Editor’s Note: This is the eighth installment in MSJDN’s series highlighting the employers MSJDN members say are going above and beyond for military spouse attorneys. Each employer in this series was nominated for MSJDN’s Member’s Choice Award by members who told us in their own words just how awesome their employers are. MSJDN is thrilled to tell these employer stories, as a way of expressing our gratitude for supporting military spouses as they build careers in the legal profession.
The MSJDN Member’s Choice winner will be announced at MSJDN’s Annual Reception in Washington D.C. on May 7.
Two of the most difficult challenges that military spouses face as they try to build a legal career are the resume gaps that result from PCS moves, and the time apart from their service member spouse that results from the decision not to PCS. Jennifer Talley’s firm Trenk, DiPasquale, Della Fera & Sodono has seen her through both. That’s why Jennifer nominated Trenk DiPasquale for the MSJDN Member’s Choice Award, given to an employer that has gone above and beyond for military spouse attorneys.
Trenk DiPasquale is a litigation and insolvency firm based in New Jersey with offices in Pennsylvania, New York and California. When Jennifer joined the firm as an attorney in 2010, she was based in the New Jersey office. Her husband, on the other hand, was stationed at Fort Drum, which is about as close to Canada as you can get and still be in New York state. For three years, they were a remote family, and seeing each other was a challenge.
The one bright spot? Jennifer worked for a firm that “always accommodated my requests for time off, or to work remotely if necessary.” Trenk DiPasquale understood the challenge that Jennifer was dealing with, and did was it could as an employer to support her. When Jennifer’s husband deployed to Afghanistan, her firm sent weekly care packages to him and his unit, and coworkers alternated being “box captain” coordinating the items to send.
In February 2013, Jennifer’s husband received orders to Ft. Detrick Maryland, and they decided they were finished being a remote family; Jennifer was going to Maryland with her husband. When Jennifer broke the news that she was moving, firm management “unexpectedly and instantly offered to keep me, and let me work remotely for the firm.” She happily accepted, and has now been working remotely for Trenk DiPasquale for nearly a year.
In addition to supporting Jennifer, Trenk DiPasquale has also been instrumental in MSJDN’s state rule change efforts in New Jersey. MSJDN’s New Jersey Team has been able to connect with “county bars, the State Bar, large law firms, and legislatures in NJ due to the firm’s support and connections.” The New Jersey Supreme Court is considering a New Jersey rule change right now, thanks in large part to Trenk DiPasquale.
Thanks to her firm, Jennifer has been able to avoid some major military spouse hurdles. “Unlike so many of our members, thanks to Trenk DiPasquale, I do not have a gap in my resume, loss of pay, or all of the other hardships that military spouses generally face with as a result of PCSing.”