858-1835
new york N E W
newsletter committee
Sarah S. Berman
ALA Chapter Headquarters
sberma[email protected]
Christine J. Kim
EisnerAmper LLP
[email protected]
Philip J. Carvalho
Aero-Industrial Communications
[email protected]
Kenneth Knott
Proskauer Rose LLP
[email protected]
Vaneat Bellizzi
Lisa Lindsey
McKool Smith PC
[email protected]
Kreidler & Kreindler LLP
[email protected]
Sarah Charton, SPHR
[email protected]
Stephanie Roman
McGuire Woods, LLP
[email protected]
Patricia M. Flynn
Day Pitney LLP
[email protected]
Sheila Shen
ALA Chapter Headquarters
[email protected]
Patricia A. Genn
Schlam Stone & Dolan LLP
[email protected]
Marjorie L. Stein
Hogan Lovells US LLP
[email protected]
Stacy Joyce, CLM
Locke Lord Bissell & Liddell LLP
[email protected]
Rita I. Thompson, CLM
Kavanagh Maloney & Osnato LLP
[email protected]
Smith Mazure Director Wilkins Young & Yagerman, P.C.
new york N E W
new members and changes
Marcia Belgorod
Office Administrator
d’Arcambal Levine & Ousley LLP
40 Fulton Street, Suite 1005
New York, NY 10038
[email protected]
p: (212) 971-3175
Maxine M. Chuck
Managing Director, Firm Administrator
MoloLamken LLP
540 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10022
[email protected]
p: (212) 607-8174
Jim Holley
Litigation Technology Specialist
Brune & Richard LLP
One Battery Park Plaza
New York, NY 10004
[email protected]
p: (212) 668-1900 ext. 1539
Rebecca Garcia-Santana
Human Resources Assistant
Tarter Krinsky & Drogin LLP
1350 Broadway
New York, NY 10018
[email protected]
p: (212) 216-8074
Irene Cohen
Office Manager
Beldock Levine & Hoffman LLP
99 Park Avenue, 16th Floor
New York, NY 10016
[email protected]
p: (212) 490-0400
f: (212) 557-0565
Christobel Jeffrey
92-34 218th Street
Queens Village, NY 11428
[email protected]
p: (718)-740-7612
Dan Li
Office Manager
Ferrante, PLLC
5 West 19th Street, 10th Floor
New York, NY 10011
[email protected]
p: (212) 308-4440
Lynn Corvino
25-15 157th Street
Whitestone, NY 11354
[email protected]
p: (718) 791-8430
Kelly J. Ong
Human Resource Manager
Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C.
700 Broadway
New York, NY 10003
[email protected]
p: (212) 558-5746
Constance J. Cosner
New York Office Manager
Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati
1301 Avenue of the Americas, 40th Floor
New York, NY 10019
[email protected]
p: (212) 497-7701
f: (212) 488-1220
Cathy M. Rossow
Director of Administration
Hunton & Williams
200 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10166
[email protected]
p: (212) 309-1201
Bridget Hagan
Practice Assistant Supervisor
Kirkland & Ellis LLP
601 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10022
[email protected]
p: (212) 909-3420
Christane Sheehan
Director of Administration
Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
1540 Broadway
New York, NY 10036
[email protected]
p: (212) 858-1965
John W. Hall, III, CPA
Director of Finance
Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP
80 Pine Street
New York, NY 10005
[email protected]
p: (212) 701-3948
Christine Mayers
85 Margaret Drive
Coram, NY 11727
[email protected]
p: (917) 673-6825
Lucille Shyti
Office Manager
Buckley Sandler, LLP
1133 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 3100
New York, NY 10036
[email protected]
p: (212) 600-2306
new york N E W
Brooklyn Bridge
Photograph by Phillip J. Carvalho of Aero-Industrial Communications
Kenneth Knott
Proskauer Rose LLP
The theme of this issue is connectedness. In New York City, the obvious icon of physical unifier is the Brooklyn Bridge, which joined
Brooklyn and Manhattan in 1883.
At the opening ceremonies the Honorable Abram S. Hewitt said:
To crown all, the work of separation wrought so surely, yet so slowly, by the hand of Time, is now
reversed in our own day, and “Manahatta” and “Seawanhaka” are joined again, as once they were
before the dawn of life in the far azoic ages.
Connect they did. Over 150,000 people crossed the bridge on its opening day.
Plans for a crossing between Brooklyn and lower Manhattan dated back to the early 1800’s. When the East River crossing was planned,
Brooklyn, with about 400,000 residents, was still more rural than urban. The city of New York — which at the time consisted only
of Manhattan — had twice as many residents, and the bridge was seen as a solution to overcrowding in Manhattan while spurring
development in Brooklyn. The bridge would enable people and goods to cross the East River quickly, regardless of weather conditions.
Certainly, the Brooklyn Bridge lived up to, and exceeded its great expectations. In 1898, fifteen years after the bridge opened, the
bridge helped unite Manhattan with Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island to form Greater New York.
Not surprisingly, Brooklyn’s decision to unite with New York City was inherent in Brooklyn’s fiber as their official motto is Een Draght
Mackt Maght, written in the (old) Dutch language, and translated as “In Unity There is Strength.”
The romance of crossing the East River has been captured by the poets through the years, including Walt Whitman’s Crossing Brooklyn
Ferry. This poem first appeared in 1856. The poem seeks to determine the relationship of human beings to one another across time
and space. Whitman wonders what he means (not as a poet but as another anonymous individual) to the crowds of strangers he sees
every day.
Others will enter the gates of the ferry, and cross from shore to shore;
Others will watch the run of the flood-tide;
Others will see the shipping of Manhattan north and west, and the heights of Brooklyn to the south and east;
Others will see the islands large and small;
Fifty years hence, others will see them as they cross, the sun half an hour high;
A hundred years hence, or ever so many hundred years hence, others will see them,
Will enjoy the sunset, the pouring in of the flood-tide, the falling back to the sea of the ebb-tide.
The bridge served again after the World Trade Center attacks 2001, and during the blackout of 2003, when walking over the Brooklyn
Bridge was the only way many New Yorkers could get home from work in Manhattan.