By GRETCHEN HENKEL
We knew that Karyn Lusskin was the president of the Friends of the Secaucus Public Library, the daughter of Trevor and the late Naomi Corso, the wife of Andrew Lusskin, and mother of Amanda and Nicole, but was surprised to learn that she, like her father, is an attorney. We discovered this fact when we saw her name listed on the placard at her father’s law office located at 1321 Paterson Plank Road. Trevor Corso, Esq., had an office for years at 1249 Paterson Plank Road but had to leave that location when the building was sold. When he moved just down the road, his daughter’s name joined his on the sign outside the doorway. We recently visited the father/daughter team of attorneys to learn more about them and their profession.
Trevor Corso, age 76, is originally from Jersey City. He met his wife, Naomi Notbohm, at Trinity Baptist Church in Jersey City. Naomi hailed from Secaucus and attended the church in Jersey City with her parents, Wilbur and Theresa Notbohm. (There was no Baptist church in Secaucus.) Trevor dabbled in the computer field in the early 1970s, but decided he would try his hand at the profession of law, and earned his law degree at Fordham University. (He earned his undergraduate degree at Rutgers-Newark.) He opened his own legal practice in Secaucus in 1977 in an office in what is now PNC Bank. As a young attorney he specialized in personal injury, worker’s compensation, real estate, and wills and estates, and still does. Trevor recalled that in the early days of his law practice he depended on his wife, an elementary school teacher in Secaucus, to provide the basics of health insurance and other benefits for their young family. The Corsos had two daughters, Karyn and Cheryl (Toman). Once he was established in his career, Trevor moved across the street to 1249 Paterson Plank Road and immersed himself in providing attorney’s services to the community. He has served as the attorney for the Secaucus Board of Health for many years.
Karyn Corso Lusskin, age 52, followed a different path than her father in her career as a lawyer. She graduated Secaucus High School in 1982 and earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago. Karyn was an English major and enjoyed writing. She had no plan to follow in her father’s lawyerly footsteps, but that’s just what she did when she earned her law degree at Rutgers-Newark in 1989. Marriage and the birth of two daughters put her career on the backburner as she became actively involved in their education. But after her youngest, Amanda, graduated Secaucus High School a few years ago, Karyn joined her father and became a full-time attorney. Amanda Lusskin is a student at Louisiana State University studying journalism while Nicole Lusskin graduated Temple University and is currently living in Petah Tikva, Israel where she is teaching the English language as part of a Masa Israel Teaching Fellowshio program. Karyn’s aunt, Teresa Notbohm Santos, is a retired Secaucus elementary school teacher, so it seems that Nicole is following in her grandmother and great-aunt’s footsteps in the teaching profession. (Naomi Corso passed away on February 9, 2010, at age 70.)
Andrew Lusskin, Karyn’s husband, is also an attorney. He practices at a law firm in Livingston. Karyn practices the same types of law as her father and each has their own clients. Father and daughter discuss their cases and help each other out. Wife and husband Karyn and Andrew also discuss various legal issues and their respective cases around the dinner table. Karyn works three days at her Secaucus office and two days at a law firm in Jersey City that only handles worker’s comp cases. Both the Corsos agree that the law profession has changed tremendously since they passed the bar, mostly through the influence of the Internet. We were surprised to learn that all attorneys must keep up with changes in the law by taking courses annually. While neither Trevor nor Karyn could recall any specific cases that stood out during their careers (“it’s not Perry Mason,” emphasized the elder attorney, referring to the TV courtroom drama of the 1950s-1960s starring Raymond Burr as the attorney who never lost a case!), they agreed that it was their clients who proved interesting, and not the cases so much. Karyn did say she enjoyed transacting real estate closings and dealing with contractual law.
Karyn Lusskin has a few other interests besides the law. She, as we mentioned above, is the current president of the Friends of the Secaucus Public Library. She also has had a lifelong passion for music and is the organist at St. Matthew Lutheran Church where she and her family are parishioners.
Perry Mason and his courtroom nemesis, prosecutor Hamilton Burger, were both known to interject the following during trials: “Objection, Your Honor! That question is incompetent, irrelevant and immaterial.” We found attorneys Karyn Corso Lusskin and Trevor Corso to be Competent, Relevant, and Material!