National Association of Attorneys General
Karen Cordry knows firsthand the “ABCs” of the legal system---asbestos, bankruptcy and corrections, that is.
Formerly a labor lawyer with the National Labor Relations Board, Karen was hired in 1992 under an 18-month contract to help states litigate two cases surrounding asbestos companies that had filed for bankruptcy, leaving states with numerous property damage claims to cleanup up state buildings where asbestos has been used.
Karen’s bankruptcy work since then has expanded from asbestos to many other areas ranging from environmental and consumer protection to taxes to guns – any place where there is an intersection between financially troubled companies and the financial and regulatory interests of state and local governments.
Karen regularly writes briefs and argues bankruptcy cases around the country on behalf of states. She currently works with NAAG’s Tobacco Project to ensure states’ interests are protected when tobacco companies file bankruptcy. And in between court dates and deadlines, she also finds time to work in the area of corrections, respond to requests for technical assistance and host multi-day seminars for state attorneys on bankruptcy law and state defensive litigation.
“I often tell people I have the best job in the world,” Karen said. “I’m a one person law office, I have the best clients you could get, and I don’t have to bill out my hours to get paid.”
Outside of the office, Karen continues her public service as treasurer of her local Sierra Club and homeowner’s association, and is a member of the Redevelopment Advisory Committee for her town. She also is the proud parent of two feline siblings, Pumpkin and Grace, rescued from the streets of Baltimore, and occasionally makes a trek to her beachhouse in Lewes, Delaware when she catches up on work at the office.