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Sessions Overview – ALANYC Sessions Overview – ALANYC

10:30am-11:00am Conference Kick Off and Introductions

11:00-12:15 pm

Opening Keynote: Mission Possible: Ready, Set, Grow!
Leah Smiley, CDE Founder and President of the Society for Diversity and IDC

Now is the right time to play a role in positioning your firm for new opportunities. In fact, future firm growth will depend on whether your organization sufficiently prepares for industry uncertainty and how well the firm leverages different ideas and perspectives. 

Leah Smiley, CDE, will show you how to breathe new life into your firm with a strategy for culture change and a vision for inclusion. From aligning your Equity and Diversity work with firm goals to managing the process of inclusion, this session will help you to develop the right plan for your firm and exceed expectations. This session will also equip you to gain greater buy-in and support from firm partners, as well as develop the agility and resilience to make your mission possible.

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Human Resources Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Human Resources Management.


Leah Smiley, CDE, is the founder and President of the Society for Diversity Inc. As a LinkedIn “All-Star”, Mrs. Smiley has facilitated hundreds of presentations for more than 10,000 professionals and executives around the world, as well as consulted with more than 100 organizations. She has 15 years of experience in Diversity and Inclusion, as well as 25+ years as a master of training and organizational development.

Through the Society for Diversity’s subsidiary, the Institute for Diversity Certification (IDC)®, Smiley has helped thousands of D&I leaders around the world achieve their dreams of promotions, new positions, salary increases, additional staff, greater credibility and visibility, as well as other phenomenal outcomes. Currently in process of accreditation, IDC confers the industry-recognized Certified Diversity Professional (CDP)® and Certified Diversity Executive (CDE)® credentials to practitioners in 46+ U.S. states and 16 other countries.

Smiley’s work has been featured on international and national radio and television programs, as well as in USA Today, Huffington Post, Business Insurance, The Indianapolis Star, The Indianapolis Business Journal, Indiana Minority Business Magazine, Associations Now, Franchising World Magazine, MEA Magazine, The Lexington Herald Leader, The Philadelphia Tribune, The Philadelphia Business Journal, Naples Daily News, The City Sentinel, Lee and Low Books, and more. She was also quoted in “The Inclusion Revolution Is Now: An Innovative Framework for Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace” by Maura G. Robinson and published by iUniverse.

Smiley has a blended family and lives in Indianapolis with her husband, whom she met while they were both political science majors at Hampton University. She also holds a Certified Diversity Executive (CDE)® designation from the Institute for Diversity Certification (IDC)®.


HR PLAN: Preparing for the Future: Recruiting & Technology
Leah Smiley, CDE Founder and President of the Society for Diversity and IDC

This workshop is designed to provide a peek into the next generation workplace and legal marketplace. From advanced diversity recruiting practices to innovative technologies, firm administrators must ensure that the new landscape is equitable, diverse and inclusive. Leah Smiley, CDE, will provide practical tips to ensure that your firm’s approach is sustainable, and it meets the expectations of future employees, clients, and community stakeholders. Additionally, this session will explore how to prepare for and achieve a multi-generational advantage.

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Human Resources Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Human Resources Management.


FINANCE PLAN: Budget or Bust
Peter Bulger – Cadwalader, Wickersham, & Taft, LLP 

One of the essential management tools for a law firm is the creation of a firm operating budget.  The cash in and cash out nature of law firms and lack of planning could be a lethal combination resulting in a law firm’s collapse.    The quote by Benjamin Franklin, “failing to plan is planning to fail” is true.    In these constantly changing diverse times, a law firm should not fail to budget.    Many administrators have questions:   When should a budget be created? What information do you need?   How does realization affect your revenue?   The key to the future of your law firm is planning to succeed.  Come to this session and learn how to create a successful budget plan and stay on course.

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Financial Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Financial Management.

Mr. Bulger has nearly 20 years of experience as a leader in the areas of budgeting, finance, strategic pricing models, and operations at leading law firms Cadwalader, White & Case, Clifford Chance, and Kobre & Kim. During his career, he has spent time living and working for those firms in New York, London, and Hong Kong. Mr. Bulger has led the global financial forecasting and budgeting process at White & Case. He also served as the Managing Director of Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A) and Special Projects at Kobre & Kim, where he played a key role in creating the financial and analytical processes that sharply increased the firm’s revenue to $183 million in 2019 from $70 million in 2015, with a commensurate increase in profit. Peter has built and led Pricing and Client Financial Management teams from the ground-up, has designed multiple client profitability models, and has developed origination credit and partner compensation structures. Currently, Mr. Bulger is the Director of Profitability & Pricing at Cadwalader, Wickersham, & Taft, LLP where he closely works with the partnership on maximizing profits from the point of new sales leads to recurring business, by focusing on effective pricing arrangements, Alternative Fee Arrangement (AFA) pricing structures, client budgeting, profitability, and financial risk management throughout the life of client relationships.

January 26, 2021


fitALANYC™: Minute-Based Skills for Managing Stress
Valerie Driscoll, PCC, FMCHC

Whether at work, home or in between, daily stress is a reality, and the concept of reducing stress is just magical thinking: something beyond our control. However, what we are able to control in almost any situation is our response to stress, and there is a good body of research indicating that it is this response, and not the stress itself that causes so much of the harm to our bodies and minds.

