Samuel T. Oliver Jr., Manning, Fulton & Skinner PA, Raleigh
My first job after college was at Salem Academy in Winston-Salem teaching world cultures, U.S. history and European history. While not a rigorous workload by high-school teachers’ standards, preparing for three courses five days a week was good training for dealing with multiple transactions. Listening and responding to student questions in and out of class helped to develop an ability to listen and respond to client concerns. Last but not least, living on a teacher’s salary developed a real appreciation for the cost of living for most individuals and that we need to provide services at a cost commensurate to their value to our clients.
Vita: Born Feb. 28, 1952, in Greensboro; bachelor’s from Wake Forest University and law degree from UNC Chapel Hill; wife. Why he chose this field: Because most transactions are commenced and completed in a few months and are generally conducted in a collaborative rather than adversarial manner. What he’d be if not a lawyer: Teacher. Memorable case: In 1984, I represented Katherine R. Everett, one of the first women to practice law in the state and the first to win a case before the N.C. Supreme Court, and her son, Robinson O. Everett, then chief judge of the U.S. Military Court of Appeals, in connection with the financing of an apartment complex. Marshall Hartsfield, a founding partner of what is now Poyner & Spruill, represented the lender. They brought 125 years of legal experience to the closing table. Passions: Fly-fishing in New Zealand, Newfoundland dogs. Hero: My father. Recent reading: Gallatin Canyon by Thomas McGuane. Don’t ask him to: Play a musical instrument.