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Melissa Krasnow
Melissa Krasnow joined VLP in 2016 and works remotely in Minneapolis for the firm, based in Palo Alto, California. (Submitted photo)

Breaking the Ice: Attorney brings tech background to AI group

Melissa Krasnow, a partner with VLP Law Group LLP, has been appointed co-chair of a new state bar working group focusing on the potential ramifications of artificial intelligence technology on the profession.

Krasnow’s interest in the Minnesota State Bar Association’s Unauthorized Practice of Law and Artificial Intelligence Working Group stems from her background in “privacy, data security, technology transactions, as well as artificial intelligence and also the convergence between those areas.”

“This is multidisciplinary,” Krasnow said of the implications of the generative AI model ChatGPT for the practice of law. “You’re applying law to technology and you don’t know what the outcome is going to be. It’s a process and everyone is learning.”

The working group will address technology and different disciplines of law, including professional responsibility and risk management, Krasnow said.

The group also will study and make recommendations regarding the unauthorized practice of law “to ensure protection of the public while also fulfilling the profession’s goal of access to justice for everyone,” according to the state bar association’s website.

A priority as co-chair will be to make sure that different disciplines are well represented, Krasnow said. “I am looking forward to working with everyone and listening and learning and hearing different perspectives,” she said.

Krasnow joined VLP in 2016 and works remotely in Minneapolis for the firm, based in Palo Alto, California. That has spurred her involvement as a Minnesota State Bar Foundation director, Hennepin County Bar Association director and Finance & Planning Committee vice chair and at-large member and New Lawyers Engagement Committee member.

“I was remote and virtual before the COVID-19 pandemic,” Krasnow said. “When you are remote and virtual, it is good to have interactions with people where you live. This was one way of doing it.”

Much of Krasnow’s client work is not in Minnesota; 20% of her clients are from California, where she also is a bar member.

Krasnow was recognized in 2022 by Chambers in Nationwide Privacy & Data Security and Nationwide Technology as “a highly regarded attorney whose broad practice exhibits strength across a number of technology-related issues” and who routinely advises “on M&A, data security issues and related regulatory matters.”

Name: Melissa Krasnow

Title: Partner, VLP Law Group LLP, Minneapolis

Education: A.B., Chinese studies and political science; J.D., Northwestern University School of Law

Q: Best way to start a conversation with you?

A: Say hello. I also could say hello to start a conversation with you.

Q: Why law school?

A: To explore areas of interest in law while honing analytical skills

Q: What are you reading?

A: “Bad City” by Paul Pringle.

Q: Pet peeve?

A: The opposite of a pet peeve is a carefully considered decision-making process where different perspectives are part of this process.

Q: Best part of your work?

A: Forging solid relationships, especially in a time of mobility, and having the opportunity to continually learn.

Q: Most challenging?

A: Addressing a first-of-its-kind issue and taking into account legal, ethical and other implications.

Q: Favorite activity away from work?

A: Spending time with family and keeping current through traditional and social media.

Q: Where would you take someone visiting your hometown?

A: For a walk on Summit Avenue, then to Grand Avenue for turtle cake at Cafe Latte.

Q: Legal figure you most admire?

A: Ruth Bader Ginsburg and various attorneys who have served as mentors.

Q: Misconception that others have about your work?

A: My work often addresses a matter not just for the short term but also for the long term.

Q: Favorite book, movie or TV show about lawyers?

A: “Legally Blonde.” It brings a smile.

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