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Former Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner Joins Gray Plant Mooty

February 15, 2011 | Press Release

Gaertner’s practice with Minneapolis’ oldest law firm to focus on litigation, complex investigations, white collar defense

MINNEAPOLIS (February 15, 2010) — The Minneapolis-based law firm of Gray Plant Mooty is pleased to announce that Susan Gaertner, who recently completed 16 years of service as Ramsey County’s top prosecutor, has joined the firm, effective today.

“We are thrilled to welcome Susan to our firm,” said Gray Plant Mooty shareholder Katie Bergstrom, cochair of the firm’s Litigation practice group. “Susan is an exceptional trial lawyer with savvy problem-solving skills. She is a great addition to our existing group of litigators, and she will be a tremendous asset to our clients—especially in this era of increased government enforcement.”

“Gray Plant Mooty is the perfect place to launch the next chapter of my career,” said Gaertner. “The firm has a sterling reputation in the legal and business communities and is very strong in the areas I will practice. I’m excited to join the firm today, and I’m looking forward to being as zealous of an advocate for my clients as I was for the citizens of Ramsey County.”

Gaertner will be part of a growing team of Gray Plant Mooty attorneys in Minneapolis, St. Cloud, and Washington, DC, who have vast experience trying criminal and civil cases, as well as handling appeals in federal and state courts—both in private practice and as government prosecutors. Gaertner’s practice will focus on litigation, complex investigations, and white collar defense. Among other matters, she will represent clients in government investigations by local, state, and federal agencies.

First elected in 1994, Gaertner served as Ramsey County attorney from January 1995 to January 2011. She was only the fourth person to hold the office in Minnesota’s second largest county since 1933, and she was the first woman to hold the office. Gaertner took a hands-on approach and successfully prosecuted many high-profile and complex criminal cases, including the first case under Minnesota’s Sexually Dangerous Persons Act. She also served as assistant county attorney for 10 years and, in that role, gained recognition as an expert in DNA evidence. In 1989, she became the first Minnesota prosecutor to present DNA evidence to a jury.

In addition to her work in the courtroom, Gaertner led several successful community initiatives as Ramsey County attorney. She created an innovative truancy intervention program to improve school attendance of students ages six to 17. Since its launch in 1995, the program has served more than 30,000 students and the truancy rate has been cut nearly in half. Gaertner also established a special gangs and guns prosecution unit to combat violent crime committed with guns. The effort has contributed to a dramatic decrease in such gang-related crimes in recent years.

Gaertner was the recipient of the American Bar Association’s Norm Maleng Minister of Justice Award in 2009, the Minnesota State Bar Association’s Prosecutor of Excellence Award in 2007, and the Minnesota County Attorney Association’s Distinguished Service Award in 2004. A native of St. Paul, she is a member of the Harding High School Hall of Fame.

Gaertner, who was recently inducted to the prestigious American College of Trial Lawyers, received her J.D., cum laude and Order of the Coif, from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1980.

About GPM:

Gray Plant Mooty is recognized as one of the leading corporate law firms in Minnesota and one of the top franchise firms in the world. Our roots go back to 1866. Today, we are a 170-attorney, full-service firm with offices in Minneapolis and St. Cloud, Minnesota, and Washington, DC. Our attorneys and staff provide exceptional client service and value to our clients, and directly or with our global affiliations, we provide comprehensive legal services on a regional, national, and global basis.

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