This quick morning workshop will explain how we as humans uniquely react to stress. You will then learn a few quick and easy skills to help change reactions into responses when stressors threaten to get the better of you.


Valerie Driscoll is a National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coach, a Certified Functional Medicine Health Coach and a Professional Certified Coach through the International Coaching Federation. She is also a qualified teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Mindful Self-Compassion through UC San Diego. Through her business, the inner piece, she provides individual and group coaching and instruction, both virtually and live, that incorporates mindfulness into successful strategies for sustainable behavior change with topics as varied as wellness, weight management and decluttering. She works with Apollo Health Company and Dr. Dale Bredesen to develop and facilitate coaching programs for reversing and preventing cognitive decline and Type 2 Diabetes. She lives in Cape May NJ.


LM EXCEED: Pandemic: What Have We Learned and How Do We Move Forward As Leaders?

At no other time in recent history have law firm management leaders contributed to and changed the way law firms conduct business. Law firm management leaders acting with virtually no advanced notice or pandemic preparation, did more in the past ten months to adapt to – and in some ways revolutionize – changes to law firm operations and communications than in the past century.

Now that these professionals have led their firms through the initial phase of our new reality, they will be keenly focused on the work to come: to prepare law firms for a blended working environment in which some people will remain remote, some will be on-site and still others will negotiate a hybrid working arrangement. This way of working brings new questions to the leadership table.

The work will not be easy. Legal operations have been impacted by furloughs, layoffs, conflict between employees working in the office and those working remotely, greater integration of technology and modification of workspaces, among other issues. Law firm managers and executives will need to educate, influence, soothe, innovate and collaborate at a higher level to succeed in the future.

This panel discussion, led by leadership coaches from Loeb Leadership, will include perspectives from a labor and employment Partner at Morrit Hock & Hamroff, LLP and the Chief Strategy Officer at Taft Law. Be prepared to gain insights, learn lessons of successes and failures so far, and be energized with new leadership and management strategies to meet the ongoing and future challenges. Our panel will share data acquired during the pandemic and offer ideas and best practices to successfully navigate the next new normal at your firm.

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category Legal Industry/ Business Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Legal Industry/ Business Management.

Gordon Loeb – Loeb Leadership Ann Rainhart, Taft Law David Sarnoff – Loeb Leadership

Jonathan Trafimow – Morritt Hock and Hamroff, LLP

Gordon Loeb is a trusted advisor to business and law firm leaders. As the President of Loeb Leadership, a full-service leadership and management development company, Gordon helped grow Loeb from a single independent consultancy to a thriving company with over 50 consultants that provide leadership training and development, executive coaching, public workshops, organizational development including employee engagement, team dynamics and firm culture, DE&I, retreats, and student leadership development programs. For the past 23 years, Loeb Leadership has worked with firms of all sizes including many of the Am Law 100 and 200 firms.

Ann Rainhart is an agent of change in the legal profession. As Chief Strategy Officer, Ann guides the firm in determining and articulating its vision, identifying market opportunities, and executing innovative strategies to influence enterprise-wide cultural and operational shifts. Before Taft’s combination with Briggs and Morgan, Ann was Briggs’ chief operating officer and a member of the firm’s senior leadership team. During her tenure at Briggs, Ann led the firm through its merger decision, a major remodel process, and implementation of innovative processes including client development coaching, legal transactional operations, and eDiscovery. Prior to joining Briggs, Ann was a leader in the operations team at Faegre Baker Daniels. As chief talent officer, Ann collaborated with the firm’s management board and executive committee to implement strategies for retention, development, and feedback for the firm’s 750+ lawyers, consultants, and professionals, and partnered with other administrative department leaders in key areas of business operations. She played a key role in the 2012 combination of Faegre & Benson LLP and Baker & Daniels LLP. Ann’s experience also includes previous roles as director of legal personnel at Faegre & Benson, LLP and as part of the human resources team at Stinson Leonard Street. Ann began her career in law firm administration at Chapman and Cutler in Chicago. Ann is a frequent author and presenter on the topics of legal operations, change in the legal profession and leadership.

David B. Sarnoff, Esq., ACC,
is an ICF Certified Executive Coach, leadership trainer and keynote speaker with Loeb Leadership. As a former attorney, experienced executive search consultant, business owner, and former board of education president, David is uniquely qualified and experienced to understand the mindset, demands and challenges of corporate executives, attorneys, administrators, managers and individual contributors. David is also committed to raising awareness of Allyship, encouraging sponsoring and mentoring the professional and career development of people of color and under-represented groups.

