The Publications Board is moving ahead with many new books and titles for solo, small firm, and general practitioners. Not lost in the excitement are young lawyers who are launching their career and practices.
We introduce the book Thrive—A New Lawyer’s Guide to Law Firm Practice by Desiree Moore. This paperback book is for lawyers who are just beginning their careers—who want to do more than show up, seem eager, and not get fired. This is for lawyers who want to know what their role is in a law firm from day one and face their careers head-on, with direction and purpose. This is for you if you don't care to be frustrated or overwhelmed by your career, but rather awakened. This is for you if you know that you want to become a leader in your law firm, practice area, or industry down the line. “Thrive” suggests that it will improve your performance, save you some very real growing pains, and accelerate your legal career.
Desiree Moore is an author, speaker, and attorney. She is the president and founder of Greenhorn Legal, LLC (www.greenhornlegal.com), which provides practical skills training for law students and new lawyers nationwide as they transition from academics into their legal careers. Moore is also an adjunct professor of legal writing and practical skills training at Loyola University Chicago School of Law.
1. Where do you live?
McKinney, TX. It’s a suburb approximately 30 miles north of Dallas.
2. What group do you practice with as an attorney?
I have a Solo Practice with one legal assistant.
3. How long have you been practicing law?
I have been a lawyer member since 1997 after passing the State of Texas bar in 1997. I graduated from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, School of Law, J.D., in May 1996.
4. When I was younger, I wanted to be . . .
To perform on Broadway. Doesn’t everyone want that? I was very active with music and dance from the age of 3. I ended up with a Piano Performance Minor Degree from SMU (Sociology Major). I play piano, saxophone, and clarinet. As a kid I took tap, jazz, and ballet. I was in the marching band and sang in choirs in high school and college. I now use those skills to perform in the Dallas Bar Association’s Bar None Show every summer. (www.barnoneshow.com—there are lots of pictures from this year’s show if you want any pictures). It’s an opportunity to give back to the community and destress from the emotionally draining practice of family law. The show involves six weeks of rehearsal and four nights of performances to raise money for the Sarah T. Hughes Diversity Scholarship to SMU School of Law. It’s a full-ride scholarship, and the show has raised more than $1.5 million dollars in its 28-year run.
5. What is your favorite part of your role as an attorney?
My favorite part of my role as an attorney is the opportunity to help people through a difficult time in their life.
6. What in your profession are you most passionate about as an attorney?
I am most passionate about preserving equal access to justice and giving a voice to those who otherwise would not be heard.
7. How long have you been a member of the ABA?
I’ve been a lawyer member since 1997, but I was also a member of the Law Student Division starting in 1993 and served as an LSD Liaison to the ABA Commission of Homelessness and Poverty in 1995. My Dad is a Past Chair of the Family Law Section, and I started attending ABA meetings at the age of 3. Most of my childhood family vacations occurred around ABA meetings. I loved that because it gave me a nationwide group of other ABA “kids” who regularly traveled with us and who eventually became lifetime friends. We all attended each other’s big life events such as bar mitzvahs and weddings. The ABA really offers many opportunities to make friends for life.
8. What ABA sections or groups do you belong to?
GP/Solo Council and Leadership Committee and Family Law Section Publications Board.
Section of Family Law
Section of Litigation
- Children's Rights Litigation Committee
- Family Law Litigation Committee
- Solo & Small Firm Committee
- The Woman Advocate Committee
- Trial Evidence Committee
- Committee Directors, Chairs, Co-Chairs
- Division 2 - Member Benefits Division
- Estate Planning, Probate & Trust Committee
- Family Law Committee
- GPSolo Leadership
- Meetings Host Committee
- Midyear Meeting Co-Chairs
- Membership Board
- Young Lawyers Committee
9. What do you find most valuable about the ABA?
The opportunity to learn from other professionals and experts around the country—in person at the meetings and also from the publications. I also appreciate the opportunities the ABA offers to travel to interesting places and make nationwide connections and close friendships.
