Many of you are like me in that you went to law school with the idea that as a lawyer you would be able to help people and make a difference in your community. Then you started your law practice with a firm and rarely have the feeling that you are actually helping people and making a difference in your community. So you look for non-billable ways to get involved.

Recently I had a coaching session with Matt Siegel, a Cozen O’Connor attorney. He was recently named to the Board of the Philadelphia Support Center for Child Advocates. Every time Matt talks about his work with the support center I can hear the passion in his voice. Matt and other members of his firm represent abused and neglected children in Philadelphia.

During the last two years I have experienced the joy of speaking at career day at the school where my daughter Jill teaches. It is one of my favorite experiences.  I have spoken to  3rd and 4th grade classes, competing with the fireman who brought trucks. Instead of anything they could climb on, my tools were an iPhone and AirMac computer. Each year the students thought those tools were pretty cool.
Last year, I decided to teach them about contracts. I brought eight books and asked who wanted to enter into a contract with me to get one of the books. To my surprise, every student in the first class raised a hand. Before the day was over, I committed to buy 90 additional books. This year I told them about The Rule of Law using some of the materials available at the Virginia Bar Association Rule of Law Project. You might remember my blog Service Idea for Your Bar Association where I discussed how Michael Pace’s passion to help middle school students understand the importance of the rule of law had played an instrumental part in getting the project off the ground.
If you do not feel your billable time is helping people or making a difference in your community, think about what you are most passionate about and then get involved.