Jonathan Trafimow
is a Partner of the firm where he Co-Chairs its Employment Law Practice Group. Mr. Trafimow represents employers in all areas of workplace discrimination, retaliation, harassment and civil rights claims, and class actions. He also provides advice and counsel to employers on discrimination and retaliation policies and prevention, harassment training and prevention, wage and hour matters, handbooks, severance packages, employment agreements and other employment- related documents.
Mr. Trafimow is also a member of the firm’s Cybersecurity, Privacy and Technology Practice Group. In the cybersecurity space, Mr. Trafimow focuses on the intersection of technology and human resources best practices in assisting clients with preparing written information security plans (WISPs). Companies can use WISPs to mitigate the risk of, and potentially limit legal exposure from, a data breach. Mr. Trafimow serves as part of a multidisciplinary team that can be called into action when a firm is sued in connection with a data breach. Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Trafimow was a Partner at the law firm of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. in Manhattan. He has also served as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of New York in employment and civil rights litigation and prior to that, worked as a Motions Law Clerk for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.


IT PLAN:  Developing a Cybersecurity Plan with the Remote Worker in Mind
Kraft Kennedy:  Chris Owen, Jude Travers, Tracy Kraft

Working remotely may be the new normal but, according to an ALA poll, will likely become a permanent reality at least for some. From a cybersecurity perspective, we address the new challenges and dangers associated with the remote workforce. We look at risks and their possible mitigations. We review policies as well as procedures. We show you how to use cybersecurity to build a resilient firm.

Takeaways include:

  • Understanding the risks of the remote network and remote access to the network.
  • Identifying user risks and attendant procedures and policies to mitigate those risks.
  • Addressing adequate protection that you need to have with a distributed workforce.
  • Understanding of various mitigations including layered solutions to help protect the remote worker and the confidentiality.

CLM® Application Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the category Information Technology OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Operations Management


As the Chief Technology Officer at Kraft Kennedy, Chris Owens is responsible for maintaining partner relationships and alignment with Kraft Kennedy. He focuses much of his time on focusing on improvements for his clients and educating them on the changing landscape of technology. Serving on numerous partner advisory and strategic leadership committees, Chris helps shape the future of applications and systems to best meet the changing needs of business of Kraft Kennedy as well as our clients. With over 20 years of consulting and technology management experience, Chris has helped lead clients with desktop design and management, server and storage consolidation and collocation, DR/BC, email messaging design and migration, document management, and hybrid/thin-client architecture. His recent work has focused on designing solutions to make the transition to a “cloud first” model and successfully adopt Windows-as-a-Service.

As Chief Information Security Officer at Kraft Kennedy John Kogan establishes and maintains the enterprise vision and programs to ensure information assets and technologies are adequately protected. John works closely with other senior executives at Kraft Kennedy to identify, develop, implement, and maintain processes across the organization to reduce information and information technology risks. As Chief Security Officer, John reviews and responds to incidents, establishes appropriate standards and controls, manages security technologies, and directs the establishment and implementation of policies and procedures. John Kogan has an extensive background in IT and business developed over 35 years working in financial services, consulting, and Fortune 100 corporations.

As Marketing Director, Tracy Kraft plans and oversees the implementation of Kraft Kennedy’s marketing and branding strategies. She is an expert in experiential marketing and manages the firm’s digital strategy and partner relations. Tracy has held this post for seven years, where she has been able to contribute unique insight gained from working closely with each practice group over her 16 years with Kraft Kennedy. Prior to joining Kraft Kennedy, Tracy managed the Law Offices of Goodhue Arons & Neary, and held Hospitality Management roles in the hotel and restaurant industry.


HR PIVOT: Remote Work in New York in our New Normal – Re-Assessing and Implementing Telework Policies and Practices
Fisher Phillips Attorney, Kathleen McLeod Caminiti, co-chair of the firm’s Wage Hour Practice Group

The spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) has forced companies, big and small, to allow or require staff to work remotely.  Now that we find ourselves living and working in a “new normal” many employers are creating or reassessing their telework policies.   Fisher Phillips Attorney, Kathleen McLeod Caminiti, co-chair of the firm’s Wage Hour Practice Group, explores the practical and legal challenges raised by remote work.  Her presentation centers on the factors that New York businesses should consider when developing legally compliant and practical solutions for the remote work to mitigate litigation risks.

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Human Resources Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Human Resources Management.

Epstein Becker Green is an accredited provider of New York Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit. This program has been approved for 1 hour of NY CLE credit in Professional Practice. This program is transitional and appropriate for both newly admitted and experienced attorneys. In order to receive CLE credit, each participant must be complete an affirmation form and be present for the entirety of the program. Credit will be provided to remote participants.


Kathleen McLeod Caminiti is a partner Fisher Phillips, a nationally recognized labor and employment firm, in the firm’s New Jersey and New York offices.  Ms. Caminiti is co-chair of both the Wage and Hour and Pay Equity practice groups. She has extensive experience handling all aspects of employment litigation, including individual plaintiff discrimination claims, restrictive covenant litigation and wage and hour class and collective actions.

Ms. Caminiti has a sophisticated wage and hour practice and has distinguished herself in Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)/wage and hour litigation. As lead counsel, Kathie has obtained favorable outcomes for clients in numerous wage and hour matters, including class and collective actions arising under the FLSA and various state laws. As a chair of Fisher Phillips’ Pay Equity Practice Group, Ms. Caminiti dedicates her time to analyzing the legal issues surrounding pay equality, conducting pay equity audits and defending equal pay litigation.

