Elyssa LeFevre Chayo aka “Lys” is the founder and CEO of Firm Forward, a legal marketing and business development agency located in Houston, Texas. Lys’s background is a combination of international business and intellectual property. She worked in corporate legal departments—managing IP portfolios and hiring outside counsel—before switching sides to work with IP law firms to help them grow revenues and get new clients. In 2014, Lys opened Firm Forward so she could share her experience and know-how with law firms everywhere. When she’s not advising clients, Lys loves hiking, chocolate, and answering random questions on Quora.
Elyssa (Lys) LeFevre Chayo
Founder and CEO | Firm Forward
We have been so fortunate to welcome Firm Forward Founder and CEO Elyssa (Lys) LeFevre Chayo to speak for Alt Legal on a number of occasions. Lys participated as an instructor for the free Alt Legal Paralegal Course teaching Section 1: Introduction to Intellectual Property. During this session, Lys reviewed key terms relating to IP, the fundamentals of the USPTO and software tools used in IP practice, the role of an IP paralegal, and more.
Lys returned as a speaker for Alt Legal Connect 2021 to deliver a workshop, “All Bark and No Bio,” where she showed attendees how to craft bios for different channels while establishing consistency and ensuring that their personalities shine through.
Then in 2023, we welcomed Lys back again to present the webinar, “On Your Mark(eting): Planning for a successful 2023,” where she described how to create a marketing plan to drive success, including deciding which platforms and marketing approaches will yield you the best ROI, coordinating travel and conferences, prioritizing tasks, expenses, and goals to ensure maximum marketing impact, and more.
Lys had incredibly positive experiences presenting for Alt Legal. Lys says, “I have had the privilege to speak for Alt Legal on a number of occasions, all of which have been beneficial, both in terms of business opportunities and networking, but also for my own professional growth. I have not found another provider in the legal tech space that has not only a relevant target audience for me, but an entire community of engaged people.”
Lys noted that one of the reasons she has returned as a speaker is because Alt Legal’s audience is so active and involved. “The best part of presenting for Alt Legalou is how engaged people are who participate in their programming. Sometimes when you present, it can be like you’re speaking into an abyss, especially when it’s virtual, but with Alt Legal, it’s different—you can feel that people are interested, and that makes you want to come back and present to this community again and again.”
For Lys, a key differentiator between Alt Legal and other organizations that she’s presented for is that she received a high level of support from the entire Alt Legal team. “Other places tend to leave you on your own, and they feel less coordinated, but Alt Legal makes everything run so smoothly that it doesn’t even feel like work.”
To prepare for her presentations, Lys worked closely with Bri Van Til, Alt Legal’s Director of Education, who coordinated all of the important details, technical arrangements, and logistics to ensure that the presentations were smooth for Lys and the audience. Lys reports that working with Bri was an exceptional experience. “Working with Bri is a dream. She makes it so easy to participate and stays on top of everything that needs to be accomplished. I know I don’t have to worry about getting through the planning phase of presenting with Bri leading the way.”
Beyond the planning and organization for her speaking engagements, Lys also appreciated Bri’s support while delivering her presentations, “Bri’s handling of the logistics and cool way of moderating make executing a program a breeze. Just having Bri there during the presentation sets you at ease for the presentation itself.”
As a result of her presentations with Alt Legal, Lys was delighted to retain new clients. She reports, “I have certainly benefited from presenting in Alt Legal programming, with people contacting me following (and sometimes during) each presentation I have given, most seeking my services and some just wanting to connect, which ends up benefiting me indirectly as well. I get referral business and even name recognition.” We’re so pleased for Lys that her speaking engagements with Alt Legal have turned into business development opportunities.
Overall, Lys says that she is “incredibly likely” to recommend speaking engagements at Alt Legal to other presenters. Thank you Lys, for your very kind words and your many valuable contributions to the Alt Legal Community!