ILNews

Leadership in Law 2013: Oni N. Harton

Associate, Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, Indianapolis Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

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oni-harton01-15col.jpg (IL Photo/ Perry Reichanadter)

Oni N. Harton’s career is on an upward trajectory. Oni, who practices in the litigation, appellate and insurance groups, has been recognized by her firm for successes on behalf of her clients, receiving the Rainmaker Award and the Appellate Advocacy Award. She attended law school as a fellow of the Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunity and received multiple honors for her academic achievement. Before joining Bose McKinney & Evans LLP, Oni clerked for former Indiana Justice Frank Sullivan Jr., who said he was extremely impressed by her intelligence, warm personality and ethical standards. Oni is active on several firm committees and participates in the Indianapolis Bar Association’s Pro Bono Hospice Program and Low Asset Will Program.

What’s the most important thing your mentor has taught you?
Think it through. That is, not to jump in and start working on a problem thinking it will save time and money, but to think through the process before I start. The extra time spent on the front end will result in time saved in the back end.

If you could take a sabbatical from the law for a year to work your fantasy job, what job would you choose?
I would choose not to work at a “job.” Rather, I’d be a stay-at-home mom and community volunteer.

If you could meet and spend a day with one lawyer from history, who would it be and why?
Sandra Day O’Connor. She’s not only a great legal mind and a pioneer but also seems plain-spoken and humorous, yet enigmatic.

If you could go back in time, “when” would you go to and what would you do?
It’s asking a lot (and I’m certainly not worthy) but I’d go back to “In the beginning.” I’d also request the sensory capability to take it all in for several days.

What civic cause is the most important to you?
Family preservation and promotion.

In life or law, what bugs you?
When there’s something that we can do to minimize the effects of unfairness or “bad luck” in people’s lives but fail to do so.

If a drink or sandwich were to be named after you, what would it be called and what would be in it?
“The Flow.” It’s a sandwich that uses the best ingredients working together to create gustatory bliss. My choices would be pesto, provolone cheese, tomato, fresh spinach or lettuce, avocado and a squirt of olive oil between toasted Ezekiel bread.

If you could pick a theme song to describe your life, what would it be?
“Unwritten.”

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  3. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  4. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  5. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

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