Attorney Bios

Neil S. Shankman

Neil ShankmanNeil Shankman was born and raised in the jungles of suburban New York. He escaped at an early age and then went to college at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. With his Bachelor's Degree in Sociology, Government and Psychology, he proceeded to seek knowledge and wisdom at Capital University Law School in Columbus, Ohio. As a member of the Moot Court Board and Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review, Mr. Shankman graduated from law school with grades that he has described as "genetically inappropriate". With dreams of raising a family and making a living, Mr. Shankman began the long march back to the East coast, where he landed in Lewiston, Maine.

Mr. Shankman has been a member of the Maine Bar since September of 1977. After four years as a lobbyist for Pine Tree Legal Assistance (statewide legal aid organization), Mr. Shankman developed and opened the first legal clinic in the State of Maine. With offices in Bangor, Lewiston and South Portland, the firm announced its opening with great fanfare. It included the first statewide prepaid legal services plan in Maine, extensive television advertising, and high visibility promotions.

During the course of the last thirty years, Mr. Shankman has continued to maintain his interest in trial work, particularly in the areas of divorce/family matters and personal injury litigation. He has developed one of the largest bankruptcy practices in the State of Maine, and continues to focus on landlord/tenant matters, both in Court and as General Counsel to Maine Real Estate Managers Association. He also serves as State Chair of the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.

After over twenty-five years living in Yarmouth, Maine with his family, he relocated to Topsham in October of 2008 where he managed to find a house built in 1797 that requires almost as much maintenance and repairs as he does. He spends his spare time skiing, sailing, bicycling and playing with his three adult children.

Rebecca V. Brochu

Rebecca BrochuRebecca Vaughan Brochu was born in Chicago, Illinois and lived in various regions of the United States before settling in New England. She attended the University of Connecticut, and graduated from the Western New England College-School of Law in 1996. Rebecca's honors include Magna Cum Laude in 1993, Excellence for the Future Award - Divorce & the Family 1996, and she was recognized by the Maine State Bar Association as the attorney with the most pro bono service hours in the year 2001. Attorney Brochu has been licensed to practice law in the State of Maine since 1997 and her experience includes 2 years of public interest practice and 2 years of private general practice. Rebecca's areas of specialization include family/domestic relations and bankruptcy.

Rebecca resides in Brunswick with her husband, Steven Brochu, also an attorney. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, tennis, and gardening.

Rita m. Farry

Rita M. FarryRita has built her reputation as an effective, efficient and aggressive representative of her clients in civil litigation for nearly three decades. She is a renowned expert in collections and creditor's rights in bankruptcy and has lectured frequently on these subjects. Her experience includes litigation in Maine, Massachusetts and Colorado, with successful appeals before the Maine Supreme Judicial Court and the First and Tenth Circuit Courts of Appeal. Rita has handled probate of decedent's estates, pursued claims in the U. S. District Court and represented clients in asylum applications before the U. S. Department of Homeland Security. Rita was recognized for her pro bono service to indigent clients and awarded membership in the Katahdin Counsel in November, 2012.

Rita enjoys municipal work and has represented the Wells, Maine Sanitary District over the past several years, where she has successfully addressed real estate title problems with properties that have previously languished for years in foreclosure and/or for non-payment of sewer charges under state statute. She has represented real estate developers and other applicants in administrative proceedings and has handled numerous landlord/tenant disputes.

Since December of 2008, Rita has served on the Maine Board of Bar Overseers Ethics Commission. She has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Cape Elizabeth Home since February, 2010, and she is a former member of the Scarborough, Maine Zoning Board of Appeals. Rita is fluent in Spanish and taught Middle and Upper School students at the Waynflete School in Portland.

Rita joins Shankman & Associates, where her focus will continue to be on civil litigation, including foreclosure defense, domestic relations, probate and immigration issues.

Rita enjoys gourmet cooking, travel, spending time with her husband, John, her teenage son, Miles, and visiting her daughter, Chloe, in Washington, D.C. She enjoys tennis, cross country skiing and her active membership in a local book group. Rita is pleased that her new practice will enable her to be based closer to her home in Cumberland and will facilitate her ongoing efforts to strengthen "aging-friendly communities" that support seniors who wish to continue to live vibrant lives in their own homes. She welcomes collaboration in her efforts to establish the "New Maine Village," (a member-in-development of the "Village to Village Network") a non-profit organization that shares this mission.

Aubrey A. Russell

Aubrey A. RussellAubrey Russell was born and raised in Minot, Maine. She attended Hebron Academy, and graduated magna cum laude from the University of Maine - Orono with a Sociology degree that included a concentration in Crime, Law and Deviance. She then went on to graduate cum laude from the University of Maine School of Law in Portland in 2007. While in law school, Aubrey was the Case Note/Comment Editor for the Ocean and Coastal Law Journal, on the Conduct Committee, and a Member of the Women's Law Association. She also completed the Pro Bono Legal Services Program and clerked for Judge John Beliveau at the Lewiston District Court.

Since law school, Aubrey has assisted in establishing the Maine Alliance for Drug Treatment Courts, and has been on their Board of Directors since 2008. She lives in Minot with her three children. She enjoys spending time with her family, volunteering in the community, camping, and playing softball.

Aubrey joined Shankman & Associates in 2008. She concentrates her practice in family law and landlord/tenant matters. She provides fair housing training to our clients, has worked on several cases involving the Maine Human Rights Commission, and is co-author of Maine Landlord-Tenant Relations - Process & Procedures. In November 2011, Aubrey was recognized for Excellence as one of New England's Outstanding Young Lawyers in Family Law. In 2011, 2012, and 2014 Super Lawyers selected Aubrey as a Rising Star.

Jeanne Sund

Jeanne SundJeanne Sund graduated from The University of Southern Maine in 2010, earning Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Philosophy and Criminology. She graduated from the University of Maine School of Law, cum laude, in 2014 and earned a Certificate of Recognition for providing over eighty hours of pro bono legal service.

While in law school, Jeanne worked as a summer intern at Pine Tree Legal Assistance in Augusta. During her time there, she assisted in the representation of clients in landlord/tenant matters and housing discrimination issues at the Maine Human Rights Commission. At the end of her internship, she became a law clerk at The Law Office of Reben, Benjamin and March where she assisted in the representation of clients in the fields of Workers' Compensation, Social Security Disability, Personal Injury, and Employment Discrimination. Jeanne also served as a student attorney where she represented individuals with family, juvenile and criminal law issues.

Jeanne is admitted to practice law in both the State and Federal Courts of Maine. Since admission, she has represented clients in foreclosure proceedings, real estate transactions, probate proceedings and estate planning.

Originally from Stockholm, Maine, Jeanne now resides in Topsham, Maine with her fiance, Anthony Profenno. She enjoys cooking, gardening, tackling home improvement projects, and spending time with her family and friends.