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The Life and Career of Lawyer Turned International-Restaurant Owner David Nachman
by Mary Waldron
After completing his undergraduate degree at Georgetown University, having always been intrigued by law as well as business, Nachman attended Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH, earning his J.D. and his master's in business. "I always tied business to what I was doing in law. Law, when it really boils down, is a business," he said.
While he was in school, Nachman helped start a t-shirt business, which ultimately helped him pay his way through school. One evening, at the campus pub, Nachman and one of his classmates came up with the idea to design "law suits"—or, rather, track suits for lawyers to wear called law suits. The team marketed the law suits to different law schools, including Case Western Reserve, the University of Chicago, and New York University. They later designed "legal briefs"—underwear for lawyers. Their legal briefs actually made it into department stores for a time, as well.
"Being at a large firm is an environment that you really have to be used to. If you have a lot of diverse interests, it's a very hard place to be. There's not a whole lot of thinking out of the box," he said.
While at his first two firms, Nachman had begun encouraging the partners to open branches in business immigration law, a newfound interest and passion of his. Unfortunately, he was never able to convince them.
When Nachman first merged his firm with Grotta, Glassman & Hoffman, he met another immigration attorney, David Sindell, who had offices in Tokyo, New York, and California. The two had a lot in common professionally and became friends. In 2001, Nachman resigned from Grotta, Glassman & Hoffman to work as a sole practitioner. Shortly after, he received a call from Sindell, who said that there was a restaurant he thought the two of them should buy in New Jersey.
Currently, Nachman is in the process of beginning a French-Japanese food tour based at a chateau on a two-acre piece of property in Southern France in the Pyrenees. This venture will allow groups to enjoy week-long stays at the chateau with one of the team's chefs guiding shopping tours in the nearby marketplace to gather traditional ingredients for extravagant French meals to be prepared and served at the house. Last July, Nachman and Sindell began renovating the six-bedroom house, and the food tours should start up in approximately six months.
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