Managing Partner's Messages
Reflections on 2020 as Pashman Stein Named Law Firm of the Year - Finalist by the New Jersey Law Journal
- Excerpted from Q&A that appeared in the New Jersey Law Journal - September 20, 2021
Appreciation During a Year of Challenges
In a year of many notable moments, as I reflect on our firm’s role in making a difference and having an impact, I’m drawn to the historic class action settlement involving prisoners’ phone charges, and to the resolution of several complicated disputes amongst family business owners. And then, of course, there is the work that we did through the Justice Gary S. Stein Public Interest Center. I have always believed that as lawyers, we have a heightened responsibility to use our resources to serve the public good. The challenges of 2020 undoubtedly heightened public awareness of the need for social, racial, and economic justice. I appreciate our partner organizations’ energy in working with the Stein Center. We were involved in 27 cases before the New Jersey Supreme Court in 2020—that’s a lot by any standard—including participating in eight oral arguments on important issues our state is facing. With one full year behind us, we are beyond thrilled with how the Stein Center fits in with our goal of being of service to our communities.
It's All About the People
Our firm’s adaptation to the pandemic truly had its foundation in our culture. While we modified technology and created policies to protect employees and serve clients, I believe that our culture firmwide had the greatest impact on our operations and success. From day one we were determined to get through this crisis together, and to ensure that every single employee would be proud to work at our firm. We did not furlough or reduce anyone’s pay. We expressed understanding if work levels ebbed and flowed, and we followed through with our commitment to stand by our employees. We wanted every one of our employees to be able to say, at the end of this, that Pashman Stein is a great place to work in times of crisis. I am gratified that our approach generated positive energy internally and externally. We also grew dramatically during this timeframe, which signals to me that the firm’s philosophy, and its commitment to the integrity of the institution, is well regarded.
Excellence = People + Culture
Excellence begins and ends with what is the most important asset in every single firm—and that is its people and the culture. Court victories and landmark decisions undoubtedly factor into the perception of our firm, but it is the people doing the work who collectively pursue excellence. We have worked very hard to create the kind of environment and culture that enables us to attract and retain the best talent this region has to offer, people who are proud to go the extra mile and dig in and sweat for their clients. While expertise is needed in a wide variety of areas, it is character, passion and desire that I think count most. To be clear, we believe that our commitment to excellence is grounded in the knowledge that there is a real purpose to what we are doing. That in turn, we think, moves us closer to our primary objective for all of our employees, which is that the fulfilment that comes with being part of something important– something that can make a difference—leaves them with the same spring in their step on Monday morning with colleagues and clients that they have when they are winding down on Friday night with family and friends.
2020 Stein Center Year in Review - February 22, 2021
The challenges of 2020 undoubtedly heightened public awareness of the need for social, racial, and economic justice. While we all look to find any silver lining from the past year, it is gratifying to share with you the 2020 Year in Review from the Justice Gary S. Stein Public Interest Center at Pashman Stein Walder Hayden. For the Stein Public Interest Center, the past year underscored the importance of our commitment to protecting civil liberties and constitutional rights through impact litigation and appellate advocacy.
I couldn’t be more proud of Director CJ Griffin and the entire firm for their dedication to public interest law. They contributed more than 4,000 pro bono hours - more than double that of the prior year - and they are the reason the New Jersey State Bar Association honored us as the 2020 Pro Bono Law Firm.
We look forward to continuing our work to advance justice and protect civil liberties and constitutional rights. Click here to view the 2020 Year in Review.
Reflections on our 25th Anniversary and our Commitment to Advocating for the Rights and Liberties of all Individuals - July 1, 2020
July 1, 2020 marks the 25th anniversary of the founding of Pashman Stein, now known as Pashman Stein Walder Hayden. While earlier this year we were looking forward to celebrating this milestone with you in person, instead we are taking this opportunity to reflect…not only on how far we have come, but also on who we are today and what we still would like to accomplish.
When Pashman Stein was founded 25 years ago, we were a few lawyers who set out to prove it is not the size of a law firm that matters, but rather the quality of work and the integrity and responsiveness of its lawyers. Our goal from the start was to build a reputation for excellence and winning results and, consequently, to become the law firm of choice for those facing high stakes or bet-the-business problems, while never forgetting that the practice of law is more than simply a business. And I am proud to say -- we did it!
Pashman Stein Walder Hayden recently was named Appellate Litigation Department of the Year by the New Jersey Law Journal – for the third year in a row! More significantly, we have earned widespread recognition as one of the very few, go-to law firms in this region for high stakes and bet-the-business litigation. There is not a deeper or better bench around. We are now a leading full-service law firm, providing our clients access to a wide range of corporate and personal legal services.
We take great pride in the fact that other leading law firms, judges and lawyers have repeatedly turned to us over the years when faced with their own legal problems. Clients and other lawyers regularly refer us cases because of our proven record of success and the credibility that follows us into the courtroom. To be sure, judges know us well, for our insight, our thoughtful analysis, and our creativity.
And that’s not all. Last fall, we established the Justice Gary S. Stein Public Interest Center, which underscores our commitment to advocating for the rights and liberties of all individuals and leaving an imprint on the important public interest matters of our time. We established the Center to create an organized platform for us to participate in many of the most significant and newsworthy matters in our State. The lawyers in our firm believe that we have a responsibility as lawyers and as members of our community, to effect real and meaningful change so that no one loses their life, or is discriminated against, because of their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or otherwise. George Floyd’s horrific and senseless death, and other similar tragedies, only reinforce the need for us to devote our resources to protecting civil liberties and promoting transparency in government. We are committed to putting our legal talents to use through the Center and otherwise to be part of the national movement to redress the systemic racial inequality that unfortunately still exists in this country.
When a few of us took the leap of faith 25 years ago to establish our own firm, I was optimistic and confident that we could create a unique and successful environment and culture, of which we could be very proud, comprised of outstanding passionate, enthusiastic lawyers. Today, I am equally optimistic and confident that Pashman Stein Walder Hayden will continue to grow, thrive and adapt. And we couldn’t have attained our success without you! On behalf of the entire firm, we thank you for your support and friendship throughout the years and look forward to the years ahead.
A Message to our Clients and Friends During COVID Pandemic - March 17, 2020
We hope this message finds you, your loved ones, and your colleagues well.
At Pashman Stein Walder Hayden, we are doing everything in our power to closely monitor the evolving situation and to continue to implement appropriate policies and procedures in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Rest assured, because of our preparations and investments in technology, we are able to continue our normal operations remotely and our lawyers remain available to provide you with the same excellent service that you have come to expect.
We have formed a COVID-19 task force to track all legal and legislative developments and to provide our clients and friends with guidance on how to navigate the extraordinary legal and business challenges that are arising as a consequence of this pandemic. Our COVID-19 Resource Center on our website provides our latest insights and will continue to be updated as the situation evolves.
Our hearts and thoughts are with all those affected by the coronavirus and we appreciate the efforts of healthcare workers and first responders who are on the front line working to keep us all well and safe.
Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions or concerns. We remain fully committed to be responsive and available to meet your legal and business needs. While this is uncharted territory, we are marshalling all of our resources to stay ahead of the curve as businesses and individuals need to address the ramifications of the new guidelines and policies, as well as the impact on businesses and individual circumstances as a result of this pandemic.
On behalf of all of us at Pashman Stein Walder Hayden, we wish you and your loved ones the best of health and safety.