Kristy Blanchard 2013-10-24 00:07:44
CARRYING THE TORCH FORWARD AS I APPROACH MY 10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY IN THE PRACTICE OF LAW, I am amazed by how things have changed in just this small amount of time. Most of our filings and settings are done electronically, our statutes and case law are available on smartphones, and exhibits are published in the courtroom via iPads. But even with all the advancements that have made our profession more efficient, our job to uphold the reputation of lawyers has not gotten easier. When I entered the practice of law, I had several great mentors who showed me the ropes. They were respectful, hard-working, ambitious, and generous with their service, time, and advice. They were involved in local bar associations and organizations, and they encouraged me to get involved and to find a place where I could serve others. As the younger generation of lawyers, we will soon be taking over the leading roles in firms, businesses, and organizations where we are involved. We are the next generation of role models and leaders, and we need to be ready to carry the torch that has been carried by so many great lawyers before us. Here are a few ideas on where we can start: • Be a mentor. Every new lawyer needs someone who will guide her through the first years of practice, someone to rely on to answer questions or to be a sounding board. Mentees are our future, and we owe it to the younger generations and to our profession to help them succeed in the practice of law. • Lead by example. We are all role models by our profession, so be the best you can be and set a good example for others to follow. • Show respect for the legal profession. You teach others how to view the legal profession by your own actions. Make a good impression. Here are a few resources to help you along the way: • Transition to Practice. Newly licensed lawyers are matched with experienced attorneys who volunteer their time and wisdom. • SBOT Advisory Network. A statewide mentor bank available to attorneys to assist with finding the right match. • Ten Minute Mentor. An online collection of videos features leading lawyers who provide free and practical advice. • Office in a Flash. A program that provides information on various topics relevant to establishing a law practice. You can find these resources and others like them at texasbar.com and tyla.org. I would like to thank my mentors Rick Robertson, Ike Vanden Eykel, and Julie Crawford. They have helped me along my legal path, and I appreciate all of their guidance and advice.
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