August 9, 2006
New lawyer spotlight: Susan Kenney-Pfalzer
~ written by Biru Chen, Columbus Bar Communications Intern
A conversation with attorney Susan Kenney-Pfalzer will never be boring. Although she is now a stable and successful family law attorney, her history can be described as unusual, extraordinary, inspiring or all three at once.
Kenney-Pfalzer's educational background is different from that of most lawyers. Instead of concentrating in a traditional liberal arts curriculum, Kenney-Pfalzer majored in dance performance during her undergraduate years at Ohio State. In fact, her dream growing up was to become a dance instructor - which is exactly what she did.
"After graduation, I taught various dance forms to students of all ages," she said. "But a couple years into teaching, I realized that I did not enjoy what I was doing at all."
Next, Kenney-Pfalzer decided to pursue a career as a chiropractor. But after working for awhile in a physical therapy office, changed her mind once again.
"I met with a career counselor one day and told [the counselor] that I like to write persuasively," she said. "It was literally a 'ding!' moment when I decided to pursue law."
And so Kenney-Pfalzer enrolled at OSU Moritz College of Law and graduated with her law degree in 2003.
Her personal life is just as exhilarating and unmatched. At the age of 21, she took a vacation in Las Vegas where she won over $12,000 from the slot machines. With that money, she spent a portion of it to take a tour of Europe with a group of students much like herself. It was on this trip that she met her future husband.
"We were engaged within eight weeks, and have now been married for 11 years." Kenney-Pfalzer said.
While attending law school, she and her husband adopted two children. Her daughter is now five and her son is two years old.
"The day I found out that I passed my Bar Exam was the same day I also found out we were able to adopt my son," she said.
Kenney-Pfalzer has a full plate at home, but she also handles her own rapidly-expanding practice and is involved in various leadership roles in the community.
Her own practice located in Gahanna mainly concentrates in family law, and she also does Guardian Ad Litem work.
"I love the client contact I get with dealing in family law as well as the intellectually stimulating work," she said.
Kenney-Pfalzer is also the president of New Roots, an adoption support group, and the president-elect of the Women Lawyers of Franklin County organization. Her other activities include serving as an associate editor of Better Lawyer and staying involved with the New Lawyers committee.
Kenney-Pfalzer has a lot to be proud and happy about. She has a wonderful family, a rich service commitment and a successful practice. She said her goals are to keep building her practice and spending time with family.
"Life is good," she said with a smile.