July 27, 2012
inc Mentoring Program: LeeAnn Massucci
LeeAnn Massucci is a graduate of Capital Law School and founding partner of Massucci and Klein. Her path to a legal career could be best characterized as unusual. For thirteen years, she coached the women’s tennis team at The Ohio State University. She went on to own a coffeehouse that included a full service bar. In addition to advice on substantive legal matters, LeeAnn’s experience as a business owner gave her invaluable lessons to share with the Columbus Bar inc attorneys.
“I became an inc mentor because I believe in the quality and benefits of Columbus Bar programming,” LeeAnn shared. She also feels that with only ten years of practice under her belt, she can relate to new attorneys and the challenges they face. She also enjoys the rapport she is able to build with younger people through coaching and teaching opportunities.
LeeAnn advises new attorneys to ensure their first priority is being attentive to the client. “Sometimes we (attorneys) are overwhelmed by the amount of work on our desks. However, without clients, there would be no work.”
A practice LeeAnn encourages new attorneys to employ is to respond to phone calls the same day or within at least 24 hours. She even gives clients her cell phone number because “family law doesn’t always happen between 8:00am and 5:00pm.” LeeAnn also shares with new attorneys the importance of choosing cases wisely. “Pro bono work is very important. However, make sure that your cases do not become pro bono by default. When there is a fee agreement, make sure everyone adheres to it.”
LeeAnn believes Columbus Bar inc is successful because the program is well managed and the application requirements are great exercises for new attorneys, most notably, the creation of a business plan. She also feels the mentors are a great asset. “Having dedicated mentors is a luxury many solo attorneys don’t have.” When asked what she envisions for the future of the incubator if all limitations were removed, LeeAnn shared the dream of a program that could serve 15-20 attorneys with full-time mentors and clerical staff.