Awards & Recognition
May 1, 2022

Am Law 100 firm Polsinelli is pleased to announce shareholders Dr. Tara A. Nealey and Greg Kratofil, Jr. have been honored for their leadership and innovation by American Lawyer as Midwest Trailblazers. They join a prestigious list of honorees recognized as agents of change who have made significant marks on the practice, policy and technological advancements in their respective sectors over the past decade.

Since 2013, American Lawyer has spotlighted legal professionals “who have moved the needle in the legal industry.” Nealey and Kratofil were selected by standing out among the best of the best attorneys representing a dozen midwestern states: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. 

A shareholder in Polsinelli’s St. Louis office, Dr. Tara A. Nealey currently chairs the Biotechnology and Life Sciences Patent Prosecution practice group. As a research scientist turned registered patent attorney, she helps bring the results of cutting edge medical, life science and agricultural research to the market where they can directly benefit patients, consumers and their families. Nealey focuses her practice on advising clients on all manners of IP questions relating to life-science technologies. Her clients are leaders in innovations that include therapeutic antibodies, new cancer immunotherapies, vaccines, gene editing technologies, brain-computer interfaces, and small molecules for treating neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.

As a consummate role model, Nealey advocates on behalf of Polsinelli’s female attorneys to help shape firm workplace policies and initiatives. She also serves as a personal mentor and coach for women attorneys within the firm who are in earlier stages of their career. As Co-Founder and Co-Chair of Polsinelli’s “Women in Intellectual Property” program, Nealey helps lead the firm’s efforts to empower a network of women in the IP industry. Within the St. Louis entrepreneurial community, she has been involved in numerous initiatives designed to help the region build its entrepreneurial infrastructure. In particular, she supported Brazen (now known as BGI) and its affiliate program, Prosper Women Entrepreneurs Startup Accelerator. Nealey was named a 2017 recipient of the Client Choice award, honored by the YWCA as a 2017 “Leader of Distinction,” and received a 2018 Women’s Justice Award in the Pro-bono category.

A shareholder and Co-Office Managing Partner in Polsinelli’s Kansas City office, Greg Kratofil, Jr. is Polsinelli’s Tech Transactions & Data Privacy Practice Chair and has long been a passionate advocate for entrepreneurs, makers, creatives and innovators. Kratofil helped Kansas City become the first metro in the nation to get Google Fiber, and he has long played an integral role in the development of Kansas City’s tech startup community. And as one of the original founders of the KC Tech Council, he has spent years assisting entrepreneurs with formation, financing, technology development and licensing. 

Kratofil helped push for a STEM education bill that was signed by the Governor of Missouri in 2018. Prior to the bill’s passing, Missouri was one of a few states without a STEM education and computer science requirements. He is currently a member of the board of trustees for Avila University and Rockhurst High School, where he is a passionate STEM advocate. Rockhurst became the first STEM accredited high school in Missouri and Kansas, where all freshmen learn to code in required computer programming classes. In 2018, Kratofil was named to the Techweek 100 list, alongside other “founders, influencers, and prominent voices who act as positive representatives for the tech community.”

About Polsinelli

Polsinelli is an Am Law 100 firm with more than 950 attorneys in 21 offices nationwide. Recognized by legal research firm BTI Consulting as one of the top firms for excellent client service and client relationships, the firm’s attorneys provide value through practical legal counsel infused with business insight, and focus on health care, financial services, real estate, intellectual property, middle-market corporate, labor and employment and business litigation. Polsinelli PC, Polsinelli LLP in California.