Erminio Giovanardi was born in Modena in 1884, he was a laical idealist of the Risorgimento, who disagreed with the middle class provincial lifestyle of his family (his father Silvio was a lawyer even if he had never practiced). He was a brilliant student awarded for his results all through his studies; after graduating from law school in 1905 he moved to Milan where he was introduced by an acquaintance, Felice Ferri industrialist in the silk business in Milan, in the law firm of attorney Boniforti where he started working as apprentice, in Via Ancona, close to via San Marco. That’s where he met his peer Luigi Bianchi who would later on become his law firm partner of a lifetime. Erminio Giovanardi left the firm of attorney Boniforti in 1909 after obtaining his qualification as lawyer and decided to start his own law firm in Via Dante no. 4. His friend Bianchi followed him after few years when Boniforti retired and left him his firm, of which there’s still a bronze bas relief plaque.
He left for war as a volunteer in 1915 and was awarded military honors for the actions on Monte Vodice and in the battle of Bainsizza; Erminio Giovanardi moved with the armistice commission to Vienna in 1918 with his wife and son Stefano. In Vienna he was head of the press office of the Italian Embassy until 1926, when he decided to go back to Italy, despite being in disagreement with the regime.
He reopened his law firm with Luigi Bianchi, in via dei Bossi no. 3. Erminio Giovanardi focused on foreign clients exploiting his fluent knowledge of German and French. Together with his activity as lawyer he also became a “Justice of the Peace”, being much appreciated for his sense of justice and for his humane approach to conflict resolution; he was twice awarded gold medal recognitions by Milan City Hall.
When World War II broke out Erminio’s son, Stefano, had just graduated from law school with honors presenting a thesis in Civil Procedure Law to Professor Francesco Carnelutti. Stefano was called to arms and left for eastern Africa, where he became a prisoner of war in British hands, transferred to India, first in Bangalore and later in Yol.
The activity of the law firm, slowed down by the war, was interrupted in 1943, when the Giovanardi family had to leave Milan under bombing. The activity started again in 1945, when the war ended, still in the office in Via dei Bossi no. 3.
Stefano was freed form imprisonment and returned from India in December 1946, registered in the lawyers Bar and started the activity with his father Erminio and lawyer Bianchi in 1947.
In the first years after war, Mr. Arturo Ratti also joined the firm as accountant, because his firm in Via Montenapoleone had crumbled under the bombing. A valuable and lasting cooperation resulted from this circumstance and such partnership continued even when Mr. Ratti moved to a new office, still in Via dei Bossi no. 3 but on a different floor, due to the growth of both legal and tax activities.
In the mid-sixties Stefano Giovanardi consolidated his relations with primary clients, especially in commercial litigation practice, confirming the strength and reputation of the firm.
In those same years Erminio Giovanardi, who was by then over eighty years old, slowed down his activity, the same did Luigi Bianchi, who soon retired leaving his position to a young lawyer: Gianluigi Turconi whose father, a lawyer himself, had prematurely passed away. The cooperation of Stefano Giovanardi and Gianluigi Turconi, resulted in the expansion of the firm’s activity towards the credit sector with regard to civil, commercial and bankruptcy proceedings.
In 1971 Turconi decided to interrupt his work at the firm to dedicate himself to other activities, but he kept a very close tie with the firm. That same year Erminio Giovanardi, still registered in the Bar Association, passed away.
During the following years Stefano Giovanardi developed the firm’s activity, which turned more and more towards the credit sector.
In 1980 when he was in his third year of law school, Carlo Alberto Giovanardi, Stefano’s son, started working in the firm as apprentice, performing chancery activities and other ancillary tasks. He graduated from law school (1982) and completed the compulsory military service (1982-1983); in 1985 Carlo Alberto Giovanardi became a lawyer and started practice with his father, repeating –even if in a different historical and economical context- the cooperation that 38 years before his father Stefano started with grandfather Erminio.
In 1986 the owner of the property in Via Bossi no. 3, Credito Italiano, asked the firm to free the property, so Studio Giovanardi moved to via San Calimero no. 7, where it remained until 1992. Since then, it has been in Piazza del Liberty no. 8.
Together with Erminio Giovanardi, Luigi Bianchi, Stefano Giovanardi and Gianluigi Turconi, key personalities of the Firm, it is worth to mention Mrs. Elena Salvini, who joined the Firm as a secretary in 1971 and retired in 2014 after 43 years of work at the firm.
This passage from Stefano Giovanardi’s biography gives an idea of the situation in Milan after the bombing: “Dad and Bianchi had the same office in via dei Bossi no. 3, but the activity was quite idle. As everywhere, heating was not working. In the corridor we had a sawdust- stove: we had to fill an iron cylinder with sawdust and plug it in. The sawdust burned little by little for some hours, heating the apartment. Dad’s room, freed from furniture, became the sawdust deposit. Both the desks were in the bigger room, once used by Bianchi. There was only one secretary, with few jobs; instead of staying at the Remington typewriter, in her room, she preferred to stay in the corridor, huddled up close to the stove”.
The rest is recent history; the association of Stefano Giovanardi and Carlo Alberto Giovanardi with attorney Andrea Fattori in 1992, the dimensional growth, consistent with changed market needs, the construction of a consolidated professional network, the admission of new partners in 2007, attorneys Cecilia Lampertico and Filippo Cantalamessa, the passing of Stefano Giovanardi in 2009 after 62 years of enrollment at Milan’s Bar, the opening of a branch in Genova with attorney Linda Morellini in 2011, the new entries in the partnership: in 2013 attorneys Cristiano Ruspi and Marco Marinoni and in 2015 attorneys Valeria Mazzoletti and Linda Morellini, and the expansion of the firm with young talented lawyers.
On the first of January 2015 a redesigned organization and structure have started off under the brand Giovanardi e Associati Studio Legale, with the goal to achieve professional growth of all partners as well as associates and staff, in consistence with the firm’s history and traditional values: confidentiality, willingness, honesty, quality of service and competence in dealing with complex matters.