Get out there and volunteer!

I’m sure that’s a pretty strange title for a post on a law blog.  But today I was reviewing where I spent my time in the last several days.  I found that a good bit of my time was spent on volunteer activities.  I’m not blowing my own horn, but sharing how I think those sorts of things help me to be a better lawyer, a better businessperson, a better person in general. 

I chair the board of Trustees of our Multiple Sclerosis Society Chapter.  Many of our friends and clients know my wife, Ellie, has MS and has had for more than 30 years.  So it makes me feel good to be able to help raise money to help people and families coping with MS.  I volunteer with my local Bar association, on the Finance Committee.  I get to use my financial and other skills to help an organization that spends tens of thousands of dollars a year helping people who can’t afford lawyers or who otherwise get impacted by the legal system and don’t know what to do.   I just spent three days with the leadership of the Commercial Law League of America, where I was the facilitator for their annual Strategic Planning process.  It was something I know how to do and they tell me it went well for them.  I felt good about working with them through the successful process.  This is an organization that has helped me grow our business over the years and, thereby, to put kids through college, so I feel indebted to the group.  Helping it to survive and thrive for another 113 years makes me feel good.

There are more, but I’m probably overdoing it.  The point is that I learn things by helping these organizations and I feel good about helping them.  It is different than practicing law and fighting with people.  I encounter people who are in need of help and I can make a difference.  That all gives me a better perspective on my life.  It works for me and it works for others.  That’s why I say “get out there and volunteer!

Written by Bernstein- Burkley, P.C. on August 13, 2008

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