Women's Leadership InitiativeQ&A with Raquel Sportel

Raquel Sportel is a senior attorney in Porter Wright’s Chicago office who works with clients on trust and estate planning, administration and litigation. She works with families and individuals to develop bespoke estate plans, focusing on wealth preservation and tax planning tailored to each client’s needs and long-term goals.

What was the single most important thing that made you want to focus on trusts and estates?

The highly personal nature of my work, which often includes the complex dynamics between family relationships and financial matters. I act as a family counselor to my clients helping them navigate family matters, and as a result, I become close to them by developing holistic understandings of their lives, providing insightful solutions and helping ease life transitions.

What part of your practice are you most passionate about?

I am most passionate about the relationships I build. Whether they are with my clients, colleagues, mentors or advisors, I develop important relationships with all. These relationships are incredibly important to me because they build me up and motivate me to help reach goals, work collaboratively across the firm, advance and identify new opportunities, or gain new skills. Relationship building happens everywhere, and I consider myself lucky to get to do it all of the time!

Tell us about a professional woman who has inspired you.

There are many professional women who have inspired me and continue to do so throughout my professional career and personal life, so for me, it is difficult to select just one. I derive inspiration from women in every walk of life because there is so much to gain. I extract insight and encouragement from various sources and develop my own style where inspired. I find that when women share and inspire one another, the water rises for us all.

How can women support other women in their organizations?

By encouraging each other! Be a part of each other’s support team. Be open in sharing experiences and lessons learned. Celebrate personal and professional milestones. Be tolerant and treat others the way you want to be treated. Do your part to pave a smoother path for those who come after you.

Complete the sentence: “If I wasn’t an attorney, I would be a…” and why?

A surgeon. I am incredibly curious about the human body and fascinated by medical technological advancements and innovation. The idea of utilizing engineering, biomechanics, physiology and health science disciplines to help people achieve the highest quality of life and therefore, lead happier lives, feels like a worthy pursuit.