Q: If a movie was made about your life, what famous actor would play Bill Winingham?
A: Any lawyer who could get Jack Nicholson to admit the truth in A Few Good Men is as good as you can get in my book. That would be Tom Cruise. Besides that, he would make me look as good as possible!
Q: In your opinion, what’s the public perception of lawyers?
A: I doubt that it’s very good, since the times you read or hear about lawyers are usually when a lawyer has done something wrong. That is really a shame, because most lawyers I know are good people who are honest and really try to do their best to solve problems for their clients.
Q: What motivates you?
A: When I was a young lawyer I was just worried that I would screw up in court, so I was motivated to learn the rules of evidence and procedure to avoid being humiliated in front of a jury! I guess that is a pretty low standard, just to avoid humiliation. After that, I actually began to get a lot of enjoyment out of winning. I have always been competitive and being a trial lawyer brings out that competitive aspect of my personality.
Q: When did you know you wanted to be a lawyer?
A: It’s funny how life’s path can take you in certain directions. My college roommate was applying to law school and took the LSAT his senior year. I had no idea what I was going to do, so I decided that I may as well take the LSAT, and I did well enough that I went ahead and applied to law school and was accepted. My father had been a lawyer, so it was something in the back of my mind that I had considered, but if my roommate had not applied to law school I am not sure I would have really taken that step. I now really love what I do. Law is a people business in many ways, and I really enjoy interacting with clients, lawyers, and judges every day. Law might sound boring to some, but every day is a new adventure trying to help somebody work out a difficult problem.
Q: If you had a time machine, where would you travel and why?
A: To the future. Our world is changing so quickly and dramatically, I cannot imagine what it will look like in one hundred years or so. When you look back a few years and think of a world without laptops and iPads and cell phones, and think of that same pace of change continuing or even accelerating, it is a little frightening–but also exciting–to think what the future will hold.
Q: My wife and I are going on vacation, where would you recommend?
A: You may laugh at this, but one of the best vacations we ever took was to a dude ranch in Arizona. It was not just horseback riding, but had golf, swimming, cookouts, singing around a campfire at night, and great food. Just watch out for the snakes!