I graduated Harvard College in 1960 and its law school in 1963. I worked for a large law firm, served in the US Army JAG (the army's legal branch), worked in an insurance company, and then for a sole practitioner. In 1971 I abandoned the world of corporate law to start a practice representing low and middle-income people with minimal access to legal advice, became one of the first lawyers in the country to offer divorce mediation, served on board of legal services programs, created referral programs for the Massachusetts Bar Association and the National Lawyers Guild, started an association of legal clinics, and served as president of a family mediation association.
In 1983, I joined the staff of Harvard Law School as Public Interest Career Advisor, counseling law students who hoped to use their degrees to serve the public. I edited the HLS Public Interest Directory. In 1989 a new dean closed my office alleging the budget for my office was a waste since HLS students had no interest in representing individuals.
In 1990 I established what is now the Center for Professional Development in the Law. Since then, I have presented workshops at law schools and bar associations and provided individual guidance to over 2000 law students and lawyers helping them find positions consistent with their professional work and their personal values and beliefs.
My book Lawful Pursuit: Careers in Public Interest Law was published by the American Bar Association Law Student Division in 1995. I also co-founded and co-edited Find Satisfaction in the Law, an on-line career planning resource sponsored by FindLaw and have a blogspot, Lawyers and Satisfaction.
It is my opinion, obsession and source of continuing outrage, based on nearly 50 years in the legal profession, that law schools (especially the highly selective ones) fail to teach their students how to practice law and continue to funnel them unsuspectingly through the on-campus-interview system (owned and operated by law large firms) into large law firms. This process is a major cause of lawyer dissatisfaction as well as the inability of the public to be able to obtain the services of a lawyer for their critical legal issues.
A major emphasis of my practice is helping my clients overcome the lack of self-worth and self-confidence produced by the failure of legal education and the belief that they are trapped and have no options.
I help them take control over their careers ... and their lives and hopefully find satisfaction in the practice of law.