Alumni Short

Allison Harlow Fumai '02: Combining Economics and Law

Ithaca, NEW YORK, Spring 2014 FORUM

Allison Harlow Fumai is a partner in Dechert LLP, a 2013 New York Rising Star according to Super Lawyers magazine, and a Cornellian through and through.

At Dechert, she focuses her practice on the representation of registered investment companies, including exchange-traded funds, mutual funds, and closed-end funds, and their investment advisers.

At Cornell, she is vice president of the Law School’s Alumni Association, and will be president in July. She has also served on her J.D. class’s Reunion committees. “I couldn’t have picked a better place to go to college,” says Fumai. “I loved Ithaca and I loved being at Cornell.” After finishing her degree in economics, she decided to study law at Cornell.

“I wanted a smaller environment for law school, but still a broad range of offerings,” she says. Those offerings included many courses cross-listed with the Johnson Graduate School of Management. “My background in economics was helpful in law school and now in practice,” says Fumai, who was the recipient of a John M. Olin Law and Economics Scholarship. She also served as a research assistant to Jonathan Macey (now at Yale Law School). Anne Lukingbeal was another mentor. Fumai began her career at Clifford Chance, specializing in investment management. She moved to Dechert in 2009 and in 2012, she became a partner.

With all this, Fumai still finds time to visit Cornell and serve on the Alumni Association. “I meet people from all over the country and globally,” she says. “It’s also a wonderful opportunity to get to know the students and hear what they’re doing. The Law School has really helped them develop their ideas and expectations.” She praised the work of Peter Cronin and Kristine Hoffmeister in creating alumni programs and Charles Cramton’s leadership of the L.LM. program. She’s also excited about the building renovations. “It’s a wonderful design and I can’t wait to see the final product,” she said. During her last visit to Cornell, she had the opportunity to tour the construction

At her 10th Reunion, Fumai brought her husband (an attorney at Oracle) and her two young children to visit Cornell My daughter fell in love immediately,” Fumai said. “I took pictures of my kids in the Moot Court Room. They are excited to go to Cornell one day.”

Cornell, both undergraduate and the Law School, provided me not only a top-rate education, but an incredibly supportive community following graduation, both personally and professionally. “I want to give back to ensure that many future Cornellians have that same experience.”