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From the N.C. Mountains to a London Law Firm: Sherri Snelson '95 Loves Her Expat Life

Growing up on a 230-acre farm outside of Asheville, N.C. — where her daily chores included bottle feeding baby calves — Sherri Snelson ’95 always knew she wanted to be an attorney.

“I idolized my grandfather, whose friends, like (former N.C. Governor and Senator) Terry Sanford ’46 and (former Congressman) Jamie Clark, would come to the farm for barbecues,” she says. “The lawyers and judges were the people my grandfather respected, so I wanted to be one too.”

Snelson, who is a partner and member of the corporate finance practice in the London office of O’Melveny and Myers, says, “I am a very different kind of lawyer than I could have ever imagined as a kid.” Snelson’s finance and restructuring practice includes advising investment funds and corporations on how to raise money and negotiating financing terms.

“I find the practice broader in scope and more interesting than my work in the U.S.,” Snelson says. “It truly is a multijurisdictional practice. In the U.S., I did some transactions that had an international element, but in the American finance world, unless you’re dealing with the very largest companies, you are just concentrating on the U.S. assets.”

She compares that to her work in London, where she can’t remember doing any deal in which the company was only located in England. “I am working on joint ventures in Portugal, Spain and Italy, and a loan for a China-focused investment fund in Hong Kong,” Snelson says.

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