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Tara Leupke
Tara Leupke

2022 Unsung Legal Heroes: Tara Leupke

Messerli & Kramer P.A.

Earlier this year, Tara Leupke celebrated her 20th anniversary as a valued employee at the Minneapolis law firm of Messerli & Kramer P.A. As a legal administrative assistant, she helps the firm’s business litigation attorneys prepare for court hearings and trials.

Leupke was drawn to the field due to a long-time interest in legal work and a self-described “methodical” nature that has served her well in the profession. After spending about a decade with a small, suburban law firm, Leupke joined Messerli & Kramer in June 2002

According to Leupke, one of the first things she learned early in her career was the complexity and detail-oriented nature of the litigation process. “You need to be really organized.” Being proactive is one of the strategies that has helped her the most. That often means alerting colleagues of upcoming deadlines set by courts. “You have to be flexible, not hesitate to jump in to help, and be willing to stay past your usual departure time. The courts set the dates and we have to be willing to work around them.”

In her role supporting four attorneys in the firm’s business litigation group, Leupke has found employment litigation to be one of the more interesting areas she’s worked in. “There are all sorts of interesting workplace situations that arise.”

The need to adapt to courts’ gradual shift from the traditional “paper chase” to all-electronic document serving and filing has also kept her work a continual learning process.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020, Leupke and her colleagues needed to quickly segue into the new world of remote work and adapt to depositions and hearings held via Zoom. As in many other areas, some of the changes necessitated by quarantine will continue to have an impact long after most workers have returned to the office, Leupke noted.

While the daily variety of the work is one of the most enjoyable aspects of Leupke’s job, what she most appreciates is “the great group of people I work with, which has allowed me to be here for 20 years.”

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