On December 3, 2021 the Wisconsin Association for Justice (WAJ) President’s Dinner was held at The Pfister hotel in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Personal injury attorney, Amy Risseeuw, was joined by her peers, family and friends to be honored as the fifth woman in WAJ’s history to become president of the organization. Amy has previously served as a member of the WAJ Jury Instruction Committee, as the vice-chair and chair of the WAJ Women’s Caucus, as the co-chair and chair of the WAJ Spring Seminar, as a member of the secretary of the WAJ Board of Directors and as a member of the WAJ Executive Committee.
During the dinner, the out-going President of WAJ, Attorney Jay Urban, introduced Amy to guests by saying, “We do not have any smarter member, we do not have any more dedicated member, we do not have any more lovely member than Amy Risseeuw. And, she is going to be our shining star going forward.”
In 2005 Amy joined Peterson, Berk & Cross, S.C. as an attorney, after graduating from the University of Wisconsin Law School. She had previously worked at Peterson Berk & Cross as a paralegal to Attorney Avi Berk, before attending to law school. Avi said of Amy, “I have known since I first started working with Amy more than twenty years ago that she was going to be a fantastic attorney and a pillar in our industry. I am constantly impressed by her intelligence, creativity and, most importantly, compassion for our clients. In being elected President of the Wisconsin Association for Justice, it is clear that others in our field recognize those traits in her as well.”
Amy long knew that she was best suited for a career in which she could be the voice for those who could not advocate for themselves. When starting her career as a personal injury lawyer, she also worked closely with Attorney John Peterson, who said, “Amy and I have been co-counsel in cases in Federal Courts around the country and have had jury trials and settlements in Wisconsin with multiple six and seven figure results for our clients. We’ve had product cases, wrongful death, medical malpractice, civil rights cases, and a multitude of other personal injury disputes. She is extremely bright, organized and diligent. As a past president of The Wisconsin Association of Justice, I know Amy will be great.”
As the new President of WAJ Amy hopes to continue to use her voice to be an advocate for justice in the state of Wisconsin. In her speech on Friday evening, Amy said, “We are the voice of those who can’t speak for themselves. The officers, directors, all the members of WAJ who fight to keep the courtroom doors open and protect our right to a jury trial. I worked with the Women’s Caucus. We were able to be the voice for women going back to work after having babies, and we wrote a pregnancy policy to guide judges, to help firms figure out what it is that the women need. We were able to be the voice for women who didn’t know they needed a speaker yet. As a member of the executive committee, I saw more ways that WAJ members can be the voice. In communicating with our legislatures to recognize how different legislation can affect people who are injured by torts. You need to be the voice for those who are the voiceless.
“The definition of an advocate and advocacy is to publicly support a policy or a position. We have examples all around us of ways that we can be the voice. We have members who are keeping elections in Wisconsin safe and open. We have members who have spoken for their school boards or may consider running for school board. We have many elected officials who strive to improve our society by being the voice for their constituents. Being the voice can make the world just a little bit better, just like we try to do for our clients each day. I am humbled and honored to serve this next year as president of WAJ. I will be a voice for justice, a voice for our goals and a voice for our mission.”
To read Amy Risseeuw’ s speech in its entirety, visit the Wisconsin Association for Justice website.
About the Author
Meghan Petters has been with Peterson, Berk & Cross, S.C. for over 15 years. She spent the majority of her time as a family law paralegal but has also been managing the firm’s social media platforms for many years. Prior to joining the firm, Meghan had a background in communications. She currently serves as the firm’s Social Media and Marketing Coordinator.