COVID-19 Resources for Lawyers

Inspiring founder | Texas quorum quirks | Homelessness at crisis point | Old firm, new approach

This week’s solid listens include an inspiring founder’s story, the politics of quorum in Texas explained and approaches addressing homelessness in a meaningful way. 

Persistence pays off

When you know you’re right and everyone tells you you’re wrong, what do you do? If you’re Janine Sickmeyer, you move to the next conversation. You find a community of visionaries and bootstrap your dream into a reality.

Sickmeyer, the founder of bankruptcy software company NextChapter, faced rejection after rejection. All the while, she plugged away at developing a product she knew had a place in the bankruptcy market. Even when the influx of bankruptcy matters didn’t materialize during the pandemic, NextChapter thrived, growing at a steady clip and eventually snapped up by Fastcase.

Sickmeyer shares her founder story with Legal Rebels podcast host Lyle Moran. Hear about her dev-to-rev strategy. She shares her angle investor focus and the 82 times she pitched to investors only to be turned away.

Texas politics translated 

On Legal Talk Today, UT Texas School of Law Prof Randall Erben breaks down the unique constitutional provisions that have empowered Texas Democrats to break quorum by fleeing to the nation’s capital.

Erben and host Laurence Colletti discuss what “arrest” means in this context. And Prof. Erben predicts how this Texas standoff will end.

Combating homelessness coast to coast

U.S. District Judge David O. Carter created a stir when he ordered Los Angeles to not only find housing for the rising population of homeless but audit spending. 

Lawyer 2 Lawyer host Craig Williams interviews UCLA School of Law’s Gary Blas and the ACLU’s Breanne Schuster. They discuss the legal issues at play, separation of powers, current legislation, and approaches being tried across the country.

Client experience reframed

On the Lawyerist podcast, Canadian lawyer Spencer Keys shares his experience buying a firm straight out of law school, then rejuvenating the small estate-planning practice. 

He shares how he focused the firm on client service, starting with breaking from tradition and choosing an approachable name for his firm, Charthouse Lawyers. 

Keys is humble as he explains his trial and tribulations. Because there’s no “magic management” book, Keys is fine experimenting with approaches to find better ways to reach and serve clients.

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Molly McDonough, a longtime legal affairs journalist, is a producer for the current events show "Legal Talk Today." She also is a media and content strategist with McDonough Media LLC. McDonough previously served as editor and publisher of the ABA’s flagship magazine, the "ABA Journal." She writes about access to justice at "A Just Society."