A Life Dedicated to Entrepreneurship Knowing Business Up, Down, and Sideways
business lawyer who knows and understands how business works, inside and out, can give that advice. I established my practice so that I could be that lawyer for people. I wanted to work with like-minded people who are dedicated entrepreneurs and help people make their dreams a reality. Last month, my family went out of town for a weekend; we rented a cabin in the middle of nowhere for my birthday to celebrate and relax for a few days. On the way back home, we stopped for dinner and drinks at a brewery owned by one of our clients. The next day, we picked up our dogs from the boarder, who is another one of our clients, and we purchased dog toys manufactured by a company that we represent.
When I was growing up, I was surrounded by entrepreneurs. My parents, grandparents, and even some of my aunts and uncles were all business owners. I can’t ever remember a time where my parents ever worked for anyone but themselves. Both my mom and dad started, owned, and sold a number of businesses throughout my life. Business and entrepreneurship were constant influences for me, and as a result, I am genetically incapable of being someone else’s employee. I liked the appeal of being in control of my destiny. Entrepreneurs were the ones accountable for everything in their business, indirectly or not, and that stuck with me. My father was someone who wanted me to go out and work for corporate America. He was more of a “Do as I say, and not as I do,” kind of person. He’d always been self- employed, and he wanted me to get out there and work a 9-to-5 job with the security and benefits that came with it. So I tried to do just that.
money). But that didn’t last long. When I transferred to a college a little closer to home, I started up my own painting business named Painting 101. Having the opportunity to sit in class while I earned money was a feeling I won’t forget, and it became my drive. It was in my blood to become an entrepreneur. In every start-up business book you’ll ever read, no matter who wrote it, the first thing you’ll read is that you need an accountant and a lawyer to get your business moving. I wanted to be that lawyer. So, I entered the University of Pittsburgh and received my law degree and MBA. After I graduated, I went to work for a rather large accounting firm. I only stayed there 366 days — long enough to get my yearly bonus and confirm that corporate America was not something I could do. I clerked for a judge in Erie for the next year, but decided that I needed to go out and start on my own. It was my goal to be “the” attorney for entrepreneurs and small business owners in Erie. Businesses that are 5 years old or younger create a lot of jobs, and those start- ups need advice and guidance more than any other business to start off on the right foot. A
During my college years, I worked a few jobs here and there to make it through (i.e., beer
These are the experiences we aim to see at Erie Business Law. It’s so fulfilling to see the impacts our clients have on the community and know that we’ve helped our clients’ businesses, employees, families, customers, and the greater community.
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