Garry J. SchnellKell Alterman & Runstein, LLP | Attorneys at Law
...Garry Schnell503.222.3531E-mail attorney Practice areas Business and
As a veteran of two of the Big Four accounting firms and the largest law firm in the U.S., Garry Schnell
has helped resolve the legal concerns of such familiar names as Google
, Columbia Sportswear
, Morgan Stanley
, Merrill Lynch
, and others.The key to working with such clients, Garry
says, is to pay attention to every detail, no matter how small, because it's the little mistakes that often create the biggest headaches.
"It trained me to look for tiny problems even when I was dealing with huge numbers and complex issues," he
says."It's easy to overlook the small aspects in favor of the big ones, but there are always sub-issues to deal with, and the best attorneys recognize them early." Garry
uses the same careful, detail-oriented approach with his
clients at Kell, Alterman & Runstein
, many of whom operate smaller, family owned companies.The big-firm experience gives him the background to tackle almost any problem, while the smaller scale of his
current client base makes it easier to develop good relationships.And a strong rapport, Garry
says, is key to any long-term relationship.
"There are two right answers in every case: what the client wants, and what the law provides," he
explains."It's my job to make the two answers meet as closely as possible.A business relationship isn't quite enough,you need to develop trust as well." After beginning his career working for a law firm in Seattle followed by Deloitte & Touche, LLP, in Portland, Garry moved down to the Bay Area to work for Ernst & Young, LLP, in its federal tax practice group.Wanting a change of pace, Garry accepted a position with Sidley, Austin, Brown & Wood, LLP, one of the largest law firms in the U.S.
After several years of practicing law at Sidley Austin in its San Francisco office, Garry
returned to his
native Portland in 2002, because "San Francisco is a great place to live, but Portland is my home."Upon returning to the Northwest, he
founded a successful technology company, which gave him added insight into the obstacles faced by small business owners.He joined Kell, Alterman & Runstein in March of 2005 after selling the company, citing a preference for legal work over the daily business drill.
The firm's intimate size and team-oriented approach appealed to Garry
from the start, as did its reputation as one of the friendlier firms in town."The firm really develops attorneys here and helps them grow," he
says."That's so important, because it not only improves client retention, but it also sharpens an attorney's client service skills.That's pretty rare, especially among the larger firms."
not solving a client's legal concerns, Garry
can often be found at the Multnomah Athletic Club
, where he's
a member/coach for the karate club.A practicing martial artist since the age of 10, and an AAU USA Team Member and National Champion in his
younger years, Garry
has leaned on his
training during his
career."It's been a constant throughout my life," he