Chris is a graduate of Purdue University’s flight program and the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. Chris began his professional career flying as a commercial pilot. As an associate attorney, Chris now focuses his efforts on the firm’s aviation and product liability case load, utilizing his technical and engineering background as an invaluable resource in litigation.
Q: Before becoming a lawyer, you were a commercial pilot. What made you want to become a lawyer?
A: As much as I love flying, it’s a pretty crazy lifestyle if you’re going to do it as a profession. I was exposed to lawyers and judges when I was a kid as my older (much older) sister was a court reporter for a judge in Tippecanoe County. I would get to hang out with my older sister from time to time and kind of liked the idea of practicing law. When I realized flying cargo in the middle of the night all over North America was not as glamorous as it sounds, I decided to head to law school. It was a decision that I have never regretted.
Q: If you weren’t a pilot or a lawyer, what would you be?
A: I have too many interests and never enough time. I love playing guitar and would start my own indie/folk/bluegrass band…not sure of a name yet. I like wood working projects. There’s something satisfying about making things out of wood, so maybe some type of carpentry business. Then there’s our farm, which could easily be a job in and of itself. Not sure which one of these, or if some other interest, wins out.
Q: You have 5 kids. All boys. Describe a household with 5 young boys.
A: I don’t think words can describe what this is like. It’s pure joy at times and pure torture at others. I will say the good far outweighs the bad. Nevertheless, “quiet” is not in our household’s vocabulary.
Q: What would I find in your refrigerator right now?
A: The better question is what wouldn’t you find in my fridge. Remember, I have 5 hungry boys to feed at home.
Q: If you were stranded on a deserted island, what 3 things would you bring with you and why?
A: Does this question assume that I already have food, water, and shelter? If it does, I would probably bring my family with me, but then I’m not sure if it would still qualify as a “deserted island.” I would also like a source of electricity, laptop or smartphone, wifi, and my guitar. Oh yeah, maybe some matches.
Q: If you could meet anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
A: Do I have to name just one person? I love history, and there’s so many people that I would want to talk to. Since the American Revolution is one of my favorites, I would probably start with George Washington. What was it about him that was able to hold together a bunch of rebels that ended up defeating the most powerful nation in the world at the time?
Q: Who’s your role model?
A: Besides the obvious answers like Jesus/God, I have a few role models that I have looked to over the years. First, when it comes to family, my dad is the man. He and my mom have been married for too many years to count (50 plus years) and he’s been a great example of how to show love to everyone we meet in this life. On the work side of life, I learned a lot from Harry Wilson, Jr. in a very short period of time. Harry’s love of practicing law was contagious, and certainly got me hooked as a young law clerk at WKW. Since Harry’s passing, Bruce Kehoe and Bill Winingham have been two of the best mentors any young lawyer can have. I count myself very fortunate to have these, and many others, who’ve made an impact on my life.