Interviews with NABL Members from NABL News
Hannah Kate Sullivan, Fidelity Management & Research Company, Merrimack, NH
Hannah Kate Sullivan
Fidelity Management & Research Company, Merrimack, NH
Tell us a little about yourself - your family, your hobbies, etc…
My husband, Tony, is the CFO of Child and Family Services of New Hampshire, and I’m a step-mother to Alex (15) and Sam (13), who are an incredibly fun and funny duo. During my spare time in the warmer months, I’m an instructor for a motorcycle track day organization (think road-racing courses, not NASCAR ovals). In the winter, it’s skiing, snow-shoeing, running, and barre class, all of which helps me fit into my motorcycle leathers again come spring.
What first interested you in law?
I was initially attracted to the logic component of the law, but I’m equally fascinated by the impact of ever-evolving public policy and social issues on legislation and judicial decisions.
What was the best career advice anyone ever gave you?
Do not have coffee in your hand if you walk into a meeting late. (I feel compelled to clarify that I have never done this.)
What has been your favorite moment of your career so far?
Not so much a particular moment, but my favorite aspect of my current role is the work we do on behalf of our municipal fund shareholders. While Fidelity is my client, every decision we make as an asset manager is informed by the fact that we are managing investments for thousands of individuals and households in order to help them obtain retirement security and plan for their families’ well-being. That knowledge, in turn, provides me with an incredibly clear frame of reference when I advise Fidelity’s municipal bond and municipal money market trading desks.
How long have you been a member of the NABL?
It must now be roughly 10 years since I took the Fundamentals course at the suggestion of NABL evangelist (and this year’s TSLI Chair) Steve Weyl, and I’ve been a member ever since.
How has your participation and membership in NABL been of value to you and your practice?
Membership in NABL is critical for anyone who wants a seat at the table for discussions about important issues in the public finance industry. It provides me with an opportunity to advocate for my client’s views, as well as to learn about the differing perspectives held by other stakeholders in the industry. And once in a great while, such as with the recent tax reform efforts, many of those varying voices have an occasion to unite.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about becoming a panelist at one of NABL's conferences?
A NABL panel a great forum for advocating views from your client’s perspective. And any prospective panelist should be assured that, even when the opinions differ, an audience of NABL members is inquisitive, engaged and respectful.
As the Panel Chair for the 16th Annual Tax & Securities Law Institute's General session: "A View from the Outside", would you tell us about your plan for your panel?
This should be a great panel, and a bit different from prior NABL fare. We’ll have a diverse group of lawyers who formerly worked at law firms and now work at a broker/dealer, underwriter, issuer, and asset manager, respectively (either as in-house counsel or on the business side of muni transactions). The panelists are eager to share their insights about what makes for a great relationship with outside counsel and what factors they consider when deciding to partner with particular outside counsel.
From the questionnaire made famous by Bernard Pivot and James Lipton, "What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?”
After working my way through Georgetown Law as a club DJ in DC, I was ready to transition to a career as a lawyer . . . but if I had known that there is actually a job where people get paid to source the perfect songs for movie and TV show scenes and soundtracks, I definitely would have considered it. Come to think of it, my unsolicited suggestion for the 2018 TSLI: What Lies Ahead theme song is “The Next Movement” by the Roots.