Miami Law Celebrates Alumnae During National Hispanic Heritage Month


Every year, the many contributions of Hispanic and Latin Americans to the United States are celebrated during National Hispanic Heritage Month, an opportunity to recognize the group's heritage and culture. This month, Miami Law is casting a spotlight on a handful of Hispanic alumnae who have made a difference in the legal field.

Araly Herrera-Borgen, JD '97, describes herself as a multi-dimensional bilingual attorney, educated in both business and law, who has established herself as a powerful force in South Florida's legal community. Herrera-Borgen has devoted her career to personal injury, medical malpractice, automobile accident and wrongful-death cases. She attributes much of her success to her days at the law school.

"Miami Law's litigation skills program, with its rigorous, hands-on training approach, helped me develop the advocacy skills necessary to provide exceptional legal services to my clients," said Herrera-Borgen, a partner at the Coral Gables firm Gamba & Lombana, P.A. "In addition, the work ethic developed through my years at Miami Law assisted me in the transition to the demanding expectations in the legal arena. Finally, the professional relationships established through Miami Law's internship programs and networking events have been vital in my success."

Herrera-Borgen earned her bachelor's degree in business administration and finance from Florida International University's School of Business in 1994, and her JD, cum laude, from Miami Law in 1997. While in law school, Herrera-Borgen wrote for the Entertainment and Sports Law Review and was inducted into the American Inns of Court. After her first year in law school, Herrera-Borgen was selected for an internship in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, with Magistrate Judge Linnea R. Johnson. She further distinguished herself in law school by receiving the Trial Advocacy Scholarship Award.

Herrera-Borgen is also involved in charitable and legal organizations. She served as Vice Chair of Grievance Committee 11 M of the Florida Bar. She previously served on the Board of Directors of the Cuban American Bar Association and the Florida Association for Women Lawyers and is a member of the Federal Trial Bar, the American Association of Justice, the Association of Trial Lawyers of America and the Dade County Bar Association.

Marlene Quintana, JD '96, represents private and public sector employers in both labor and employment law matters as a shareholder at GrayRobinson, P.A., and is Board certified in Labor and Employment Law. She is also certified Civil Circuit mediator. Quintana has litigated and advised clients in federal civil rights issues and other federal and state employment matters, such as the Family and Medical Leave Act, The Fair Labor Standards Act, and the Federal and State whistleblower statutes. Quintana also has experience defending clients in federal and state court cases arising under the First and Fourteenth Amendments.

Born in Tampa, Quintana has represented employers before the National Labor Relations Board, the Public Employers Relations Commission, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Division of Administrative Hearings. In addition, Quintana has extensive experience in labor arbitrations, collective bargaining and related union issues, day-to-day client counseling and problem solving, policies and procedures, and employment related training. Quintana's lobbying experience includes providing government relations counseling to a diverse group of clients that include non-profit advocacy organizations and national corporations. Quintana has developed legislative strategies, built coalitions, and organized grassroots communications. Quintana has mediated dozens of federal and state court cases.

A double 'Cane, with a B.S. in Communication, cum laude, in 1993, and a JD, cum laude, three years later, Quintana was President of the Hispanic Law Students Association; Associate Editor of the Inter American Law Review; and a member of the Iron Arrow Honor Society and the Order of the Coif. She served as President of the Cuban American Bar Association in 2008 after several years on its board. She sits on the board of Miami Bridge Youth and Family Counseling Services, and is a former Chairwoman of the Eleventh Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission.

Sandra M. Ferrera, JD '99, is a partner at Meland Russin & Budwick, P.A. in Miami, where her main areas of practice are in real estate and corporate transactional matters. Ferrera focuses her practice on the development, acquisition, financing and construction of projects throughout the state of Florida. She represents real estate developers in all phases of complex commercial real estate transactions, including the negotiation, documentation, and closing of the acquisition and sale, development, and financing of commercial real estate. Ferrera also represents financial institutions and borrowers in acquisition and construction financing, and has handled the resolution of complex title issues. Ferrera is AV Preeminent Peer Review rated by Martindale-Hubbell in the area of real estate. Ferrera has also developed the firm's probate and guardianship practices.

Born in Miami, Ferrera received her JD, cum laude, from Miami Law in in 1999. While at UM, she was a member of Phi Delta Phi and served on the Editorial Board of the University of Miami Business Law Review. Ferrera earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Florida International University in 1996. While at FIU, Ferrera was a founding member and President of Alpha Xi Delta National Fraternity. "Having gone to the University of Miami School of Law gave me the necessary foundation and education to be confident as a young practicing attorney," Ferrera said. "Today, close to 15 years later, it continues to provide me with invaluable resources and opportunities that foster continued growth and development."

Ferrera was sworn to the Florida Bar in 1999, and is also admitted to the United States District Court, Southern District of Florida. She is President-Elect of the Cuban American Bar Association, as well as a member of Miami Children's Hospital Foundation; the Condominium and Planned Development Committee of the Florida Bar; the Dade County chapter of the Florida Association of Women Lawyers; the Real Property, Probate, and Trust Law Section of the Florida Bar; the Dade County Bar Association; the South Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; and the Hispanic National Bar Association.