Ms. Caminiti has successfully defended cases alleging civil rights violations, race, sex, age and handicap discrimination, sexual harassment, whistle-blowing, wrongful discharge and retaliation. She has also defended employers and financial institutions in Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) cases, including class actions, seeking severance, pension and health and welfare benefits.

Ms. Caminiti counsels her clients on compliance with the panoply of employment laws and assists with their liability prevention efforts by conducting employee training, preparing handbooks and implementing policies, as well as wage and hour and pay equity audits.

Ms. Caminiti has published numerous articles that have appeared in The New York Law Journal, New Jersey Business, New Jersey Lawyer Magazine, and ACC Docket regarding a variety of employment-related issues.  Kathie is listed in New Jersey Super Lawyers (2015-Present) and The Best Lawyers in America (2016-Present).

January 27, 2021


OM PIVOT: The Remote Office and Its Impact on Your Firm’s Real Estate Footprint and Operations.

Prior to the Pandemic many of us worked in law firms with a firm bias against “working from home”. There were numerous reasons given by managing partners and executive committees as to why this wouldn’t work for their firms. Well, necessity is the mother of invention and apparently many naysaying firms are thriving with a remote workforce. What does this mean for the future of the commercial law firm office and the staff it takes to operate it?

  • Can you afford to downsize now? Can you afford not to? Are landlords willing to renegotiate? What are we seeing with commercial real estate leases?
  • How do you provide benefit options to a newly geographically diverse workforce?
  • What are the business tax implications?
  • How do you staff a partially virtual law firm? These are some of the topics our panel of experts will address during this fast paced look at the Law Firm of the Future

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category Operations Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Operations Management.


Brian Gertler is a Partner and Senior Vice President at LDI Color ToolBox working principally in developing LDI’s corporate communications, marketing, strategic partner alliances and innovative technologies.   Brian is a serial entrepreneur having owned document management, optical retail, cookie bouquet, marketing communications and computer companies.  Brian has been a professional photographer, performing musician playing multiple instruments, vocalist and emcee. 


John Connolly is the Major Accounts Manager for the Legal Market at LDI, has been with them for nearly 19 years and has over 30 years of industry experience.  He holds a B.S. in Computer Science from Manhattan College.  John and LDI have been actively involved with the ALANYC Chapter for over 14 years and are currently Grand Central Club supporters.  John currently serves on several ALANYC committees, including our Business Partner Advisory Council, Diversity & Inclusion Team, Community Connections Team and our Business Partner Mentoring Program.

Sarah Kim is a Senior Tax Manager in Berdon LLP’S State and Local Tax Group with nearly 10 years of professional experience. Sarah advises Fortune 500 and middle market businesses across an array of industries. She has particular expertise in corporate income and franchise tax, sales and use tax, personal income tax, unincorporated business tax, commercial rent tax, and real estate transfer tax. Her experience extends to the following services: consulting on income and franchise tax and sales and use tax issues, including nexus determination, optimal filing methodology, and sourcing analysis of various types of income; representing clients in state and local income tax and sales and use tax audits and appeals; reviewing income/franchise tax and sales/use tax returns of multistate corporations; assisting clients with securing voluntary disclosure agreements for various taxes; conducting state and local tax due diligence in connection with various M&A transactions; and identifying state refund opportunities and coordinating the filing of refund claims.

Lawrence W. Klein, Esq. (”Larry”) is the New York Metro Region Branch Manager for Robert Half Legal, a global provider of specialized staffing and consulting solutions. Larry and his team assist Law Firm and Corporate Legal Department clients with contract, interim/project and direct-hire staffing/consulting needs. Prior to joining Robert Half Legal in 2017, Larry spent several years as Regional Director, overseeing sales and operations for a national litigation support company. Larry graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (Marketing and Management) from The State University of New York at Albany. He obtained his law degree from Brooklyn Law School and is admitted to the State and Federal District Courts of New York. While in active practice, Larry was associated with the New York offices of Brand Glick & Brand, P.C. and Jones Hirsch Connors & Bull, P.C., concentrating on general liability and insurance related litigation. Over the course of his nearly 20 year career in the New York legal services space, Larry has had the opportunity to participate as a speaker, panelist and subject matter expert for educational and informational programs put on by organizations such as the New York State Bar Association, Association of Corporate Counsel and the Association of Legal Administrators. Larry enjoys sports, cooking and is a live music enthusiast. He resides in New Jersey with his wife and two children.

Margaret Poster joined Cushman & Wakefield as an Executive managing Director, Legal Business Expert in 2019, following a 29-year career as Chief Operating Officer of Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP, a prominent and highly profitable international law firm. Having been an ‘industry insider’, Margaret brings unparalleled expertise and experience in the legal sector, to the Cushman team. During her tenure at Willkie, the firm enjoyed an outstanding record of growth and profitability, consistently ranking in the top tier of AmLaw 100 firms. She was highly regarded as a leader in the profession and was a frequent speaker at industry conferences. Earlier in her career, Margaret held senior executive positions at Workbench, Inc. and Barnes & Noble Bookstores, Inc. and worked on the audit team of PriceWaterhouseCoopers.

