*In a new feature, Kightlinger & Gray will be highlighting attorneys to help you get to know your team at K&G in short 5 minute interviews.
5 Minute Focus- Senior Partner Ginny Peterson
- What was a deciding factor in going to law school, and becoming an attorney?
- I went to law school as a non-traditional law student. I began after I had already been employed full-time in the insurance industry for 15 years. I was age 37 when I enrolled in the evening division as I did not want to give up my day job! Initially I began considering furthering my education because I wanted to be able to offer an employer more and further my own opportunities My decision came down to getting an MBA or a law degree, and I decided on law school.
- Were there any moments in law school that made you second guess your career path?
- No. For me, without sounding too cliché, the experience was very rewarding. I think initially I did not really have a clear career path since I just wanted to expand my education. And, since I loved what I was doing in the insurance industry, there was probably less pressure.
- What would you tell someone that is on the fence about becoming a lawyer, or trying to make a decision about this career path?
- I would tell her or him, that going to law school expands your mind and your way of thinking which is helpful in both your personal and professional life and obtaining a law degree, gives an individual many employment options. Having a law degree, and understanding the law gives you credibility in a lot of different jobs. If you think you would enjoy the learning process, I would encourage you to take the leap.. I am a big believer that the more you enjoy something the better you will be at it!
- What was a defining moment in your legal career?
- For me, a defining moment was the first time I prepared a Motion for Summary Judgment, and the supervisory partner didn’t have much in the way of corrections. It was a moment of accomplishment. I now have the opportunity to pay the great mentoring I received forward.
- What would you want someone outside the legal field to know about your job?
- That legal work is not just reading contracts, documents, and paperwork. The legal field is still a very people oriented business, and that you have to want to and enjoy working with people if you want to do well and enjoy your job.
- What are your regular takeaways that make being an attorney rewarding and fulfilling?
- I enjoy interacting with people, and I enjoy helping people solve their problems. I enjoy analysis and outlining opposing thoughts and reaching a conclusion. Also, being able to be a continual scholar, and always learning is an enjoyable part of being an attorney. There is also never a dull moment. I have never been bored in 20 years!!
- What is an interesting fact about yourself?
- An interesting fact, is that the law is actually my third career. I started as a schoolteacher ,and then I worked in the insurance industry for almost 20 years prior to changing my career. I still love to teach and enjoy presentations and group discussions in legal and insurance organizations.
Ginny Peterson is a member of the Firm’s five-member Management Committee, and serves as the chair of the firm’s Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith Practice Group. A Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) with extensive experience in pre-suit evaluation and litigation, Ginny’s practice areas include General Liability, Property, Life, Disability and Environmental Insurance Coverage, Bad Faith, Professional Liability Defense Litigation mainly of insurance agents and attorneys, insurance issues, environmental defense and appellate work in each of her practice areas.