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Twelve Sexy Things You Can Do with a Law Degree That (1) May Make You Famous and (2) Do Not Require Practicing Law

published September 29, 2014

By CEO and Founder - BCG Attorney Search left
Published By
( 1188 votes, average: 4 out of 5)
What do you think about this article? Rate it using the stars above and let us know what you think in the comments below.
Twelve Sexy Things You Can Do With a Law Degree

Most attorneys are doomed to a life behind a computer screen and pretty boring lives. Here are 12 things that people with law degrees (or at least some legal education!) have done that made them famous without practicing law:

See the following for more information:
1. Become an Actor

There are tons of actors with law degrees:

2. Become a Media/Television Host

Lots of well-known media/televisions hosts have come out of law school.
Diane Sawyer 3. Become a Journalist

There are a ton of famous journalists with law degrees:
4. Become an Artist
  • Henri Matisse (French artist, gained his qualification in law after working as a court administrator)
  • Wassily Kandinsky (abstract artist, studied law at the University of Moscow)
Henri Mattise

5. Become a Musician
  • Julio Iglesias (received his law degree at Complutense University of Madrid)
  • Andrea Bocelli (Italian Singer, graduated from the University of Pisa)
  • Paul Simon (dropped out of Brooklyn Law School)
Andrea Bocelli

6. Become a Screenwriter
7. Become a Puzzle Maker

Will Shortz (New York Times Crossword puzzle maker, University of Virginia Law School graduate)

Will Shortz
8. Become an Author
  • John Grisham John Grisham(The Firm, graduated from University of Mississippi School of Law)
  • Scott Turow (Presumed Innocent, graduated from Harvard Law School)
  • Robert Louis Stevenson (Treasure Island, studied law at Edinburgh University)
  • Washington Irving (Rip Van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, studied law in New York City under a judge)
  • Charles Perrault (Tales of Mother Goose, studied law in Paris)

9. Become an Entrepreneur

Being an attorney is a great path to being a successful entrepreneur.
10. Become a CEO

The number of CEOs who are attorneys is very impressive. Here are some Fortune 500 CEOs with law degrees:

Brian T. Moynihan

CEO Company Law school (name) (state)
Alexander, Anthony J. FirstEnergy University of Akron
Anderson, Richard H. Delta Air Lines, Inc. South Texas College of Law
Blake, Francis S. Home Depot Columbia University (NY)
Blankfein, Lloyd C. Goldman Sachs Group Harvard University (MA)
Braly, Angela F. WellPoint Southern Methodist University (Dedman) (TX)
Burke, Kevin Consolidated Edison Fordham University (NY)
Chambers, John T. Cisco Systems West Virginia University
Chenault, Kenneth I. American Express Harvard University (MA)
Conway, John W. Crown Holdings Columbia University (NY)
Crane, David W. NRG Energy Harvard University (MA)
Dauman, Philippe P. Viacom Columbia University (NY)
Diaz, Paul J. Kindred Healthcare Georgetown University (DC)
Dillon, David B. Kroger Southern Methodist University (Dedman) (TX)
Earley, Anthony F. Jr. PG&E Corp. University of Notre Dame (IN)
Engles, Gregg L. Dean Foods Yale University (CT)
Ettinger, Jeffrey M. Hormel Foods University of California-Los Angeles
Farrell, Thomas F. II Dominion Resources University of Virginia
Ferguson, Roger W. Jr. TIAA-CREF Harvard University (MA)
Finnegan, John D. Chubb Fordham University (NY)
Frazier, Kenneth C. Merck Harvard University (MA)
Greenberg, Lon R. UGI Villanova University
Haldeman, Charles E. Jr. Freddie Mac Harvard University (MA)
Johnson, William D. Progress Energy University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Kandarian, Steven A. MetLife Georgetown University (DC)
Kearney, Christopher J. SPX DePaul University (IL)
Kinder, Richard D. Kinder Morgan University of Missouri
King, David P. Laboratory Corp. of American University of Pennsylvania
Lipinski, John J. CVR Energy Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey-Camden
Mathas, Theodore A. New York Life Insurance University of Virginia
McGee, Liam E. Hartford Financial Services Group Loyola Marymount University (CA)
Moynihan, Brian T. Bank of America Corp. University of Notre Dame (IN)
Ninivaggi, Daniel A. Icahn Enterprises Stanford University (CA)
O'Brien, Richard T. Newmont Mining Lewis and Clark Law School (MA)
Otis, Clarence Jr. Darden Restaurants Stanford University (CA)
Rogers, James E. Duke Energy University of Kentucky
Roth, Michael I. Interpublic Group New York University
Roth, Michael I. Interpublic Group Boston University
Rubright, James A. Rock-Tenn University of Virginia
Rust, Edward B. Jr. State Farm Insurance Cos. Southern Methodist University (Dedman) (TX)
Skaggs, Robert C. Jr. NiSource West Virginia University
Smisek, Jeffrey A. United Continental Holdings Harvard University (MA)
Sorenson, Arne M. Marriott International University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Starks, Daniel J. St. Jude Medical University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Steiner, David P. Waste Management University of California-Los Angeles
Storch, Gerald L. Toys "R" Us Harvard University (MA)
Temares, Steven H. Bed Bath & Beyond University of Pennsylvania

