Thursday Profile: Mark Burzych

 Mark Burzych is a founding member of the Okemos-based Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes, PLC, and is the Lansing attorney leading the firm’s business practice. His practice focuses on small business growth strategies, including franchising. His franchising niche is in the hospitality industry but he works with franchise companies in all industries. His franchise industry work includes trademark and intellectual property protection. His hospitality industry work includes liquor licensing. 

He is an adjunct law school professor, author, speaker, and community volunteer.
Following his undergraduate studies at Michigan State University’s James Madison College, Burzych received his juris doctorate, cum laude, from the University of Michigan Law School in 1990.
The Lansing native has been involved in local and state Republican organizations. He is a former staff member of the Michigan Republican State Committee, and was appointed to both the Board of the Michigan Municipal Bond Authority and the Michigan Public Education Facilities Authority, which he chaired. He is currently a member of the board of directors of the Michigan Restaurant Association.  
By Jo Mathis
Legal News
Residence:  Okemos.
Currently reading …If an audiobook is “reading,” then “David and Goliath” by Malcolm Gladwell.
What is your most treasured material possession?  In 1984, 
I was an intern in the Office of the Vice President (George H.W. Bush) in the Old Executive Office Building in Washington, DC. 
I worked in his press office during the 1984 election campaign. 
I collected a lot of “memorabilia” during that time period that I treasure.
What would surprise people to know about George Bush? 
When people sit back and think about George H. W. Bush (41), 
I think people will be surprised to remember that he was the last president of the Greatest Generation and he embodied all of the attributes associated with that generation. He was a veteran of WWII (shot down over the Pacific and saved by a U.S. Navy submarine), industrious, hard-working, humble, friendly … a “get the job done” guy. He was imminently qualified to be president, serving as Congressman, Republican National Committee Chairman, CIA director, ambassador to the UN, and our country’s first “ambassador” to China. On a personal side, he had the stereotypical “politician’s memory.” Although I worked for him for only four months, on his visits to Michigan, if he saw me in the crowd, he would always wave and say “Hi, Mark!” He was an amazing man … and the last president of the Greatest Generation. 
What advice do you have for someone considering law school?  First, understand why YOU want to go to law school. Second, make sure you understand the economics of your law school education and make sure that the investment will give you an economic return.  
If you weren’t a lawyer, what would you be?  Something in sports, probably in the golf industry.
Favorite local hangouts:  Any golf course.
Favorite websites:  Is Candy Crush a website?  
Your proudest moment as a lawyer?  Every day that one of my franchise clients sells a new franchise, opens a new company location, or opens a new franchise location.  
What is your happiest childhood memory?  Playing whiffle ball with the neighborhood kids from sun-up to sundown every summer day.
What would surprise people about your job?  I think people would be surprised by how closely regulated franchise sales are and how I get involved with all of the issues that clients’ businesses may be facing … not just the “legal” issues.  
What do you wish someone would invent? A software program that would automatically index email messages from Outlook to client correspondence files.  
If you could trade places with someone for a day, who would that be?  The leader on Sunday morning at the Masters.  
What’s the most awe-inspiring place you have visited? The Grand Canyon.  
What’s your greatest achievement?  Marrying my law school sweetheart, Kim (22 years ago!), and raising three exceptional kids with her.  
If you could have one super power, what would it be? Patience … with my wife, kids, clients, staff, co-workers, opposing counsel, and judges.
What would you say to your 16-year-old self?  Spend a little more time planning, and rely less on “winging it.”  
Must-see TV: All away MSU games. 
What word do you overuse?  “Okay.”  (I hate reading court transcripts.)  
What’s one thing you would like to learn to do? To play the piano.
What is something most people don’t know about you?  I really enjoy all kinds of music—except rap.  
If you could have dinner with three people, living or dead, who would they be? Jesus Christ and whoever he brought to dinner.  
Can’t-live-without technology:  My iPhone ... Candy Crush is on that!
Favorite CD: Frank Sinatra’s Christmas Album.
Favorite law-related movie:   “A Few Good Men.”
What’s the best advice you ever received?  Work hard, keep your mouth closed, and good things will happen.
If you can help it, where will you not return?  Las Vegas, but it’s hard not to return because so many conferences are scheduled there.  
What do you drive? A 2000 Cadillac SLS. People honk at me at stoplights when the light turns green—thinking that I’m “old.”  
What would you drive if money were no object? A 1965 Shelby Mustang (in the summer).  
What is your motto?  “Be passionate.  Work, play, live, and love with passion.”
Where would you like to be when you’re 90?  Shooting my age on a golf course, then on to the 19th hole!  

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