Germán Morales: A Visionary Advocate for Businesses & Causes
In the world of corporate financing, emerging businesses, international transactions, and business litigation, few individuals have made as profound an impact as Germán Morales of Bailey Duquette. With a career spanning over two decades, Morales has not only demonstrated an unparalleled wealth of experience but has also dedicated his life to advocating for causes he deeply believes in. His journey is a testament to the power of dedication, expertise and the pursuit of noble endeavors.
While Morales describes his desire to advocate for causes he truly believes in as a philosophical reason for seeking a career in law, there was also a more personal reason why he aspired to be an attorney.
“I saw my parents struggle at points in their careers having difficulty accessing quality legal representation,” he says. “There tends to be a sandwich effect. The wealthy people and big businesses have access to very capable lawyers. The poor have access to legal representation through public defenders, who are also highly qualified. But it’s hard for mid-size businesses to swallow thousands of dollars in legal bills when they have a problem.
“I saw how my parents struggled,” he continues. “I also saw how my sisters struggled. I decided I wanted to develop my career so I could offer my services to that segment – the core of our society, who might not have the extra resources to get high quality legal representation.”
I decided I wanted to develop my career so I could offer my services to that segment – the core of our society, who might not have the extra resources to get high quality legal representation.
Morales’ education fully prepared him for this endeavor and offered him the ability to cater to international clients. Well-versed in Latin American legislation, Morales offers his clients deep insights into regional practices and transactions. He has guided clients through a diverse spectrum of business financing solutions, from investment deployment and commercial financing to loan workouts. He attended law school twice, first, in his native country of Colombia and then again when he immigrated to the United States, where he attended Florida International University College of Law.
“The first time I attended law school in Colombia, I was very young and had the ideal of advocating for those causes I believed weren’t receiving fairness or justice. When I attended here in the U.S., I was more motivated by this core market that really needed qualified, sophisticated legal professionals at an affordable price.”
Morales embarked on his career with a vision to make a significant mark on the world of corporate finance. He recognized early on that effective financial strategies could serve as a catalyst for growth and innovation in businesses. With unwavering determination, he climbed the corporate ladder, mastering the intricate world of trade finance, and establishing himself as a seasoned expert in the field.
Coming to America
Watching the struggles of his family and their businesses was not the only suffering Morales was to observe. Prior to coming to the United States in 2000, he and his family endured one of the cruelest and most frightening decades in Colombia.
“I came by myself and shortly after my family moved over,” he says. “Unfortunately, we were caught in that decade when there was a lot of violence and kidnapping, guerilla activity. My family was a victim of their extortion and was sadly caught in that exodus during the last years of the ’90s and early 2000s. It was very difficult leaving your life behind, but we made the best of it that we could. We’re resilient and we’re in a good place now. Migrating to the U.S. is not as easy as a lot of people would think it is. And while I could not think of living anywhere else now, it does come with a significant price tag.
“We were very fortunate that my mother was an American. My sisters, who were born in New York, were also,” he adds. “I was born in Colombia. But as the son of an American, I immediately became a citizen born abroad. This was possible back in the early ’70s. We had a choice. We had the ability to relocate without having immigration issues. There are a lot of people experiencing similar circumstances who did not have that ability. For that, I will always be grateful.”
Working With Friends
Before joining Bailey Duquette four years ago, Morales began his legal career in the U.S. by opening his own practice.
“I joined this firm for a couple of reasons aside from the fact that I was impressed with their reputation,” he says. “There’s the economy of scale, which means you can get better deals when you’re with a group of people than you can when you’re alone or in a small firm. That includes everything from practice software to legal research.
“More significantly, I was being left out of opportunities due to a lack of resources to handle big projects,” he adds. “When you’re a solo with a big acquisition or litigation, you’re buried in paperwork and might not be able to deliver the turnaround times clients need and want. When you have several partners who are also top legal minds, like the ones I work with, you can handle this. The people I work with are not only among the very best attorneys, they are also the nicest people.”
Morales says he was delighted when he was recruited by Bailey Duquette. He has enjoyed continued, growing success and found a group of like-minded professionals.
“We have a very cool relationship,” he says, “everyone is really nice. We’re very independent, but also very close. I believe we share core values. These guys are very honest; they’re not looking to become millionaires, they have a nice life and just do the right thing. That’s essentially what I’m looking for. Money’s great, don’t get me wrong, I love it but it’s not the be-all, end-all. Happiness is being able to advocate for causes you believe in, even when there’s not that much money involved.”
When asked what he thinks makes this firm different or unique Morales had a ready response. “I’d have to say the closeness we have with respect to the matters we take on and the clients we serve. We develop strong and tight bonds with our clients, and side by side, with them, guide them through their legal matters. We have our shirt sleeves rolled up, ready to work.”
Morales’ expertise in corporate financing caught the attention of emerging businesses seeking guidance and support. Morales became a trusted advisor, helping countless startups navigate the complex world of finance and providing them with the tools they needed to thrive. His passion for nurturing the growth of small enterprises became a defining characteristic of his career.
International transactions presented a new frontier for Morales. As the global economy evolved, he recognized the importance of facilitating cross-border deals and ensuring their success. His adept understanding of international regulations and market dynamics made him a sought-after expert for companies looking to expand their operations overseas. Through his guidance, businesses were able to bridge cultural and geographical gaps, fostering international cooperation and economic growth.
Beyond his corporate endeavors, Morales also made a name for himself in the realm of business litigation. He used his extensive knowledge to advocate for clients facing legal challenges, employing his strategic acumen to protect their interests. Morales approached litigation not merely as a legal battle but as an opportunity to seek justice and uphold the principles he held dear.
However, what truly sets Morales apart is his unwavering commitment to advocacy. Throughout his career, he tirelessly championed causes close to his heart, dedicating time and resources to make a positive impact on society. Whether it was supporting initiatives for education, environmental conservation, or social justice, Morales uses his influence to affect change.
I was being left out of opportunities due to a lack of resources to handle big projects.”
On the Homefront
As impressive as Morales’ career has been, he’s been equally successful in his private life and is proud of his wife and son. His pride in his wife Tatiana, who was his high school sweetheart, and their 18-year-old son Matais, who is planning on joining the military, is apparent.
“My wife is a superstar,” he says smiling broadly. “She used to be an interior designer, but a few years ago she decided to change her career and is now a trained aesthetician. She specializes in oncology patients. She provided services to oncology patients here at the Cleveland Clinic for about seven years. But, when the pandemic came, we purchased a large van and converted it into a mobile therapy treatment room. So now, she takes her services directly to oncology patients to their homes. What’s really special about what Tatiana does is, every dollar she received in tips she uses to fund facials for oncology patients who can’t afford it.”
Morales also prides himself on maintaining a healthy, balanced life. Dedicated to his practice and clients, he works hard but also makes sure he makes time for other things in his life including his wife, son, and his mother and their beloved dogs, Mila and Simon. He also enjoys yoga at least three times a week as well as hiking and other outdoor activities.
Morales continues to advocate for causes he believes in. His legacy serves as a shining example of what one can achieve with a passion for their work and a commitment to making the world a better place.
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