Partner, Williams Parker Harrison Dietz & Getzen
Elizabeth Stamoulis grew up with a father who was an attorney and a judge, plus a mother who worked as his assistant in his home office. And she never thought she wanted to follow in those footsteps. But after majoring in classical studies at Dartmouth, she began to consider the legal profession after all.
She then earned a law degree from Stanford, where she became interested in intellectual property law. Now, less than a decade later, she’s a partner at Williams Parker Harrison Dietz & Getzen, one of largest and most established firms in the Sarasota-Bradenton region, where her focus remains intellectual property law.
“It’s such a growing area and becoming so important these days,” Stamoulis says. “Every day it’s changing, and I think the excitement of being on the edge of new technologies and trying to keep up with it is really interesting.”
Three years spent working in Manhattan after law school provided her with valuable experience but also insight into her future. “After a few years, I realized that lifestyle wasn’t for me,” she says. “I needed that job to figure that out. And I still do high-level work here, but there’s more work-life balance.”
Stamoulis likes assisting business owners with problems that come their way. “People come to me when they have a question, or they get a scary letter in the mail they want to talk to someone about,” she says. “I really love feeling like I’m helping people and contributing to other people’s success.”
That appreciation of teamwork is present whether she’s in the office or playing a cooperative board game like Pandemic on the weekend. “I love working with other people,” Stamoulis says. “I think different perspectives and having a second pair of eyes on things is nice. Getting the benefits of the collective group is so much more productive and successful and fun than doing things by yourself.”
She’s also found that networking is more effective when you’re not just thinking about yourself. “I think it’s so important to meet people and find out about them and let them know about who you are as a person,” she says. “You’re never going to get anything from somebody if they don’t trust you. And if you make yourself useful to other people, they’ll start thinking of you when the time comes.”
ON THE RECORD: Elizabeth Stamoulis
Employer Williams Parker Harrison Dietz & Getzen
Title: Partner (Intellectual Property/Corporate Law)
Birthplace: Red Bank, New jersey
Years on the Gulf Coast: Four and a half
Marital status/children: Married
Alma mater/degree: Dartmouth College: Bachelor of Aarts; Stanford Law School, Juris Doctorate
Where is the best place to network? Anywhere can be a good place to network, so long as you can make a meaningful connection.
What's the best business lesson you've ever learned? Do not try to do everything yourself. Work on creating and contributing to a team. This allows everyone to benefit from each other’s strengths and support and ultimately results in a more successful and rewarding experience.
What's your top tip for being productive? Tackle your hardest task first. It will make you feel better, and the rest of the day will be easier.
What's the weirdest job you've ever had? For five years, I was a member of a professional Greek dance troupe.
What community group or organization are you most involved with? Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce
If you could have a side hustle, what would it be? Working with business owners, I have always admired the courage and drive it takes to open your own business. I enjoy baking; it would be exciting to try my hand at opening a bakery.
What's your favorite off-hours activity? Kayaking, biking — anything active and outdoors
What's your favorite board game or video game? I love cooperative board games (where all the players face a common conflict and win or lose together). Lately, my favorite has been Pandemic.
What's the top item on your bucket list? My grandfather was of Greek descent, born in a Greek community in Egypt. Someday, I would like to travel to Egypt to see the town where he grew up (Port Said).
Where is your happy place? Sitting on our back patio watching the sunset
What's your favorite podcast? I enjoy true crime series like "Serial."
Who/what is your favorite musical artist/band? Growing up in New Jersey, I became a huge fan of Bruce Springsteen (like the rest of my family). My mother has some great stories about seeing him at The Stone Pony and running into him at the record store..
Who would play you in a movie about your life? Nia Vardalos. Growing up as a Greek-American, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” pretty much sums up my childhood.
What was your first album/tape cassette/CD? I have vivid memories of listening to the “Christmas with the Chipmunks” cassette tape (by Alvin and the Chipmunks) as a child.
What was your first concert? We lived close to the Garden State Arts Center growing up, so my parents would take me to concerts all the time. Some of my earliest ones were The Temptations and The Four Tops.
What's one song that will get you out on the dance floor? "Hey Ya!” — OutKast
What's your favorite karaoke song? “Paradise by the Dashboard Light” — Meatloaf
What instrument/role would you play in a band? With my dance background (and the rhythm it required), I have always thought I would have made a good drummer.
Please describe yourself in three words. Analytical, driven and diligent