Mark Shore graduated the University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, in May 1993 with a Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science. He began his career with US Healthcare, Inc. (prior to its merger with Aetna, Inc.) in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania. In 1995 Mark accepted a position in the New York City office of Milliman and Robertson, Actuaries and Consultants. And eventually moved to Coopers & Lybrand’s Health and Welfare department (prior to its merger with Price Waterhouse) in the same role. In 1999 Mark joined Group Health Incorporated (GHI) as a Middle Market Group Marketing Representative. He worked with the New York and New Jersey brokerage community to place employer-sponsored health insurance for companies with 51-1,000 eligible employees. In 2002, Mark joined a regional Insurance Brokerage firm where he was responsible for servicing and acquiring new business. In August, 2010, Mark founded Atlas Consulting Services, LLC where he continues to develop, implement and manage Employee Benefit insurance programs for his clients.


Labor Law Update
Dean Silverberg, Esq.

This update will include:

  • Highlights of the new New York State & New York City Paid Sick & Safe Time Off Laws
  • Covid-19 Vaccination of Employees
  • Brief Back to the Office Update; New York Quarantine Rules and Travel Advisories; and select General Covid-19 Developments
  • What To Expect Under The Biden Administration From An Employment & HR Perspective

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr 15 Min (75 min) in the category of Human Resources Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr 15 min (75 min) in the Subject Area of Human Resources Management.

Epstein Becker Green is an accredited provider of New York Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit. This program has been approved for 1 hour of NY CLE credit in Professional Practice. This program is transitional and appropriate for both newly admitted and experienced attorneys. In order to receive CLE credit, each participant must be complete an affirmation form and be present for the entirety of the program. Credit will be provided to remote participants.


Dean L. Silverberg, Esq. is a Member of the Firm in the Labor and Employment practice, in the firm’s New York office. He practices both public and private-sector labor and employment law, and is actively involved in employment and workplace tort litigation, labor arbitration, collective bargaining negotiations, wage and hour audits, and human resource consultation and management. 

As Head of the firm’s China Initiative, Mr. Silverberg travels to China to meet with executives of the parent companies of the Chinese subsidiaries he represents in America, confers with representatives of the Chinese Government and trade organizations, and presents seminars to Chinese businesses seeking to operate or invest in the United States. He works closely with Chinese businesses in the U.S. in various industry sectors to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulatory requirements. 

Mr. Silverberg coauthored the Employer’s Guide to Military Leave Compliance, published by Thompson Publishing Group. Mr. Silverberg frequently writes and lectures on a range of employment law topics including employment and workplace tort litigation, worker classification matters, human resource consultation and management, and military leave compliance.

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Silverberg was deputy counsel to Mayor Edward I. Koch of New York City. He served as an advisor to the Mayor’s Office in connection with public-sector labor relations, personnel management, and civil service administration.


LM PIVOT: Marketing in This New World

Time to get creative!  No more lunch/dinner/cocktails with clients and potential clients.  No more in person conferences and conventions.  No more road trips to client sites.  How do we shine in a pandemic and keep our firms top-of-mind?  (Thinking blogging, webinars, podcasts, but open minded.)  

Please join members of Davis Wright Tremaine’s marketing and business development team for a discussion about how one law firm pivoted in its client development and retention efforts in 2020 to lay the groundwork for future success. Topics discussed will include events, content marketing, the sales pipeline, and client service. No zombies will be harmed in the recording of this panel (or at least not that many).

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the subject area of Legal Industry/Business Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Legal Industry/Business Management.


Kevin Guidry is DWT’s Senior Manager of Business Development. Kevin is a lawyer and has 7+ years of legal industry business development and practice management experience. Before working in legal, Kevin worked in sales and marketing in the wine industry.

Tara de Borja is DWT’s Marketing Events Manager. Tara has 4+ years of legal marketing experience and 10 years of legal, corporate, nonprofit fundraising and board event experience.

Dan Sheehan is DWT’s Marketing Content Manager. He uses his expertise in SEO, content writing, and legal marketing to help optimize attorney thought leadership across digital channels. Prior to joining DWT, Dan was the Digital Marketing and Technology Director for The Cochran Firm’s Washington, D.C., office.

Sean Gibson is DWT’s Director of Client Service and Internal Communications. He has 15 years of experience working in legal marketing, business development, practice management, and communications roles at AmLaw 100 firms. He also writes novels, for which he apologizes to the literary community at large.

January 28, 2021


fitALANYC™: Fit as you Sit
Dr. Piken

The vast majority of health issues that you may be suffering from now or may be developing could be minimized if you just didn’t sit so much. Working remotely doesn’t help the situation. Do you want to learn some simple techniques to minimize the damaging effects of sitting? Join us for a 25-minute talk about how you can stay fit while you sit.


Dr. Jason Piken is a Chiropractor, Certified Nutrition Specialist and Health Coach who offers a unique holistic and whole body approach to nutrition and wellness. Since starting his practice in 1996, Dr. Piken has taught people how to heal from various problems ranging from chronic pain to digestive disorders. When you walk into his office you know that you are in an environment where you are going to be personally cared for. His midtown Manhattan office, Innate Wellness Group, functions as a primary source for healthcare without the use of drugs or surgery.

