Thursday, March 26, 2015

In Memoriam: Jerry Richman

I learned of the passing of a good man yesterday.  Taking a hiatus from Facebook, I've been a bit out of the loop on many things, including births, engagements, and, sadly, deaths.  Last night I learned that Jerry Richman had died.

I've spent 30 minutes looking for a picture of Jerry on Google, but have come up empty.  What I was able to find were numerous articles and public records memorializing the important role he held in his community.  Jerry was an attorney.  He took difficult cases and won a lot of them.

I remember him as "Mr. Richman".  He was one of two people in this County who still called me "Tommy".

"Tommy - how are you?  And how's your father?  Great great, everything sounds great."

I've known Mr. Richman since I was little.  As I grew up, I looked up to him as a respected attorney in his community.  In 2007, I was confronted with a difficult career decision - did I stay in private practice or did I become a government attorney for the DoD?  What were the career pitfalls that I may not be seeing?

I called Mr. Richman and he talked to me for an hour.  He had worked for the Department of Justice and emphasized that I could always come back into private practice, but that being a government attorney was best when you're young and don't have many financial obligations.  I took the job with the DoD and while it didn't work out, I learned important skills and now have a security clearance practice because of it.  Being a government attorney was the right thing for me at the right time.  Thanks to Mr. Richman.

He was a warm, friendly, kind man.  I am sure that those on the other side of the courtroom may not have seen him that way, but that's in the nature of the profession.  I will miss having him call me "Tommy"; a humbling reminder that many people in this County have known me my entire life.  And I will certainly miss Jerry Richman.

That's all for today.  Have a great Thursday doing what you love.