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Matt Forsgren Named Lawyer of the Year

After 27 years practicing in the areas of civil litigation, internal investigations, and criminal defense, Matt Forsgren has been named as a Lawyer of the Year in Minneapolis in the 2022 edition of Best Lawyers in America. Best Lawyers®, now in its 40th year of providing a purely peer-reviewed guide to the top attorneys in the United States, released the honors today. Its Lawyer of the Year recognition is reserved for individual lawyers with the highest overall peer feedback for a specific practice area and geographic region.

“Matt is incredibly deserving of this recognition,” said Forsgren Fisher managing partner Bob Gilbertson. “Individuals and companies facing the toughest situations imaginable seek out Matt to help them set and execute on a strategy and navigate minefields along the way. Our clients get the benefit of his deep experience and judgment, and, as he would be the first to say, the talent of his teammates as well.”

Given this special recognition, we feature Matt with some questions and answers about his practice and outlook on law and life.

Why three practice areas?

I never wanted to do only one area, and I have never done only one area. I always have wanted variety, but I also have wanted to interweave my skills in doing civil, criminal, and the areas in between. My thought was that this multidisciplinary approach could be effective for clients and the courts where I have practiced.

The areas in between?

Part of that consists of internal investigations. But I also handle administrative-enforcement proceedings and representing victims of crimes, fraud, blackmail, and harassment. I have seen a lot and don’t always know what to make of it.  But I like being able to take some form of action.

Reaction?

In a word: humbled. This is cliché, I recognize. But I think about all the attorneys from whom I have learned. I think about the extraordinary things that I see attorneys doing as private lawyers and in the public sector, including those on the bench. All these people have influenced me. And I am grateful that what I am doing with that knowledge seems to have been received well by them. 

What about challenges along the way?

I feel like I am very open about challenges that I’ve experienced in my life and career. As many people know, one of these challenges was a brain tumor (fortunately, a benign one) two years ago. Before neurosurgery, I worked hard to get myself in physical and emotional shape for what was about to happen. I felt like that went well. In recovering from a long but successful surgery, I was reading every day, canoeing every day, and walking one of my dogs five to eight miles every single day while listening to audiobooks and podcasts—often about the law and history. Little did I know that at the end of those three months of convalescence my mom would be diagnosed with a brain tumor (unfortunately, a malignant one) that would end her life within months. That began another journey allowing us some of the most precious time that I surely will experience in my life. I would simply encourage every person to know that we all have battles, joys, and sadness, and that we should be there for one another in the short lives with which we have been blessed.

Looking forward?

We have founded a firm based on authentic collaboration and trust. No one at our firm is silent in the face of injustice or bad behavior. This is the platform that I’ve always wanted as a practicing lawyer, and I want to contribute to our making the most out of this opportunity. I could not be surrounded by better humans.