Dr. Piken has been in clinical practice since 1996.  Dr. Piken is a chiropractor, a nutritionist and also a health coach.  He utilizes, functional medicine, applied kinesiology and health coaching at his NYC office Innate Wellness Group.  He also has a virtual practice where he sees people from all over the world.   

Dr. Piken’s primary areas of expertise are helping people with chronic pain and/or chronic digestive issues.  He takes the approach of helping people physically, chemically and emotionally to get them to be their best selves.


FINANCE PIVOT: The Billing Waltz – Learn to Dance with the Right Billing Systems PartnerMichael Leonardi – Moderator Fred Cohen – Zola SuiteSteve Crossman – SurePoint Technologies
Bruce Policky – Software Technology LLC

This engaging panel will discuss the various billing systems currently on the market for law firms. The discussion will focus on whether a firm should consider a cloud-based product; what information is available for financial dashboards; and (the ever-popular topic) how can a billing department go paperless.  We encourage you to attend and bring your billing system questions.


Michael A. Leonardi is the Executive Director & Chief Financial Officer at Holwell Shuster & Goldberg LLP, a NYC Litigation Boutique. He handles all aspects of financial and administrative management, including as a member of the Executive Committee and a Trustee of Firm Retirement Plans. Michael has been in the legal industry for over 40 years holding positions such as Controller, Director of Finance, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Director, for large, mid-sized and boutique firms. Michael has been a member of ALANYC for 35 years and has been a Board Member for the past three years, serving as Financial Officer. Michael has a keen interest in Community Services and fund-raising events, having Chaired the 2019 Wiffleball Classic, an event bringing together over 400 participants and 30 Corporate Sponsors to raise funds for Autism Speaks and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He is an annual sponsor of Holiday Toy drives to assist local children’s hospitals, families-in-need and the Ronald McDonald Foundation. Married for 37 years, Michael is the father of two daughters and a grandfather of two. He is an avid sports enthusiast, both as a player and fan, loves to read, attend Broadway shows and enjoys traveling


Fred Cohen is the founder and Chief Executive Officer at Zola Media. In addition to his duties as CEO, he is the chief product architect of Zola Suite where he is focused on developing state of the art technology to enable law firms to massively scale their operations. He has been a leader, product visionary, and innovator in the legal technology space for over 10 years. In that role he is the inventor of 2 patents with the USPTO. Fred has led the company from its founding to becoming one of the fastest-growing businesses in the U.S. two years in a row as recognized by Inc Magazine. He is also a former practicing attorney as a partner at a New York Trusts & Estates firm. His interests include anthropology, tennis, art, user experience design and business process optimization. Fred holds both an Economics and a Political Science degree from Queens College of the City University of New York and a JD from Hofstra University School of Law.

Steve Crossman
serves as Vice President of Sales & Marketing for SurePoint Technologies. As Vice-President of Sales, Crossman oversees SurePoint Technologies Go-to-Market team which includes Sales, Relationship Management, and Marketing.  Steve has partnered with hundreds of law firms nationwide on their technology initiatives. With more than 20-years of experience in sales and leadership and more than 10-years in Legal Tech, Crossman has served as a business executive, attorney and entrepreneur in  start-ups, privately and publicly held corporations, and small and large firms.  His unique blend of perspective as a businessperson, salesperson and GTM leader has earned him numerous awards and accolades throughout his tenured career.  In addition, Crossman regularly mentors business leaders and legal professionals on how to best solve their unique business challenges. Crossman has Juris Doctor degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology.

Bruce Policky is the Client Success Manager at Software Technology LLC, the maker of Tabs3 Software, and responsible for managing all marketing, sales, and training activities. Over his 30+ years with the company, he has served in the roles of Quality Assurance Manager, Technical Support Supervisor, Systems Trainer, and Product Manager, helping clients and consultants in the legal software industry meet their Billing, Accounting, and Practice Management needs.


HR EXCEED: Leading with Impact: Building Resilience & Strategic Risk-Taking
Stacey Lea Flanagan, Director, Department of Health & Human Services
Why do some people thrive professionally while others are passed over for career advancement opportunities? The answer is often a lack of resilience and a resistance to taking risks—due to a variety of factors. Today, it is especially important to develop greater “bounce back” skills and gain more comfort with strategic risk-taking. Fortunately, the ability to transform challenges into growth and to leverage leadership skills to one’s best advantage can be learned. Participants in this discussion will learn practical techniques to reframe uncertainty:

  • Welcome healthy conflict, adapt to tough challenges and move out of your comfort zone to embrace new pathways to advancement.
  • Learn to demonstrate confidence and openness through verbal and non-verbal communication.
  • Identify new strategies to find solutions outside your comfort zone.
  • Motivating employees in “the new normal” online/virtual platform engagement.

CLM® Application Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Organizational Development OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Communication and Organizational Management.


Stacey L. Flanagan is the Director of Health and Human Services for the City of Jersey City.

