Meet Chicago Local Steering Committee member, Sara Anstoetter!
Tell us a bit about yourself – where do you work and what do you do?
Over the past ten years, I have worked with a range of big law and mid-size law firms in various roles to strengthen their brands and deepen their client relationships. Currently, I lead the marketing & communications activities for the boutique litigation firm Bartlit Beck where I oversee the firm’s visual identity, awards and rankings, sponsorship engagement and the production of marketing collateral and advertising materials. I have a broad range of skills, including design, strategic planning, brand positioning, client development and website and social media management.
I have a BA from the University of Iowa and live in Chicago with my fiancée, Rob, and son Robert Charles “Charlie.”
What’s your current and/or former volunteer role in LMA?
Currently, I co-lead the Chicago Local Steering Committee programming efforts with Jordan Navarro.
What do you enjoy about volunteering for LMA?
I feel incredibly privileged to be working alongside and learning from some of the brightest minds in legal marketing and am proud to give back to this organization that provides the crucial knowledge, inspiration and camaraderie needed to bring value to the legal community.
What was your pandemic silver lining?
Four months into the pandemic, we welcomed our son Charlie into the world (four weeks before his due date). From day one, he was active, alert, and already full of surprises. Amid the backdrop of an unimaginable year, Charlie was our bright light reminding us of the love, joy, and peace surrounding us. Our happy, social, and now 20-month-old loves to dance to music (Old MacDonald is a favorite), show off his Spanish vocabulary, read books before bedtime and generally prefers reorganizing our spice rack and my makeup drawer to playing with all of the toys he’s amassed. He is independent and strong-willed, with a vocabulary that is growing by the day. “No” has evolved to “no way,” “no night-night,” “no bye-bye,” – “no, no, no!” Periodically, he’ll surprise us with an “I love you” that melts our hearts. Viewing the world through his big, curious eyes continues to mesmerize me.
What new hobbies did you take on during the pandemic?
The pandemic allowed our family to rediscover our love for the outdoors in the form of hiking. Over the last two years, we’ve hiked the Warren Dunes (MI), Indiana Dunes National Park (IN), Sleeping Bear Dunes (MI), the Pisgah National Forest (NC), River Wildlife Wilderness Preserve (WI), San Bernadino National Forest (CA), Joshua Tree National Park (CA), Eagle Point Park (IA), Four Mounds (IA), McDowell Sonoran Conservancy (AZ) and El Yunque National Forest (PR). We’ve also discovered some local gems – the Palos Park Woods and the Skokie Lagoons. It’s a rewarding hobby that allows you to be fully present with body and mind – awakening senses, releasing stress, igniting curiosity, and feeding your soul.
What is something that people won’t learn about you by reading your CV or LinkedIn profile?
I grew up on a third-generation farm in Iowa (located just 10 minutes from the Field of Dreams movie site – for any baseball fans!). Through the example of my grandfather, I developed a strong work ethic and a deep appreciation for the farming community. Much like successful legal marketers, successful farmers are master multitaskers. Successful farmers must have a savvy business mind, acquire the rudimentary skills of veterinary medicine, nursing livestock back to good health, and in some cases learning to doctor themselves back to good health. Successful farmers must be models of faith, depending on the rain and sunshine to bless their efforts. They must have the vision of an engineer to solve everyday problems on the spot; master the fundamental principles of biology, chemistry and meteorology; take on the roles of a mathematician, carpenter, mechanic and accountant; and be well versed in the laws of the land. My grandfather was just that farmer. He lived life with tenacious independence and had a rugged grit that one can only find in an Iowa farm kid. I think he would be proud to know that I’ve never lost sight of my farm girl roots and continue to be guided, both in my personal and professional lives, by the principles that he instilled in me – integrity, loyalty, humility.