Deanna Tanner Okun Interviewed for Law360’s Law Firm Leader Series
Deanna Tanner Okun, former two-term chair of the International Trade Commission (ITC) and newly appointed managing partner at Adduci Mastriani & Schaumberg LLP (AMS), was recently interviewed by Aebra Coe for Law360’s Law Firm Leaders series.
In this interview, Okun was asked about the firm’s past and future in terms of adapting to change. With the upcoming 40th anniversary of the firm, its resilience and strength is being tested with the dual challenges of the first leadership transition since the firm’s founding in 1981 and the coronavirus pandemic. Okun believes that how she handles these challenges, in conjunction with her management committee, will define her career as managing partner.
Okun said she is looking to build on the firm’s strong foundation and reputation as the most experienced firm practicing international trade and Section 337 intellectual property litigation, transition successfully from a first generation law firm to a second generation one, as well as grow other practice areas in international trade policy and trade law remedies. A major component of this transition is the implementation of committees, “filled with my younger partners and associates to try to help build up the leadership for the future,” Okun said. “I want to know that in line behind me are others who can take the helm and lead. We want to successfully transition our clients [...] from generation one to generation two.”
The firm is known for being at the top of the international trade practice area and plans to continue that standard of excellence despite the current challenges. Okun sees opportunities for the firm and silver linings in the remote work situation created by COVID-19, including the expedited adaptation of technology and a new e-newsletter to help the firm maintain a sense of community while working remotely. AMS is continuing their summer associate program and quickly adapting to their remote workplace. The overall takeaway of overcoming challenges rather than being paralyzed by them is, as Okun states, “[…] we make changes as a law firm to better serve our clients,” as the firm has done for going on four decades.
Other questions that Coe asked include talent acquisition and competition with Big-Law, and what well-known lawyer, dead or alive, she’d want to have lunch with and why. To read the full interview, click on the pdf link below.
April 15, 2020