Lauren had her first client when she was in kindergarten. His name was Steven and she defended him from a woman who accused him of throwing snowballs at her sons. When the mother tried to accost Steven, Lauren stepped in and pointed out that the woman’s “innocent” sons had thrown snowballs at Steven the day before…with rocks in them. Stunned by the defiance of an eight-year old girl with frizzy hair, the mother retreated…and Lauren won her first case.
It was a theme in her life, with teachers, employers and family members worn out by protracted negotiations with a passionate young girl ultimately sighing and saying, “you should be a lawyer”. And so she is.
Lauren’s father’s career was spent as director of labour relations for the City of Sault Ste. Marie and she spent her youth learning about workplace issues. Now her older sister and brother have careers in human resources, while Lauren took the legal path.
In 1995 Lauren started her own firm with no clients and very little experience in employment law. She set up her office in a spare room with a table, computer and a wooden dining room chair. She spent four months immersed in a small business start up program learning everything from business planning to marketing to financial management, while at the same time learning as much as she could about employment law.
She loved every minute of it; and still does. Running a business and being a lawyer are equally challenging and rewarding and she has since helped develop Bernardi Human Resource Law into a well-respected and innovative human resources law firm. Lauren’s enthusiasm and drive infuse every aspect of the firm and its ongoing growth.
Lauren feels incredibly blessed to enjoy a career that is rewarding, interesting and, at times, really funny.