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    Wisconsin Lawyer
    June 01, 2015

    Meet Our Contributors

    Become a contributor! Are you working on an interesting case? Have a practice tip to share? There are several ways to contribute to Wisconsin Lawyer. To discuss a topic idea, contact Managing Editor Karlé Lester at (800) 444-9404, ext. 6127, or email klester@wisbar.org. Check out our writing and submission guidelines.


    What are you reading now? Do you have a favorite author/genre?

    I just finished the second book in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. When the books were first published, I thought I was too old to be reading “kids’ books.” As it turns out, that was a mistake. The books are part of the children’s literature canon now, and for good reason – they’re good stories, well-told, about universal ideas. What more could you want from a book?

    To keep my grown-up brain engaged, I alternate fiction (children’s or otherwise) with nonfiction. Next on my nonfiction list is Atul Gawande’s Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End, or maybe Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis, by Robert D. Putnam.


    Your practice includes wage and hour class actions. What drew you to that practice area?

    Breanne L. SnappBreanne L. Snapp, Habush Habush & Rottier S.C., Madison.

    I really enjoy being an advocate. The class-action mechanism is often the only viable way to hold employers accountable for illegal pay practices, so I get the privilege of helping workers recover some of the wages they’ve been denied. Like traditional personal injury work, it’s another way to advocate for people who might not otherwise be able to afford a lawyer.

    I’m also drawn to the complexity and challenges in class-action work. Typically these cases involve both federal and Rule 23 state law classes. There are different remedies, different standards for class certification, and different procedures that must be followed. I’m learning something new every day.


    What would you tell someone considering law school?

    Kenneth B. Davis Jr.Kenneth B. Davis Jr., Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren s.c., Madison.

    First, if possible – and I appreciate that the current job market makes this a challenge – don’t go directly from college to law school. Professional school is very different from undergraduate school. A couple of years of on-the-job learning about what it takes to succeed in the “real world” will make you a more effective law student.

    Second, whether in your college classes, extracurricular activities, or job responsibilities, seek out as many writing opportunities as you can find, especially in situations when someone will be giving you honest feedback on your work. The ability to communicate effectively in writing will prove critical to your success not only in law school but also once you begin practice.

    Third, if in doubt, give law school a try. In my opinion, the first year of law school is one of the most rigorous and transformative experiences in all of higher education. Even if you ultimately conclude that law school isn’t for you and drop out after the first year, the skills and perspectives you develop that year will serve you well in whatever you end up doing.


    What are you most looking forward to in the next month or so?

    Gregg HermanGregg Herman, Loeb & Herman S.C., Milwaukee.

    In a bit over a month, I’ll begin a new term on the State Bar Board of Governors (BOG). Yes, I have a life outside the practice of law and there will be events happening that are of more importance to me, but I care about my profession, as well. Serving on the BOG is one way of expressing this concern.

    The State Bar of Wisconsin deals with numerous issues, ranging from assisting its members in making a living to questions of ethics and professionalism to attempting to improve the system of justice for society as a whole. Of course, serving two years on a rather large board cannot answer all – and maybe not even any – of these concerns by myself. But, as with much else in life, sometimes you just have to try, rather than accepting that things can never be any better.

    Part of the reason I am so much looking forward to serving on the BOG are the two presidents under whom I will serve. Both Ralph Cagle and Fran Deisinger are going to be outstanding leaders of this organization. Absent that quality of leadership, the BOG is irrelevant. With it, the State Bar can do a tremendous amount, both in micro issues and macro ones.

    We may not succeed in improving our legal system, but I look forward to the effort.




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