How long have you been with CLG? I joined the firm in May 2016. I’m the Operations Assistant to Brian Dunn, our Chief Operating Officer.
What inspired you to work here? I went to VCU and majored in Business Administration and Management, with a minor in Finance. I’ve always been a numbers person, and enjoy accounts payable and that type of work. When I met the people here and realized I could work with them every day while using my favorite skill – working with numbers – I was excited to join the firm.
What else do you bring to CLG? I’m fluent in Italian and English and have an intermediate ability to communicate in Spanish, which I studied in high school. My Dad was born in Argentina to Italian parents, and my Mom is from Sicily. I didn’t know English until I went to kindergarten here in the Richmond area. My parents speak English, but my grandparents don’t, so I’ve always spoken Italian with them. I picked up Spanish fairly easily because it’s similar to Italian. Knowing three languages is helpful at CLG because I can communicate with our Spanish-speaking clients and sometimes with others who don’t speak English as their first language.
What have you learned from working here? I’ve learned a lot about the legal aspect of our firm by answering questions from clients. A lot of our clients are going through a tough time. Imagine if you’ve been doing the same job for 30 years and then you get hurt and can’t continue working. It’s taught me that in general, I don’t need to complain as much. If you’re a healthy person with a job, you have a lot to be thankful for.
Describe your typical workday. I work with numbers all day, which I like. I write checks and pay the bills. Also, paralegals bring me disbursements for personal injury cases, which are the settlement statements that go to accounting. I verify that the balances are broken-down correctly and write individual checks to medical providers, attorneys and clients. I also answer incoming phone calls when our receptionist is on a call. But in general, almost everything that has to do with numbers comes across my desk.
What’s satisfying about working here? The community. I like the people I work with. That makes coming to work easy. Everyone is very friendly here. And, my coworkers appreciate the work that I do – especially when I doublecheck their math. I love that I get to do math all day. Numbers are always straightforward. For example, 2 + 2 = 4 and there’s no disputing it. If something’s off in a column of numbers, you can figure it out. Life is not always as straightforward as that. I wish life were a little more like numbers―much more logical and sensible.
What’s your proudest moment at CLG? Monthly reconciliations! When I’m able to get the entire month’s accounts to balance on the first try without having to go back in and figure something out, that’s a delightful moment. I do both monthly and quarterly reconciliations. The quarterly ones are definitely a lot more complex!
What else? I grew up nearby, in Midlothian. I like to cook – anything and everything – and I like to bake. I still have family in Italy, so I’ve visited there. I love that in Italy, there’s a town bakery and on your way home from work you stop and get a loaf of fresh bread to have with dinner. I wish I could bring that tradition to the U.S. There’s nothing better than fresh, warm bread. I was a waitress throughout high school and college at Angelo’s Italian Restaurant in Midlothian, and I still enjoy working there one or two nights a week. Having worked there for so long, I have regulars who now specifically come on the nights I work, and that puts a smile on my face. I’ve learned a lot from the hustle and bustle of being a waitress, including how to multitask and provide great customer service, skills I’ve brought with me to my new home at CLG.
How about after work? I’m very close with my family. My sister has four kids, and my brother just had his first. I love children; I try to spend as much time with them as possible. I used to be their babysitter on a regular basis and more of a disciplinarian. Now, I get to take them out for ice cream and to the toy store, give them candy, and keep them up past their bedtimes – it drives my sister crazy, but it is such a treat to finally be the fun aunt!