Prior to joining the Fulop Administration, Flanagan was the Director of Neighborhood WIC at Public Health Solutions. As part of her position, she worked to bring innovative programming to the organization’s Women, Infants, and Children supplemental food program (WIC) and the WIC Vendor Management Agency. Flanagan’s work history includes Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters. There, she implemented a franchise-style direct service program in 16 states, working in cooperation with Executive Directors to provide protocol, licensing and contract agreements. She also served as the Mandel Fellow at The Leader to Leader Institute (formerly the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management). Stacey coordinated a national training program for the Drucker Self-Assessment Tool and Meeting the Collaboration Challenge while implementing a new training component to the Foundation’s programming. 

As a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer, Flanagan served as a community development specialist, working with the National Development Corporation of Costa Rica to provide training and technical assistance to local municipalities, develop small enterprise businesses with women, and plan programs supporting alternative education to adults.

In addition, Flanagan spent years as a Part-time Faculty Member at NJCU,  St Peter’s University, The New School where she taught courses on food policy, social justice, program development and research methods.

Flanagan graduated Michigan State University with a BA in Political Science, and holds an MS in Nonprofit Management from Milano the New School for Urban Policy and Management.


IT EXCEED: From Surviving to Thriving – Remote Workforce Optimization
Moderator: Christopher Zegers -IVIONICS
Speakers: Douglas Gibson – Chaffetz Lindsey, Kenneth Levonaitis – Seward & Kissel and Andrea Markstrom – 
Taft Stettinius & Hollister

We’ve discussed the need for enhanced cybersecurity. But what else do law firm leaders need to keep in mind as we continue to manage a growing remote workforce. How are you meeting the needs of your colleagues in the remote environment? Periodical Trainings? Web Communications? Taking Breaks? Offering/Budgeting for remote ergonomic enhancements? What IT procedures and workflows need to be revised and how? How do we monitor remote productivity? How do we engage with our employees?

Join the speakers as they discuss technology considerations for a telework-friendly environment with their top 10 dos and don’ts that are sure to support and sustain your remote workforce now and into the future. This will be a fast-paced session that will leave you with lots of great recommendations for processes and technologies to add to our leadership toolkits as we navigate and lead in this “new” normal.

CLM® Application Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Information Technology OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Operations Management.


Christopher Zegers
is the Director of Consulting – Legal and is responsible for providing IVIONICS’ law firm and corporate legal department clients with legal operations management consulting. Chris capitalizes on proven process management principles with teams of legal tech, development, infrastructure, cloud, and security experts. These efforts help legal teams exceed client expectations, while generating consistent, high-quality products and services.

Before arriving at IVIONICS, Chris spent over 22 years guiding law firm leaders through ever-evolving innovations required to ensure exceptional client service and process efficiency. He’s managed teams upwards of 30, budgets upwards of $10 million and was recently Chief Information Officer of a prominent national firm of 300 attorneys.

Chris earned his master’s degree from the University of Michigan School of Information and is Vice President of the Board of Directors of Jersey Cares. Chris is both an author and orator who frequently presents on such topics as legal processes, risk management, and cyber security.

Douglas Gibson
is the New York-based Director of Information at Chaffetz Lindsey. He is responsible for planning and developing strategies of the firm’s current and future technology, and, critically, risk and security. He has over 20 years of experience in law firm management including positions at Clifford Chance and White & Case. He has designed networks, drafted data governance plans, as well as beta tested the latest from encryption startups to Westlaw’s next UI/UX.

He is active in the Association of Legal Administrators, the Sedona Conference, and International Legal Technology Association.

Douglas earned his master’s from Columbia University and is currently working on a master’s at NYU focusing on cybersecurity.

Kenneth Levonaitis
is responsible for the leadership and management of Seward & Kissel’s Information Technology Department. Similarly, he ensures alignment of technology initiatives to support the firm’s tactical and strategic plans.

Ken joined Seward & Kissel in 2020 with over 25 years of experience in the technology field. During his career, he previously held leadership positions at several law firms, as well as corporate legal departments.

Ken keeps a keen eye on industry trends and looks to continually provide innovative and cost-effective solutions for the firm. He and the technology department focus on providing world-class client service to the firm and its clients.

Ken is a graduate of the Stillman School of Business at Seton Hall University where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting.

Andrea Markstrom – As the Chief Information Officer at Taft Stettinius & Hollister,  Andrea is responsible for firm-wide information technology and security initiatives across all of Taft’s offices and practices areas. Bringing more than 25 years of experience to the firm, Andrea has a track record of success leading technology and operations departments for large corporate organizations and Am Law 100 law firms.  A recognized leader in her field, Andrea’s accolades include the 2019 NYC CIO of the Year Award from the CIO Inspire Organization.  As founder of the professional networking forum i.WILL, Inspiring Women Igniting Leadership & Learning, Andrea is committed to supporting and empowering women.

January 29, 2021


LM PLAN: Ethics – The Added Pressure of Running a Law Firm in a Pandemic
Speakers:  AJ Haugen, Herbert L. Jamison & Co. Robert Frattarola, Herbert L. Jamison & Co. Anthony Davis, Clyde & Co. 

Revenue is down, income has been slashed, clients’ businesses are in jeopardy, our business is in jeopardy.  The situation is ripe for temptation and desperation.  Isolation provides cover for red flags we might normally have seen.  What should we be looking out for on a good day, much less during these bad days?

