In a community that honors the Midwest traditions of hard work, integrity and reliability, the attorneys at Lapp, Libra, Thomson, Stoebner & Pusch, Chtd. have long been recognized as champions of justice for businesses and individuals. These conscientious, dedicated Minnesotans stand together to deliver on their promise to render the highest quality legal representation at a good value.
The 14 talented men and women at Lapp Libra focus in the areas of business and banking litigation; business bankruptcy and creditors’ rights; commercial real estate transactions and litigation; corporate and business law; and estate planning.
Often recognized by their peers for their professional excellence, nearly all of the firm’s attorneys are AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell. In 2015 alone, six were named as Super Lawyers: David Libra, Richard Thomson, John Stoebner, Ralph Mitchell, Joe Roach and Mark Kalla. In addition, Amy Schwartz was named a 2015 Rising Star.
David A. Libra began as a law clerk for the firm that now bears his name while completing his degree, magna cum laude, at the University of Minnesota Law School. He became the firm’s first associate and has since distinguished himself as a leader in the areas of real estate, estate planning and business law. Libra is a Minnesota State Bar Association board certified real property law specialist and is a member of the real property sections of the Minnesota and American Bar Associations. Throughout his career, he has represented some of the largest commercial property holders in Minnesota in the leasing, sale, purchase and finance of real property.
“Our firm recently served as local counsel in connection with several of the largest real estate transactions in Minnesota history – involving a suburban office park,” Libra said. “We regularly represent national and local landlords on substantial office projects, doing leasing and related work, and large and small owners of commercial and multifamily properties. We have very skilled business attorneys who handle corporate, banking, business, and employment transactions, as well as our litigation department that effectively resolves any disputes involving our clients.”
Gregory D. Pusch is also an honors graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School who joined the firm as a summer law clerk before becoming an associate in 1984. His extraordinary talents shine in the areas of corporate law, corporate finance, general business law and real estate, where he represents a variety of businesses and individual clients in a broad range of corporate and commercial matters including business startups; corporate finance; mergers and acquisitions; business recapitalizations and restructuring; shareholder disputes; general tax issues; and real estate leases.
“I work primarily on the business transactional side of law,” Pusch said. “Along with the other attorneys who practice corporate law here, we represent companies large and small, from the birth of the business through its disposition, or, in some cases, dissolution.”
John R. Stoebner graduated magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School and has also practiced at Lapp Libra for his entire career. He serves as a member of the Panel of Private Bankruptcy Trustees for the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Minnesota. His depth of experience results from his service as a trustee in more than 17,000 Chapter 7 cases. He also represents both creditors and debtors in Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy matters.
“I am one of two attorneys in our firm who are appointed as Chapter 7 bankruptcy trustees in Minneapolis. I am currently serving as trustee in the Polaroid bankruptcy case, which is the largest chapter 7 case in the history of Minnesota. We have been involved in selling assets and liquidating funds all over the world, and we have pursued more than 100 lawsuits related to the case. Although we have hired outside counsel to assist in certain specific matters, our firm has acted as the overall general counsel for the bankruptcy estate in this case. For example, we are resolving all but a select few of the claims filed in the case in-house. Our firm also handles business Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 cases, primarily through Ralph Mitchell. In addition, we also file individual bankruptcy cases; often for clients referred to us by other law firms. Bankruptcy has been a strong niche area for our firm.”
Amy L. Schwartz came to the firm in 2004 after graduating with high distinction from the University of Iowa College of Law. She excels as a litigator in various business matters, including banking disputes, contract claims, and employment matters. Her trial court victories are consistently upheld at the appellate level.
“We are a full-service firm that looks to help everyone from small businesses, to mid-size companies, to large corporations with all of the services they will need in the normal course of business. These services include corporate formation, transactional matters, litigation assistance and real estate matters. We have grown in recent years and continue to grow to service our expanding client base,” Schwartz said.
A Commitment to Service
The attorneys at Lapp Libra practice in a collegial and collaborative atmosphere, resulting in positive client outcomes and relationships. “I grew up in a small town and graduated with a class of 12,” Stoebner said. “I guess I’m kind of a small town guy. I think our firm has a small town feel. There’s not a lot of bureaucracy here. As a bankruptcy trustee, I work with a lot of larger firms, and respect the resources they can muster, but I prefer the way we operate. Considering the caliber of lawyers we have here, there’s not a lot of ego or other issues to get in the way. We relate well with each other and with our clients.”
Although the firm is relatively small, it is big on its quality of service. Forty-plus years of dependable, high quality, representation has yielded a full roster of notable, long-term clients. Libra commented, “In the Minnesota marketplace, we have seen a number of mergers and expansions of firms to serve national clients. We have the skill and experience to provide the same high quality service to meet our clients’ needs, and at a more reasonable cost. We pride ourselves as an effective and cohesive group of attorneys. Some clients are disappointed when they meet with a partner-level person at a large firm and quickly get shunted off to other people. That doesn’t happen here. Clients get more personalized service and a hands-on connection with the primary attorney who is handling their matter.”
“We consider our clients as having a personal relationship with us,” Pusch said. “We are committed to helping them whenever we are needed, not to just having one-off interactions with them. Even with my corporate practice, a lot of my clients have turned into friends. It really adds a nice aspect to the practice.”
Located in downtown Minneapolis, Lapp Libra is convenient to the companies and individuals it serves. “We often get conflict referrals from other firms,” Stoebner said. “They know we do high quality work, and won’t steal their clients.”
Lapp Libra’s long record of well-reasoned legal advice and superlative client care continue. Pusch summed up, “One of the reasons for our long-term success is that we don’t look at our clients as potential profit centers. We care about people and helping them achieve their goals.”