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Three Spencer Fane Attorneys Named Missouri Lawyers Media Up & Coming Attorneys

October 25, 2023

Spencer Fane is pleased to announce attorneys Tomi Akinyemi, Heather Morris, and Charli Steed have each been honored by Missouri Lawyers Media as Up & Coming attorneys. Spencer Fane is one of just two firms with three honorees.

The annual Up & Coming awards celebrate outstanding legal professionals who are 40 or younger or who are within their first 10 years of practice. Honorees have demonstrated professional accomplishment, skill, and leadership beyond their years, as well as extraordinary commitment to their communities through volunteer service and leadership. 

At Spencer Fane, Tomi concentrates his practice on complex commercial real estate transactions both locally and nationally, working with borrowers, lenders, developers, owners, and management companies on various matters, including real estate finance, acquisition, disposition, and due diligence, as well as leasing of industrial, commercial, multifamily, and mixed-use properties.

In his Up & Coming profile, Tomi reminisces on one of his favorite moments as an attorney in just his second year of practicing law. “I got the opportunity to take ownership of various parts of the transaction that allowed for direct client contact. There were numerous nervous moments, but being an integral part of the deal team grew my confidence and mental fortitude, which I view as necessary skills for practicing this area of law.” Read his full Up & Coming profile here.

At the firm, Heather focuses her practice in the areas of transactional and regulatory banking matters, including mergers and acquisitions, commercial lending, workouts, bankruptcy, and corporate trust. She is also one of eight members on the firm’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee and Co-Chair of the firm’s summer associate program, as well as serving as the DEI Committee liaison for the Women ADVOCATE connect group.

In her Missouri Lawyers Media profile, Heather credits her father – an attorney involved in estate planning – with shaping her career, explaining that she once thought she would follow him into that practice area. She shared, “I appreciated the way he was able to build personal relationships and help people in a positive setting. My career so far is not at all what I had planned during law school, but I would not change it.” Read her Up & Coming profile here.

At Spencer Fane, Charli is an attorney in the Tax, Trusts, & Estates group, focusing her practice in the areas of tax, wealth preservation, and general business. She helps clients plan for the future by preparing trusts, wills, powers of attorney, nonjudicial settlement agreements, and fiduciary litigation documents.

In her profile, Charli shares that she is a third-degree black belt in American Freestyle Taekwondo, has won an MMA fight, and has been interested in the legal profession since she was a child. She also shares advice for other young lawyers, “Don’t be reluctant to branch out, be yourself and stand up for yourself or others when needed. Try to incorporate what you are passionate about in your legal practice, and if you do that, you will never work a day in your life.” Read her Up & Coming profile here.

To learn more and view the full Up & Coming list, please click here.