Mannion Prior LLP Partner Jennifer DiVeterano Gayle will receive the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section 2021 Trailblazer Award at the Association’s Annual Meeting on May 20.
The Trailblazer Award recognizes young lawyers practicing in the real property, probate and trust areas of law. Honorees demonstrate excellence in the practice of law, professionalism through bar association activities and a commitment to pro bono legal services.
Ms. Gayle’s nomination cited her stellar reputation as an Orphans’ Court litigator in Pennsylvania, her ability to find time to serve in leadership positions within various bar associations and her conviction to pro bono work while managing a busy caseload.
Earlier this year, Gayle was named a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC), and serves as a frequent author and panelist on various trust and estate topics, including the utilization of experts in Orphans’ Court litigation, surcharge litigation and the removal of fiduciaries, representing clients with diminished capacity, the attorney-client privilege and the collection of Orphans’ Court judgments.
Gayle focuses her practice on litigation involving trusts, estates, guardianships and powers of attorney, including all forms of estate and trust disputes, will contests, surcharge and removal actions, interpretation issues, and other fiduciary matters before the Orphans’ Court Division of the Court of Common Pleas and Register of Wills. These matters frequently include complex corporate issues related to business interests owned by estates and trusts. Gayle has a particular expertise with respect to electronic discovery and the fiduciary exception to attorney-client privilege.
Gayle devotes 150 to 200 hours annually to pro bono matters, and serves as a child advocate with the Montgomery Child Advocacy Project (MCAP), volunteering her time to advocate for child victims of abuse, neglect and trafficking in the courts and social services agencies.
Gayle was awarded the 2011 Citizen’s Crime Commission Award of Merit II for her prior pro bono representation of the Montgomery County District Attorney to obtain a guardianship in the case of abuse and neglect.
Mentorship is important to Gayle. She is Mannion Prior’s designated mentor for new associates and female attorneys. She also helps conduct on-campus interviews for summer and full-time associates, and serves as a mentor to pro bono attorneys for the Philadelphia Volunteers for the Indigent Program in trust and estate litigation matters.
Gayle is a member of the Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and Montgomery Bar Associations, the Executive Committee and the Orphans’ Court Litigation Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association Probate and Trust Law Section, and is co-chair of the Pro Bono, Community Service and Access to Justice Committee and a member of the Women in the Law Committee of the Montgomery Bar Association.
She earned a J.D., cum laude, from Villanova University School of Law and a B.A. from Ursinus College, with distinguished honors.