I was extremely excited to interview Stefanie Herrington, Estate Planning Attorney for Bartlett & Herrington, because not only does she do amazing work for our mutual clients but has a heart of gold and really makes a huge impact in our community.
How long have you been practicing law?
I graduated from law school seven years ago and I spent my first year clerking for a judge in Denver at the Colorado Court of Appeal. Then I spent a year practicing complex business litigation in Portland, Oregon - and I have been here (Carpinteria) for five years now - We just celebrated the 5 year anniversary of our law firm, Bartlett & Herrington.
Can you tell me a little more about your role as an Estate Planning Attorney?
I do everything from trusts and probates, trust administration after clients pass away, I do a lot of veteran planning for veterans who have low income and high medical needs, I do special needs planning for our clients, I do a lot of agricultural planning because of where we live in the Carpinteria Valley, so a lot of sub specialties but it all falls under estate planning.
Why did you get into law and what do you enjoy most about it?
I was a newspaper editor and I loved it. I loved reading articles and getting breaking news and finding errors. But after awhile I had done it for ten years and I wanted more of a challenge so I decided law school would be a great education - and I didn’t think I wanted to be a lawyer until I started doing it. What I love about my job is I get to do a lot of hands on work with my clients, and often times I get to work with multiple generations so I enjoy the whole family aspect and connecting people with other resources, like Realtors!
What is the toughest part of your job?
The toughest part is also the most rewarding part which is really just delving into family dynamics and learning individual goals and their challenges and the things that worry them at night, so sometimes you get to see the worst of people and more often than not you get to see the best of people.
Do you only handle cases locally?
The vast majority of our clients are in the local area so Carpinteria, Ventura, Goleta, Santa Barbara but certainly I have clients in the Bay Area and elsewhere that are referrals for other clients. But most of our work is here.
We know you are heavily involved in the community, tell us more about your amazing community service in Carpinteria.
Mainly right now the things that I am enjoying the most and spending most of my time with are: I am serving on the board of Girls Inc in Carpinteria, so that’s an amazing organization that really impacts the lives of young girls in our community. And I have been a member of Rotary for 5 years since I moved to Carpinteria and last summer I started a new Rotary Club, Rotary Club of Carpinteria’s Sunset, and I invited all of my friends to join it - so even though I am not the president of that club I am just the secretary - I play a big role. So those are my two big projects that I spend nights, weekends and sometimes part of the day on.