Epstein Becker Green is an accredited provider of New York Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit. This program has been approved for 1 hour of NY CLE credit in Ethics. This program is transitional and appropriate for both newly admitted and experienced attorneys. In order to receive CLE credit, each participant must be complete an affirmation form and be present for the entirety of the program. Credit will be provided to remote participants.

FINANCE EXCEED: Forecasting for a Sunny Future
Speakers: John Nolan Dunn – Chaffetz Lindsey LLP, Patrick Johansen CPP – LawFirm Pricing

As law firms look past 2020 and into the future, it is important for administrators to be able to accurately project revenues, and more importantly, expenses.  Firms will be asked to do more with less certainty to how and where they will do it.  Please join this fascinating session on calculating future revenue and expense projections (and how to stay on course).  We will discuss various topics including tools needed to implement these forecasts (KPIs), scenarios that will impact your forecast (AFAs), and key decisions resulting from your forecasts (staffing).  Information will be given on how to create effective billing and revenue guidelines. Forecasting for the future will take on a new meaning as more of our workforce continues to be remote working.   What will that entail as far as revenue and expense projections?   Come and be part of the discussion.

CLM® Application Credit for Functional Specialists: 1 hr (60 min) in the category of Financial Management OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hr (60 min) in the Subject Area of Financial Management.


John Nolan Dunn
is the Director of Finance and Operations at Chaffetz Lindsey LLP.  He oversees the firm’s financial, pricing, and operations functions.  Previously he was a Senior Financial Analyst on the Pricing and Profitability team at Kobre & Kim LLP where he helped develop and implement pricing strategies leading to 50% growth in revenue during his tenure.  Prior to working in the legal industry, he worked in finance and taxation roles at KPMG LLP and National General Insurance.  He holds an MBA in Finance & Accounting plus an MS in Taxation from Fordham University along with a BA in history from George Washington University.

Patrick Johansen CPP has spent a more than a decade in law firm management, leading several business development and marketing departments, two Pricing/LPM teams, and a practice management team. An award-winning writer and speaker, Patrick is the only professional to have held certifications in Pricing (Certified Pricing Professional, CPP) and Legal Management (Certified Legal Manager, CLM). Between 2008 and 2019, Patrick was a member of the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA), authoring several articles for Legal Management and serving on the Greater Chicago Chapter Board of Directors. He is a past member of the Legal Marketing Association (LMA), serving as National Education Committee Chair and Midwest Chapter Board of Directors. In 2014, Law360 named Patrick to its inaugural Legal Industry Editorial Advisory Board. In 2015, he was elected a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management. Since 2019, Patrick has worked with practice group and firm leaders to develop Pricing Strategies that grow revenue and improve profits.


Closing Keynote: It’s Game Time! Leadership Lessons from a Former Pro Female Football Player Jan Spencer

Words have profound power; they can lift someone up or tear someone down. Jan Spence shares how pursuing her life-long dream of playing professional football led to the unexpected opportunity to affect change through encouraging words and simple actions. Applying her “Cheer Leadership®” approach in the workplace builds stronger connections, increases employee engagement and loyalty, and fosters collaboration and innovation. The invaluable lessons shared in this high energy, interactive keynote transform employee and client relations and create more synergy among leadership and the people they manage.  

After this session, attendees will be able to:  

  • Implement practical ways to encourage and connect with employees, colleagues, and clients.
  • Discover and use their new Cheer Leadership® skills in the workplace to increase productivity.  
  • Create a plan to connect with employees, colleagues, and clients in a distinctive way to increase engagement and retention.

CLM® Application Credit: 1 hrs (60 min) in the subject area of Organizational Development OR CLM® Recertification Credit: 1 hrs (60 min) in the Subject Area of Communication and Organizational Management.


Jan Horton Spence, Certified Speaking Professional & Certified Virtual Presenter

Jan Spence is an international speaker, author, and consultant. With contagious charisma and a zest for life which make her an excellent motivator and leader, this TEDx speaker has used her vast knowledge in sales, communications, finances, and employee engagement to help numerous clients including Pillsbury,
Walmart, and Frito-Lay.

Jan and her husband, Mitch, launched the second FiltaFry franchise in the US in 2003. As CEO, Jan built such a successful operation that they were awarded the “2005 Franchisee of the Year” by the International Franchise Association. Meeting their four-year plan, they sold the business in 2007 at 300% ROI. Since then, Jan has circled the globe as a trainer, consultant, and speaker for franchisees, organizations, and companies.

Having been interviewed by Entrepreneur magazine and the Big Dog Morning Show in Jesup, Ga, Jan shares her story of fulfilling her lifelong dream of playing women’s professional full-tackle football. As a member of the National Speakers Association, Jan combines the lessons she learned through that experience with her business experience to inspire people to make a difference through “Cheer Leadership®.” Known for her highly interactive, entertaining, and inspirational style, she recently taught in Panama, Romania, Switzerland, Uganda, Australia, and Bahrain.

Jan serves on the boards of Meeting Professionals International – North Florida and Compass Finances God’s Way – Florida. She is active with the local Association of Talent Development chapter and the Beach Church in Jacksonville, Florida. She and her husband of twenty years enjoy traveling the
world when not at home attending Jaguars football games and cultural events.

Final Remarks