Journal of Leadership and the Law

Introduction to the 2013 Edition

Elon Law student Andrew RealonFrom the Editor

The word ‘intent’ means something different in a legal context.  Outside of the law, the term is thrown around with little consequence; but as a legal term, it is regarded as a term of art. 

Whereas in the study of law we learn that intent can be general or specific, measured objective or subjectively, or can be transferred to apply to other wrongs, the Black’s simple definition suffices for this edition’s purpose: “The state of mind accompanying an act.”

As I begin to prepare myself for the mental challenge of the NC Bar Examination, others who have sat for the Bar have reminded me of the seemingly obvious pieces of advice and colloquialisms: “the test you only want to take once,” “go big or go home,” “do it right the first time.”  Like going to the Super Bowl, taking an examination such as the Bar demands the highest performance possible.  So, you might agree with me that the intent associated with the act of sitting for the Bar is the “it’s game time!” attitude, where nothing less than the best will work. 

Once students pass the Bar and become attorneys involved in the act of lawyering, what is the intent that attaches?  The law school experience is a series of “go-go-go” experiences including final exams that usually constitute the entirety of a course grade.  This series of examinations is followed by the only truly important exam to be taken a few months after graduation: the Bar.  After the Bar, what benchmarks remain?

Right out of school the passion is still there.  I have had the chance to work with attorneys fresh out of school demonstrating strong passion for the law.  And I have seen the other end of the spectrum, working with seasoned attorneys who have lost that passion.  Burnout is not something to be ignored in the legal profession.

This issue of the Journal of Leadership and the Law is dedicated to discussing those in the legal profession who are pursuing the law with all the zeal they can muster.  John Boschini provides a book review on a new biography of Justice Henry E. Frye, a true leader in North Carolinian law and civil rights, who never slowed down when faced with obstacles.  Ernest Lewis’s student note values ‘balance’ in the legal profession as a means to preserving zeal.  Shoshanna Silverberg has written a forward on a piece by J. Kim Wright, who talks about holistic lawyering as a means to prevent burnout.  Passages from Professor John Alexander’s recently-published book chapter discuss a new-age model in law schools, where interpersonal evaluation is valued as a part of legal education, and will lead to more lawyers as leaders.

I hope you agree with me that this issue has thought-provoking content.  It was our intent to share a journal with you that highlighted those who are passionate about the pursuit of law—those with a “Super Bowl” attitude.  I would like to thank the entire staff for their contributions.  I also want to thank you, the reader, for your attention to this issue.  Please share it with your colleagues.  We also welcome your feedback—email us at ELJournal@elon.edu.

Sincerely,
Andrew D. Realon L'14
Editor in Chief