"The College will always have that psychodramatic underpinning, that self-discovery and true knowledge of self, coupled with love, the most powerful thing there is. You can be who you are and be powerful. You don't have to be anybody else. You are enough."
TLC alumni and Board member JR Clary talks openly with host Rafe Foreman about story and its importance. “A story must be told in a way that allows the listener to understand that from my own human experience I can connect to the story you are telling. It awakens within me feelings of, for example, betrayal, or hurt or pain or immense joy. And because your story is awakening that feeling within me, we are like two piano strings that once one has been struck, the other resonates."
JR has served on the Board of Directors for the Trial Lawyers College since 2010 and currently serves as the TLC Treasurer.
"During my trip, I learned that in Latin American culture, hummingbirds symbolize strength, hope and migration. I knew that I wanted to use that symbol in my paintings when I got home."
TLC Podcast host Rafe Foreman interviews Portland artist Janie Lowe on her travels along the US/Mexico border and the artwork that resulted from her journey. Explore paintings from Janie's Borderland Stories collection as you listen.
In May of 2019, Janie traveled from her home in Portland to get a first-hand view of the people and the environment along the border between Texas and Mexico. Her travels took her from Brownsville to El Paso, donating supplies and volunteering at respite centers, visiting with landowners, and seeking to understand and capture the struggle for survival along the Rio Grande river.
Janie discusses the efforts underway to construct a wall along the border and how the wall will impact residents, migrants, and the environment. "The closer we got to the wall, the more opposition there was to it. I didn't talk to one person on the border that thought it was a good idea to put the wall up and that it would do any good at all."
She shares how what she observed surprised her, saying, "I think that I expected to go down there and be heartbroken and see all this injustice, but you don't see people rushing over the river, you don't see this rush of people. You don't see the detention centers. What I did not expect was the hope that I saw and felt. That ordinary people step in and do what needs to be done for humanitarian purposes, just to help people out. People will step in and do things where the government has failed."
"I believe...we’re going to see an incredible explosion in everything that TLC is, everything that TLC stands for, and everything that TLC can be."
TLC Podcast host Rafe Foreman interviews TLC President John Sloan on the strength of the Trial Lawyers College. A TLC graduate and seasoned trial lawyer, John graduated from TLC in 1998 and joined the faculty in 2002. He was named to the Board of Directors in 2010 and has served as President since 2014.
In this interview, John shares his belief in psychodrama as the bedrock of the Trial Lawyers College, and as an essential tool in connecting with clients and jurors. "The surprising thing is that through the psychodramatic method, you're going to find something in common with everyone." John first discovered psychodrama at the Trial Lawyers College in 1998, more than 18 years into his practice. "I had had some success by then, but I realized at TLC that I really didn't know very much about what was available to me in the practice of law. I didn't understand the power that could be at my beck and call if I was willing to put in the work to...discover the story, discover the emotion of the story, to learn to love even the unlovable client."
John describes the challenges the Trial Lawyers College faces in planning seminars and colleges in the midst of a pandemic and discusses how the College might evolve in the future, from video conferencing to offering more advanced training at regional seminars. "We have an incredible staff committed to our method, who have worked their butts off for years in continuing our method, perfecting it, and figuring out better ways to teach it. The Trial Lawyers College is strong, is going to continue, and is going to be better."
TLC Podcast host Rafe Foreman interviews TLC graduate, trial lawyer, and focus group researcher Bruce Phillips on creative ways to continue to drive your cases and your practice forward during tough times.
In this wide-ranging interview, Bruce describes how he has come to see the importance of blending the personal with the professional, rather than trying to keep them separated, as a tool for bringing new insight and intuition to trying a case. An accomplished musician, Bruce describes how "TLC was where I quite denying that side of myself and tried to find a way to integrate it into my practice." Whether literally composing a piece for use in a video to be used in a case, or simply playing music as a way to relax his mind and look at the issues in a different way, Bruce says he has found that bringing more of himself into a case allows him to be more connected and creative.
In 2019, Bruce started exploring the idea of conducting online focus groups in addition to traditional face-to-face sessions. The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic made the move to online essential and helped to promote broader use and improvements to web meeting technology. "While we're all sitting at home during this period of isolation, who else is sitting at home? Jurors!" Bruce says, encouraging his fellow TLC alum to explore this new opportunity. "Many of the TLC techniques can still be used in the online videoconferencing setting."
Bruce encourages TLC graduates to get in touch with him if they are interested in exploring the idea of online focus groups further. "Call if you're running your own focus group or you just need some help getting started. Right now is a wonderful opportunity to be of service to one another. The universe will bring it back in due time."