We are thrilled to welcome an amazing new associate, Jen Gayle, to our team of outstanding private client professionals. Jen comes to us with experience in international tax and trust work at Miller & Chevalier in Washington, DC and prior to that at Vinson Elkins in Houston, Texas. She is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center. Jen’s practice will encompass a wide variety of domestic and international estate planning, as well as tax, trust, and business planning matters for our multinational clients. Please join us in welcoming Jen to our team!
The new decade ushers in a new era for our law firm. As we say a very difficult good-bye to our long-serving partner and friend, Derry Swanger, who is joining a smaller practice to gain lifestyle flexibility, partners Cindy Grossman and Steven Baker will join their partners, Leslie Giordani and Michael Ripp, in the firm’s name. Accordingly, Giordani Swanger Ripp LLP (“GSR”) will move forward effective March 1, 2020 as Giordani Baker Grossman & Ripp LLP (“GBGR”). The practice areas and services of GBGR remain identical to those of GSR. We eagerly look forward to the coming decade and beyond to continuing our representation of our national and international clientele, by offering a broad but focused suite of private client services with a foundation in tax and estate planning. For more information, please see our formal announcement here.
With a mixture of fondness and heavy hearts, we recently sad goodbye to Peggy Ugent, who retired in April after nearly 12 years with the firm. As GSRJ’s Director of Tax and Accounting, Peggy used her extensive expertise and background in U.S tax matters to counsel firm attorneys on income and transfer tax considerations with regard to proposed business transactions, choice of entity structure, and investment in pass-through entities. She has not disappeared from the industry completely, though; as the current chair of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ Trust, Estate and Gift Tax Technical Resource Panel, she continues to share her deep knowledge of complex domestic and international tax issues.
On Saturday, February 24th, COO and Finance Director Bob Chesner once again presented at Tony Robbins’ Platinum Partnership event, held this year in Sun Valley, Idaho. Bob’s presentation highlighted the power of private placement life insurance in creating abundant tax-free retirement income. We’re thrilled that Bob was once again extended the incredible opportunity to share his passion among such distinguished company.
We are excited to welcome Therese Gansle to our team as GSRJ’s newest legal assistant. Therese brings more than 20 years of legal and paralegal experience, having worked for prestigious firms in both Austin and Washington, D.C. In her role with the firm, she will support partners Derry Swanger, Amy Jetel, and Steven Baker, and associate Lauren Fitte. She will also play an important role in helping conceive and plan the firm’s social functions. Please join us in welcoming Therese to the team!
For the first time ever, GSRJ associate Lauren Fitte has been selected for inclusion in the 2018 Texas Super Lawyers Rising Stars list! Lauren has been with GSRJ since early 2017. She specializes in designing tax-efficient structures for U.S. and non-U.S. families and advises with regard to both inbound and outbound investment planning, inheritance planning, asset protection, tax compliance matters, international trust and estate planning, and pre-immigration planning. Ms. Fitte is a certified mediator who has published several articles on international estate planning and taxation. She is also a contributing editor to the four-volume treatise Asset Protection: Domestic and International Law and Tactics, published by Thomson/West group and updated quarterly.
Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations. No more than 2.5% of up-and-coming lawyers in Texas are named to Rising Stars, as determined by Thomson Reuters.
In the wake of Sandra Bonham’s retirement earlier this year, Hailey Bobella has taken over as the paralegal for the estate planning department. She works primarily with Derry Swanger and Steven Baker to help clients create and maintain domestic estate planning structures and administer decedents’ estates. Ms. Bobella will also continue to act in her capacity as business development specialist, focusing on the firm’s business development, marketing, and branding efforts, and offering administrative support to Edgewater Consulting Group, Ltd.