Partner, Corporate Attorney
Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohl LLP
Jessica Herron currently serves as a Partner at Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP., a law firm founded in Detroit with nearly 300 attorneys in seven offices. As a corporate attorney, Jessica represents clients with mergers, acquisitions, financings, transactional matters, private and public securities offerings, and compliance and disclosure under SEC rules and listing standards. Outside of laying the law in her profession, Jessica volunteers her time as a Board member of Junior Achievement of Southeastern Michigan and the Wolverine Bar Association. Jessica credits her not-so-common leadership qualities in being able to provide work-life-balance for herself as a wife and mother of three boys.
Jessica in one word: Fearless
Favorite Detroit hangout: The Dequindre Cut
How Jessica Gives Back:
Board of Directors - Junior Achievement of Southeastern Michigan: Focuses on high impact programs that drive long-term outcomes in areas of financial literacy, career readiness and fostering the entrepreneurial spirit.
Board of Directors - Wolverine Bar Association: Detroit’s representative of the legal profession, serving the public and the profession by enhancing the legal system and promoting justice, professional excellence and respect for the law.
In her own words:
1. What’s your most important career accomplishment to-date?
Being able to balance my personal and professional life, and most importantly being happy while doing so. While attending undergrad at Michigan State University, we had our first son and I was still able to graduate in three years. I then received my Masters and graduated in one year from a two-year program with a high GPA. After that, I graduated from law school cum laude, with two boys in tow. I am now a partner at my law firm with three boys and a husband. I give my all at work and at home. I happily work very hard and I have never missed any school or sports activities for my kids. I am active at their schools serving on the PTA and as a room parent and I am active in my community. So often we are told what we can’t do and how we can’t have it all, but I believe that “all” is relative and today, I am fulfilled. We have got to learn to live in the moment. I am grateful to be able to take a step back and soak in all that I’ve been able to accomplish in such a short period while being an active mom, and still having my sanity and happiness. That’s important to me!
2. How have you redefined leadership through your professional success?
Availability and transparency. I truly believe in lifting as I climb and I am very intentional about mentoring and being a resource for those junior to me. I make myself available and I am an open book.
3. Why is civic engagement (volunteerism) important to you?
It’s important to me, especially in the city, for the children who live here to see successful people who look like them. I loved the concept of Junior Achievement as a child and was a recipient of the program while in grade school. I wanted to be a part of something where I knew there was a true return on investment. It’s important for children to know that you can have a successful career and help others and I enjoy modeling to our children the importance of giving back. Also, leadership roles in the community are extremely important as I am able to build as a person from all of the diverse ideas and thoughts around me, but I am also able to contribute diverse views to attribute to a better working environment, which in turn produces a better output for the organization.
4. How have you disrupted the idea of traditional leadership? How do you express leadership?
Work-life balance and being authentic at all times. First, I was taught by my mentors to be a kind person and do good to others. There is enough room at the top for all of us, especially since the “top” is relative. I learned to be intentional about helping others and I am very intentional about reaching out to formal and informal mentees, sharing my mistakes with those junior to me (be it career or parenting), and also being accessible. Secondly, work-life balance makes a difference in my abilities to lead, because I am able to lead by example. My family is no secret and I am able to be a successful attorney and be an active wife and mother too.
5. What is a blue sky goal that you would like to accomplish in your career?
I still have some ladders to climb, but I would love to retire and travel the world with family and friends and I also have dreams of becoming a professional chef.
6. Why did you choose to pursue your passion/profession in Metro-Detroit? How do you intend to impact the region through your work?
I am from Detroit, born and raised. My family is here, and I wanted to raise my own family in the city that built me. There is nothing like a true Detroiter! I hope to be an example to the younger generations (DPS students in particular) that no matter what anyone says about us and our assumed lack of support, school supplies, education, etc. we were built to succeed and we can!
Meet Jessica at the Vanguard Awards! Click HERE to join the celebration!