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Stanley Peter Jaskiewicz

Mentorship Milovanovic

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We all know some things we can instantly recognize, even if we can’t define them - a fine wine, for example, or a great sunset.

Certainly, you won’t see any “help wanted” ads for a mentor - or for a mentee.

I think such a relationship must instead evolve organically, rather than intentionally.

But there are well-known, successful exceptions.

For example, best-selling author Bruce Feiler carefully planned for mentors for his young children after a devastating cancer diagnosis (see here).

(I am glad that he survived to write books I have enjoyed.)

Even the Supreme Court has recognized the concept of knowing something, without being able to define it, in late Justice Potter Stewart’s famous concurring opinion in Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 U.S. 184 (1964).

I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description (of pornography); and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it, and the motion picture involved in this case is not that.

I think that description fits a “mentor,” as well – not only do we know one when we see one, but we certainly recognize the many others who are not mentors.

Although the dictionary definition is simple – “a trusted counselor or guide”  that phrasing falls far short of those whom I consider my own mentors, who have helped me grow, both as an attorney, and in life.

Since everyone knows what a mentor is, and knows one (or, fortunately, more), the Voice of Experience editors asked its editorial board to tell us about their mentors.

Included in this issue is what they told us about their own mentors.

I hope you have been as fortunate in finding one for yourself.

Mentorship Articles

Mentor: a Trusted Counselor or Guide
By Richard Goodwin
Dick has learned plenty about mentorship throughout his life, by both being a mentor to others and having some of his own. Hear about his lessons learned and what advice he gives to those who mentor.

Mentors from Another Planet
By Stanley P. Jaskiewicz
Stanley reflects on the mentors throughout his life who have impacted him most and the characteristics they all share.

The Importance of Mentorship in Law School
By Seth Kramer
Mentors can be a great support throughout many of life's experiences, especially law school. Hear about the importance of students having resources to mentorship and how some schools are addressing this important issue.