Lawyers: A Serving Profession
by H. Dickson Burton
We have just finished a wonderful time of year, which most of us hate to see go (though it does seem to come around again more quickly every year). What makes the season so warm and memorable is undoubtedly the extra emphasis on service and giving. It seems that at the end of the year, we try to consider, more than at other times, the plights and burdens of those around us. We consider how we can do something, however small, to lighten those burdens. I am in particular awe of the service many in our profession give at this time of year - and throughout the year. Indeed, I am convinced that service is a hallmark of our profession.
Leonard Burningham is one great example of a lawyer providing extraordinary service. For twenty-nine years Leonard, along with Lincoln Mead, a long-time former employee of the bar, and many others, has volunteered countless hours organizing, managing, and providing much labor to gather food, clothing, and cash donations from lawyers, law firms, their employees, court personnel, and others. Many of you have contributed to this food and winter clothing drive and do so every year. The many donations have benefited various charities and shelters in our community, particularly serving those in greatest need of the basics of food, clothing, and shelter. Thanks Leonard, for your years of remarkable service.
There are many other and even countless examples of attorneys serving in our community in diverse ways, and not just at the end of the year. Attorneys are giving of themselves throughout the year to lift up individuals and communities at food banks, charities, shelters, youth recovery and rescue organizations, and church groups. Many lawyers volunteer on community councils, non-profit boards and political organizations, youth sports groups, and on and on.
I know attorneys who spend time every week serving meals at homeless shelters and often organize other attorneys or family members to join them. Others spend regular time as big brothers and big sisters to at-risk youth. One...