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Kersten Holzhueter, 36

Kersten HolzhueterPartner, Spencer Fane

Location: Kansas City

Practice Areas: Litigation and financial services

Law School: University of Iowa

Earlier this year, Kersten Holzhueter was named co-chair of Spencer Fane’s litigation and dispute resolution practice group, which includes 120 attorneys across the firm’s 19 offices. It is the largest practice group in the firm.

The promotion comes just three years after she was named one of the youngest partners in the firm, and Holzhueter has had to roll with the punches as the pandemic altered all of the grand plans made early in the year.

Holzhueter is heavily involved in the Kansas City legal community, including serving as a board member for the Association for Women Lawyers and chairing the Lawyers Encouraging Academic Performance annual Mardi Gras luncheon, which raises money for Operation Breakthrough.

What advice do you have for young lawyers?

Ask for help. I used to want to answer all questions on my own. I was causing unnecessary stress when I had so many mentors willing to provide judgment-free help. I’m lucky to have mentors for all facets of practicing law, too — not just substantive legal issues.

What has been your favorite moment as an attorney?

I’m a nerd. I love being an attorney for lots of reasons. I love writing briefs; I love finding excuses to make flowcharts; I love the detective work. But, if I had to narrow it down to a single moment, it would be the instant I felt an individual client’s sigh of relief after the jury finished reading a verdict in her favor. I’ll never forget those happy tears. I learned so much about the emotional side of client service. That case was not just about research, writing, witness prep, etc. It was about helping a client understand the litigation process, learning how to best address a particular individual’s emotions and helping to proactively manage those emotions through the exhausting ups-and-downs.