Feature: Kira Masteller
Kira Masteller is not only a well respected Estate Planning attorney, she is also the president of the San Fernando Valley Bar Association. Here at RSJ we have been fortunate enough to collaborate with her on several projects, and have several more planned for the future. We wanted to share a bit more about this remarkable woman with our clients, colleagues, and community.
What is your current job title?
Shareholder at Lewitt, Hackman, Shapiro, Marshall & Harlan
How long have you been in this role?
How long have you been in your current industry?
What inspired you to follow this path?
I found when I was initially a paralegal working in family law, that I enjoyed working with families, property and taxes. I did NOT like the battles in family and seeing individuals at their worst. I went to work for an estate planning firm and knew I found my niche, as clients doing their estate planning/tax planning and financial planning are NOT generally in battle. I am able to educate clients to make informed decisions with respect to their estate and tax planning, avoiding battles and achieving their goals. I went to law school at night while I worked full time as a paralegal and went into estate planning as soon as I became an attorney.
What is your favorite part about your current role?
Working with people and solving puzzles for clients. Saving estate taxes, property taxes and income taxes for families by learning their goals and providing them with their best options is very gratifying.
What has been one of the biggest surprises you encountered in your current position?
As a woman in a traditionally male field, I have been accepted and enjoy so many professional relationships. I am part of a generation that is changing the statistics for women and I love it.
What are some of the biggest industry changes you’ve observed over the course of your career?
Paper to digital. No more law libraries; no more paper. The digital age and the speed at which we have to work now is a huge change. We have to be lawyers and technology masters to keep up in my field.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
Keep moving forward.
What advice would you have for someone entering this field?
Learn to listen. Listening to your clients is the best tool in my tool belt.
What is your superpower?
Being of service. Being of service to others makes me feel good and energizes me every day. What can I do to contribute today? I start with a smile and add to it as the day progresses.