Maria Ruberto – Pallett Valo Women Leadership Interview

Maria RubertoTell us about your position at Pallett Valo

I joined Pallett Valo shortly after being called to the bar in 2005.  I have been practicing in the area of Construction Law since that time.  I have had the pleasure to be trained by my business partner Anna Esposito. Through Anna’s guidance and mentorship, I have excelled as a leading practitioner in the area of Construction Law.  I am currently the head of the Construction Group and a partner at Pallett Valo.

What are some of your biggest achievements/accomplishments within your legal career and why is this so important to you?

Through the years, I have had the opportunity to work with many experienced lawyers in the construction bar.  I was a member of the Construction and Infrastructure Law section of the Ontario Bar Association for six years and was involved in assisting the section in making recommendations regarding the amendments to the now Construction Act. I am frequently asked to speak to various construction associations and at various seminars for the Construction and Infrastructure Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association.  I was successful as carriage counsel in bringing a motion for the payment into court by the City of Guelph of the ‘minimum holdback’, which expedited distribution of the ‘minimum holdback’ to subcontractor lien claimants in the Urbacon v Guelph holdback decision. This decision is relied upon by many construction lawyers to ensure timely release of holdback funds to subcontractors on construction projects in Ontario.

What advice would you give to women trying to break into a male dominated field?

Be confident, practical, civil and knowledgeable in the area you practice in and you will excel and be respected regardless of whether the area you practice in is viewed as a male dominated field.