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Four Quarles & Brady Employees Receive Wisconsin Law Journal’s Unsung Heroes Awards

Award Honors Attorney Support Staff

MILWAUKEE, Wis. — Quarles & Brady is pleased to announce that Debbie Simatic, Alexus Hudson, Jim Johnson and Wanda Cieslak have received Wisconsin Law Journal Unsung Heroes Awards.

The Unsung Heroes Awards honor the support staff for local attorneys who work hard behind the scenes and play a significant role in contributing to the success of law firms.

Debbie Simatic has been an integral part of Quarles & Brady for 19 years. She currently provides key support to several C-Suite level executives, including Quarles & Brady's Executive Committee, the executive director, and the chief human resources officer. She efficiently plans and executes firmwide leadership meetings, including coordinating venue details, meal planning, and technology needs. She also manages the firmwide notary public program, and maintains enterprise-wide contracts and agreements for a diverse field of firm relationships and obligations.

Alexus Hudson joined the firm in July 2008. Her flexibility, determination, and quick learning skills have served her well over the years as a technical learning coach. The firm has more than 450 applications and many of them require significant training involvement each time they are updated or replaced. She must learn how the application works, and how the attorneys and staff actually use the product, before she can begin outlining teaching program.

Jim Johnson joined the firm in May 2012, where he was a clerk working at our off-site warehouse. Throughout the years, Jim gained valuable experience at the warehouse where people trusted his judgement and insight. In 2014, Jim was promoted to facilities manger of the Milwaukee office. He helped plan phases of the largest renovation project in the firm's history that included moving, filing, and deliveries. Since taking a supervisory role in January 2017, Jim has done an exemplary job continuing a file destruction project that has already seen 12,000 boxes of un-needed files be shredded, as well as assisting with a similar effort in our Madison office.

Wanda Cieslak received a posthumous Unsung Heroes Award, which was accepted by her husband and daughters. Wanda was at the firm for 26 years as a legal secretary for the Estate, Trust & Wealth Preservation Practice Group. Wanda was considered a bellwether for the office. She would be consulted on her secretarial perspective on new strategies, practices, or procedures that we were considering rolling out to the office. She was everything that you want in support role: hard-working, detail-oriented, organized, selfless, friendly, customer service oriented, and loyal. Wanda left a tremendous legacy at the firm and is role model for other secretaries that are just getting started on their secretarial careers.

The four were honored during a ceremony on Thursday, November 30, at the Grain Exchange Ballroom in Milwaukee.