In October Lisa Greer Quateman will pass the baton on to the next generation of Bond lawyers.
Quateman, a senior partner of Polsinelli, said that she would remain employed when she retired, but "only got off the time sheet."
Quateman helped set up Polsinelli's Los Angeles office in July 2011 when the national law firm bought Quateman's law firm and appointed her to be the managing partner of the office, a position she held for five years. The law firm, which had no offices in California prior to the purchase of Quateman LLP, now has offices in San Jose and San Francisco.
Quateman is now a senior partner.
Lisa Greer Quateman plans to retire from Polsinelli in October.
Quateman, who will retire on Halloween, said she was sure there would be some jokes about it. If Halloween isn't considered a witch lesson, she joked.
She has a reputation for being thorough, but it is not difficult to work with her.
"She never raises her voice because it would be rude," said Timothy Reimers, a Polsinelli director who sees Quateman as a mentor.
Reimers worked with Quateman for 18 years.
"She hired me when I was a baby lawyer. I grew up in their company – and then we all grew out of their company, and Lisa decided it was time to look for something new, ”said Reimers.
Quateman is considered a rainmaker in legal usage, but not a shark. She showed that when she sold her company to Polsinelli in 2011.
She made sure that the lawyers and administrative staff at her firm would all have a job if they wanted one at Polsinelli, Reimers said.
"She trained me in public finance," he said.
Quateman LLP has provided a lot of outside finance and real estate advice, he said.
"She trained me on a broad basis and made me a better lawyer because I know more than I would have if I had only specialized," said Reimers.
Quateman also trained him on how to run a business, add value, and think about what's best for customers, Reimers said.
Quateman's willingness to go beyond that is exemplary even in the legal profession, where lawyers are known to log more than 100 hours a week.
While Quateman was working with Lisa Marie Harris, CFO of the San Diego County Water Authority, Harris said she texted Quateman sometime in the middle of the night.
"It was the first time we did a pre-delivery or taxable person and I wanted to make sure we did it right," said Harris. "I said I need your help."
Quateman replied back, "I'm in the kitchen, just let me go to my computer," Harris said. "She knows the seriousness of the engagement, which is why we were able to save so much money."
The SDC had expected to save $ 40 million on the refund, but the water wholesaler saved $ 67 million.
Harris said during her six years as SDC finance director that she had made it her mission to educate all 36 members of the SCDWA board of directors about municipal finance. She has previously asked Quateman to hold financial workshops for the board, and plans to do so in the future, Harris said.
"It has an enormous reputation," said Harris. "I am so sad that she is retiring, but I know that one of her goals was to sit on boards, so I'm happy for her."
Quateman is a member of several corporate boards and will continue to manage her family's real estate business, Voyagers Properties Trust / Odin Properties Trust, since April 1998.
"I have gradually expanded the corporate board work portfolio and will continue to do non-profit board work," said Quateman.
She took a position on the board of directors of Western Asset Mortgage Capital Corp. in June. on. has been on the board of the ITR Concession Co. LLP since October and on the board and the audit and ethics committee of Scherzer International since January 2016. She resigned from the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce in January.
According to Quateman, accepting a position on the board means signing up for around 250 hours of work each year, but membership in corporate boards has long been a goal.
"I am married to a very supportive partner who respects what I have tried," said Quateman. "I've always worked a long time." Quateman adds that she had more time to pursue her career because she couldn't have children.
In addition to the company boards, she is also a board member of the Heidi Duckler Dance Theater. City of hope; the UCLA Ziman Center for Real Estate; and the Pacific Council on International Policy.
According to Harriet Welch of Squire Patton Boggs, one of the founders of the Women in Public Finance office in Los Angeles, lawyers receive no training in running a business. It's a skill that's learned in practice, and it's not a skill that all attorneys shine on, but Quateman said Welch, who has known her for 25 years.
When the couple first met, Quateman had just started Quateman LLP.
Quateman's law firm had several attorneys, which was unique at the time for women-owned companies, said Quateman, who said that many women-owned companies were sole practitioners.
Welch said she saw Quateman's name on a list of women's companies and started a conversation.
"We talked about what it takes to build a WBE, and I was impressed by their ambition and focus," said Welch.
It was in the early 1990s and Kathleen Brown was California's treasurer.
When Welch first came to California in 1984 after working for a New York-based law firm, the municipal bond arena was “fairly male-dominated, but there were many women who were encouraged by Kathleen Brown's initiatives and other initiatives. " She said.
Quateman had already founded her company when Brown became treasurer. Someone had suggested that Quateman, as a woman-owned company, add its name to the treasurer's pool, she said. Quateman's experience at this point was primarily in corporate and real estate work.
"When I started my company, I didn't think it was a woman-owned company," said Quateman. "I went to law school, worked for a large company and was just thinking of starting my own business."
Brown, the youngest sister of former California governor Jerry Brown, was elected treasurer in 1990. One of their initiatives was to create more opportunities for women and minorities who work in the state business.
"So you've seen a steady increase in women with legal and municipal banking experience working on government affairs," said Welch.
Quateman was among these women.
"I think women face the greatest challenge of climbing the ladder if they become rainmakers who have the same respect for the men who are rainmakers," said Quateman. "It's a bigger challenge for women because there is an unconscious tendency."
Consider the male partner having a drink with a customer and not inviting his colleague Susie because he believes they need to go home to their children, Quateman said. "This is a missed opportunity for Susie both with the customer and building a relationship with that partner," she said.
"That changes," said Quateman. "One of the things that I found great about working with public finance agencies is that a lot of women are in government positions."
That means they're more likely to create opportunities for other women, Quateman said.
"Some of my best relationships are with female customers, and some of my hardest customers are women," said Quateman.
At the beginning of the last decade, they were also among the women who actively launched a Los Angeles chapter on women in public finance, Welch said. The group later merged with the national organization, she said.
"What I always appreciated about Lisa is that she never said: & # 39; Why doesn't anyone hire me? & # 39;" Welch said. "She just went outside, worked hard, and made sure she knew what she needed to know."
Welch talked about working with Quateman on a government bond deal.
"When you sign a state treaty and work in a conference room, there are about 40 people at the table," said Welch. “It is very well-behaved, measured and a managed process. Everyone makes comments on the bond documents. "
After completing work on the government bond documents, many participants land at Sacramento Airport.
"The airport is full of bond lawyers and bankers," said Welch, who discovered Quateman while he was studying the bond documents and started a conversation.
Quateman asked Welch a question about the Indenture, and the couple began to go through all the documents.
"We went through the Indenture article by article," said Welch. "I was" It does that and it does that. "Then we went through all the regulations for the heating plate."
The conversation centered on the areas where businesses and communities were similar and different, Welch said.
"I thought here was a person who shared my wishes to practice at a high level in this area," said Welch. "She didn't just show up to pick up the check.
"I was always impressed by her," said Welch.
“We have worked on many transactions. What strikes me most is that not many people are willing to go through a bond identity just to hell, ”said Welch.
"She loves this job. She really loves work, she loves winning new customers, "said Reimers." But I think she is ready. "