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Lisa O. Stump- Lashly & Baer

lisa-stumpAbout five years ago, Lashly & Baer’s longtime President Kenneth C. Brostron began talking with other firm leaders about a transition plan for the future. They turned to fellow board member Lisa O. Stump. Her first response: President? Me?

“I certainly didn’t think I would be interested because I knew how much time and energy Ken had put into it,” Stump said. “I wanted to maintain my practice of law, which was growing. So we came up with a somewhat different type of governance — several vice presidents work with me on specific areas so that I can continue with my practice.”

Stump, who has spent her career with Lashly & Baer, became the firm’s first female president in February 2018. She oversees a firm of 50 lawyers as well as chairing its governmental practice, which includes her own clients.

“As far as being a woman president: I feel honored . . . but the neatest thing about it was that I think they chose me for me,” she said. “It still matters in our community to be the first woman president of the firm. It’s still unusual to have it, and to have a president who continues to practice and hasn’t moved totally over to administration.”

After graduating in 1986 with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Kansas, Stump earned a law degree from Washington University School of Law in 1989. Joining Lashly & Baer as an associate, she encountered two instrumental, “wonderful” mentors: Brostron — who served as president for 32 years — and attorney John Fox Arnold.

Their mentoring, she said, started “from day one, with me working with them on their governmental clients. I wouldn’t be where I am without that.”

For the past 10 years, Stump has chaired the firm’s governmental practice. She primarily represents agencies or clients supported with public funds, such as school districts, libraries, municipalities and transit systems. She frequently confronts problems that don’t have easy answers, but she said she is energized by finding those solutions.

Among the significant regional projects with which she’s been involved: the St. Louis Convention Center Hotel, the rehabilitation of the McKinley Bridge, the ongoing renewal campaign for the St. Louis County Library system and numerous policy, legislative, construction and expansion issues for the MetroLink light-rail system.

“I like that the clients are helping the community, and I can help them with their goals and missions,” she said. “Or when you can improve a situation for a child so that [the child], the school district and the parent are working together, that’s very satisfying.”

Stump has been married for 33 years and is the mother of four sons, ranging in age from their 20s to 16. She is an elder at Bonhomme Presbyterian Church in Chesterfield and has traveled seven times to Honduras through a church partnership that supports an orphanage for girls there.

Her advice to young lawyers: “Be true to yourself. Listen to yourself and do something that you like. Involve others who understand you — friend, mentor or spouse. It’s important to get involved in something that you care about, rather than just a good opportunity or something that looks good on your resume.”