“I want widows to know that once they have loved someone so deeply and been loved, it will come again. Nobody should live without love, and they don’t have to.”
This podcast features California attorney Samantha Berryessa, who continues our ‘Managing in Tough Times’ series with a moving account of her experience navigating grief before and after the 2019 death of her husband, attorney Dax Cowart.
A wrongful death lawyer by practice, Samantha gracefully highlights the parallels between her personal experience with grief and her perception of the grief of her widowed clients. Offering a unique glimpse into the inner world of a newly widowed woman, Samantha’s riveting testimony is essential listening for any trial lawyer who represents the bereaved.
“We need to communicate with our eyes more, whether it’s to your spouse or the jury on voir dire or to your client.”
In this week’s episode of the TLC podcast, civil lawyer Chandler Loupe joins host Rafe Foreman in a contentious discussion around the unique challenges faced by trial lawyers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Sharing his experience as a trial attorney in one of the few regions that kept its courtroom doors open through 2020, Chandler provides a timely reminder of the value of looking into people’s eyes.
“In order for me to do a trial right now, I need to prepare extra-special. It’s sort of like an extended warm-up to get my head in the right spot.”
This week’s podcast features Jason Savela, a criminal defense lawyer with more than two decades of experience trying cases to juries in Colorado. Continuing our theme of “Managing in Tough Times,” Jason shares the details of some of his most riveting cases, guiding listeners through the hardships and triumphs that he has shared with his clients.
As a TLC-trained trial lawyer, Jason stays true to the psychodramatic methods, sharing the strategies he used to discover his clients’ stories and tell them authentically to the jury. Bringing the discussion back to the tough times we’re collectively facing, Jason reminds listeners of the importance of using demonstrative evidence now more than ever.
“I didn’t want anyone to see me as I really am. I thought they would reject me. That’s why, in the beginning, I worked so hard to walk perfectly -- I didn’t want anyone to see my weakness. But it was only when I was willing to let people inside and to see that is when I began to be comfortable with it as well.”
Continuing our ‘Managing in Tough Times’ series is Bret Merkle, a Sioux Falls, South Dakota, personal injury attorney whose life was turned upside down at the age of 21 after he sustained serious injuries in a motorcycle accident. Suddenly facing a life with chronic pain and loss of bodily function, Bret slowly discovered sources of joy and fulfillment that would keep him moving forward.
While he learned to push through his hardships to accomplish an impressive legal career, Bret continued to struggle with being open about his physical struggles due to a fear of rejection. As Bret finally began to appreciate the value of living authentically and creating bonds as his true, vulnerable, and imperfect self, he built powerful relationships and unmatched success in his career as a trial lawyer. Above all, he’s learned to face his fears in everything he does -- whether it involves his body or his next trial.