Featured Lawyer: Neera Chatterjee

Neera Chatterjee

Vice President and Senior Counsel

Wells Fargo

1. What is your area of practice?

I work within the corporate regulatory section of the Wells Fargo Law Department.  The core function of my team is to monitor and identify regulatory changes (laws, regulations, and ordinances) that are applicable to the company, provide high level analyses of these regulatory changes, and communicate these changes so that they may be implemented by the company and lines of business.  I also partner closely with colleagues in risk and compliance and currently serve as chair of the Law Department’s Corporate Risk Management Practice Group.

2.Why are you unique?

I grew up in a place that, at the time, was not the most ethnically diverse.  My main goal was to blend in and be like everyone else.  Being ‘unique,’ was not something I saw as a desirable trait.  So even now, I tend not to think about what makes me different from others, but more so what I might have in common with people I meet.

3.How did you do it?

I am not sure that I have done ‘it,’ but I am reminded of a colleague who once told me, in the words of Sheryl Sandberg, that careers are a jungle gym and not a ladder.  That metaphor resonates with me, as I have been a lawyer in several different environments, from clerking in federal court, to litigating at a large law firm in Texas, to moving in-house at the University of Texas and now Wells Fargo.  My trajectory may seem somewhat non-traditional given that I have changed industries and geographic locations, and this path is certainly not one I would have predicted for myself, but I have benefited from a willingness to explore different opportunities that allow me to continually learn and build new skill sets.

4.What do you do outside of the law?

I enjoy listening to live music (which includes my kids banging on drums or screaming into a microphone) while sipping on a cold beer in the company of family and friends.  I also enjoy sushi, running, hiking, cooking, and the Chicago Cubs, among other things.

5.Who were the people critical to your success and who do you want to thank?

I have had several fantastic mentors throughout my career – lawyers who have taught me about integrity, ethics, and public service.  Each of these mentors has influenced my approach to the practice of law, but the people who have propelled me to success are my parents, who have always told me that I can accomplish whatever I set my mind to if I am willing to work hard, and my husband and children, who are steadfast in their support and drive me to be the best version of myself.

 

 

 

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