I’m Rob. I’ve been practicing law for more than a quarter century. After some early experimentation in the private sector, I joined the United States Air Force and had the privilege of serving my country as a judge advocate. I left as a captain and spent a couple of years at ExxonMobil handling various kinds of litigation. I then moved to Shook, Hardy & Bacon, where I spent three and a half years handling products-liability cases. I then spent almost 18 years at Seyfarth Shaw, where I co-chaired the firm's national Appellate Team and wrote scads (scads!) of complex briefs filed in courts and other forums across the USA. I've now found my forever home at Nichols Brar Weitzner & Thomas LLP, where they tell me I can write as much as I want.
Over the years, I’ve shed my hair and cultivated a righteous white beard. I’ve written for the planet’s most demanding clients. I’ve had to reduce arcane concepts like venue and joinder to plain English. I’ve been forced to write crisply. I’ve served on the Board of Advisers for the Academy of American Legal Writers and the critical-reading panels for Black’s Law Dictionary (9th ed.) and Garner’s Modern American Usage (3d ed.). And while I hate to boast, I was named Time Magazine's Person of the Year in 2006.
I often remind struggling legal writers that their suffering is neither unique nor pointless. Writing can be a painful ordeal, but it’s so worthwhile. And those who suffer are in very good company. To quote the late Justice Antonin Scalia, “I don’t enjoy writing, but I enjoy having written.” Amen and amen.