This month’s spotlighted VADA member is Jim Cales of Furniss, Davis, Rashkind and Saunders, PC, in Norfolk. Jim is a past Chair and Vice Chair of the VADA’s Auto and Transportation Liability Section. He also has been a member of the VADA’s Annual Meeting Committee. Jim currently serves as the Tidewater Regional Director on the VADA’s Board of Directors.
Where were you born?
2. Spouse? Children? Pets?
Yes, yes, and yes. My lovely and patient wife of 21 years, Jennifer, and I have three wonderful children: Emily 18, Ava 11, and Jacob 11. We have a pet shih-tzu, Hairy. Also, I went to work one day this past holiday season, then all of a sudden we had a bearded dragon named Fred or Allison depending whether it’s male or female. Does anyone know how to tell? Hit me up with a DM.
3. What type of law do you practice?
Insurance Defense and Municipal Law
4. How long have you been a member of VADA?
5. What do you like most about practicing law?
The best part of what I do is putting together the puzzle of a strange set of facts or an unusual concept of law in a way that helps a client tell his or her story.
6. What have you enjoyed most about your time in VADA?
The people. It sounds like a cliché, but it is true: the men and women who make up this organization are its best asset. Their willingness to help, teach, and learn from each other is universal and infectious.
7. Who is the most fascinating person you ever met?
I skipped a night class in law school to attend a dinner of about a dozen students with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and her late husband.
8. What is the one app on your phone you cannot live without?
Other than text/email, I would have to say the podcast app. Going through the commute every day is tolerable with podcasts from ESPN, NPR and Comedy Central.
9. What is at the top of your bucket list?
Catch a ballgame at the new Busch Stadium
10. Do you have a favorite movie quote?
Al Pacino’s closing argument in “And Justice for All,” broadcast friendly edit of course.
11. What talent do you wish you had?
I have a feeling it would be nice to juggle.
12. When I am not at the office, I like to …
Tinker with computers. My son and I just built a PC from scratch this past winter. It was like grown up Legos.
13. If I wasn’t practicing law, I would be …
Working as a beat writer for the St. Louis Cardinals.
14. What would your courtroom walk-up music be?
15. Who is your real life superhero?
Without hesitation, my parents. They made sure that their son with funny looking arms would only be limited by what was between his ears.
16. What advice would you give someone who just passed the bar?
We have a saying at my firm that has been attributed to one of our firm’s founding members—and original VADA member—Bob Furniss: “When it comes to telling your client about their case, bad news is like old lettuce. It doesn’t get better the longer you wait.”
17. What is the last TV show you binge watched?
The Handmaid’s Tale.
18. What is your guilty pleasure?
Absurd 1990s comedies. And ice cream, always ice cream.
19. What is your definition of success?
Living a life of kindness, honesty, and doing your best is my measure of success. That, or owning a Ferrari.
Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys
1915 Huguenot Road, Ste 301
Richmond, VA, 23235
Executive Director: Sherma Mather
Director of Meetings: Amy Gilbody
Journal of Civil Litigation Managing Editor: Molly Terry