Bonial & Associates, P.C., Managing Director Bonial & Associates, is both a Certified LGBT Business Enterprise (LGBTBE) by The National LGBT Chamber of Commerce and a Certified Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC). The WBE certification affirms the business is woman-owned, operated, and controlled. Hilary Bonial told DS News that “seeing my teams succeed is the most enriching part of my job.” Bonial added, “Watching the legal strategies assist clients in making good business decisions is quite rewarding.” Bonial noted she is most proud of the positive results she has obtained in court for her clients. “Any time I can stand before a judge and represent my client, I am proud of the unique set of skills I have developed over the years and of my ability to put them to good use.” Bonial has been Managing Director of Bonial & Associates, P.C., for over two years, and served previously as a Shareholder/ Attorney at Buckley Madole, as well as serving as General Counsel for National Bankruptcy Services, LLC, for over eight years. Despite some improvements over the years, Bonial said the number of female executives within the industry is still comparatively small, and she is often the only female leader in the room when a decision is made. “The perception of women leaders being overly emotional remains,” she added. Looking ahead to 2020, she said, while it may be “pie in the sky theory,” she would like to see the adoption of meaningful diversity programs in the default legal space.
As the Founder and CEO of a woman-and-minority-owned small business, and a survivor of stage-3 breast cancer, Leisha Delgado understands what it takes to overcome long odds and succeed. “In a market with limited foreclosure activity, competition for business among law firms that specialize in default servicing has become fierce,” Delgado said. “I created Hello Solutions to give law firms a competitive advantage—a way to get more business without having to dedicate senior partners to sales—while also making it easier for servicers to find high quality default servicing legal support.” During her time in the industry, Delgado has become familiar with its ever-changing regulatory environment. “Regulations seem to change almost daily—especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. The firms I work with help clients stay in compliance with the various federal, state, and local government mandates.” Delgado believes that the key to helping servicers and investors effectively manage their default servicing legal challenges lies in the partnerships that she helps build between them and the attorney firms in the Hello Solutions Network. “Our collective success comes down to meeting the needs of the servicer,” Delgado said. “Our firms are big enough to handle any default servicing needs a client might have, but small enough to remain nimble and have a senior partner personally involved with the client’s business.”
Catherine Di Lorenzo, Esq., Managing Attorney of all aspects of the S&E Delaware operations, brings her over 20 years of wide-ranging experience in criminal law, litigation, and all aspects of default servicing, litigation, family law, estate planning, general civil litigation, and guardianships. Catherine’s number-one priority is partnering with clients to achieve dynamic communications and processing to enhance client efficiencies. “Coming to Stern & Eisenberg was an exciting career changing decision. S&E has given me the autonomy and trust to manage Delaware operations so that we can continue to provide stellar services to our clients. We are encouraged to constantly evaluate our performance and improve and support a healthy work-life balance. Innovative ideas are always welcome at S&E. As a woman in a male-dominated field, it is refreshing to work for a firm that values what I have to offer professionally while also encouraging a work life balance that many women with families are often lacking,” Catherine said. Catherine strives to provide unparalleled service for her clients, improving efficiencies by enhancing case-tracking and conflict-management tools. Catherine is looking forward to staying on top of new regulations and programs designed to protect everyone’s interests and address financial matters brought on by COVID-19.
Keri Ebeck knew in middle school that she wanted to be an attorney. Perhaps it was growing up watching Perry Mason and Law & Order, she says. After being the first in her family to graduate from college, then law school, and then practicing law for 18 years, she sees things a little differently. “Now I watch those legal shows and realize that legal TV is nothing like the real practice of law.” While proud of her many accomplishments, Keri says a career highlight occurred when she left her comfort zone and changed firms. “I made that decision to better myself as a person, as a lawyer, and as a leader,” she said. “Being a part of a great firm is essential to loving what you do. I consider myself very lucky to have joined Bernstein-Burkley, P.C. The firm has truly enriched my career and practice.” In addition to Keri’s love of the law, her company’s excellent representation of its clients really drives her. “Being surrounded by strong partners and staff, I’m in a great position to help clients, as we navigate the fallout from COVID-19 and move forward into a new future.” With Keri and her firm’s help, hopefully that future will be a bit brighter for clients.
Sally E. Garrison received a B.A. in economics, environmental science, and political science from Claremont McKenna College in 1995. She received her J.D. from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 2000. She also attended the Oxford Summer Program at Queen’s College, focusing on the European Union and Intellectual Property. Prior to her work in real estate law, Sally taught as an adjunct professor in the areas of intellectual property, copyright, and law in cyberspace. She also worked as in-house counsel for OU. She is currently a managing member of The Mortgage Law Firm, which does business in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Washington. She leads the Client Relations and Compliance teams for the firm and is an active leader of various real estate industry groups. She is a graduate of the Stagen Leadership Academy Integral Leadership Program, earning “Black Belt” distinction for her work in communication, influence, and motivation. She was a finalist for the Women in Housing 2019 Keystone Award for Cultural Leadership. She won the USFN’s Member of the Year Award in 2020 and was named one of OKC’s Top Attorneys by 405 Magazine in the area of real estate in 2020 and 2021. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the USFN and is licensed to practice law in OK, AZ, HI, and TX.
