The son of Greek immigrants who rose from poverty, George Lattas knows that helping people is simply what’s right. “You have a responsibility to put your hand down to help people up,” he says. Part of the first generation to attend college, George got his JD as well as an MBA from DePaul University, and went into public accounting out of law school, followed by loss mitigation and bankruptcy, as well as working as a general counsel for a real estate firm. “I focused on this area because I was always involved in business with my family,” he says. “And I always had a knack for finance and general commercial matters. It was always something I knew I wanted to do.”
In November of this year, George will have been practicing law for 13 years in Chicago, and today he runs his own firm, Lattas Law Office, where he works alongside two associates, closing significant transactions. In one such transaction, they represented a borrower on a $73 million credit facility, negotiating with the lender for the most favorable terms of the loan agreement. And right now, they’re representing a seller on a $63 million sale. While the numbers might be impressive, George still maintains his dedication to supporting families, and though they represent some well-known national tenants, he prefers to fly under the radar about his considerable success. And he doesn’t turn away smaller requests from smaller-scale clients. “I love mom-and-pop engagements, like helping a first-time business owner who needs a lease reviewed,” he shares.
Most of George’s clients maintain a connection to Chicago, although he’s represented landlords, tenants, buyers, and sellers from all over the country. They’ve included everything from retail centers to farms, from small, family-owned businesses to publicly traded companies, and everyone in between. In addition, his firm represents a number of local and regional developers, as well as large national chains such as Panda Express, and franchisees of Popeye’s and Checkers. But despite the breadth of clients he works with, George remains selective about the matters he takes on, choosing to only work cases where he knows he can be successful, and referring out the rest if he thinks someone else’s area of expertise will yield better results. This honesty and transparency is key to his practice. “I call it white-glove service,” he says. “Our clients notice our hyper-responsiveness. We’re not litigators. We’re at our desks, so if we get a call or email, we answer. We’re super accessible and attentive to our clients and their needs, and we strive to provide the best service.” Navigating their real needs is what George and his associates value the most. As he puts it, “We find solutions; we don’t kill deals, we close deals.”
In addition to serving his clients to the best of his ability, George upholds his philosophy of reaching down to help others up in his community, as well. In just the past two years he was able to raise $200,000 for various charities. He also serves as the president of the alumni engagement board and sits on the dean’s advisory council at DePaul University College of Law.
Attorney & Counselor at Law — Lattas Law Office