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Our Mission

The International Practice Management Association (IPMA) is the premier resource for information and education on the management of paralegals and other practice support professionals in law firms, corporations and law departments globally. Its mission is to advocate for the effective use and management of these professionals, to promote and enhance the proficiency and professionalism of its members, and to provide thought leadership to the membership, the legal industry, and the public at large on the value of utilization and management of paralegals and other practice support professionals.

Speaker Bios

As always, this year's speakers are proven leaders, strategists, practitioners, and peers. No matter how long you've been in the legal industry or what position you hold at your organization, there's always something more to learn.



The Legal Industry Today: The Role of Allied Professionals in the Competitive Legal Landscape
Zena Applebaum is the Director, Professional Firm & Corporate Segments with Thomson Reuters in Canada.  In her role, Zena has primary responsibility for voice of the client feedback, client intelligence, market insights, and sales enablement. Prior to joining Thomson Reuters, Zena was the Director of Competitive Intelligence at the global law firm Bennett Jones LLP, having pioneered the discipline of law firm CI, and authored "Business Intelligence for Law Firms" published in November 2012.  Zena shares hers passion for the industry as a speaker, writer and a contributor to blogs including 3 Geeks and a Law Blog with topics ranging from competitive intelligence, legal industry change management, qualitative data analysis and personal branding. Zena is a data junkie who revels in the possibilities of data to connect people, places and things. In 2015 Zena was inducted as a Fellow of the Council of CI Fellows, she is a sessional instructor the University of Toronto iSchool, and currently serves on the SLA Board of Directors. She can be reached at @ZAppleCI or via LinkedIn.


Resilience and Balance: Your Personal North Star Lights the Path
Terrie Campbell is the Chief Executive Officer of Esquire Deposition Solutions having joined the company in 2015 as Chief Operating Officer to drive improved and consistent operating practices. As CEO, Terrie is committed to premium client care, achieving optimum effectiveness, and enabling true innovation. She is well-versed in change management, operational process and methodology design, output management and optimization, vertical solutions, and strategic design. Terrie has many years of experience studying generational workforce behaviors and is a driving force behind engaging Millennials in the legal industry.


The Surprising First Step to Breakthrough Career Success
Caroline Ceniza-Levine is a career and business expert, writer, speaker, and co-founder of SixFigureStart®. Caroline has coached executives from leading firms including Amazon, American Express, Condé Nast, Goldman Sachs, Google, Pfizer, and Tesla. Prior to launching SixFigureStart® in 2008, Caroline spent 15 years in strategy consulting, executive search, and human resources. Caroline has been a repeat guest on CBS, CNN, CNBC, and Fox Business and has been quoted in major media outlets, including BusinessWeek, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Fortune, Inc, and Success Magazine. Caroline is a career columnist for and formerly wrote for CNBC, Money, and Portfolio. She is the author of three books: Jump Ship: 10 Steps To Starting A New Career (2015, Forbes Media); Six Steps To Job Search Success (2011, Flat World Knowledge); and How the Fierce Handle Fear: Secrets to Succeeding in Challenging Times (2010, Two Harbors Press). Caroline teaches Professional Development and Negotiation courses at Columbia University and is a graduate of Barnard College. A classically trained pianist at Juilliard and Manhattan School of Music, Caroline stays active in the arts, performing stand-up comedy.


The 10-80-10 Principle
Sunjay Nath travels globally sharing insights on leadership and performance. He is best known for his trademark, “The 10-80-10 Principle” which is a framework that helps individuals and teams improve performance. This methodology combines best practices with small wins to help people empower themselves. Sunjay was a founding Vice President of an e-learning company based in Toronto that has gone on to become a multimillion-dollar company. He started an international speaking business when he was 19. As a speaker, Sunjay has travelled extensively and addressed in person well over 1,000,000 people around the world since 1995. In 2005, Sunjay became the youngest Canadian (and third youngest in the world) ever to earn his CSP (Certified Speaking Professional). The CSP is the highest internationally recognized designation that a speaker can aspire to achieve.

Managerial Skills Seminar

Karen Anderson is the Manager, Corporate Services at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP’s Toronto office where she is responsible for the business law clerks team.  Karen  has over 25 years of experience and oversees work-flow, staffing, policies and pricing as well as  training for clerks, students and lawyers.  In her role as a working manager, Karen has gained expertise in all areas of corporate proceedings and ongoing corporate maintenance matters and regularly assists on many corporate acquisitions and reorganizations. 

