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About Joanne Seminara, Esq.

Serving Clients in the Five Boroughs and New Jersey


Partner

Photo: Joanne Seminara

Joanne Seminara

Partner

"Estate and Special Needs Planning can be stressful. It is rewarding and humbling each time a client places her or his unique needs in our hands and see their tension ease when they leave our office, knowing we have made a difference in their lives."

Joanne Seminara has been an attorney licensed to practice law in New York and New Jersey for over three decades. Joanne practices in the areas of elder law, estate and trust planning, including estate tax and Medicaid planning, and special needs planning. A partner in the elder law firm of Grimaldi & Yeung LLP, her offices are located at 9201 Fourth Avenue in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn and 546 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York.

An attorney known for her thoroughness, tenacity and compassion, Joanne has experience in many other areas of practice, including residential and commercial real estate, corporate law, employment law and land use and zoning matters.

Passionate public speaking, organizing and community service has been and remains an important part of Joanne’s life. She regularly speaks at legal education seminars on estate, trust and tax matters and is a popular speaker at community events. In 2015, together with Judith Grimaldi, Esq., Joanne authored her first book entitled: 5 @55; Five Essential Legal Documents You Need by Age 55, as part of a public education campaign that describes the critical importance of having 5 legal documents in place by mid-life. Her various television appearances include the 6 PM News on Fox 5 New York, Brooklyn Savvy, NY1 and Good Day New York.

Ms. Seminara has also received numerous awards and recognitions including: 2017 Bay Ridge Third Avenue Merchant’s Civic Award, named Outstanding Woman in Business and Community Leadership by NIA Community Services Network, 2017; 2016 Power Women in Business Award from Home Reporter & Spectator News, 2016 Community Service and Law Award from the Brooklyn Real Estate Board, 2014 Winner of New York City Council Women’s Community Service Award, 2012 Winner of Top Women in Business Award from Home Reporter & Spectator News, 2010 Keynote Speaker on voting rights at Ft. Hamilton Army Base, 30th Anniversary Service Award from the Union Center for Women, Service Award from the Golden Flame Society of St. Rosalia-Regina Pacis Church, and Community Service Award from the Guild for Exceptional Children, Inc.

A member of Community Board 10 for some two decades, Joanne served as Chair of the Board from 2010 to 2013, priding herself on efficiently running a Board that emphasized the talents of its members and ensured inclusion of all community voices. A volunteer member of community organizations for many years, Joanne is currently the President of a local chapter of Business Networking International as well as the elected Democratic State Committeewoman and Executive Committee member of the Brooklyn Democratic Party.

Joanne enjoys traveling, politics and reading. A life-long Bay Ridge resident, Joanne, a mother and grandmother, is married to Pierre Lehu, a published author and publicist.

Testimonial:

Dear Joanne,
I want to thank you for the excellent work that you do for our family. You are a kind person and a thorough attorney. I admire both qualities.
Be well,
-Ricardo

Published Works

  • 5@55: The Five Essential Legal Documents You Need By Age 55, Quill Driver Books, 2015

Classes/Seminars

  • Lecturer, Real Estate, Bay Ridge Real Estate Institute, 1992 – Present

Honors and Awards

  • 2014 Winner of New York City Council Women’s Community Service Award
  • 2012 Winner of Top Women in Business Award from Home Reporter & Spectator News
  • 2010 Keynote Speaker on women’s voting rights at Ft. Hamilton Army Base
  • 30th Anniversary Service Award from the Union Center for Women
  • Service Award from the Golden Flame Society of St. Rosalia-Regina Pacis Church
  • Community Service Award from the Guild for Exceptional Children, Inc.

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • New York State Bar Association (NYSBA), Member
  • Member NYSBA Elder Law and Special Needs Section
  • New York City Bar Association
  • Bay Ridge Lawyers Association, Member
  • Business Networking International
  • Former lecture, Bay Ridge Real Estate Institute

Past Employment Positions

  • Wolff, Seminara & Lehu, Partner, 1990 – 1994
  • Wolff, Seminara & Mitherz, Associate Attorney, 1986 – 1990
  • Kurzman Karelsen & Frank, LLP , Partner
  • Bay Ridge Real Estate Institute, Lecturer

Pro Bono Activities

  • Democratic State Committeewoman, 64th Assembly District, 2002 – Present
  • Chair, 2010-2013, New York City Community Board 10, member since 1993
  • Past President, Alliance of Bay Ridge Block Associations
  • Guild for Exceptional Children, Inc. past director and parliamentarian
  • Community member of Lutheran Medical Center’s Investigative Review Board
  • Candidate for New York City Council
  • President, Alliance of Bay Ridge Block Associations
  • President, Bay Ridge Forum

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