Podcast #82: Starting a Non-Profit Firm While in Law School, with Jamie Sutton

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In this week’s podcast episode, Sam talks with Jamie Sutton, a third-year law student who has already started his own sliding-scale nonprofit law firm.

A Passion for Policies and Procedures

Sam mentioned he had recently done a presentation about policies and procedures with Aaron Hall, who was a guest on the Lawyerist podcast back in episode 8. Policies and procedures might sound dry, Sam noted, but he is obsessed with them nonetheless. When you put everything you do into a reference manual, it becomes a useful tool for how a company or firm operates—it is essentially the “code” of your firm.

Aaron, while not in opposition to Sam on this, did note that Sam’s passion for manuals was greater than his. He pointed out that the challenge with using detailed procedure manuals for everything in a law firm setting is that having so much detailed documentation for lawyers doing creative work can make them feel beholden to the checklist.

Sam pointed out that this problem can be avoided by making sure that the manuals are a tool to get buy-in from your employees. That helps them to be on the same page about your shared goal of working together to have a great firm.

Starting a Non-Profit Firm While in Law School, with Jamie Sutton

Jamie Sutton

Jamie Sutton is the vice-president of Justice Unlocked, a non-profit organization that provides low-cost legal services for clients unable to afford attorneys.

He is a former Non-Commissioned Officer in the United States Marine Corps, who served four years in the infantry including a combat tour in Iraq. He has dual Bachelor’s Degrees in Criminal Justice and Philosophy, a Master of Arts in Religion and is a J.D. Candidate at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law.

You can follow Jamie on LinkedIn.

Thanks to Ruby Receptionists and Abacus for sponsoring this episode!

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  • Jamie Sutton

    Thank you for the opportunity to be on the Podcast Sam, I’ve been a long-time fan of The Lawyerist. It was my first real media interview and I was extremely nervous! But I hope your listeners get something interesting out of it.