How Satisfied Are You At Work? Interpreting the Perspectives of Paralegals and Paralegal Managers.
Stephanie Angel is a senior staff attorney in the firm's WilmerHale Discovery Solutions department, focused on substantive and strategic areas of discovery for Litigation/Controversy matters. Ms. Angel focuses her practice on issues of e-discovery. Specifically, she works with other attorneys, litigation support coordinators, and paralegals in order to provide efficient and cost-effective discovery in litigations and investigations. Staff attorneys on these teams manage matters to create smarter document review processes through strategic and tactical work from preservation to collection and through review and production. In this role, they utilize the firm's internal review software as well as e-discovery vendors' review and analytical tools.

How to Structure your In-House Legal Dept and Relationships with Law Firm Paralegals
Fiorella Bellissimo is director - business services and one of the main paralegal Toronto office. She is responsible for the general management and day-to-day operations of our Toronto office, where she conducts training seminars for students and lawyers and develops and implements policies and procedures. for paralegals in business law.
Fiorella Bellissimo, a paralegal for more than 25 years, has extensive experience in public and private companies. She assists lawyers in various transactions such as tax restructurings, mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances and securities offerings. Fiorella Bellissimo also has extensive experience in due diligence, incorporation and updating of corporations, and other corporate services offered by our business law paralegals.

Ask the Experts

Cathy Boette leads the Firm’s Paralegal Program that, following the August 1, 2018 combination with Florida-based Broad and Cassel, spans 25 office locations across the U.S. and includes a team of more than 160 paralegals and practice assistants. She is responsible for all aspects of the operation of the paralegal program, including recruiting, training and development, and workloads. Cathy understands the challenges and complexities managers face when they and their staff are in different locations and focuses on building relationships between locations, replicating best practices, and fostering an environment that encourages collaboration, professional development, and the delivery of client value. Cathy earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio and a Paralegal Certificate, with honors, from the National Center for Paralegal Training in Atlanta, Georgia. In her role as Director of Professional Programs, Cathy also serves as the administrator liaison to the Firm’s policy advisors, as well as Encompass, the Firm’s e-discovery and information governance service and practice, and she administers the Summer Undergraduate Internship Program.  Cathy serves on the Firm’s Paralegal and Policy Advisor Committees.  She also serves as an advisory board member for two local paralegal programs and teaches career seminars to students in the University of South Carolina Paralegal Certificate Program.


How Satisfied Are You at Work? Interpreting the Perspectives of Paralegals and Paralegal Managers.
Daniel Bonner is an attorney and serves as the Director of Client Solutions with Level 2 Legal, a Dallas-based provider of eDiscovery and legal solutions, specializing in managed review, outsourcing, and consulting for law firms and in-house counsel. Daniel was one of the first employees of Level 2 Legal, which began 10 years ago as a result of the relationships the organization had with many Silicon Valley tech companies who found themselves in the midst of the Eastern District of Texas’ patent litigation “Rocket Docket." Daniel brings his legal experience, craftsmanship, and precision to every client he serves and has managed more than 100 complex eDiscovery projects for some of the largest companies in the world. Daniel holds a JD from Texas A&M University School of Law and a BBA in Finance and Accounting from Texas A&M as well.
Mental Health 101
Tracy Daniels is currently employed as a Master Level Practitioner with the Pathways program with BayCare. Tracy began his career as an Active Duty Air Force Law Enforcement Police where he served several years in Asia and the Middle East. Tracy also served as a Group Treatment Leader at a juvenile detention facility, where he provided counseling and life skills, conflict resolution, stress management techniques and mediation services. Tracy now conducts prevention training such as parenting skills, domestic violence, stress management and healthy relationships. With his experience and extensive training from the University of Maryland, Bowie State University and Walden University, Tracy is able to assess individuals, identify and report barriers and develop a plan of action.

Navigating A Merger: Understanding Us, Them, You and the New "We" 
Tara Kim Eberhart is the Director of Paralegal Services and Docketing at Dentons US where she oversees the paralegal program of 150+ paralegals and the national general/litigation and intellectual property docketing teams. Prior to her tenure at Dentons, Tara created and supervised the national paralegal program at McKenna Long & Aldridge. She began her career in a small, general practice firm, Michael Murphy and Associates, before moving to an IP boutique firm, Oblon Spivak, and ultimately joined the bio/chemical litigation team at Morgan Lewis where she specialized in large scale, eDiscovery intense intellectual property (patent) litigation. Tara earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Mary Washington and her Masters in Legal Administration (MALA) from Marymount University. She served as co-chair of the DC chapter of the International Practice Management Association (IPMA), is a past president and advisory board member of the National Capital Area Paralegal Association (NCAPA), and was the recipient of the Paralegal Program Excellence Award in 2010. Tara is a member of The George Washington University faculty (Adjunct Professor, Litigation) and Paralegal Studies Program Advisory Board.


