Bench & Bar

JUL 2018

The Bench & Bar magazine is published to provide members of the KBA with information that will increase their knowledge of the law, improve the practice of law, and assist in improving the quality of legal services for the citizenry.

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| JULY/AUGUST 2018 8 legal legend. Can you talk about your law firm, one of the most venerable and venerated in Kentucky? After my judicial clerkship, I started with the former Ogden Newell and Welch in Louisville. Squire Ogden was quite a character, and had an impressive legal mind. Although I did not practice law when he was alive, I remember him from when I was a boy. He and other lawyers in our firm then such as Rick Newell, Jim Welch, Joe Oldham, as well as my dad, all stressed the importance of putting the client's interests first and working as hard as we could to accomplish the client's goals, while adhering to the highest ethical standards in the practice of law. I have vague memories of the old Stoll Field and driving by there with my grandfather, though at the time, I had no idea for whom it was named. Richard Stoll was an extraordinary lawyer and community leader whose accomplishments and contributions to the profession are too many to list here. e SKO lawyers who followed Judge Stoll have carried on his tradition of excellent legal work, as well as con- tributing to the community in many different ways. It's important to everyone at SKO that we honor the legal and community service legacy we've been entrusted with—and we look forward to passing that torch to future generations. Your background includes time as a law clerk for a U.S. District Judge in the Virgin Islands, and time sailing in the Caribbean. Can you describe those adventures to our readers? Back when I was an undergraduate at the University of Kentucky, I got wanderlust and quit school before graduating (much to my parents' dismay). During that time out of school, I met a man who owned a 46 foot sailboat in Tortola, in the British Virgin Islands. Even though I did not then know how to sail, he offered me a job on his boat as captain. A friend of the owner met me on the boat and taught me how to sail, and how to take care of the sailboat. One of my brothers went down with me and we had an unbe- lievable experience sailing throughout the Caribbean on the boat. We would pull into an anchorage, drop anchor, and then put on a snorkel mask and catch fish or lobster for dinner. After about a year on the first boat, I went to work as a charter captain for a com- pany called the Moorings. at was a more regular charter captain job, where I would take families out for week-long charters, mainly in the BVI. After about two and a half years sailing, I decided it was time to return to school. After completing law school, I applied to be a law clerk for the U.S. District Court in the U.S. Virgin Islands. I was Doug: Doug: fortunate enough to get that position in St. Croix, where I served for two years. e judge was a great person—very smart, kind, understanding and patient. It was a great experience in part because the court really served as three different courts then: it was an Article One court, and heard all federal claims; it was also a court of general jurisdiction for cases above a certain dollar minimum; and it was an appel- late court from the Territorial Court of the Virgin Islands. e clerking experience was quite interesting, but also full of adventure, as it turns out. I was there when Hurricane Hugo hit St. Croix and really caused problems. My apartment was without electricity for more than four months as the island tried to rebuild after the storm, similar to what is occurring now after Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017. Sadly, the judge I worked for passed away soon after the hurricane, before my term ended. After the judge's death, I worked with various visiting judges who were sent to help address the caseload and learned many different styles of judging as a result. e budget for the judicial branch has become a biennial battle in Kentucky, and the same thing is occurring in statehouses around the country. Is the legal profession doing a good enough job in educating the public about the primacy of the rule of law in society? As for the budget for the judicial branch, our leg- islators are all trying to balance a lot of different demands for funding priorities. eir job is not an easy one in that respect, and I appreciate the support the judicial branch receives from the legislature. Chief Justice Minton has worked tirelessly to explain the needs of our courts to the Legislature and the KBA tries to help as it can. It is an ongoing challenge, but I believe the legal profession is trying to educate the public about the importance of the rule of law, but I'm sure we can always do more. Doug and Jack Ballantine, 1988 Bar Admission Doug: Q&A WITH KBA PRESIDENT

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