Michelle Garcia Gilbert has practiced real estate and business law since 1989, specializing in the default servicing industry. As Founder and Managing Partner of Gilbert Garcia Group, P.A., Michelle has managed the firm’s expansion into probate, estate planning, guardianship, business transaction, and corporate law. Michelle also manages Sapphire Title & Escrow Company, a residential and commercial closing company launched in 2015. Michelle is highly active in her legal communities. She is a member of the Greater Tampa Association of Realtors; Bay Area Real Estate Council, Inc., Board of Directors; Hillsborough County Bar Association (Real Property, Probate and Trust Law, Solo and Small Firm, Diversity, and Military and Veteran Sections); Florida Bar (Real Property, Probate and Trust Law, Business, and Solo and Small Firm Sections); American Legal and Financial Network; Legal League 100 (Vice Chairperson, 2016-19; Advisory Council Member, 2014-19; Special Initiatives Working Group, 2017-present); REOMAC/NADP; Attorney Agent for NACIT/Doma and Westcor Title. She was named one of DS News’ 2021 Top 25 Women of Law and selected as one of MReport’s 2015 and 2018 Leading Ladies. Michelle places great value on serving her community. She volunteers at St. Lawrence Catholic Church and School, and with Cristo Rey School of Tampa. She serves on the Board of Directors of St. Peter Claver Catholic School, and LifeChoices Family Medical.
Camille Hawk, one of the region’s leading creditors’ rights attorneys, offers financial institutions first-rate representation in the areas of real estate, lending law, and default services including lending regulations, bankruptcy, title issues, foreclosure, loss mitigation, litigation, closings, eviction, and collections. She is licensed in Nebraska and Iowa and has over 27 years’ experience working with creditors. Camille has been published regionally and nationwide. She has presented seminars for NBI, Lorman, State Bar Associations, and other industry organizations. Some of her presentation topics include triaging files after moratorium holds, foreclosure gap seminars, ongoing CFPB changes, agricultural lending, and foreclosure pitfalls. She also has helped draft and pass several pieces of creditors’ rights legislation related to manufactured homes, lines of credit, HOA and COA statutes, lien releases, Trustees’ powers, and post foreclosure funds disbursement requirements. Believing it is important to give back, Camille is active in professional organizations and serves on various community boards. She is the current Chair of the NSBA Education committee, the current Secretary of the NSBA Bankruptcy section and the NSBA Bank Attorneys section, a past Chair of the Bank Attorneys section, and a NSBA House of Delegates member.
Fei Lam is the newest Partner of Stern, Lavinthal & Frankenberg LLC (SLF), a full-service default firm with an expanding footprint in New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. With over 20 years of management default-related experience, Fei is currently spearheading the firm’s ever-growing expansion into New York. While balancing career and home, Fei has also found time in her busy schedule to also pay homage to her Asian heritage. Over the past 10 years, she has been providing pro bono legal services to the Chinese Heritage School of New Jersey (CHSNJ) and currently sits on its board. CHSNJ is a nonprofit organization with a mission to offer Chinese language education to students of any race and ethnic origin. Its goals are to provide a nonpolitical and non-religious-learning environment to deepen students’ interest in the Chinese language and culture, consistent with the need for diversity and inclusion of all races and cultures. Fei has served on the American Mortgage Diversity Council (AMDC) and the AMDC Mortgage Banking Relations Subcommittee mentoring program with the goal of achieving more diversity in the mortgage banking industry.
Jaclyn Palazzolo is a Partner with ALAW, overseeing the Attorney Closing Services Division. Jaclyn is a licensed Florida Attorney, based out of the firm’s headquarters in Tampa, Florida, and has been with the company for six years. She has extensive experience managing a national panel of attorneys and staff handling thousands of transactions a month. Currently, Jaclyn manages the nationwide title and settlement services for the firm, including residential purchase, attorney closings services, refinances, REO transactions, and commercial work. Prior to joining the firm, Jaclyn worked as the managing title attorney for a statewide title and settlement company while also practicing in foreclosure, guardianship, and estate planning. She’s a born-and-raised Floridian who completed her undergraduate degree at Florida State University, where she received a dual Bachelor’s degree in political science and criminology. She earned her Juris Doctorate from Stetson University College of Law.
Jennifer Rogers has 18 years’ experience, primarily focused on representing mortgage lenders and services in real estate law, title curative matters, routine and complex civil litigation, bankruptcy, creditor’s rights, and residential and commercial foreclosures and evictions. Jennifer and the other founding members of IDEA Law Group shared a vision to build a law firm different from the typical mortgage default law firm. As a result, IDEA Law Group combines the latest technology with a business model based on transparency and trust to deliver a truly unique experience for default servicing clients. The vision of the law firm is to focus on Inclusion, Diversity, Equality, and Access (IDEA), and a business model designed from day one to be client-centric. IDEA is focused on providing highest quality, personalized support using leading edge technology while delivering the highest possible ROI for lenders, servicers, and investors. Jennifer has been a frequent speaker at mortgage default conferences addressing issues related to litigation, foreclosure, evictions, and creditors’ rights. She is a founding member of the Colorado Creditor’s Bar Association, and she is licensed to practice law and based in Colorado.