New Recruiting Techniques and Options
Ricki Frumkin is the Executive Director of Law Resources, Inc. in Washington, D.C.  Ricki is engaged in the recruitment and placement of attorneys, legal assistants and legal support personal for temporary and permanent positions for law firm and corporate legal departments. Ms. Frumkin is highly skilled in all aspects of the recruitment and placement of qualified and experienced contract attorneys, paralegals and support staff. She understands the fundamental importance of open and direct communication with the law firm client and temporary employee candidates, striving to give both a positive experience. Ms. Frumkin received her undergraduate degree from Frostburg State University. Prior to joining Law Resources, Ricki was a law firm Administrator & Director of Client Services, and also the Director of a Bar Review Company responsible for the D.C. metropolitan area, Maryland and Virginia.Through her work, Ms. Frumkin has gained extensive experience in all aspects of recruiting, screening and placement of legal assistants and contract attorneys and is well respected in her field.

How Satisfied Are You at Work? Interpreting the Perspectives of Paralegals and Paralegal Managers.
Jane Anne has extensive experience as an environmental, insurance and litigation paralegal.  She transitioned to paralegal management in 2008 and is now responsible for coordinating activities and assignments for the paraprofessionals in Reed Smith’s Chicago, Pittsburgh, Houston, Austin and Miami offices. As part of the paraprofessional management team, she works on a daily basis to staff assignments, monitor utilization and develop educational programs for the paraprofessionals at all levels.   She participates in the hiring decisions to ensure the candidate will best fit the needs of the office, the practice group and the attorneys.  Jane Anne is adept at building relationships between the paraprofessionals within all of Reed Smith’s U.S. offices.  She takes a positive approach to problem solving and mentors each individual to achieve career goals.  Jane Anne is on the board of the International Practice Management Association (IPMA) as Vice-President, Membership.

Educating and Developing your WorkforceHow to Structure your In-House Legal Dept and Relationships with Law Firm Paralegals
Michelle Hess is the Paralegal Manager for Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie LLP. She is a graduate of the Master of Paralegal Studies program at The George Washington University. Michelle received her Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies from Florida Gulf Coast University in 2012. In 2000, she received an Associate of Science Degree in Paralegal studies from Hillsborough Community College, graduating with Highest Honors. Michelle obtained the Advanced Certified Paralegal Designation in Discovery in 2010 and Trial Practice in 2013. She has worked with notable Florida law firms in various areas of litigation and trial practice, including commercial litigation, intellectual property litigation, media law, medical malpractice, nursing home litigation with an emphasis on fraudulent corporate schemes, and technology and on arbitrations, mediations, and trials across the nation. Michelle has lectured to paralegals on trial practices through the Institute of Paralegal Education, sat on panels for COALSP and the Arkfeld ASU eDiscovery conference, and spoke on eDiscovery at the GW Alumni Association annual eDiscovery conference.


Social Media Made Easy
Beth Huffman is the Director of Marketing at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP.  She previously spent 12 years at Dechert LLP, most recently serving as the Global Director of Communications and Media Relations.  Prior to joining the law firm world, Beth was a sports reporter, including 13 years at the Philadelphia Inquirer.  Having spent nearly 40 years working in the field of communications, she has seen the evolution of the industry from typewriters to early computers to today’s world that revolves around electronic devices.  Beth started the social media program at two of the world’s largest law firms and looks anxiously (and a little nervously) forward to what is next in the field!

Ask the Experts (Panel Discussion)
Anthony is currently the Global Legal Operations Manager for GE Capital, in Norwalk, Connecticut. In addition to his current role, Anthony is also responsible for supervising GE's paralegals and serves as GE Capital's Corporate Governance Manager, overseeing the governance and operation of its more than 1,200 legal entities. Prior to joining GE in June of 2011, Anthony lived in Delaware where he spent six years with the litigation department of the Philadelphia-based law firm Saul Ewing, LLP and four years prior to that in the litigation department of Margolis Edelstein.
How Satisfied Are You at Work? Interpreting the Perspectives of Paralegals and Paralegal Managers.
Ari Kaplan, an attorney and legal industry analyst, is an inaugural Fastcase 50 honoree, a fellow of the College of Law Practice Management, and a finalist for the International Legal Technology Association’s Thought Leader of the Year award. He is the author of Reinventing Professional Services: Building Your Business in the Digital Marketplace (Wiley, 2011) and The Opportunity Maker: Strategies for Inspiring Your Legal Career Through Creative Networking and Business Development (West Academic, 2nd Ed. 2016). Kaplan serves as the principal researcher for a variety of widely distributed benchmarking reports, has been the keynote speaker for events worldwide, and is the founder of the Lawcountability® business development software platform and iPhone app. He is an avid swimmer, self-taught beginner-level Python coder, and a two-time Ironman triathlon finisher.

