The Brooklyn Law School Board of Trustees appointed two outstanding recent graduates as its newest members, each for a two-year term: Sasha Linney ’11, an associate at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP; and Tyler J. Korff ’12, who has his own firm. “We are very pleased to have such bright young legal minds join the Board of Trustees,” said Stuart Subotnick, Chairman of the Board of Trustees. “With the Law School experience still fresh in their minds, their contributions to the Board will be extremely valuable to the BLS community.”
Sasha Linney ’11, who is an associate in the Mergers & Acquisitions Group and Business Restructuring and Workout Group at Debevoise, studied languages as an undergraduate. She earned a degree in Comparative Literature, magna cum laude, from Princeton University in 2002. After college, she lived in Malaysia through the Princeton in Asia program where she taught English as a Second Language in Penang. After one year, she moved to Spain to teach English to second graders at The American School in Madrid. When she returned to New York City, Linney joined the Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB), which investigates police misconduct and abuses of authority. Over her four years at the CCRB, she rose from the position of Investigator to Assistant Supervising Investigator and was inspired to pursue a career in the law.
While at the Law School, Linney was the Managing Editor of the Brooklyn Law Review, an Edward V. Sparer Public Interest Law Fellow, and a member of the Moot Court Honor Society. She credits her interest in bankruptcy law to Professors Edward Janger and Michael Gerber. “I took bankruptcy with Professor Gerber and had contracts with Professor Janger,” she said. “They were such great professors and I felt a real affinity toward the subject matter.”
Linney spent her 1L summer as an intern with the Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project (now known as the New Economy Project) staffing a legal hotline and advocated for low-income New Yorkers aggrieved by abusive financial services and credit practice. “It was a great opportunity to help people who were suffering from steep debt in the post-financial crisis economy,” she said. During her 2L summer, she was a judicial intern for the Honorable Martin Glenn, U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge, Southern District of New York.
Following law school, Linney joined the Bankruptcy Group at Debevoise where she was part of the American Airlines team acting as special aircraft financing counsel in its New York-based Chapter 11 proceeding, which involved the restructuring of complex financing and purchase arrangements for over 1,000 aircraft. In her current M&A rotation, she advised the Tribune Company in its $2.7 billion acquisition of Local TV, and AXA in its agreement to acquire 51% of Mercantil Colpatria’s insurance operations in Colombia.
“I am honored to be a part of the Board of Trustees,” she said. “As a recent graduate, I am looking forward to the opportunity to being a part of the exciting changes that are happening at the Law School under the vision of Dean Allard.”
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Tyler J. Korff ’12, who has an undergraduate degree from Columbia University, attended law school and rabbinical school simultaneously. He received his rabbinic ordination from Yeshiva Rabbi Chaim Berlin in 2013, just one year after he obtained his J.D. from Brooklyn Law School. For Korff, the combination of degrees was not all that unusual. His father, Grand Rabbi Y. A. Korff ‘72, also earned a law degree at Brooklyn Law School, and serves as Chaplain of the City of Boston as well as a Consul General for Austria and a consultant in international law and relations.
“My ancestry is full of rabbis, and there are many attorneys in the family as well, so I was certainly influenced to some degree by my dual family occupations,” Korff said. “At the same time, I did choose both ‘professions’ myself, and I hope to make a positive difference regardless of whether I’m working in a clerical or legal capacity.”
At the Law School, Korff was the Notes and Comments Editor on the Brooklyn Journal of Corporate, Financial, and Commercial Law and was a research assistant for Professor Anita Bernstein. “The defining moment of my tenure at Brooklyn Law School was first-year Torts, when I met Professor Bernstein,” he said. “It was a special privilege to serve as her research assistant for nearly three years, and on such a wide-array of projects. I like to think I made a small contribution to her work, but I certainly gained far more than she did.”
Following graduation, Korff opened his own practice where his focus is primarily corporate transactional work. “Drafting documents is one of the most rewarding parts of any transaction. Whether it’s corporate formation, purchase and sale agreements, or contracts and partnership agreements, a well-drafted document that anticipates all the contingencies and potential points of contention, however unlikely they may be, can prevent a gigantic headache later on.”
Korff also volunteers his time representing veterans. “There is still a remarkable lack of awareness about the issues our troops face when they come home,” he said. “Access to legal representation is consistently cited by veterans as one of their top three unmet needs. When I have the opportunity, I try to help veterans obtain the VA benefits to which they are entitled, or with other general legal matters outside the VA context such as housing and employment.”
Korff said he is excited to join the Board of Trustees and advance the interests of the Law School. “As a young alumnus, it’s truly a privilege to work with such a distinguished board of trustees,” he said. “I look forward to providing my own perspective and contributing to whatever extent I can.”