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Active Listening is a Critical Skill for Attorneys to Practice Law at a High Caliber During Coronavirus and Beyond


Speaker(s): A. Jonathan Trafimow, David B. Sarnoff, Natalie Loeb, Tricia Fratto
Recorded on: Oct. 28, 2020
PLI Program #: 308118

David B. Sarnoff, Esq., is an ICF Certified Executive Coach and leadership trainer with Loeb Leadership. As a former paralegal, attorney, experienced executive search consultant, business owner, and former board of education president, David is uniquely qualified and experienced to understand the mindset, demands and challenges of attorneys, corporate executives, managers and individual contributors.

David utilizes his strengths as an executive coach to elevate the professional performance, mindset, emotional intelligence, soft skills, leadership potential and team building skills of his clients.  David is committed to raising awareness about allyship. In September 2020, he was appointed to serve a three-year term on the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee of the New York City Bar Association.  He is also an effective speaker and connects with his audience on a personal level.  David has presented on numerous topics to a variety of organizations, including several PLI One Hour Briefings.  These topics include, emotional intelligence, leadership skills, active listening, workplace conflict, allyship, corporate culture, shared mission, presentation skills and interviewing skills, among others.   Additionally, David is certified in the emotional intelligence assessment EQ-i 2.0.


Jonathan Trafimow is a Partner of the firm where he Co- Chairs its Employment Law Practice Group.  Mr. Trafimow represents employers in all areas of workplace discrimination, retaliation, harassment and civil rights claims, and class actions. He also provides advice and counsel to employers on discrimination and retaliation policies and prevention, harassment training and prevention, wage and hour matters, handbooks, severance packages, employment agreements and other employment-related documents.

In addition, Mr. Trafimow is an experienced trial attorney and one of a limited number of attorneys with trial experience in the class action context.  Mr. Trafimow co-tried Pisani v. Staten Island University Hospital, 06-CV-1016 (JFB), a defamation case, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York.  He also previously co-tried a civil rights class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, Dodge v. County Orange, 02 Civ. 769 (CM).  Mr. Trafimow has been counsel of record in numerous reported and unreported decisions, including Penn v. N.Y. Methodist Hospital, 884 F3d. 416 (2d Cir. 2018) (writ of certiorari denied 139 S.Ct. 424 (Oct. 29, 2018)); Sethi v. Narod,  12 F. Supp 3d 505 (E.D.N.Y. 2014); Thomas v. iStar Fin., Inc., 652 F.3d 141 (2d Cir. 2010) and 629 F.3d 276 (2d. Cir. 2010); Caban v. N. Y. Methodist Hosp., 119 A.D.3d 717 (2d Dep’t. 2014); Alizadeh v. Pei, 2017 N.Y. Misc. LEXIS 4767 (N.Y. Sup. Ct., Kings Co., Dec. 11, 2017); Sethi v. Morrissey,105 A.D.3d 833 (2d Dep’t 2013); Cobb and Rouse, et al. v. Pozzi, et al. 363 F.3d 89 (2d Cir. 2004); United States ex. rel. Romano v. New York Presbyterian Hosp., 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17002 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 4, 2008); 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 269 (S.D.N.Y. April 2, 2008); 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 54038 (S.D.N.Y. July 15, 2008); Fleming v. Verizon New York, Inc. 2006 WL 2709766 (S.D.N.Y. Sept 22, 2006); Mayers v. New York Comm. Bancorp., Inc., et al., 2006 WL 2105810 (E.D.N.Y. Aug. 31, 2005); Burniche v. General Electric Automation Services, Inc., 306 F. Supp 2d 233 (N.D.N.Y. 2004); Moore v. City of New York, 219 F. Supp 2d 335 (E.D.N.Y. Sept. 10, 2002); Rodolico v. Unisys Corp., 96 F. Supp 2d 84 (E.D.N.Y. May 1, 2000) and, as amicus curia, Evans v. Stephens, 407 F.3d. 1272 (11th Cir. 2005) (en banc).  Unreported decisions include a favorable ruling before the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, Bedoya v. Hilti, Inc. (Dec. 13, 2005) and numerous district courts decisions.

Mr. Trafimow is also a member of the firm’s Cybersecurity, Privacy and Technology Practice Group. In the cybersecurity space, Mr. Trafimow focuses on the intersection of technology and human resources best practices in assisting clients with preparing written information security plans (WISPs).  Companies can use WISPs to mitigate the risk of, and potentially limit legal exposure from, a data breach.  Mr. Trafimow serves as part of a multidisciplinary team that can be called into action when a company is sued in connection with a data breach.

Mr. Trafimow is also an experienced pro bono mediator for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, and was a Fellow of the Coro Foundation Leadership New York Program for the 1999-2000 term.  He frequently writes and lectures on employment law topics in venues throughout the United States, and has authored a book chapter, updated frequently, entitled “Discrimination”, published in the HR Guide to Employment Law: A Practical Compliance Reference (2009) and co-author of “The Sovereign Power of the State: A Proposed Theory of Accommodation,” 12 Cardozo L.Rev.951 (1991).

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Trafimow was a Partner at the law firm of Epstein Becker & Green, P.C. in Manhattan.  He has also served as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of New York in employment and civil rights litigation and prior to that, worked as a Motions Law Clerk for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.


Natalie Loeb is the founder of a certified woman owner business, Loeb Leadership: a management and leadership development company headquartered in the USA for over 20 years.  With over 25 years of experience in professional development facilitation and executive coaching, Natalie is known as an innovative business leader, strategic partner, and leadership development coach to her clients. Recognized as a thought leader on leadership Natalie is regularly approached for her developed expertise by small, medium and Amlaw 100 firms, non-profits, technology start-ups and a variety of other industries.  Natalie and her team help their clients succeed by creating and executing flexible programming with a goal of supporting the growth of high trust work cultures.  Coaching and training programs include increased self-awareness, developing agility and building leadership capacity to provide participants with the ability to gain the extra discretionary effort required from today’s workforce as the combination of   “live” and “remote” work environments accelerates.   An abundance of research along with practical experience continues to prove that today’s leaders need a sophisticated ability to effectively connect and engage with others.

Natalie is a trained executive coach through the Zicklin Business School in New York City.  She received her Master of Science in Industrial/Organizational Psychology at Baruch College in New York City and is certified in over 15 leadership assessment tools.  Natalie has authored numerous articles on law firm leadership.  In addition, Natalie is a sought after speaker for legal conferences and a faculty member for the Practising Law Institute (PLI).  Recent webinar briefings for the PLI include IQ vs EQ; What Lawyers Need to Know About Emotional Intelligence, Active Listening for Lawyers, Law Firm Workplace Culture – Be Smart, Build a Healthy Culture and Generational Challenges Between Law Firm Partners and Associates.


Tricia is a co-founder and the General Counsel of Ethics Suite, LLC. Ethics Suite offers a web-based internal misconduct, theft, and fraud reporting platform and a full range of legal-compliance and forensic accounting consulting services. Prior to founding Ethics Suite, Tricia served as the Director of Global Investigations at Starwood Hotels and Resorts, where she provided oversight of its worldwide anti-corruption and anti-bribery investigations, designed and implemented protocols and policies, developed and conducted training programs, and advised on remediation plans. Tricia also practiced at two of the world’s largest law firms as a white-collar litigator, with particular focus on internal and government facing investigations. Tricia is a graduate of Fordham University School of Law.