Educating and Developing your Workforce
Toni Marsh, JD, is the founding director of The George Washington University's paralegal studies programs and an Associate Professor of Paralegal Studies. She designed and launched the paralegal studies program at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and designed the first-ever formal paralegal program in the nation of Tanzania at the University of Bagamoyo. Professor Marsh teaches Legal Writing, American Jurisprudence, and Contracts and presents regularly on paralegal careers, unauthorized practice of law, and paralegal utilization to increase access to justice and firm profitability.


IPMA Managerial Skills Seminar 
Gary Melhuish is the Manager of Litigation Support Services in the Philadelphia office of Ballard Spahr, LLP. Prior to joining this firm in 2006, he was the Legal Assistant Director in the Washington, D.C. office of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP. Gary has over 30 years' experience as a paralegal including more than 20 years as a paralegal manager. He is the current President of the International Practice Management Association (IPMA). He was Adjunct Faculty at the Georgetown University Paralegal Studies Program from 2002 through 2005 where he taught Legal Ethics and Legal Technology. Gary is a former member of the ABA's Approval Commission of the Standing Committee on Paralegals and serves on the National Federation of Paralegal Association's PACE Advisory Committee.


Leveraging Your Resources- Why Partnering with the Right Service Provider Makes Sense
Bill Moore is an accomplished senior manager with expertise in driving aggressive revenue and profitability growth for both brick/mortar and high technology companies, with an emphasis on the legal industry. He has a twenty-year proven track record in creating, building and executing business strategies that result in organic gained market share through differentiated products and services.  He is a skillful and sought after speaker at legal conferences as an industry expert, and law firm educator on secured transaction law, due diligence review and jurisdictional filing nuances.  He is also a business partner of the IPMA.‚Äč


Ask the Experts (Panel Discussion)
As the leader of a Canadian national team of paralegals and law clerks, Mary is shaping the way the firm provides paraprofessional services to its clients. Mary is focused on innovation and client service – implementing technologies, programs, policies and procedures to ensure the paraprofessional services meet the needs of clients today and in the future. She is also leading the development of flexible career paths for paraprofessionals. She actively helps members of her team define their ideal career paths, and creates opportunities for continuous learning and skills development. Mary brings to the role a deep understanding of the paraprofessional role and the firm. She joined Borden Ladner Gervais in 1990 as a paralegal in the Intellectual Property Group, and has moved through a series of progressively more senior leadership roles after completing a management training program. As a result of her own career progression, Mary believes in the importance of providing others with opportunities for career advancement and cross-training.

How to Structure your In-House Legal Dept and Relationships with Law Firm Paralegals
Gianna Oliveira is a Senior Corporate Law clerk with over 20 years of experience in corporate law.  She spent 9 years in a downtown Toronto corporate securities boutique law firm, Wildeboer Dellelce LLP, where she worked as a Legal Assistant and later as a Corporate Law Clerk.  Gianna then joined U. S. Steel Canada in 2008 as an in-house Corporate Law Clerk.  In 2015, Gianna joined Fengate Capital Management, an asset investment management firm located in Oakville, Ontario and is currently the Senior Corporate Law Clerk.  She manages the department and works on all things corporate such as incorporations and business registrations, extra provincial registrations, minute book reviews and maintenance, corporate compliance and corporate secretarial matters relating to board, committee and advisory meetings. Gianna graduated from the Legal Assistant/Law Clerk program at Mohawk College in 1996 and received her Certified Law Clerk designation with the Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario in 2013.  She is a fellow member of the Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario and a member of the IPMA.

Leveraging Your Resources- Why Partnering with the Right Service Provider Makes Sense
Sharon Patterson is an IPMA member and a Paralegal Supervisor at Goldberg Kohn Ltd.  She has over 25 years of paralegal and management experience which has imbued her with a depth of knowledge that makes her a true standout in the field.  In addition to the IPMA, Sharon is the Commercial Finance Co-Chair of the Illinois Paralegal Association, and a member of the IPA Education Committee.


