Early Responsibility

Lauren K.O. Kagawa

University of Hawaii
William S. Richardson School of Law, 2018

When I first began working at Starn O’Toole Marcus & Fisher, I was immediately thrown into the thick of it.  Within the first few months of working, I was already communicating directly with clients and drafting contracts for some of the firm’s major clients. 

I felt rewarded by this early responsibility because I was able to get hands-on experience without toiling away researching or doing document review for the first year of my career.  The directors encourage associates to take responsibility for the outcome of each case and to be engaged from start to finish.  Being allowed to play such a big role in the client’s case has been vital to my transition from student to practicing attorney. 

I have been told that other firms, especially large firms, do not offer young associates these same opportunities.  SOM&F’s practice of immediately exposing associates to the full gamut of work, rather than piecing out tasks as we slowly climb the ladder, helps us to gain necessary skills and confidence quickly.  Knowing that I have real responsibilities that can affect important clients lets me know that I am an integral part of the SOM&F team.