IndyBar: Interrogatories - Donald R. Lundberg

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By Tyler D. Helmond, Voyles Zahn & Paul

Lundberg Don Lundberg

Donald R. Lundberg
Deputy General Counsel, Barnes & Thornburg

He is a graduate of the Indiana University Maurer School of Law – Bloomington. He served as Director of Litigation at the Legal Services Organization of Indiana and as the Executive Secretary of the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission before joining Barnes & Thornburg LLP. He is Donald Lundberg, and he has been served with interrogatories.

Q You spent about 20 years at the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission before leaving for private practice. What has been the biggest change?
A Remember, before that I was a lawyer for 15 years with what is now Indiana Legal Services. The biggest change for me has been experiencing the entrepreneurial aspects of the practice of law. New life experiences are good. I have been enjoying this one.

Q What is your default Starbucks order?
A Cuppa Joe. Black, no sugar. I’m easy to please.

Q If you decided to start tweeting, what would your twitter handle be?
Your question assumes I do not tweet. I would be offended if it weren’t true. Never having thought about it before, I’d draw on my Res Gestae column and select @EthicsCurbstone.

Q What is your favorite part about practicing at Barnes and Thornburg?
A Easy. The great colleagues and clients. In every legal job I have had, the things that have sustained me in the long run are the personal relationships.

Q If you had the opportunity to meet one deceased jurist through time travel, who would it be and why?
A I’d say Learned Hand, if for no other reason than it’s such a great name. And then there’s the fact that he had one of the great legal minds. The meeting would be embarrassing though, since I would be a blithering idiot.

Q Who are the lawyers you admire most?
A The ones who have the passion to serve their clients well, with the humanity to avoid being jerks to their fellow lawyers.

Q Letterman or Leno?
A What a question. Letterman. Are you really from around here?

Q If you were to give a law school commencement address to one of the classes of 2014, what would you say?
A I think the title might be “The Importance of Plan B.” Most folks who go to law school think they will do well. It is simple math that half of the class will do less well (according to GPA) than the other half. Opportunities to practice in established firms will be difficult for many new law graduates. And striking out on one’s own can be terrifying. Don’t get me wrong, I love being a lawyer and would never discourage someone from following a passion for the law into practice. In fact, the practice of law is no longer (if it ever was) a place for lawyers without passion for the work. But there are alternatives to traditional law practice that can be at least as gratifying and rewarding. Single-minded focus on practicing law can blind recent law graduates (and practicing lawyers, for that matter) to neat opportunities for which a law degree can be helpful, even if it is not necessary. As I think about it, this would be a depressing commencement address, which explains why I have never given one. I pity the law school commencement speakers of today who have to capture the excitement of becoming eligible for admission to practice while remaining realistic about the prospects.•


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  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.