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Passing the Torch: A Legacy of Leadership and a Plan for the Future

01.25.24 | NEWS

Loren Podwill

As Paul McCartney and Jon Lennon wrote and the Beatles sang, “The long and winding road that leads to your door will never disappear…” It’s hard to believe that it’s been 10 years since I was bestowed the honor of serving as Bullivant Houser President and 40 years since I joined the firm as an associate in 1984. Yes, it’s been a long and winding road!

As I pass the torch to our new Firm President, Laura Caldera Loera, I find myself reflecting on all we’ve accomplished over the years and on the bright future of the firm.

Over the last several years, we’ve had major firmwide accomplishments as we transition the firm for the future.  For example, we’ve embraced modernization, transitioning to cutting-edge technology, like 3E, streamlining our operations to better serve our clients. Great thanks to our Financial Services and IT Departments for their tireless work on this project. Just prior to COVID, we moved our Portland and Seattle offices to new and modern spaces designed to create a comfortable and inviting environment for our employees, clients, and guests, in an efficient and flexible space reflecting the law office of the present and future. A remodel of the San Francisco office followed. We rebranded in 2021, updating our profile and website to communicate our values of Teamwork, Respect, Tenacity, Fun, and Creativity, and to capture our commitment to excellent client service.

Our commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion has deepened, and the Board is currently working on the creation of a dedicated DEI committee with a robust agenda and with full firm support. This initiative represents our ongoing pledge to cultivate an inclusive and equitable workplace. We also navigated through the uncharted landscape of COVID-19 and came out the other side as a successful hybrid workplace with employee-centered policies in place.

To our clients, your trust and support have been the cornerstone of our success and the reason that we exist. We are deeply grateful for your partnership. We remain committed to providing you the best legal advice and representation in a timely, efficient, and cost-effective manner.

This new chapter of the firm will be steered by Firm President Laura Caldera Loera. Laura has already proven herself as a formidable leader, serving on the Board of Directors and heading the Business Practice Group before that. She has been a key part of the firm’s growth, and a dedicated mentor to many of our up-and-coming leaders and shareholders.

Although my time as Firm President has come to an end, I will continue my legal practice focusing in the areas of fidelity and surety, insurance law, construction law, and commercial litigation.  I am also honored to serve as the 2023-2024 Chair of the ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section.

The next generation of Bullivant Houser lawyers and leaders are ready to lead our firm into the future. The composition of our Board with a majority of female shareholders reflects the new era, promising fresh perspectives and innovative approaches.

Our team, particularly those who have dedicated entire careers to Bullivant, are the backbone of our firm. Their loyalty and hard work have been nothing short of remarkable. I want to thank and congratulate all of you for your years, and in many cases decades, of commitment to the firm and our clients. I particularly want to thank our Director of Operations, Sheri Lagassé, and our Controller, Laurie Morgan, for their tireless efforts on behalf of the firm. We could not have accomplished all that we have done over the years without you.

Here’s to the next generation of leaders and managers at the helm, guiding our firm towards continued excellence and innovation.


With gratitude and excitement for the future,

Loren Podwill

Immediate Past Firm President

Bullivant Houser

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