Aug. 24, 2022
Eve H. KarasikSee more on Eve H. Karasik
LEVENE, NEALE, BENDER, YOO & GOLUBCHIK L.L.P.
LOS ANGELES - Eve H. Karasik enjoys Chapter 11 matters because they give her the opportunity to learn about a wide variety of businesses and their legal issues. When she represented some casinos several years ago, she learned about gaming law and licensing. She learned about commercial leases representing retailers. And more recently, when she helped a nonprofit saddled with many secured debts, she learned a great deal about government grants and awards. "It's fascinating the diverse industries and legal areas that you end up involved with in bankruptcy," Karasik said. One problem she has is getting that idea across to young lawyers and law students. Karasik is the vice president for diversity and inclusion with the American Bankruptcy Institute, where she heads its pipeline and profile-raising committee. Its mission is to attract and maintain a diverse population into bankruptcy law. It's not easy, she said. "It's hard enough to get people interested in insolvency in the first place.... We have the doublewhammy of a smaller population of diverse people and trying to get that population headed toward us." But Karasik says the ABI is having some success. She and her committee have a mentorship program and are looking into ways to help diverse lawyers meet others, publish and present at meetings. ABI is also part of a diversity consortium made up of several insolvency organizations, including the National College of Bankruptcy Judges. "I think we're making change, and I'm really, really thrilled to be part of it," she said. Diversity is one of her passions, she said, as is being active in bankruptcy organizations. She serves on the executive committee of ABI's board of directors and is a past president of the Los Angeles Bankruptcy Forum. Lately, in her own practice, she is seeing the effects of how expensive Chapter 11s have become. She has instead been putting together many assignments for benefit of creditors and some of the new Subchapter V reorganizations for small businesses. But she hasn't actually filed any of those yet. "A lot of cases are being resolved before you even get [to court]," she said.