President Mark D. Gearan today announced that Louis H. Guard, Esq. ’07 will join the Colleges as chief of staff and counsel in the Office of the President and secretary to the Hobart and William Smith Board of Trustees beginning Wednesday, June 4. A cum laude graduate of Hobart College and Cornell Law School, Guard will provide advice and counsel in a variety of institutional areas, assist the president with all major initiatives and projects, and coordinate legal matters for the Colleges.
“I am pleased to welcome Lou back to HWS to take on this important role,” says President Mark D. Gearan. “Lou brings unique skills and personal attributes to this position. A Geneva native and Hobart graduate, he knows the community well. His legal training and professional work experience at two law firms will be helpful in many key areas. And his knowledge and deep commitment to Hobart and William Smith combine to make him a perfect choice for this position.”
Guard earned his J.D. with a concentration in advocacy from Cornell and is admitted to practice law in New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. He most recently served as an associate in the real estate development and finance department of Woods Oviatt Gilman LLP, in Rochester, N.Y. There he concentrated his practice in commercial real estate transactions, commercial real estate financing, real estate development, leasing, and banking as well as general business law.
He also served as an associate in the real estate and corporate departments of Dilworth Paxson LLP, in Philadelphia, Pa., counseling for-profit and non-profit clients in a wide variety of business, finance and governance matters.
While in law school, Guard was a summer legal fellow in the Office of General Counsel at Saint Joseph’s University and also served as a law clerk with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Regional Counsel in Philadelphia. Additionally, he was a visiting student at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Guard served as general editor of the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy and received a Dean’s Service Certificate for volunteer hours, including volunteer work with a national senatorial campaign in Pennsylvania. He is the recipient of the Barnes-Wall Foundation of South Carolina’s Award for Excellence in Military Legitimacy Scholarship as well as the Cornell Law Library Prize for Exemplary Student Research for his written work on targeted killing and international law. Guard was recently named to the Cornell Law School Alumni Association’s Executive Board of Directors.
Guard earned his bachelor’s degree in history and public policy studies from Hobart College. While at HWS, he was co-founder of the Hobart and William Smith Colleges Public Affairs Journal, a member of College Democrats and Orange Key Honor Society. He also studied in Washington, D.C. for a semester. Guard was the recipient of the Dean’s Citizenship Award as well as the Alumni Association Award. Following graduation, Guard served for two years as presidential fellow and assistant to the president at HWS.
In the Geneva community, he is a member of the Nester Hose Fire Department, and previously served as an elected trustee of the Geneva Public Library and as a class correspondent and reunion committee co-chair for the Colleges. He is married to Kirra Guard ’08, MA ’09, a William Smith alumna who is completing her doctorate in school psychology at Lehigh University.