With an eye on the future, Camarillo-based employment law firm LightGabler LLP has named five new partners.
Not counting name partners Jon Light and Karen Gabler, the promotions represent 25% of the firm’s attorney headcount. Light, who is the firm’s managing partner, said the move, made this month, to give those partners a stake in the operation was to signal his confidence in their leadership.
“I wanted to create some continuity for the future,” he said. “They’ve got a 20-to-25-year shelf life, and this really sets us up for the future. They’re going to be the heart of the firm for the next five, 10, 15 years.”
The new partners are Chandra Beaton, Ryan Haws, Michael Brody, Jamie Stein and Angela Lopez.
Light said the attorneys’ time at LightGabler runs from about four years to more than 20, while their practices cover a wide range of employment litigation and employment counseling.
Beaton’s practice covers disputes including construction defects, personal injury, intellectual property and general liability, among others. Haws handles a variety of workplace disputes and compliance issues. Both Brody and Stein cover wrongful termination, workplace harassment and discrimination, wage and hour claims and other individualized disputes, while Lopez also picks up those areas plus compliance issues.
One consistency among the group, Light said: no egos.
“We don’t put up with egos,” he said. “It’s really been a pleasant firm, and I try to sustain that by hiring good people.”
Since forming in 2011, when Light left the since-shuttered Nordman Cormany Hair & Compton in Oxnard, LightGabler has grown from five lawyers, an administrator and paralegal to 20 attorneys, five administrators and five paralegals. It has a second location in San Luis Obispo, and Light noted that the firm posted a 20% revenue growth in 2020 in spite of the pandemic. At the moment, the firm is handling 98 class-action lawsuits.
“Year over year, we’ve had growth in terms of people. We’ve had positive growth, even during Covid,” he said. “That’s the best part about employment law. It’s noncyclical. In good times it’s busy, and in bad times it’s busy.”
And while Light formed the firm without having an institutional legacy in mind, it’s an idea that has crept into place recently. He admitted that while he’s counting down the years until his retirement and no longer has the energy for trials, his younger attorneys have taken the reins and made it worthwhile for the firm to invest in their careers here now.
That investment, Light added, creates a “bedrock foundation” to continue the firm’s work and growth.
“I really wanted to create a legacy for these folks and give them something to work with,” he said. “For the next 10 years, we’re dialed in.”