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Member Spotlight
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On this page we share interviews by Board Member and
Labor & Employment Law Committee Co-chair Tejash V. Sanchala, Esq. 
with WCBA members about their experiences and insights.
The articles were originally published in the Member Spotlight column in
the WCBA's Westchester Lawyer magazine, We hope you are inspired by
their stories!

Tejash welcomes your comments and suggestions for future columns.
He can be reached here.




Frances DeThomas, Esq.

Principal Attorney,
Tyre & DeThomas, P.C.




Number of years as a WCBA member, positions held and awards received: I have been a member of the WCBA since graduation from Pace Law School in 1999 and currently serve on the Executive Committee of the Family Law Section of the WCBA. I have been selected to the NY Metro Super Lawyers for 2016 and 2017.

My primary practice areas are: matrimonial and family law.

One of my favorite legal success stories: I think more gratifying than obtaining any favorable decision or order from the court is helping a client/family/children in a family law related crisis find the right solution to their problem without the necessity of court intervention. One recent case involved parties that were on the verge of needing immediate court involvement that would have included full blown custody and family offense proceedings, but opposing counsel and I recognized the need to get the right mental health professionals involved to diffuse a volatile situation and from there the parties were able to physically separate and come up with an appropriate parenting plan for the children.

My legal mentor was: Margaret H. Tyre, Esq.

If I were not practicing law I would be: a chef.

The best thing I did to improve my skill set as an attorney: the training I received to become a Collaborative Law attorney, which included mediation training and interdisciplinary collaborative training, helped me immensely in both collaborative law matters and traditional litigated family law matters. In collaborative training you develop a skill set which enables you to work with, and not against, the other party to achieve results, which is a much smarter use of everyone’s time, energy and resources.

The best thing I did to improve marketing my practice and me: I learned from Margret Tyre that the best way to market yourself is to “be yourself and see and be seen.” That includes not just active involvement in professional associations, but also active involvement and pursuing leadership positions in organizations and groups that you enjoy in your personal life, because when it comes down to it, we choose to work with the people we like, admire and trust.

What I splurge on: my garden, flowers delight and fascinate me at the same time.

The best hour of my day is: morning, after coffee, of course.

Favorite movies: so many to choose from, but those involving great courtroom scenes: And Justice for All, To Kill a Mockingbird, Miracle on 34th Street, My Cousin Vinny and Liar Liar (you might have to be a matrimonial attorney to appreciate the last one!).

Favorite meal: pomme frites, mussels and a white Burgundy at any French bistro.

My favorite vacation: my honeymoon trip to Portofino, Florence and Chianti, Italy, with the love of my heart, John Randolph. Italy is a very easy and friendly place to travel, with so much natural beauty, culture and great food and wine.

Three things I cant live without: New York Times, Shenorock Shore Club, Rye YMCA.

One of my favorite things to do in Westchester: A walk through Manor Park in Larchmont either early in the morning or at dusk, the sky and lighting on the water are beautiful.

Best advice I ever got: integrity is a lot like toothpaste, once you squeeze it out of the tube you can’t get it back in.

My advice to new lawyers: do the right thing, even when no one is looking.

Last time I was out of my comfort zone: running my first 5K this past April in the Rye YMCA Derby.

One of my future ambitions: resurrect the WCBA Co-ed Softball Team. The New Lawyers Committee started the team in 1999-2000 and it afforded the new lawyers at the time, Tejash Sanchala, Joe Villanueva and myself included, to develop lasting WCBA friendships. I think it is incumbent on us to help our younger lawyers learn to network in a way that is fun and engaging outside of the traditional CLE Program format.

My favorite part of being involved with the WCBA: meeting lawyers and professionals in different practice areas other than my own, participating on the Executive Committee of the Family Law Section, networking and attending great CLE Programs.


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