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What is the best gift you've ever given or received?

Every 14 weeks, a group of students graduates from the Greater Chicago Food Depository’s Chicago’s Community Kitchens program. As a supporter of CCK, we always try to have at least one LP person in attendance. We also like to give a small gift to the graduates in recognition of their efforts. This spring, after giving a $25 gift card to one CCK participant, we received a note. She had used the money to buy some cutting boards and a digital scale, and thanked us for helping her start her culinary journey.

That's the thing about giving. Small gestures can make a big impact, be it a $5 mug, an old hat or something that has no monetary value whatsoever. We asked our One Question participants this month what is the best gift they’ve ever given or received. No surprise, most of their responses had little to do with the dollar amount of the gift. They were about the thought behind it.

Whether you have something special planned for someone special this holiday season or you’re blown away by a thoughtful gift, we wish you a holiday season full of lasting memories.

Happy Holidays from your friends at LP.

 
 

 

 

Brian Kozminski
Real Estate
1

"A hand drawn card for Father’s day when my son was young."

Jason Hirsh
Litigation

1

 

Dannia Altemimei
Corporate
 

"The best gift I ever gave was at the holidays 2 years ago. My dad grew up poor in New York City. He has always been a huge Yankees fan. Even after he became successful in the business world, he never spent money on himself. For the holidays, my husband and I decided to get him a vintage wool Yankees jacket with the leather sleeves.

I thought he would love it, but I did not anticipate that he would start crying when he opened it. He wore it around the house for the rest of the week and still wears the jacket all the time. Every time we see him, he tells us a new story about someone who stopped him to compliment the jacket."

Lauren Wolven
Trusts & Estates

1

"The gift of time. Whenever a meeting is cancelled or plans fall through, I consider it a gift of time to myself and to others. The gift of time almost always comes as a surprise and I try to choose wisely how I will use it."

Angela Hickey
Executive Director

 

Gary Blackman
Litigation

1

"The best gift I have ever given was the time I surprised my parents (who live out of state) with a wedding anniversary visit. I revealed the visit by having my two children hide in a FedEx box that I “delivered” to their front porch."

Marc Fineman
Intellectual Property

1

"The best Christmas gift I ever received was finding out on Christmas Day 1996 that my wife was pregnant with our first child."

Tom Jaros
Real Estate

 

"The best gift I have ever received was my grandma’s turquoise ring. It is cool, funky and classic and reminds me of her every day."

Erin Isaacson
Litigation

1

 

Becky Jo Morgan
Corporate Paralegal
1

"The best gift that I ever received was from my grandfather, Hyman.

“Poppie Z” was the Captain of the USS Sardonyx in WWII. Growing up, I was his “skipper.” When he passed, Poppie Z left me his Captain’s cap."

Marc Zaslavsky
Corporate

 

Jeremy Gresham
Director of Finance

1

"My World’s Greatest Dad coffee mug. I’m not even sure which of my boys gave me this mug. I’ve had it for at least 15 years. It’s worn, it’s faded but it’s mine, and I love it. And it reminds me that the most important things in life are family."

Mitch Weinstein
Intellectual Property

1

Brad Kolar
Founder of Avail Advisors

 

"The best gift I ever received was when my husband and I first moved in together. We were broke because he was in business school, and we lived in Manhattan with me supporting us on an television assistant’s salary. He drew me a picture of flowers when I got promoted at work because we couldn’t afford the real deal. I still have it in my wallet 14 years later!"

Christina Lutz
Litigation

1

Jay Leonard
Principal at Bernstein

1

"When I was about 10 years old I received a special Christmas gift from my grandfather. He took a bunch of old tools (screwdrivers, hammer, wrench, pliers, level, saw, etc.) that had belonged to his father, and he refurbished them and mounted them on a pegboard tool rack. He knew I was interested in woodworking at the time, and so he gave me the tools at Christmas and then taught me how to use each tool for its proper purpose.

I used those tools through my adolescent years to build a case for my baseball cards, a birdhouse for my mom, and other experiments. My talents as a woodworker did not carry over into adulthood, but the memory of my grandfather’s thoughtful gift will be with me forever."

Michael St. Peter
Corporate

 

 

Abe Trieger
Real Estate
1

"I recently received, from a close friend, a small souvenir bottle which contains sand from Omaha beach in Normandy France. This bottle of sand caused me to recall that my father was involved in the Normandy invasion. My father never spoke much about his involvement in the war, in fact when asked he would often lead the conversation in a different direction. When speaking with my older siblings, they had a similar experience and knew little of his war time experience.

Later in life when my father’s health was failing, his discharge papers were necessary for him to receive care at the VA hospital. My two oldest brothers were helping my mother through this process. His discharge papers stated that he was involved in the Normandy invasion and the liberation of Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany. It also stated that he was the recipient of a Silver Star, Bronze Star and an Oak Cluster. I was not aware of this history nor were most of my siblings until I did some research after receiving this gift. This small bottle of sand gave me the gift of connecting with my father’s war history and perhaps understanding him a little better."

Kevin Corrigan
Director of Administration

1

"For law school graduation, my parents got me a set of golf clubs (which I still use to this day)."

Linsey Neyt
Real Estate

 
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Levenfeld Pearlstein does not operate in a vacuum. We rely upon our network of clients, advisors, trusted friends, and colleagues to help it learn, grow, and connect. The firm launched its annual One Degree event to help people within LP's network connect, and it introduced bio videos to help LP's clients and potential clients connect to its attorneys. Because there are a lot more connections to be made in LP's network, we launched One Question, One Degree – a monthly video series that asks insightful, business-related questions to people in LP's network. Through personal stories and anecdotes captured on video, our network will get to know LP's attorneys and contacts, and in turn, will become a little more interconnected.

Want to watch more installments of One Question, One Degree?