Practice Area Focus

  • Commercial lending, including structuring, documenting, and closing complex credit facilities
  • Creditors’ rights enforcement, including enforcing lender remedies for credit facilities in default
  • Commercial transactions, including real estate and corporate finance

Professional and Civic Activities

  • American Bankruptcy Institute
    • Secured Credit Committee, 2010–present
  • American Bar Association
    • Business Law Section
      • Banking Law Committee 2011–present
  • Oregon State Bar
    • Client Security Fund
      • Committee Member, 2006–2009
        • Committee Chair, 2009
    • Debtor-Creditor Section
      • Editorial Board, 2009–present
    • Secured Credit Committee, 2010–present
  • Schoolhouse Supplies
    • Board of Directors, 2004–2006
    • Board Chair, 2006

Admitted to Practice

  • Colorado, 1994
  • Oregon, 1987
  • Washington, 2000
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon, 1991
  • U.S. District Court for Western District of Washington, 2009
  • Appeared in U.S. Bankruptcy Courts in California, Delaware, Oregon, Washington, D.C., and Washington


  • J.D., Willamette University College of Law, 1986
    • Member, Willamette Law Review
  • B.A., University of California, Los Angeles, 1982


Susan T. Alterman

With more than 30 years of experience working on commercial finance, real estate and creditors’ rights matters, Susan Alterman focuses her practice on commercial banking and complex real estate transactions. She assists a variety of financial institutions and real estate investors in structuring real estate and asset-based credit facilities, including loan documentation, underwriting considerations, and regulatory matters. With a thorough understanding of the nuances required to produce effective agreements, she advises clients in co-lending, inter-creditor and participation arrangements. She also counsels business clients on commercial loans and workouts.

In her comprehensive real estate practice, Susan has advised real estate investors in buying, selling, and leasing commercial, retail, industrial and agricultural properties, forming condominiums, and multiple land use proceedings.  She has handled the purchase, sale and finance of auto dealerships in Oregon and Washington, negotiated and drafted multi-floor leases in core downtown office buildings in Portland and Seattle, and acts as outside counsel to one of the largest real property acquisition companies in the United States.

As part of her banking practice, she recently worked closely with a community bank to restructure its real estate portfolio by substantially reducing its non-performing assets. Her efforts, including numerous wins for her client in the courtroom, contributed to the lender’s successful recapitalization. The lender’s senior management credits Susan’s work with recovering millions of dollars more than the client’s initial valuation of the portfolio.

Susan is the former chair of Oregon State Bar's Client Security Fund.  She is a member of the Leadership Cabinet of Willamette Law School, and is a former member of the executive committee of the Portland State University Foundation.



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