How to Work a Room? By Mentioning Your Work!

Posted by Dana Campbell, ALDF's Chief Contract Attorney on June 11, 2007

You’d think a room full of veteran New York lawyers would be a tough crowd to impress, but recently at a continuing legal education seminar I brought the bunch to a deafening silence, hanging on my every word. How’d I do it? By mentioning in a small group discussion that I was an animal lawyer, and then describing what one does as an animal law practitioner. As I was talking, all the other groups around us gradually stopped talking to hear what I was saying. The best part is that they weren’t chuckling or smirking, they were genuinely interested.

Actually, this scenario happens to me a lot, where the conversation turns to what we all do for a living, and hands down I’ve got the most interesting job in the room. I know that some of my fellow staffers have experienced the same thing, but you don’t have to work at ALDF to be able to do important, relevant work for animals, thus becoming the most interesting person at a party or seminar.

Animals and their welfare are increasingly becoming part of even the most traditional areas of law practice. If you are a lawyer, consider adding animal law as a component of your practice or pro bono work, whether your current expertise is custody cases, wills and trusts, civil litigation, and so on. Perhaps there is a need for an instructor of Animal Law at your local college or law school. Why not propose yourself to teach it? If you are not a lawyer, consider volunteering for an animal group like ALDF or a local shelter, or working with a firm that does animal cases.  Visit our website for more ideas on how to get involved doing fascinating work.  

C’mon, be a star!