Prior to joining the firm, Smith founded her own law firm in 2016 after a 35-year career in private practice and as general counsel of several large public companies. Smith’s law firm, with offices in New York City and New Canaan, Conn., focused on commercial and matrimonial matters. Her firm acted as national claims and settlement counsel for a national retailer, and advised several public companies on compliance and governance matters. Smith also represented individuals in employment discrimination matters, and served as an arbitrator for the American Arbitration Association on its national roster of commercial arbitrators.
In her matrimonial practice, she used her knowledge of corporate law and executive compensation, as well as her financial training, to achieve outstanding results for her clients. She also served as co-counsel in cases with large marital estates, including non-U.S. assets, privately-owned businesses and complex financial instruments. In 2018, she became a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, and a member of the American Academy of Financial Litigators, New York Chapter.
Early in her career, Smith was a partner in the law firm of Baker McKenzie, one of the largest international firms in the world. While in private practice, Smith represented individuals in family matters, as well as banks and small businesses. Smith left private practice to become general counsel of GE Plastics. She was appointed a GE officer in 1993, then one of a handful of women officers. She left GE in 1998 to become senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of Owens Corning. In addition to her legal responsibilities, Smith served as Owens Corning’s chief restructuring officer and was elected to its board of directors. She achieved national recognition for her innovative efforts to resolve asbestos litigation, testifying before Congress to urge the enactment of legislation that would permit companies to pay injured workers in privately negotiated settlement programs like the one she implemented for Owens Corning.
In 2003, Smith returned to Connecticut, joining International Paper as senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary. Smith relocated to Memphis, Tenn. when the Stamford, Conn.-based company moved its headquarters there in 2005. In addition to overseeing a 100-person global legal department, she sponsored and participated in pro bono initiatives in the community, and was appointed by the Tennessee Supreme Court to serve on its Access to Justice Commission.
Smith moved to New Canaan, Conn. in 2011 to become chief legal officer of PepsiCo. In 2013, she accepted an ex-patriate assignment in Brussels, Belgium, to become executive vice president, general counsel, and general secretary of Delhaize Group, now Ahold Delhaize, one of the world’s largest food retail groups. She was a member of its six-person executive committee before returning to the U.S. at the end of 2014.
As general counsel, Smith led large legal organizations and advised boards and CEOs on a wide range of corporate transactions and governance matters. She also represented her clients in significant litigation matters before the U.S. Supreme Court, federal appeals courts, and various district and state courts throughout the country, including nationwide product liability class action lawsuits, personal injury lawsuits, antitrust and trade secret theft cases, employment discrimination, environmental and other regulatory matters.
Smith graduated from Vassar College with highest honors and highest distinction in her major, economics, was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and was among the first women to be awarded a Rhodes Scholarship. As a Rhodes Scholar, she attended the University of Oxford, earning her master of philosophy degree in economics, and then attended the University of Miami School of Law as a John M. Olin Fellow in Law & Economics, receiving her J.D. with honors in 1982.
“We are pleased to welcome Maura to our practice,” said Edward Nusbaum, the firm’s founding partner and principal. “Maura’s insights and experience will afford clients an invaluable perspective, further complementing our firm’s culture of service and dedication to the exceptional representation of our clients. She will also continue to represent clients who reside in New York in divorce and other family law matters, and will continue her work as an arbitrator.”
Smith is admitted to the bars of Connecticut, New York, Tennessee, Florida, and the Supreme Court of the United States. She is a member of various state and local bar associations, including the Connecticut Bar Association, and its Family Law Section, the New York Bar Association, and its Family Law Section, and the American Bar Association.
The Law Offices of Edward Nusbaum P.C., located at 212 Post Road West, represents individuals with substantial assets in all areas of family law matters, including divorce, alimony, child support, property division, child custody and relocation cases. A significant portion of the firm’s work is concentrated in Fairfield County, although it also represents clients who reside in other counties, and those who have assets or business interests in other states or countries. For additional information on the Law Offices of Edward Nusbaum P.C., please visit its website at http://www.nusbaumfamilylaw.com/ or call 203-226-8181.
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