10. How has ABA benefitted you personally or professionally?
As I said earlier, from an early age the ABA provided me with a lifetime close network of friends. The reason I ended up in Dallas from Kansas City was because of the late Past ABA Family Law Section Chair Louise Raggio. She was a close family friend through the ABA, in additional to being a tremendous champion of women’s legal rights from Texas. Per her suggestion, I chose SMU in Dallas for my undergraduate degree and to my mother’s chagrin I ended up staying in Dallas.
Professionally, the ABA has provided me with a nationwide and international network of friends who are inspiring; who continually lead by example; who have referred me cases, and who are always willing to answer a legal question or provide a restaurant or hotel recommendation.
11. Do you belong to any other professional organizations?
- American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Fellow 2012
- Attorneys Serving the Community, Member since 2003
ASC is a collaboration of Dallas women attorneys who combine their talents, imagination and resources to serve the Dallas community and support local nonprofit organizations whose programs benefit women, children, and families.
- Collin County Collaborative Law Alliance, Member since 2010
- President 2012-13
- Collin County Young Lawyer’s Association, Member 1998 - 2013
- Collin County Bar Association, Member since 1998
- Collin County Bench Bar Foundation, Fellow since 2000
- Curt B. Henderson American Inns of Court, Member since 2011
- Denton Bar Association Member since 2008
- Plano Bar Association, Member since 1998
- Frisco Bar Association, Member since 2002
- State Bar of Texas, Member since 1997
- Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists, since 2011
- Texas Bar Foundation
- Dallas Bar Association, Member 1997-1999, 2012 - Present
12. Other awards or honors?
- Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization 2011
- Cited in Fawzy v. Fawzy, 2009-NJ-0702.293: In July 2009 her published law school article: Comment, Binding Arbitration: A Proper Forum for Child Custody?, 14 J. Am. Acad. Matrimonial Law. 419 (1997) was cited by the New Jersey Supreme Court as a portion of "scholarly writing on the subject."
- Texas Super Lawyer Family Law 2011, 2012, Texas Monthly
- Texas Super Lawyer Rising Star Family Law 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, Texas Monthly
- 1st Place Pro Bono Attorney of the Year 2013, Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas, Collin County
- 2nd Place Pro Bono Attorney of the Year 2011, Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas, Collin County
- Atticus Finch Award 2006, Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas. This award is recognizes someone who demonstrates the spirit of pro bono and by giving back to the community
- Outstanding Director of the Year 2005–2006: Presented by The Joseph M. Pritchard Inn of Former and Current Officers and Directors of the Texas Young Lawyer’s Association
- Presidential Award of Merit for Exemplary Service to the Bar & Public, 2003-2004, 2004-2005
Christine Grace Albano
Law Office of Christine G Albano
6988 Lebanon Rd, Suite 102
Frisco, TX 75034-6743
United States of America
(972) 668-9704 (work phone)
Tips for New Members
Law Firm Practices: Ideas to Recover If Stumbling
It’s amazing how simple, yet challenging, it is to define your business goals and to implement a plan to reach them. Jim Collins’s “How the Mighty Fall and Why Some Companies Never Give In” is a good indicator of problems that confront business executives. It also serves as a lesson to lawyers and law firms regarding building law practices—potential failure.
Right now, you may be mentally stating to yourself the obvious: “I know what to do, and I know my goals for cases and clients. This isn’t my problem.” Collins would say that a step is missing in the thought process. Some failure is inevitable—it’s life, and how we address it is important for the firm’s turnaround and well-being.
Using a well-crafted plan to reverse the course of failing, if it happens to your firm, is vital to its overall success. Collins postulates that failure can be reversed if you recognize the stages and take action. We try to avoid catching a cold or the flu when the season is upon us; however, it is inevitable that we will be slowed down by a brief cold or flu at some point. Decline at a law firm can be thought of in a similar fashion.
According to Collins, decline can be detected, avoided, and reversed. The book is based on his four-year research project in which he uncovered the five stages of decline.
Stage 1 Hubris Born of Success
Stage 2 Undisciplined Pursuit of More
Stage 3 Denial of Risk and Peril
Stage 4 Grasping for Salvation
Stage 5 Capitulation to Irrelevance or Death
Once again, Collins, the best-selling author of Good to Great, shares his wisdom and reminds us of what even the strongest of leaders may need. Great companies can skip a step, fall, and recover stronger than ever.