Assignments at an All-Time High!
Assignments at an All-Time High!
This week was probably by far the busiest I have had in terms of assignments. I know I have probably said that on other blog posts but I am sure this week takes the cake.
Monday, I spent most of my time getting ready for the Case Brief Presentation at the attorney luncheon on Wednesday. I have previously met with Bud Kirk on several different occasions to make sure the cases I selected were beneficial to the firm. Other than that, I finished refining my Motion in Limine that I had for Chase Hattaway and wanted to finalize that and get it on his desk. He was out until Thursday, but I was able to spend some extra time proofreading it. That evening, I printed out my presentation so I could begin practicing and making sure I knew each case thoroughly.
Tuesday, Chase sent me an email about reviewing the Defendant’s Objection to a NPNP and to summarize the strength of the Defendant’s argument in a memorandum. It was very interesting because it dealt with an investigator and his findings. I was able to find direct case law from the Supreme Court that supported our position. It feels great when you are able to find case law that is spot on to the problem you are having. I also worked on the research memorandum that Steve Klein assigned me and worked on finishing that so that I could proofread it before turning it in. Later that afternoon, Bud called me into his office to look at my final drafts before the presentation. I expressed my gratitude toward this meeting because there were a few things that I did not do. Although I am always anxious when I meet with Bud, I am glad that he called me into his office.
Wednesday was the big day! The attorney luncheon was here and it was my turn to give a presentation. Wednesday morning, I spent proofreading Steve Klein’s paper so in the afternoon I could just turn it in. Around 10:30, I kept re-printing, proofreading my PowerPoint to make sure everything was spelled correctly, and that I addressed the right things. I went into the Boardroom early and was able to pull up my PowerPoint to get a run-through in. Later, before the luncheon started, I asked Kaye Daugherty to sit in while I practiced again so she could make sure my voice was loud enough in the boardroom. As the associates and partners filled the room, I began to get nervous. However, I remembered my conversation with my mom when she said once you start you would be fine, because you know the material and you have prepared. She was right. First, I am really tech savvy so my PowerPoint was very appealing to the eyes. To say the least, I knew I would get points for that portion. My first slide opened my presentation using the “curtain effect” and I heard a few attorneys sigh in relief as if it was something impressive. That was all I needed. Everyone was now tuned in and I began effortlessly. I will admit, instead of saying American Airlines, I started to say African American at one point but that’s okay, we all make some type of mistake. Other than that, I was ready for any questions by the partners and finished my PowerPoint with ease. I was previously told that the attorneys do not clap at the end of the presentation so it is sort of like this awkward sit down when you are finished. However, when I was at my last slide and thanked them for listening, I heard a room full of clapping going on. They had actually went against the normal and clapped for me. I was shocked, amazed, and grateful all in one. My jitters were officially gone and I could put them away until the Mock Trial. Later that evening I received an assignment from Brett Carey and Suzanne Hill. The list just keeps getting longer and longer.
Thursday, I sat in on a meeting with LaShawnda Jackson and her team regarding a client team’s cases. Sara Lewis is about to take the Bar so she will be out for a few, which led to me taking her spot on some assignments. It was great to be a part of a real team meeting and of course, the cases were interesting enough. Now for a moment of truthfulness. I turned in my research memorandum for Steve Klein that afternoon and he gave it back to me the next afternoon on Thursday. He said the first two pages had too many errors. I was taken back by it because I know I had proofread several times before turning it in. Rightfully so, I was embarrassed. Nevertheless, one thing about me is I learn from my mistakes and I try my hardest not to make the same mistake twice, especially with the same person. I went through the paper, corrected my mistakes and ended up re-writing the entire thing. Before I turned it back in, I printed it out about three-four times and went through it with a red pen as if I was a teacher grading a student. I had to slow myself down because although I had many assignments, I have to be efficient in each assignment that I turn in. I turned the paper back in with a note thanking Steve for giving me the opportunity to correct my mistakes and assured him that this would not happen again. I am sharing this portion to show that as Summer Associates, we make mistakes, but we also have the chance to correct them. I wanted to show the real program and a real person because I do not do everything right the first time around. Thursday evening, I attended the OCBA Young Lawyer and Law Clerk Reception with LaShawnda, Shenele Pettis Bright and Christian Tiblier. I was able to network with some attorneys, judges, and even saw a few classmates of mine. It was a great event.
Friday, I dove into Brett’s assignment and was able to find yet another case that was spot on for the issue I was researching. I was able to get this paper finished a few days early. I also started working on Suzanne’s research, which required a little more attention. For Chase’s review assignment about the objection, I finished his research, compiling our strongest arguments and turned that in to him on Friday as well. CFAWL had another luncheon and I attended that with Shenele Pettis Bright and Courtney Walmer. Those luncheons are a great experience because it shows the involvement outside of the firm that goes into being a lawyer. Now for the heart of the Summer Associate Program, it was time for the distribution of the Mock Trial materials. My partner is Phoenix, and we will be representing the Defendants first and then the Plaintiffs in the afternoon. This is what we have been waiting on all summer long and it is finally here to start preparing.