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Julia Taylor, 39

Julia TaylorPartner, Dentons US

Location: Kansas City

Practice Areas: Real estate

Law School: University of Texas

Julia Taylor’s high school aptitude assessment placed her ideal career as either lawyer or florist.

“Given that I have a hard time keeping even the toughest plants alive, I think I made the right choice,” she said.

Green thumb or no, her clients and colleagues would agree. Whether her work involves debt and equity procurement or construction contracting and enforcement, she has become an indispensable resource for those working on commercial building developments.

As a LEED-accredited professional, Taylor is even able to advise her clients on sustainability issues. A former president of Commercial Real Estate Women Kansas City, she has worked on matters related to everything from hotel projects to a professional sports stadium. Meanwhile, her assistance to the Urban Neighborhood Institute proved helpful in redeveloping Kansas City’s east side. She also helps to support the MS Society and the Ronald McDonald House.

“She is an energetic and effective leader, mentor and strategist both for her clients and for colleagues within the firm,” her nominator wrote. “Quite simply, every initiative or project is made better by her participation.”

What advice do you have for young lawyers? 

I always encourage young lawyers to ask questions. So many people are worried about asking “dumb” questions or looking foolish. Asking the right questions, though, shows others that you are being thoughtful and diligent. And one question that is almost always received positively is, “What else can I be doing?” Whether directed toward a senior partner or a client, showing initiative and looking towards the next phase of a project or case, always being proactive, shows others that you are on top of the matter and instills trust.