Vermont Bar Journal, Vol. 40, No. 2 Vermont Bar Journal, Fall 2017, Vol. 48, No. 3 - Page 5

PRESIDENT’S COLUMN Interview with Dan Maguire Teri Corsones: Today is September 8, 2017 and I’m meeting with incoming VBA Board President, Daniel Maguire, in Mont- pelier. Dan, on behalf of Vermont Bar Journal readers everywhere, thank you for taking time to meet with me today. Dan Maguire: Teri, thank you very much. I feel very privileged and honored to be here. the love of Vermont had been entrenched during my time here in law school. I missed the people, the beautiful views, and most of all the friends I had made. I did an about face, came back to Vermont, took the bar exam the following summer and have been here ever since without a single regret. I have raised my family here and am strongly connected to our state. TC: The honor is all ours! First, can you tell us a bit about your background; where you grew up, and where you went to school. DM: Sure, I grew up in Rhode Island with my immediate and extended family. I went to college at the University of Rhode Island where I studied political science, and after I graduated I spent some time traveling and working before I decided I wanted to come to the beautiful state of Vermont to attend Vermont Law School. TC: What law jobs did you have after your return to Vermont? DM: When I returned to Vermont I brave- ly opened my own p ractice. I look back and say I was brave, but at the time I was prob- ably more naïve than brave. An attorney in South Burlington, Paul Morwood, provided me an opportunity by offering me an of- fice in his office in exchange for title work and legal research. It allowed me to build a practice. It was during that time that I re- connected with my original interest in crim- inal defense; I was yearning for litigation experience and started to investigate op- portunities in public defense. The Defend- er General’s Office had ad hoc assignments and I stepped out, asked for the opportu- nity and started my criminal defense career. I kept my eyes open for other contract op- portunities and a conflict public defender contract in Middlebury became available. The requirement was that I be physical- ly present in Addison County so I rented space from the Probate Judge at the time, Chester Ketchum. Federal Judge William Sessions was the Public Defender in Mid- dlebury then, and as you can imagine, with- in a short period of time I had some very, very serious cases. TC: What led you to follow the law school path? DM: A childhood friend of mine had a father who was a talented and well-known attorney in Rhode Island by the name of Eugene F. Toro. I recall looking up to him and being fascinated by his work. He was one of the premiere criminal defense attor- neys in the state. He allowed me to shad- ow him when I was in high school, and I was hooked. I caught the bug for the prac- tice of law and for litigation, in particular. His energy and dedication were contagious and he encouraged me to think about law as a career. Before going to law school I spent a few years working in restaurants and in the service business, but eventual- ly came around and found myself clear in my intentions and arrived at Vermont Law School in the late summer of 1985. TC: Did you consider ever settling any- where other than in Vermont? DM: When I first came here, I fell in love with the state, but it always was my inten- tion to return to Rhode Island. The pull to go to work with Mr. Toro was great and my family was there. All four of my grandpar- ents were immigrants from Ireland, and I am a first generation college graduate. Our family was close and it had always made sense to me that I would live close to them. So, when I graduated from Vermont Law School, I took the Rhode Island bar exam and was admitted and started work- ing there for a short period of time. While all of those aspects pulled me back to RI, TC: Well, what a great lawyer to be con- nected with. DM: Absolutely. I got to know Bill, and if he had a conflict or if his office had a con- flict, the cases came my way. There was another attorney in Middlebury who made himself available to me, and that was Peter Langrock. I didn’t know that he was such a well-known and respected attorney at the time. He was just this very friendly attor- ney who was always at the courthouse. But I was very green, and he was very helpful to me and I owe him a big debt of grat- itude. I worked in Middlebury for several years, and then applied for a job with the Attorney General’s Office. Through that of- fice I had the opportunity to represent the Department of Corrections, which was an incredibly rich and educational experience. It was during this work that I met Michael THE VERMONT BAR JOURNAL • FALL 2017 Kennedy. Michael and I worked together representing the Department of Correc- tions, along with John Treadwell, who’s now the Chief of the Criminal Division in the Attorney General’s Office. After work- ing at the AG’s office I changed direction and decided to teach as an adjunct profes- sor at CCV, the Community College of Ver- mont, and I also taught at Woodbury Col- lege. TC: What did you teach? DM: I taught basic criminal law and pro- cedure, and I also taught family law. TC: You have a very varied background! What was next? DM: While I enjoyed teaching and brief- ly explored a permanent role in the educa- tion world, the practice of law and litiga- tion pulled me back. I invested and chose to open up my own office. I had enjoyed the previous experience when I owned my own business and chose to re-invent in that way. Building a law office up from nothing in the state of Vermont is no easy task. I took it one step at a time to find myself where I am today. TC: What year was that? DM: 2002. I networked. I reached out to all the attorneys who I knew, I let them know what I was doing, and I said, “if you have any cases that you don’t want, please send them my way.” I also reached out to the Defender General’s Office to find out if they had any work. Matt Valerio offered me a contract and I snapped it up. I found my- 5