Ryan Sullivan

Director of Centralized Services

Ever since I can remember I always wanted to be an attorney.  Kind of a strange goal for a middle-schooler I’ll admit, but I guess it came from two things—my dad was a detective and I was a movie buff.  Dad was always trying to figure out what happened and who did it, and I can remember watching Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson go at it in A Few Good Men and thinking—that’s what I want to do.  Lawyers get to the bottom of things no matter how difficult and no matter how much resistance they encounter.  From early on I pursued that dream, joining Model Congress and Mock Trial in high school, majoring in Political Science at UConn and finally entering law school at Quinnipiac Law. 

I was fortunate to find an incredible mentor at Quinnipiac, Professor Meiklejohn; then two serendipitous events occurred—first I enrolled in his Real Estate Transactions course, where Attorney George Holler was a guest speaker in class.  It was at the height of the Great Financial Crisis, and at that time he was defending homeowners in foreclosure cases.  He spoke to us about how cases are actually resolved.  After countless hours of legal theory, I was fascinated by the things he was saying.  He told us the mortgage companies were so overwhelmed that they didn’t have anyone who could listen to reasonable proposals and that the only way to overcome the institutional inertia was to make strong enough arguments that they had to escalate the cases out of the foreclosure mills—to hire actual litigation attorneys.  He explained that it didn’t matter so much if you could win the case, but if your theories were strong enough you could bring the other side to negotiate fairly.  This is exactly what I had always wanted to do—to be persuasive in a way that helped clients solve their problems.

The second event occurred after I graduated from Quinnipiac (magna cum laude I’m proud to say).  George was looking to hire a new lawyer and called Professor Meiklejohn asking for a recommendation.  I joined the firm soon after that, and found it was truly a great place to work. Everyone welcomed me as a family member, and they showed me what a team could accomplish with hard work.  After three amazing years at the firm I left to pursue a role in litigation.

After playing the role of Tom Cruise for a time, I realized something was missing: the “small family firm” feel I had enjoyed at Holler Law Firm. One day I happened to speak with Rosa Holler about my newborn daughter and next thing I knew, I was back at home with the Hollers. Day-to-day I’m solving problems, both in assisting clients with escalations, and in helping buyers and sellers get to closing on time.  While I never knew how being a lawyer would turn out, this is exactly what I always wanted to do.  

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