Nycol Morrisey: Paralegal at Greenberg Traurig, LLP, in New York, NY by LawCrossing


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									LEGAL STAFF PROFILE                                                                                1. 800.973.1177

                            Nycol Morrisey: Paralegal at Greenberg Traurig, LLP, in
                            New York, NY
                            [By Judith Earley]
                            “After reading our nation’s Declaration of Independence and some civil rights acts, my eyebrows rise knowing that most of
                            the documents and laws lack any reference of black people/African-Americans. I have seen black women struggle for civil
                            rights for 30 years and still no advancement but little changes. I’m always thinking that there must be some magic formula
                            or solution that will fix or stop ethnic issues against black women who come in numerous shades.”

These are the words of Nycol Morrisey, a           “I trained and supervised a team of 0 junior     After acquiring extensive knowledge on the
seasoned paralegal at Greenberg Traurig,           paralegals while organizing and managing          trademark side of intellectual property,
LLP’s New York office. There, she has              an electronic database that would eventually      Morrisey was asked to join the New Jersey
flourished in several areas of law.                contain copies of all the materials from the      team to handle a case involving patent
                                                   20 boxes,” said Morrisey.                        infringement within multiple states.
“I don’t understand why blacks/African-
                                                   Because of her passion and extensive
Americans are still a minority when the                                                              “I compared and analyzed patents from
                                                   knowledge of trial work, Morrisey was
world has over 5,000 ethnic groups and 600                                                           several countries regarding the same
                                                   awarded the opportunity to join the best
language groups,” Morrisey continued. “I                                                             product and specifications. I also updated
                                                   intellectual property team at Greenberg
don’t understand why we have ‘minority                                                               and maintained an electronic database that
                                                   Traurig. Her assignments ranged from
rights’ and ‘human rights’ instead of                                                                hosted 20 state and federal cases involving
                                                   tracing patent trademarks to conducting
‘individual rights.’”                                                                                one client and its patent disputes with other
                                                   preliminary investigations at stores that sold
                                                                                                     international and national matters,” said
                                                   their client’s product. The team was ready
In 2000, Morrisey was hired as an experienced                                                        Morrisey.
                                                   for trial after her many long hours of work.
trial paralegal to assist two shareholders in
the litigation department. Since then, she has       Q. What do you do for fun?                      “My current energy and time is devoted to
acquired knowledge in various areas of law,          A. Weekend trips with the girls, distance       the labor and employment (L&E) department,
such as litigation, corporate law, intellectual      running, indoor rock climbing, cooking for      where I work closely with 2 attorneys. I
property (including patent and trademark             friends and family, shoe shopping, playing      not only have a professional relationship
                                                     with my nieces and nephews, taking
law), and labor and employment. While at                                                             with my attorneys but also a personal bond.
                                                     pictures, and working on home projects.
Greenberg Traurig, she has been entrusted                                                            The personal bond has made me willing and
with the supervision, training, and mentoring        Q. What CD was most recently in your CD         able to do almost anything to make the L&E
of junior paralegals.                                player?                                         team a success. I am a ‘jack of all trades’; I
                                                     A. John Legend, Once Again.                     multitask to get any and everything for this
“In the litigation department, I worked with                                                         growing department. I have worn the hat
                                                     Q. What is the last magazine you read?
teams in preparing cases for state and               A. Kitchen and Bath Ideas (a Better Homes       of several professions in this department,
federal trials. During trial preparations, I         and Gardens special publication).               including a paralegal, secretary, and
prepared witness binders, subpoenas, trial                                                           marketer.”
exhibit binders of all parties, and deposition       Q. What is your favorite TV show?
                                                     A. CSI Miami, 24, and Law & Order.
digests. I also arranged voluminous motions                                                          Morrisey said that while she enjoys
and briefs with over 00 exhibits.”                  Q. Who is your role model?                      the challenges of working in multiple
                                                     A. Any woman pushing the envelope in            departments, areas of law, and locations,
Morrisey’s successful review of 20 banker           the “man’s world” but still doing what          one of her most difficult challenges is getting
boxes of discovery material motivated                she loves to better humanity (including         attorneys and clients to adjust to the use of
attorneys at the firm to assign her to an            herself).                                       electronic filing rather than paper filing.
international corporate and bankruptcy case.

PAGE                                                                                                                                 continued on back
LEGAL STAFF PROFILE                                                                       1. 800.973.1177

                                               solutions to complete a task. Every day,         writer, willing to learn every day from the
                                               I ask [about] and suggest new ideas and          old and young, and, most importantly, be a
                                               procedures. I’m often called the ‘suggestion     present/future mentor.”
                                                                                                Morrisey is an alumna of Fairleigh Dickinson
“It would be great to have an entire case      Two significant influences in her life are       University, from which she graduated with a
(paper files) placed in an electronic          her father and her aunt, who have always         bachelor’s degree in sociology with a minor
database, and when the client and/or           allowed her to make her own educational          in criminal law. She continued at Fairleigh
attorney want/need a document, they would      decisions.                                       Dickinson University, enrolling in a paralegal
be a click away instead of getting a paper                                                      program and receiving an American Bar
cut,” said Morrisey.                                                                            Association-approved Paralegal Certificate.
                                                                                                She has been active with the National
Some of the emotional highlights of her                                                         Association for the Advancement of Colored
career include winning employee of the                                                          People (NAACP), the Legal Assistants
month, being nominated for employee of                                                          Association of New Jersey, USA Track
the year, and changing job/position titles.    “They have supported me 00% and picked          & Field, and the Road Runners Club of
She has been a source of advice for junior     me up when I fell and didn’t want to finish.     America.
paralegals and attorneys in more than one      The nucleolus and extended love and support
way, and judges have told her attorneys that   gave me strength to believe that I was           On The neT
she is very valuable to the trial team.        capable of doing and completing anything!”
                                               she said.                                        Greenberg Traurig, LLP
According to Morrisey, her education gave                                             
her the fundamental tools she needed to do     And what is her advice for students who are
her job, but she had to learn how and when     preparing to become paralegals?                  Fairleigh Dickinson University
to use them.                                                                          
                                               “The laws change and affect everyone every
“My work experience and personal life was      day. Don’t choose to become a paralegal for      National Association for the Advancement of
and is the best education in facilitating my   a job…it’s not just a job. A person interested   Colored People
paralegal duties,” said Morrisey. “I’m like    in becoming a paralegal should be-or must
a sponge…I learn every day from attorneys,     be-willing to become very well organized,
secretaries, and even the maintenance staff.   a multitasker, expedient yet thorough with
I often step back and present more general     assignments, a good communicator [and]


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