IB Member Spotlight: Gary McCallister

gdm-e1327004692575-150x150Gary McCallister
Gary D. McCallister & Associates, LLC.
Chicago, IL
http://www.gdmlawfirm.com/

Fast Facts —

3 words to describe yourself: Dedicated, compassionate, problem-solver

Favorite sports team. Chicago Cubs

Outside of law, what is the one business you would love to start? I would start my own travel company, organizing and overseeing foreign travel..

Best business tip for a college graduate. Once you recognize your desire to learn, pursue your passion regardless of the path it takes you.

Person you would like to meet and why. Franz Kafka: he had a number of writings that I studied in college and I was always curious as to what they were thinking with regard to the world around them.

 

Please take us back to the beginning of your career.

GM: I think what inspired me was that there was a huge a need. My favorite part is that you can really make a difference in someone’s life. You can affect positive change in what could usually be a bad situation. In this profession, you have the ability to make the law what it “ought” to be.

 

You spent the first 20 years practicing law in Kansas. Why the change to Chicago?  

GM: We had opportunity to move to a larger and more viral legal market. It opened many more doors in terms of pursuing opportunities that were not available in Kansas. On a personal side, it gave our children the opportunity to experience growing up in a very different environment, compared to where we had lived in the past.

 

How did you break into the Chicago market?

GM: I sought out advice, counseling and direction from a variety of different lawyers in practice areas outside of mine. I did this to better understand the overall legal culture in Chicago. These lawyers had some very interesting observations of the legal system and provided advice as to how one can develop success in this market.

I would recommend a younger lawyer to seek out more experienced lawyers to guide them with their judgments, decision making as well as their strategies. To me, in this profession, relationships are everything.

 

Like other IB members, you  are very involved in your local community, especially with speeches and presentations as well as the American Lung Association and Autism Speaks. Why do you think giving back is so important for IB members and the overall success of our group?

GM: I think that it is a duty of ours to contribute within the community. I have been very involved with World Bicycle Relief USA, Autism Speaks and Tutoring Chicago, which is a volunteer educational program to provide a consistent source of encouragement and positive interaction with young students.

I believe addressing safety issues for children is a significant item and I have been so impressed by the recent distracted driving campaigns. These types of campaigns have an impact locally and the speeches remind organizations how important it is. IB has given us a positive direction and is always reminding us that we can make a difference.

 

What do you value most about your IB membership?

GM: I have been an Injury Board member since the very beginning. The vibrancy of the network is of tremendous value. The members encourage one another and it pushes us to be the best lawyers we can be. IB also gives us many educational components to understand tactics to better our firm such as social media strategies and other useful marketing techniques.

If you would like to be featured in an IB member spotlight, please contact Braden Kowalski at bkowalski@injuryboard.org.

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