33 years, 750 cases
33 years, 550 cases
38 years, 300 cases
Aside from representing clients and helping them to resolve their legal problems in the quickest and easiest fashion I can, one thing I enjoy doing is explaining law and legal issues to media and large audiences. For some reason, I’ve never had a fear of speaking before large groups of people, and I found out two things very early in my legal career: 1) Most people don’t understand how law comes to be formed, where it comes from, or how the legal system works, and 2) Most people are fascinated with the working of the legal system – more particularly, that is, the court system. Add the criminal legal system into the mix, and people become even more interested. That almost certainly explains the popularity of John Grisham’s legal thrillers, and the seemingly endless popularity of legal entertainment in the media. Television has always been a leading barometer: Whether it was “Perry Mason” a half century ago, “Judd For The Defense” 30 years ago, “LA Law” twenty years ago, “The Practice” ten years ago, or “Boston Legal” and “Damages” today, the viewing public never ceases to be amazed and intrigued by the workings of the American legal system.
I always had a natural talent in articulating complex ideas and topics, so that whoever was listening could understand and connect to those topics. In both high school and college, almost whenever people would listen to me “argue” or advocate a given position, they would almost invariably react with “You know, he’s got a certain way about him; I see his point.” So it was a given, I guess, that some form of advocacy was going to be in my professional future. When I’m not in court or representing clients, I really enjoy commenting on legal and legislative issues in the media: Radio and television are favorites of mine, but I also provide commentary to print news outlets. My first job after I graduated law school, was as media spokesperson and Editor-In-Chief of the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys (MATA), www.massacademy.com, which is the state chapter of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America (ATLA, which is now called the American Association for Justice, www.justice.org.) One of my principal jobs there was to be the organization’s voice and face to the media on the subjects of tort law, tort reform and the liability insurance system, and in that capacity I commented almost daily to the general print and broadcast media, as well as to specialty legal news media such as Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, the National Law Journal and Lawyers Weekly USA. I performed the same spokesperson functions later for the liability insurance industry, when I covered New England for the Insurance Information Institute, www.iii.org.
These talents led me to develop the idea to create my own legal talk show on cable television, and I took that idea to the cable TV system that then covered south suburban Boston, Cablevision Systems. They liked the idea, and “At The Bar” was first broadcast in May 1995. For the next nine years, through various cable license transfers to AT&T BroadBand, then to Comcast Cable, At The Bar was broadcast weekly to several towns in south suburban Boston. I was the Executive Producer and Host of this weekly legal talk show, which showcased various cases being covered in the local and national media, and each show featured a guest attorney who was a specialist in a given area. Among my guests were the Attorney General of Massachusetts, District Attorneys, state legislators, and legal reporters. More than anything else, At The Bar was fun. I was never paid a dime – my work was entirely civic volunteerism, but I enjoyed it immensely. When Comcast cable took over the broadcast license for this geographic area in 2004, it terminated local access broadcast programming, and At The Bar, along with other programming, ended. For approximately eight years, I served as a Director of the Westwood Community Access Television Corp. (WestCAT), a non-profit organization that was charged with the responsibility of overseeing the creation and development of a new, independent production company broadcasting quality local access television in Westwood, Massachusetts. This local broadcast organization is now known as Westwood Media Center, and is a thriving source of local television programming, local government affairs access, and local news.
I’ve also taught legal courses at three local colleges: Fisher College in Boston, Newbury College in Brookline, and Massachusetts Bay Community College, in Wellesley. Teaching is a part of my public education skills, and it’s something I enjoy immensely. The courses I’ve taught include Criminal Law, Civil Litigation, Introduction to Law and the American Legal System, Business Law, Real Estate Law and Family Law. To bring new knowledge to students who want to learn is a very fulfilling experience. I’d enjoy teaching at a law school someday.
I’m also a blogger, and have two separate blogs that I post regulalrly to: www.bostoncriminalattorneyblog.com, where I regularly write on the subject of criminal law in Massachusetts, and www.bostonaccidentlawyerblog.com, where I write on a variety of injury law and liability issues in Massachusetts. When I’m not writing or commenting about the law, I enjoy working out at the gym and reading history. Staying physically fit is important to me, and I also study a form of Russian military self-defense, called “Combat Sambo.” It helps to balance mind and body, and I study (and practice) this martial art with my beautiful wife, Debbi K. Kickham. Another thing clients or readers may not know about me, is that, with my wife Debbi, I’m also a Travel Editor and Writer. Debbi’s background before we met was as a travel writer and reporter, and through our courtship and marriage, we found ourselves traveling very frequently, to the point where we would both regularly write and edit our stories. Our stories have appeared in several different newspapers, magazines and websites, and if you Google either of our names, you will find various travel stories we’ve written. We’ve been everywhere from Boston to Bora-Bora, all over Europe and the Caribbean. Hawaii and luxury cruises are our specialty areas.
By the way, of all the gifts or all the things I’ve been given, my wife Debbi is by far the most important and valuable of these. I try to live my life and outlook based on (of all things) a magnet we have on our refrigerator. It reads: “Rich Is Not How Much Money You Have. Rich is Who You Have Beside You.”
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.