Tuesday, January 16, 2007

From Skating to Diplomacy

I saw an interesting article in USAToday about Michelle Kwan. She'll be on a diplomatic tour in China for ten days. So from representing the US in the Olympics and other sports arenas to representing us in meetings in China. Another example of you never know where your life experiences will lead...

There's also an interesting trend in federal courts. Judges are selecting more clerks with real law experience. That is experience outside of school. I clerked for a judge on the Court of Federal Claims my first year out of law school. My judge liked selecting night students like myself because we had some real world experience -- though not legal experience.

Being a clerk was phenomenal experience. I didn't get to handle any exotic trials....in my court the United States is always the defendant, so trials can be literally anywhere in the world. The judge brings the court to the parties...very different from other courts.

But I learned a lot of research and writing, what a judge wants to see, what works in oral arguments, what to avoid, how to treat court staff, etc. Skills that I use all the time, but especially days like today where I had two big hearings. Talk about making a girl brain-dead!

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