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Young Lawyer Chair


Mr.Scott L Sternberg

Scott L. Sternberg is a partner at Sternberg, Naccari & White, L.L.C., with offices in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, where he focuses on business, general litigation and media matters. His media focus has involved litigation for newspapers, including The Advocate, and legal and legislative work for the Louisiana Press Association. He received a BA degree in journalism from Louisiana State University and his JD/DCL degree from LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center. He was admitted to practice in Louisiana in 2010.

Scott has served as chair-elect, secretary and District 1 representative on the Louisiana State Bar Association’s (LSBA) Young Lawyers Division (YLD) Council. As part of the YLD’s strategic planning, he chaired the first Louisiana Young Lawyers Conference in 2019. In 2019, he received an LSBA Citizen Lawyer Award for his pro bono, professional and charitable activities. In 2015, he received the LSBA’s Stephen T. Victory Memorial Award for most outstanding Louisiana Bar Journal article. He served on several LSBA committees and was a member of the 2012-13 Leadership LSBA Class.

He serves as the immediate past chair of the Federal Bar Association New Orleans Chapter’s Younger Lawyers Division and has taught at LSU and Loyola. He serves on the boards of the Pro Bono Project, the Louisiana Center for Law and Civic Education and the Jefferson Parish Chamber of Commerce. He has been recognized as one of Gambit Weekly’s “40 Under 40,” as a Louisiana Super Lawyers “Rising Star” and on New Orleans Magazine’s “Top Lawyers” list.

Scott and his wife Breland are the parents of three children.

Chair Messages

June-July 2019: YLD an Essential Part of Your Young Lawyer Journey: See You Out There!

I sometimes dislike the connotation that comes with the description “young lawyer.”

I don’t feel like a young lawyer anymore. I have a few years left based on the 39-and-under definition. But when I ran for Young Lawyers Division (YLD) chair, then-Chair Scotty Chabert told me I would be a totally different person by the time I wrote this first YLD Chair’s Message. I wouldn’t be a “young” lawyer anymore. Although it hasn’t really been that long, I can’t help thinking he’s kind of right.

I’m not sure what I thought a young lawyer was back then. I know what Scotty meant — the journey to secretary through chair-elect, chair and past chair is nearly a five-year process. That’s a long time to be in the leadership of a board that is focused on, ostensibly, being really new to this whole lawyer thing. When I ran for YLD secretary, I had only one child, was working at a “big” firm as an associate and was trying to figure out the whole work-life balance thing.

Three kids later, I still haven’t figured out work-life balance or anything else, really, but I’m getting better at it. I started my own firm. I built a practice. I expanded my network and my goals in part using the leadership positions (like the New Orleans Federal Bar Association and the LSBA YLD) I have been lucky enough to have.

In considering it, I have recently argued (forcefully) that “young” lawyer doesn’t only mean we are just the tech-savvy kids. Just because your kids are our age doesn’t mean you can talk down. It doesn’t mean we are the only attorneys in our offices that can be the workhorses because we have to prove our worth. It doesn’t mean that we’re naïve or inexperienced. Anyone, of any age, can be these things at any time. Some of the best “older” lawyers I know still value the marathon session and the deep-dive as much as they hated it as an associate.

No, to me, being a young lawyer means you are in a special place in your career that requires support because we’ve all got a journey ahead.

Young lawyers are paying their significant student loans, dealing with the skyrocketing costs of child care or generally trying to keep their co-workers happy. Sometimes they hang their own shingle. Sometimes they work at big firms. Sometimes they do both. In their spare time, they are passionate about things like politics, volunteering or their families (or all three). They are doing paid work, pro bono work and low bono work. They are trying to find their place. Is this the right firm? The right practice? The right career? Can I make partner?

This year, the YLD is going to focus on helping you through your journey as a young lawyer. It is the next step in our own internal process of evaluating what our function is as a Division.

For some time now, a rotating cast of once-and-future YLD chairs, Executive Board members, YLD Council members and former Council members have worked together hand-in-hand to move the YLD in what we consider to be a better direction.

Last year under Dylan Thriffiley’s leadership, we focused internally — we engaged in a significant strategic plan and tried to focus on doing the things we do well, better. We also sought your input. And we’re about to ask for more. This year, we will turn our gaze outward. This year, we are going to reach out to more young lawyers than ever before.

You will see your representatives at your young lawyers’ meetings. You will see us at your local bar events. We are going to bug you and your friends until you volunteer for one of our fulfilling programs or attend our Young Lawyers Conference (or both!).

In fact, if you want to get involved, email me. My email address is scott@snw.law. I mean it. We have committees and lifts both light and heavy. We could use those who want to make a difference no matter how much time they have to volunteer.

So, you’re a lawyer. At the beginning of your career. With a lot to do, and a lot to juggle. It’s true that, like me, you may not always feel like a “young” lawyer. You might not always like how those words make you feel. But until you no longer fit the definition, we at the YLD are going to endeavor to be an essential part of your young lawyer journey. See you out there!
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