Gregory Baum practices in Ball Janik LLP’s Finance and Corporate, Financial Services and Real Estate Practices. His nearly 40 years of law firm, solo practice and corporate experience gives him a broader perspective than that of most lawyers. For most of his career, Mr. Baum has been a business executive, Corporate Secretary and General Counsel in the technology and real estate investment sectors. “A venture capital-backed computer H/W & S/W developer with US & foreign sales has far more in common with a multi-state real estate investment developer than just the word ‘developer.’ While their specific activities and jargon differ, they share with all organizations the need to tailor their legal entity type to their circumstances, to hire, train and manage their employees effectively, and to raise capital and finance their operations. These are things I can help clients do better.”
Mr. Baum has been directly involved in business organization and compliance, labor and employment matters with union and non-unionized workers, intellectual property protection, technology sales and licensing, real estate acquisition, management, financing, leasing and sales of hotel, retail, office, industrial and multi-family property types. In his 16 years as VP, Secretary and General Counsel of Harsch Investment Corp., a $2 Billion privately-held real estate company, he established and oversaw compliance of its more than 40 affiliated entities. His civil engineering education has been utilized working on development and construction projects and coordinating environmental risk assessments and remediation programs. He has structured and negotiated more than 200 financing transactions with banks and institutional lenders aggregating over $3.5 Billion.“
Throughout my career, I have engaged the services of lawyers in dozens of states and foreign countries, across many professional disciplines. As my company’s chief legal officer, effectively, I have been their client. The lawyers who won my respect were rewarded with return business and my recommendations of their abilities to others. What characteristics did these lawyers have in common? Every one of them:
- Knew their subject matter thoroughly and would readily admit what they didn’t know;
- Listened carefully;
- Returned phone calls or emails promptly;
- Communicated clearly and concisely;
- Recommended a course of action; didn’t just list potential alternatives or say “no”;
- Demonstrated sensitivity to the overall cost of the work they were asked to do; and
- Maintained a sense of humor.
I strive to be that kind of lawyer every day. I wouldn’t hire a lawyer that didn’t demonstrate all those characteristics and don’t believe any client should.