How to Structure your In-House Legal Dept and Relationships with Law Firm Paralegals
Laura Porter, Manager, Corporate Secretariat at OMERS, is responsible for department administrative matters, staffing, developing, training, budget, implementing departmental policies and procedures, providing information regarding corporate procedures, and monitoring workflow. She has over 20 years of experience in a legal environment, and prior to joining OMERS in 2014, Laura was a Manager and Senior Law Clerk at a Toronto law firm whose duties included department administrative matters, staffing, developing, implementing departmental policies and procedures, providing information regarding corporate procedures, conducting seminars for students and lawyers, and monitoring workflow. Her expertise covers corporate and security matters including, incorporation, amendments, amalgamations, continuances, revivals, asset and share transactions, reorganizations, corporate record keeping, drafting closing agendas, agreements, prospectus documents, coordinating complex transactions, and regulatory filings for SEDAR, EDGAR, and SEDI including preparation of public filing documents. Laura is a member of the Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario and the International Practice Management Association.

Hot HR Topics, Canada
Nisha Rider is the National Director of Human Resources at McMillan. With more than 20 years of experience, Nisha provides strategic leadership and oversight to the firm's human resources and various general operations functions nationally across five offices, located in Ottawa, Montreal, Ontario, Alberta and Vancouver. She leads a team of professionals who are responsible for human resources, facilities and office services, hospitality and concierge services, learning and development, legal support services and translation services. Nisha is a member of McMillan's Inclusion and Diversity Committee, Discrimination and Harassment Committee, and Business Continuity Team.
Pre-conference: Managerial Skills Seminar
Alison Sinclair is the Manager, Corporate Services at Wildeboer Dellelce LLP, a boutique corporate securities law firm in Toronto.  She is responsible for the management, administration and training of the Corporate Services Team, law students and lawyers.  Through 25+ years’ of industry experience, Alison has developed expertise in many areas of corporate law and continues to apply her skill to various corporate transactions.  Alison is a member of many firm committees, including Professional Standards, Operations and Mergers & Acquisitions. 
Ask the Experts (Panel Discussion)
Carol Van Buren is the Director of Paralegal Services at Perkins Coie, LLP, where she is responsible for the paralegal program in all the US offices. She works with the firm’s practice groups managing the paralegals, including staffing, training, profitability, and policy innovation and development. Carol has worked as a paralegal director for the last 26 year at AM Law 100 & 200 firms. Carol is currently serving as a co-chair of the PNW Chapter of the IPMA and is a member of the Emerging Trends Committee. She is a member of the University of Washington’s Paralegal Advisory Board.
IPMA Talk Live: Peer-to-Peer Roundtable Discussions
Amy Williams is the Director of Practice Management for King & Spalding LLP. She joined King & Spalding in 1995, one year after graduating from Emory University. Amy's major was Middle Eastern Studies with a minor in Hebrew, which she has used exactly never in her professional career. She currently manages the Paralegal Services Department firm-wide as well as the Legal Practice Assistants (secretaries and word processing) in the Atlanta office. Amy has been a member of the IPMA since 2006 and attended most conferences since that date (she missed 2012 and 2013 due to the arrival of her twin boys...who are awesome, just ask her).

How to be an Effective Coach for Your Employees
Greta Zeimetz, CAE is the Executive Director of the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA). Greta has been in the position since 2015 and has more than 18 years of nonprofit leadership experience. Greta also has taught undergraduate and graduate level leadership and management courses for more than 17 years. She holds a BA in Communications, a MS in Management & Organizational Behavior, and is currently all but dissertation (ABD) for her Doctorate in Business Administration, which she aims to complete in 2018.   Greta is a current member of the American Society of Association Executive’s (ASAE) and Oklahoma Society of Association Executives (OSAE).  Greta is also a current member of ASAE’s Executive Management Section Council. She is a prior member of the Professional Development Council and has done other volunteering activities for ASAE and local charities.   Greta has three adult children, two of which are currently in college and live with her, and her oldest son resides in Wisconsin. They are outnumbered in the house by the number of pets they have – 5 cats and 2 dogs.  


Rethinking the Annual Performance ReviewDamaging Communication Mistakes and How to Avoid
John Zettler is the Director of Talent Strategy & Development at Dale Carnegie. He is a human resource specialist and highly regarded coach and facilitator. With almost 20 years of professional experience, John refined his expertise in management and strategic human resources in both the Manufacturing and Professional Services sectors. Highlights of John’s experience include: Director of Human Resources within two major Canadian Law Firms, Talent Strategy Consultant with London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC), Human Capital Consultant with Deloitte, and Human Resources Manager at Magna International and Goodrich Aerospace.