Page 13 - Minnesota Vol 8 No 4
P. 13

Steven J. Ryan
Leading Boldly in a Time of Change
Ina time marked by dynamic changes taking place in business, technology and society, one law  rm is not only embracing the future, but proactively de ning it. For more than 135 years, Briggs and Morgan, Professional Association, has evolved to serve the needs of the Minnesota business community, and today, that legacy continues under the leadership of President and Managing Partner, Steven J. Ryan.
Ryan came to his position in August 2018 with nearly 25 years of service to the  rm as a practice group leader and member of the board and executive committee. A noted practitioner in the areas of banking and  nance; capital markets; and real estate, Ryan brings an advanced understanding of business that informs his leadership of the  rm. However, his approach to the business of law transcends a focus on just client acquisition and balance sheets. He says he and his team are committed to asking the important questions about where they and the industry are headed, so they can build a sustainable  rm that responds nimbly and meets the needs of clients today and long into the future.
“I’ve always had an intense interest in the business of law as distinct from the practice of law,” he said. “I feel very privileged to have the chance to serve as president and managing partner. It’s humbling to step in where a lot of people have contributed to the  rm’s reputation and suc- cess and keep propelling that momentum forward. For me, this is very much a team e ort. I am surrounded by incredibly talented leaders who work alongside me in a collaborative way to discuss what this  rm needs to look like in the future to meet our clients’ needs.”
Firm COO, Ann Rainhart, described Ryan as an outstanding lawyer and business person who is also a visionary and thoughtful leader. She recalled her  rst meeting with Ryan, which occurred when she interviewed at the  rm four years ago. “He was so excited talking about change and what needed to happen at the  rm, that he bounced out of his chair and started writing on the white board. It was a feeling of, ‘You have ideas, and I have ideas. Let’s create them together.’  at energy is what we, as a leadership team, are trying to create and harness in other people. In order for us to serve the needs of clients, our internal  rm culture must provide the means for people to do their best work, purposefully, on a journey of discussion, discovery and support.”
Ryan speaks with enthusiasm about the purpose of the  rm as an enterprise. “We want to be pro table, but that’s not our reason for being. We are striving to be outward facing in our strategy while cultivating an environment internally for people to thrive. What we’re really here for is to help others reach their potential.”
At Briggs, there is no compartmentalizing.  e same values that apply to serving clients and cultivating professionals also apply to making Minnesota communities safe, inclusive and prosperous places to live. Briggs lawyers and professionals have long engaged in public service, public o ce, the judiciary and pro bono work.

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