The ACTEC Foundation Announces the 2022-2024 Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders

Mar 23, 2023 | News


Contact: Rebecca.Vandall@actec.org, 202.465.8270

Washington, DC, March 23, 2023:  John T. Rogers, Jr., President of The ACTEC Foundation, and Cynthia G. Lamar-Hart, Chair of the ACTEC Diversity, Equity & Inclusivity Committee, are pleased to announce the Eighth Class of Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders.

The Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders Program was designed to foster scholarship and education in trust and estate matters, promote diversity and inclusivity and encourage the development of potential ACTEC Fellows. Initiated in collaboration with the American Bar Association Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section (RPTE) Fellows program, this program provides successful graduates of the two-year RPTE program an opportunity to extend their participation in RPTE leadership activities through the financial support of The ACTEC Foundation. In March 2018, the program was named after Dennis I. Belcher, ACTEC President 2009-2010, a leader of the College and mentor to many young trust and estate lawyers.

John Rogers provides his congratulations to the recipients:

“It is my pleasure to welcome the newest class of Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders. These five individuals are among the best and brightest rising stars in the trusts and estates field, and we are delighted that they will be part of our program for the next two years.”

The ACTEC Foundation 2022-2024 Class of Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders are:

Joshua R. Caswell, Choate Hall & Stewart, Boston, MA
Joshua Caswell works with clients of Choate’s Wealth Management Group. With a focus on representing principals of private equity, venture capital and hedge funds, as well as corporate executives, business owners and entrepreneurs, he counsels successful individuals and families in all matters related to preserving, enhancing and transferring family wealth. Joshua provides clients with sophisticated estate planning and estate settlement strategies that take advantage of tax minimization opportunities in a manner that is consistent with their value and objectives. Additionally, he has represented many clients in the acquisition, management, preservation and perpetuation of “heirloom” properties.

Preston C. Demouchet, Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP, New York, NY
Preston C. Demouchet is a member of the Trusts & Estates Department focusing his practice on tax, estate planning, and the administration of estates and trusts. He advises high-net-worth individuals and families by designing complex estate plans tailored to achieve each client’s wealth preservation and transfer goals. In assisting clients, Preston utilizes a tax-efficient approach that addresses business succession needs, charitable goals, and inter-generational planning. His clients also include entrepreneurs, owners of closely held businesses, and sports and media executives. Preston also counsels corporate fiduciaries in all aspects of estate and trust administration. Prior to joining Carter Ledyard, Preston worked as a Series 7 and Series 66 financial advisor at The Ayco Company LP, a Goldman Sachs Company, where he provided tax and estate planning advice to Fortune 500 executives.

Sandra Fung, Withersworldwide, New York, NY
Sandra is an associate in the private client and tax team. Her practice focuses on private wealth matters with an emphasis on transfer tax, trust and estate planning. Sandra’s practice has a particular emphasis on the development and implementation of sophisticated lifetime planning strategies and the evaluation of existing trust structures. Additionally, she advises on the use of trust structures for circumstances beyond traditional estate and tax planning considerations, including trust structuring for assets subject to regulatory oversight, individuals subject to conflict-of-interest policies in both the public and private sectors, and united governance for voting control of publicly traded corporations. 

Kenneth N. Jefferson, Holland & Knight LLP, Washington, DC
Kenneth “Kenny” N. Jefferson is a private wealth services attorney in Holland & Knight’s Washington, DC and Los Angeles offices. Kenny focuses his practice on advising high-net-worth individuals and families on complex estate, gift and generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax planning issues, managing tax compliance challenges and achieving non-tax goals. He has experience drafting core estate planning documents, including wills, all manner of trusts, financial powers of attorney (POA) and healthcare directives. He advises and helps implement trust modification techniques, probate matters and high-net-worth estate administration, business planning and entity formation. Additionally, Mr. Jefferson regularly drafts business entity governing documents such as limited liability company (LLC) operating, partnership and buy-sell agreements. In addition to his legal practice, Mr. Jefferson is serving a two-year fellowship with the American Bar Association Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section.

Joanna Morrison, UBS, Chicago, Illinois
Joanna Morrison works with ultra-high net worth individuals and their advisors, aiding in the development and implementation of tax planning and business succession strategies. She also works with clients to assist with meeting their philanthropic goals. Joanna reviews clients’ estate planning documents to help ensure that their plans accurately reflect the family’s philosophy, needs, and objectives. Prior to joining UBS, she practiced trusts & estates law with the law firms of Schiff Hardin LLP, Winston & Strawn LLP, and Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn LLP. She is an active member of the American Bar Association, where she currently serves as Real Property, Trusts, and Estate Fellow, and is a member of Business Planning Group and the Diversity and Inclusion Committee. She is also a member of the Chicago Estate Planning Council.

The Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders Program provides lawyers with an in-depth introduction to ACTEC and its role in the trust and estate community and encourages active engagement in responsibilities that support future eligibility for nomination as an ACTEC Fellow. Young leaders are offered tuition-free attendance for ACTEC/ALI CLE webinars and financial support to attend ABA/RPTE Section Meetings, and they are invited to attend ACTEC Regional and State Meetings.  Since this program was established in 2015, twelve Dennis I. Belcher Young Leaders have been elected to the College.


About The ACTEC FoundationThe ACTEC Foundation is the philanthropic arm of The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC). The Foundation is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) that promotes scholarship and education for families and professionals and supports students interested in the trust and estate area of the law. Through continued financial support, The ACTEC Foundation offers professional development, scholarships and education for a number of important efforts, including legal education, educational support, public initiatives, legal publications and the student editorial board for the ACTEC Law Journal.

About the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC): Established in 1949, The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) is a national, nonprofit association of approximately 2,500 lawyers and law professors from throughout the United States and abroad. ACTEC members (Fellows) are peer-elected on the basis of professional reputation and expertise in the preparation of wills and trusts, estate planning, probate, trust administration and related practice areas. The College’s mission includes the improvement and reform of probate, trust and tax laws and procedures and professional practice standards. ACTEC frequently offers technical comments with regard to legislation and regulations but does not take positions on matters of policy or political objectives.

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