Monday Profile...Chris Patterson

 By Jo Mathis

Legal News
 
Chris Patterson was born in Peck, Mich., and raised on the family’s farm. He graduated from Western Michigan University in 2007 and Michigan State College of Law in 2010. 
During law school, Patterson was a law clerk for Circuit Judge Donald Teeple of Sanilac County and served as an extern for United States Court of Appeals Judge David McKeague. After law school, he continued working in the judicial system as a clerk for the United States District Judge Lawrence P. Zatkoff of the Federal Eastern District of Michigan, and focused on intellectual property, complex commercial litigation and various contract and statutory interpretation matters. He then joined Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes, PLC and now supports the firm’s municipal and corporate practice groups. 
Patterson became a mountain biking enthusiast in college and started racing soon after. In 2009, he co-founded a mountain bike endurance racing team that has grown to nine members. When he’s not at work,  he’s likely to be riding and racing or working on local trails, or organizing events to further grow the sport at the grassroots level.
 
Residence:  Okemos.
 
Currently reading …    “Pro Cycling on $10 a Day” by Phil Gaimon and “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman.
 
What is your most treasured material possession? Pants are most useful. (Can’t do business without them.)  Most expensive may be my bike collection, which easily surpasses the value of my car.
 
What do you drive? 2007 Ford Focus.
 
What would you drive if money were no object? 2007 Ford Focus daily, but an Aston Martin Vanquish for those days where style is important.
 
Favorite place to spend money:  Meijer and the bike shop.
 
What advice do you have for someone considering law school? Spend a summer hanging out around a law office. There’s a lot about being a lawyer that Hollywood never shows. If you get paid, that’s a bonus.
 
Favorite local hangouts: Any road, path or trail that I can run or bike down.
 
What is your happiest childhood memory? My parents provided far too many to single one out. I would have to say the road trips with my parents to anywhere. My father enjoys just driving, so we would pick a destination in the northern Lower Peninsula (a few to the U.P.) and start driving. The entire time we would listen to the oldies on the radio. This may have something to do with my taste in music.
 
Which things do you not like to do? I enjoy clean clothes and have no issue doing laundry. I, however, can’t grasp the efficiency of folding them and putting them away when I am going to use them again. This means I have a clean pile of clothes and dirty pile of clothes. (I do hang my dress shirts, since that doesn’t require folding.) 
 
What would surprise people about your job? Client service.  Your clients can be understanding and you can build a personal connection with them. I have had ice cream with clients after meetings, as well as have homemade cookies given to me to make a long-late meeting seem better. Clients really can be the best part of the job.
 
What do you wish someone would invent? If I listed it here, I would probably try to invent it . . . or I am in the process and cannot make a public disclosure at this time.
 
Does your job ever make you pessimistic? Certainly not. But a skeptic, definitely.
What has been your favorite year so far? Given that I have made 29 of them so far, it’s really the combined influence of each that creates the amazing life I have.
 
If you could trade places with someone for a day, who would that be? Procycling race director for one day of the Tour de France, a F1 driver, venture capitalist or a coffee barista (preferably at Starbucks or a small independent shop).
 
What’s the most awe-inspiring place you have visited? Cycling the Blue Ridge Parkway and stopping at the overlooks with a subtle fog in the valleys or mountain biking the 401 Upper trail in Crested Butte, Colo., while seeing the Maroon Bells on the horizon.
 
If you could have one super power, what would it be? Photographic memory.
 
What would you say to your 16-year-old self? At 29, I should not give my 16-year-old self advice quite yet. 
 
Favorite joke: The office staff would say any joke I made myself, but it honestly has to be some of the stuff that Steve Schultz, a partner at the firm, says. He has the best stories as well.
 
Must-see TV: Any show with lawyers, including “Suits” and “The Good Wife”
 
What word do you overuse? “Presumably.”
 
What’s one thing you would like to learn to do? Play the bagpipes
 
What is something most people don't know about you? My taste in music is similar to most teenage girls. 
 
If you could have dinner with three (or four) people, who would they be? If this dinner occurred the night before I traded places with anyone I wanted for a day, it would have to be those listed above. At least at the conclusion of dinner, I would know which to choose. Otherwise, Abraham Lincoln, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison.
 
Can’t-live-without technology: The coffee mug. Without it, my hands would be burned.
 
Does anything worry you? I always worry about those I care about . . . and missing a court filing deadline. 
 
Are you concerned about diet and exercise? Yes. I think it’s important to maintain a healthy lifestyle and balance that with the stresses of being a lawyer. If my office was suitable for a treadmill desk, I would have one!
 
If you can help it, where will you never return? Except for Cincinnati, all other areas of Ohio. The risk of a traffic stop coupled with a traffic ticket is greater than losing your money on Wall Street.
 
What is your motto? Live life with passion and treasure the people and relationships in your life.
 

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