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Alumnus Spotlight: Charles W. Lamb Jr. (J.D.'98)

lamb picName: Charles W. Lamb Jr.
Title: Attorney / Owner
Employer Name: The Lamb Law Firm, P.C.
Location: Albany, Georgia
Number of years in this position or with this employer: 10 years
Georgia Law graduation year: 1998
Other degrees / institution / year: B.B.A. / University of Georgia / 1992

1. Why did you choose to attend the University of Georgia School of Law?
I was mindful of the quote from former governor Carl Sanders that was engraved in an outside wall of the law school that I had passed many times as an undergraduate student: the "University of Georgia School of Law is … to be one of such excellence that no citizen of Georgia need ever leave the state because a superior legal education is afforded elsewhere." I had thoroughly enjoyed the Legal Environment of Business course and the two business law courses (all taught by Dr. Bob Boehmer) that I had taken at the Terry College of Business at UGA. Moving just one building over – from Caldwell Hall to the law school – seemed like the perfectly natural thing to do. I didn’t have to leave the state – or the campus.

2. Who was your favorite Georgia Law professor? Why?
I most enjoyed taking the courses taught by Professor Bob Brussack (civil procedure and administrative law). I appreciated the clarity with which he presented the course content. Also, for some reason, his glasses and his hairstyle made him remind me of former Senator Sam Nunn. Either his appearance – or his teaching style – always gave me the impression that I was in the presence of greatness.

3. What was your favorite thing about living in Athens?
I enjoyed visiting the many local venues featuring live music, attending the variety of cultural festivals and events held downtown (where I also lived), and occasionally bumping into local legends.

4. What advice would you give to a current law school student?
If you think you already know it all, you should be worried – because you almost certainly don’t.

5. Please briefly describe your current position as the owner of The Lamb Law Firm.
I handle serious injury claims (such as spinal cord and brain injury claims) for plaintiffs. For several years, I also served as retained general counsel for a regional nonprofit organization serving people with disabilities. For the last four years, I also have taught online paralegal studies courses for Darton State College (on a part-time basis).

6. What do you enjoy most about your job? What is the most rewarding aspect?
As a person who experienced a spinal cord injury myself (in 1989), I enjoy helping injured people obtain the resources they will need to cover the significant expenses that are often associated with living with a disability. Also, I particularly appreciate having the opportunity to reassure them – by my own example – that a person who acquires a disability can still be productive and enjoy life.

7. What is the most interesting case you have encountered in your practice?
About nine years ago, I handled a claim for a young woman with a traumatic brain injury who was treated at the same facility (Shepherd Center in Atlanta) at which I was treated after my spinal cord injury. The settlement funds from that claim allowed the young woman to build an accessible home, obtain reliable transportation, return to college and invest the remainder in such a way as to ensure continuing income for years to come. She currently lives independently and she is employed in a job she loves. We still keep in touch with one another – just last week we had coffee together at a local Starbucks.

8. What do you do to handle the stress of your work? How do you relax after a stressful day?
I enjoy spending time with my friends, dining out and occasionally attending a live-music show (although there aren’t as many here in Albany as there were in good old Athens).

9. What advice would you give to someone working in your field?
Particularly for someone just entering the field: don’t bite off more than you can chew and be willing to ask for help when you need it.

10. What do you enjoy doing during your free time? What are your hobbies?
I’m not sure that you would call it a hobby, but I have personally grown a lot from giving my time as a board member/volunteer for a variety of governmental and nonprofit entities (e.g., Georgia State Rehabilitation Council, Georgia Brain and Spinal Injury Trust Fund Commission, Albany Advocacy Resource Center, Leadership Albany and Dougherty Circuit Bar Association).   

11. If you could share an afternoon with anyone, with whom would you choose to spend it?
I would choose to spend it with both my maternal grandfather (who died when I was very young, about whom I have heard more than I actually remember for myself, and who was reportedly a savvy businessman) and my fraternal grandfather (with whom I didn’t get to spend as much time as I would have liked when I was growing up but who I know was a man whose heart was overflowing with love for his family and community).

12. What would you consider your greatest accomplishment in life?
Acknowledging that my physical disability is an important part of me – but not letting it define me – has been important. I know that I am a “whole” person and that I have the ability to help other people.

13. What book/resource do you find yourself referencing the most?
Georgia Automobile Insurance Law (Thomson Reuters), Davis and Shulman’s Georgia Practice and Procedure (Thomson Reuters), and Fastcase (access to which is a benefit of membership in the State Bar of Georgia).

14. When you look out your office window, what do you see?
I see a towering pear tree that is visited seasonally by hungry squirrels, birds and people.