Personal Inquiry: Lise Barrera

A Q & A with Lise Barrera, Wayne State Law grad and a partner with Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss, where she is head of the firms Mortgage Banking Group.

Q. What words do you live by?
A. There is no such thing as a minor lapse of integrity. Tom Peters It pretty much says it all.

Q. Where is your favorite place to be?
A. In my garden.

Q. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
A . It changes moment to moment, but enjoying a sunrise with a hot cup of coffee is a pretty great start.

Q. What is your idea of a perfect day off?
A. If its raining, reading a good book on my sofa, perhaps a nap, some kind of fried Thai noodle dish for dinner, and maybe a fire and a movie. If its sunny, anything outdoors plus the Thai food.

Q. What are your three favorite movies?
A. Its tough to narrow down. I will go with Princess Bride, Finding Neverland, and Band of Brothers (not technically a movie, but still brilliant).

Q. When and where were you the happiest?
A. I spent the most wonderful New Years Eve with my girlfriends out near Howell. It was an amazingly warm day spent outdoors, then a fantastic meal, and a celebration in the moonlight.

Q. Which talent would you most like to have?
A. I would love to be able to sing. I mean really sing, with a voice someone other than me would want to listen to.

Q. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
A. I would like to be a better listener.

Q. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
A. Finishing college after taking a few years off to pursue a career in ballroom dancing.

Q. What is you most treasured possession?
A. One of my favorite things is a beautiful oil painting by Claire Ewart that I bought in Saugatuck. I never get tired of looking at it.

Q. What is your greatest extravagance?
A. My dual suspension mountain bike. A very expensive impulse buy.

Q. Whats your favorite vacation spot?
A. I absolutely loved my time in the Upper Peninsula. Its incredibly beautiful.

Q. Whats your definition of success?
A. Learning from the mistakes I made yesterday, so I dont have to repeat them today.

Q. If you could be someone else for a day, who would it be?
A. My sister Tessa. She is currently living in Austria and has this great new job with Red Bull in social media. I think it would be fun to be there and do that for a day. Then, of course, she would have to come back and undo the damage.

Q. If you could have any super power, what would it be?
A. Hindsight as foresight.

Q. Where would you most like to live?
A. I really love where I live now, but Boulder, Colorado does hold a bit of a mysterious allure for me.

Q. Why did you choose to go into law?
A. Its something I thought about for years and then things just fell into place with testing and admissions as I was finishing up my bachelors degree. It seemed meant to be.

Q. What advice would you give to a law school student?
A. Work your butt off in your first year. It matters.

Q. What advice would you give to yourself at the age of 20?
A. I dont think its printable.

By Jo Mathis

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