Working on the cutting edge of the software field means leaning forward a bit, a fact that is just as true for developers and licensers as it is for their attorneys.
“At the end of the day, I tell my clients that I am not here to impede progress,” said Saraann Parker. “I am here to help make the deal work.”
Originally inspired by a law and communications class during her junior year at Boston University, she started to gravitate towards a legal career. Still, she spent time as a journalist on the East Coast and in Europe before moving back to her hometown to attend law school at Saint Louis University.
“I was always a writer and still am,” said Parker. “It’s always been who I see myself as. Words are very important to me.”
After graduation, she went to Bryan Cave to work with the corporate attorneys and IT staff to help create a software program for the firm. She recalled going door-to-door to the firm’s partners just to figure out their needs.
“By doing that, I learned a lot about corporate law and I also learned a lot about IT,” she said.
Later, she’d do software licensing work at The Stolar Partnership before going to the forerunner of Husch Blackwell to help grow their technology practice.
“The cloud was just coming into prominence so I did a lot of early work in cloud services, cloud software, website hosted services, development, a lot of joint development agreements,” she said. “Anything having to do with technology transactions.”
Parker arrived as a partner at Armstrong Teasdale in 2013 where she’s worked in a hybrid space between corporate and IT dealing with technology transactions work. Last year, she worked with more than 60 clients on more than 100 matters ranging from license and joint development agreements to mergers and acquisitions efforts to trademarks and copyrights.
“I think our job is to first listen carefully. Then ask questions,” said the 59-year-old. “Then understand what the client needs and look at what we are doing from both the legal and the business standpoint.”
Her firm biography best sums up her impressive body of work.
“A zealous advocate with a proven track record of achieving strong and protective client rights and remedies,” it reads, “Saraann approaches each negotiation in a respectful and collaborative manner to achieve an end result that is fair and satisfying, enabling positive business relationships among the parties.”