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Leadership in Law 2013: Daniel P. Cory

Associate, Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP, South Bend Notre Dame Law School

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dan-cory02-15col.jpg (IL Photo/ Perry Reichanadter)

When Daniel P. Cory decided that he wanted to pursue a career in environmental law, he rented an apartment near the Plews Shadley Racher & Braun LLP offices in Indianapolis during a summer break from law school. This allowed him to meet many of the attorneys from the firm and led to PSRB offering him an associate position after graduation. PSRB believes Dan will be an important contributor to the life of the firm for years to come. Not only has he developed expertise in complex areas of the law, but he devotes many hours to community service and pro bono work.

If you could take a sabbatical from the law for a year to work your fantasy job, what job would you choose?
Musician, playing guitar in coffee shops or in larger venues somewhere.

What civic cause is the most important to you?
Education and mentoring. Children have so much potential, and I’m always amazed how much impact even a small amount of positive influence can have on them.

If you could meet and spend a day with one lawyer from history, who would it be and why?
Thomas Jefferson. I think it would be fascinating to talk with him about the changes he saw over his lifetime, moving from the principles set forth in the Declaration of Independence to the practical realities of governing as president and to discuss with him how the political and legal structures he helped create have evolved into the systems we know today.

If you could go back in time, “when” would you go to and what would you do?
I would travel back to when my grandparents were my current age. I never got to know them very well so it would be great to spend time getting to know them and discussing life and our shared family history.

In life or law, what bugs you?
The misuse of the phrase “begs the question” – in life and in law. I inherited this pet peeve from someone else and now I notice it everywhere!

If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
The ability to read minds would certainly make trials and depositions easier.

What do you find scary?
Sharks. I find them terrifying.

If a drink or sandwich were to be named after you, what would it be called and what would be in it?
I once ate a 72 oz. steak dinner at the Big Texan steakhouse in Texas, so my sandwich would have to be called the “Big Dan”and include large amounts of steak.

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  1. Bill Satterlee is, indeed, a true jazz aficionado. Part of my legal career was spent as an associate attorney with Hoeppner, Wagner & Evans in Valparaiso. Bill was instrumental (no pun intended) in introducing me to jazz music, thereby fostering my love for this genre. We would, occasionally, travel to Chicago on weekends and sit in on some outstanding jazz sessions at Andy's on Hubbard Street. Had it not been for Bill's love of jazz music, I never would have had the good fortune of hearing it played live at Andy's. And, most likely, I might never have begun listening to it as much as I do. Thanks, Bill.

  2. The child support award is many times what the custodial parent earns, and exceeds the actual costs of providing for the children's needs. My fiance and I have agreed that if we divorce, that the children will be provided for using a shared checking account like this one(http://www.mediate.com/articles/if_they_can_do_parenting_plans.cfm) to avoid the hidden alimony in Indiana's child support guidelines.

  3. Fiat justitia ruat caelum is a Latin legal phrase, meaning "Let justice be done though the heavens fall." The maxim signifies the belief that justice must be realized regardless of consequences.

  4. Indiana up holds this behavior. the state police know they got it made.

  5. Additional Points: -Civility in the profession: Treating others with respect will not only move others to respect you, it will show a shared respect for the legal system we are all sworn to protect. When attorneys engage in unnecessary personal attacks, they lose the respect and favor of judges, jurors, the person being attacked, and others witnessing or reading the communication. It's not always easy to put anger aside, but if you don't, you will lose respect, credibility, cases, clients & jobs or job opportunities. -Read Rule 22 of the Admission & Discipline Rules. Capture that spirit and apply those principles in your daily work. -Strive to represent clients in a manner that communicates the importance you place on the legal matter you're privileged to handle for them. -There are good lawyers of all ages, but no one is perfect. Older lawyers can learn valuable skills from younger lawyers who tend to be more adept with new technologies that can improve work quality and speed. Older lawyers have already tackled more legal issues and worked through more of the problems encountered when representing clients on various types of legal matters. If there's mutual respect and a willingness to learn from each other, it will help make both attorneys better lawyers. -Erosion of the public trust in lawyers wears down public confidence in the rule of law. Always keep your duty to the profession in mind. -You can learn so much by asking questions & actively listening to instructions and advice from more experienced attorneys, regardless of how many years or decades you've each practiced law. Don't miss out on that chance.

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