Kathy K. Kranitz Sadoun has practiced law in the same firm for almost 40 years while sitting at the desk her father used during his 50-year career.
The St. Joseph woman is a third-generation lawyer, practicing alongside her brother in the firm their grandfather opened in 1919.
“I sit at my desk, which was my father’s desk, and my brother sits at the desk that was my grandfather’s desk, and there’s a certain comfort or familiarity to it that’s nice,” Kranitz Sadoun said. Her grandfather died in 1979, and her father died in 2013.
While practicing law clearly ran in her family, Kranitz Sadoun gave a nod to her mother, who died in 2012, for putting up with a family of lawyers.
“[She] should be receiving every award for putting up with us. Our dining room was never dull; there was more than one occasion when the dictionary or encyclopedia came out,” she said.
“Some thought we were crazy, some thought we were fun. But we enjoyed it — at least I enjoyed it.”
Kranitz Sadoun said she always intended to make a career in law. After graduating from the University of Arizona in 1976, she went on to earn her J.D. at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law in 1979.
From there, she came back to her hometown and began practicing law at the family firm, now known as Kranitz, Sadoun & Carpenter.
Her practice focuses mostly on family cases in St. Joseph, which she calls a perfect place to practice law.
“It’s more personal on the professional side because we deal with the same group of attorneys constantly. So you learn a rhythm with your colleagues, and I think it helps resolve matters. It helps you find, or come to a realization, more quickly if you are not going to be able to resolve it,” she said.
“The relationships you build with your colleagues really help you guide your clients because you know who you are dealing with and they’re not strangers,” she added.
Kranitz Sadoun said she likes the interaction with her clients and strives to make sure they are pleased with their case’s outcome.
“I try to do good work for my clients, and I hope they are satisfied with the work that I do. Beyond that I am not a prideful person… I guess I am proud that I survived. It’s not a question of my ego; it’s a question of whether I’ve been successful in what I’ve been charged to do,” she said.
“In the particular field that I am in you hear a lot of things that are not pleasant and people have a lot of problems.”
When she’s not practicing law, she can be found working with local charitable organizations or exercising.
The self-described “woman of few words” said that people sometimes need help solving their problems — so that’s what she does.
“I’m not a shining, shining star. I just do my job,” she said.