The Case of Experience v. Enthusiasm: Why Not Both?
My mailman is not really sure about me. On any given day, I might receive a magazine from the American Bar Association for senior lawyers called Experience, alongside brochures about how to wind down my practice and ease into retirement. In the same delivery, the mailman would be equally likely to leave a copy of TYL — a magazine from the association’s Young Lawyers Division.
So what am I? Am I a senior lawyer, or am I a young lawyer? The answer is I’m both. How can that be? I only became a lawyer a little over eight years ago.
I joined the ranks of the Young Lawyers Division at the end of 2009 (despite being old enough to be most of the other young lawyers’ mother) when I was sworn in. I found a position with a small firm, where I learned how to really practice patent law, working with hundreds of clients. Like many “young” lawyers, I was enamored with law and my enthusiasm showed.
This sort of paradox of the senior-young lawyer also brings a benefit to my clients. Although I haven’t been practicing law a really long time (like other lawyers in my generation), I come equipped with experience in product development and general business. I have an MBA. I know what it takes to get a new product to market. I know what it takes to attract large companies to look at new products from small companies. I bring that experience to the table, and to my clients.
Lastly, having worked in a large company where cross-functional cooperation is not just necessary, it’s critical for the growth of the business, I understand how all the different pieces of the puzzle have to fit together in order for a product to be successful. I have a bird’s eye view when it comes to a patent strategy and a trademark strategy.
So yes, I’m a young lawyer, and yes, I’m a senior lawyer. Guess what? My clients get the best of both worlds.
Patricia P. Werschulz
Werschulz Patent Law, LLC
23 North Avenue East
Cranford, NJ 07016