Sam Zell from ValueWalk.com11. Become a Real Estate Developer
12. Become a Politician

Lawyers generally make up over 40% of the US Congress and over 60% of the US Senate. Many big-time politicians are/were attorneys:
  • Gandhi (trained in law at the Inner Temple, London)
  • Fidel Castro (graduated from the University of Havana)
  • Nelson Mandela (studied at University of Witwatersrand)

A surprising number of attorneys were also US Presidents:
  • John Adams (Harvard, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • Thomas Jefferson (College of William & Mary, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • James Madison (College of New Jersey, now Princeton, then read law)
  • John Quincy Adams (Harvard, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • Andrew Jackson (self-taught lawyer)
  • Martin Van Buren (Kinderhook Academy, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • John Tyler (College of William & Mary, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • James Polk (University of North Carolina, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • Millard Fillmore (clerked for and studied under New York Judge Walter Wood)
  • Franklin Pierce (Bowdoin College, then studied law)
  • James Buchanan (Dickinson College, then studied law)
  • Abraham Lincoln (No formal education, a self-taught lawyer)
  • Rutherford Hayes (Kenyon College, Harvard Law)
  • Chester Arthur (Union College, then studied law)
  • Grover Cleveland (apprenticed as a lawyer)Barack Obama
  • Benjamin Harrison (Miami University in Ohio, then studied law)
  • William McKinley (Allegheny College, Albany Law)
  • William Howard Taft (Yale, Cincinnati Law)
  • Woodrow Wilson (Princeton, UVA Law)
  • Calvin Coolidge (Amherst, then apprenticed as a lawyer)
  • Franklin Roosevelt (Harvard, Columbia Law)
  • Richard Nixon (Whittier College, Duke Law)
  • Gerald Ford (University of Michigan, Yale Law)
  • Bill Clinton (Georgetown University, Yale Law)
  • Barack Obama (Columbia, Harvard Law)
Please see the following articles for more information about nontraditional law jobs and alternative ways to use your law degree:

Alternative Summary

Harrison is the founder of BCG Attorney Search and several companies in the legal employment space that collectively gets thousands of attorneys jobs each year. Harrison’s writings about attorney careers and placement attract millions of reads each year. Harrison is widely considered the most successful recruiter in the United States and personally places multiple attorneys most weeks. His articles on legal search and placement are read by attorneys, law students and others millions of times per year.

More about Harrison

About LawCrossing

LawCrossing has received tens of thousands of attorneys jobs and has been the leading legal job board in the United States for almost two decades. LawCrossing helps attorneys dramatically improve their careers by locating every legal job opening in the market. Unlike other job sites, LawCrossing consolidates every job in the legal market and posts jobs regardless of whether or not an employer is paying. LawCrossing takes your legal career seriously and understands the legal profession. For more information, please visit

published September 29, 2014

By CEO and Founder - BCG Attorney Search left
( 1188 votes, average: 4 out of 5)
What do you think about this article? Rate it using the stars above and let us know what you think in the comments below.