SIDEBAR: President of the Columbian Lawyers Association RoseAnn C. Branda
RoseAnn C. Branda is a Brooklyn-born attorney who graduated from Fontbonne Hall Academy in Bay Ridge before she went to Wagner College and eventually Brooklyn Law School. She has practiced law for more than 30 years with a focus on family and matrimonial law as a partner in the law firm Caruso, Caruso & Branda, P.C.
Branda is very active in the local legal community. She is the former president of the Brooklyn Bar Association (BBA) and the Bay Ridge Lawyers Association and is the current president of the Columbian Lawyers Association of Brooklyn. She is also an active member of the State Bar Association and the Brooklyn Women’s Bar Association.
Currently she chairs the New York State Bar Association Committee on Attorney Professionalism, serves on the State Bar Executive Committee for the Family Law Section as a representative of the Second District and is the chair of the Family Law Section of the BBA. In 2010 she received the BBA’s annual award and was the 2006 recipient of the BBA’s Distinguished Service Award.
What inspired you to study law?
Mary Tyler Moore. When I was in college, I worked for an entertainment attorney whose one client was Mary Tyler Moore. She would show up to the office at about 11:00 a.m., my boss would take her to tennis and lunch and return to the office around 4:30 p.m. I thought it was so glamourous, boy was I wrong!
How did you decide upon your area of legal expertise?
Shortly after graduating law school, I worked on a paternity case and got drawn into the field of family law. The need to protect clients from abusive and controlling spouses and help families interested me and still keeps me going.
What was your most memorable case and why?
Without disclosing names, I represented a wife who was fighting over custody, support, property and the case concluded after a 20-day trial. The husband had five attorneys representing him in various capacities. The judge was a very demanding, difficult judge and despite all barriers created, I was successful in every aspect of the case — regardless, the husband appealed, filed bankruptcy and was able to defraud his wife of what was she rightly deserved. In addition, I never got paid. Every aspect of that case taught me a lot.
What has been your proudest moment as an attorney?
When I was inducted as president of the Brooklyn Bar Association, with both of my parents in the first row.
What is one fact about you that people would find surprising?
That work is work, and once I leave the office I can separate myself from the incredible stressful days.
If you weren’t a lawyer what career would you pursue?
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