In high school, I had big plans to become an engineer — that is, until I read Louis Nizer’s memoir My Life in Court. I chose the book for a contemporary reading class, thinking it would at least be an interesting read. For me, it ended up being quite a bit more than that. From the moment I opened the cover, I was completely hooked.
Nizer’s work stood out to me because it showed a side of practicing law that I had never considered before. Most courtroom stories seemed to feature a lot of over-the-top, emotionally driven theatrics — so much so that I had never even considered going into the legal profession. In Nizer’s stories, though, he approached every case with a level head and a well-designed strategy. Most fascinating of all, he seemed to create a rhythm in the courtroom. Even as a teenager, I could almost imagine myself litigating his cases in exactly the same way.
When I started law school a few years later, one of the first things I learned was that only about 1-2% of the students in our class would become trial lawyers. Rather than deterring me from my goal, that statistic simply made me think, “Well, I guess I’ll just have to be one of them.”
My job is about acting with integrity and ensuring other professionals do the same