Skip to Main Content

Career Journey

A conversation with Wakaba Tessier.

Describe your career trajectory.

I lateraled to Husch Blackwell’s St. Louis office in 2012, a move that enabled me to broaden my healthcare experience. Three years later, driven by the desire to reduce the flight time to visit my parents in Japan, I left for the Seattle office of a 3,000-attorney firm. At this larger firm, however, I had limited opportunities for professional growth. I missed Husch Blackwell’s collegial atmosphere and working with attorneys across offices. After learning about the legal needs of a Kansas City-based client with whom I worked closely prior to my departure, I moved to Kansas City and rejoined the firm. I call my time in Seattle my “eight-month sabbatical.”

What is one thing that makes Husch Blackwell special?

The people are just very nice and without ego. You think of attorneys being competitive in a big firm, but I don’t see that. The firm rewards teamwork, and people have embraced that team culture.

Why have you chosen to make your career at Husch Blackwell?

You’re given a lot of opportunity to build your career. You are encouraged to participate in client service teams and other strategic initiatives. Whether you’re an associate or a partner, the firm is supportive of your growth, leadership and involvement. When I started here, I was only a third-year associate. One of the first assignments I received was to license a specialty pharmacy in all 50 states. A partner let me run with it, even though I had never done this kind of work. This is representative of the trust our partners have in associates and the opportunities they’re given. To this day I work with this client, which is also a big reason why I came back to Husch Blackwell.