Lane & Waterman is excited to welcome two new and one returning Summer Associates to the firm this year: Sam Cropper, Brittany Kammerer, and Sarah Oberg.
The firm’s Summer Associate program gives law students hands on legal experience after their second year of law school. Summer Associates assist with current client matters, including drafting briefs and transactional documents, participating in depositions, arbitration, and mediation sessions; attending client meetings; and observing courtroom practice.
We sat down to chat with each of them to learn more about their interests inside (and outside) the field of law.
- What is a day in the life for you at Lane & Waterman so far this summer?
- What area of law do you want to know more about?
- What partners are you working with at the firm / what are you doing with them?
- What are you reading/listening to right now?
- Favorite spot to eat in the Quad Cities?
Sam returns to the firm for a second summer as a Lane & Waterman summer associate. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Utah and is currently a student at The University of Iowa College of Law and The University of Iowa College of Public Health. Sam is President of the Iowa Student Health Law Association and an Associate Editor with Transnational Law and Contemporary Problems. In addition to his time spent with Lane & Waterman, Sam has worked for University of Iowa Health Care, Iowa Legal Aid, and the offices of Representative Steve Eliason, and Senator Orrin G. Hatch.
- My day consists of completing different projects for clients of the firm. I have done work in health law, tax, labor & employment, trust & estates, and secured transactions, to name just a few. On one day, I might be reviewing the organizational documents of a physician practice, and on another, I will be writing the first draft of a brief in a medical malpractice defense case. Legal work is like solving multiple little mysteries every day.
- My background is in healthcare, so I enjoy learning more about areas of the law that address the legal issues healthcare organizations face every day. Aside from that, I would love to gain more experience regarding mergers & acquisitions, business formation & corporate financing, & securities compliance. I would also like to gain more experience in the area of medical malpractice defense.
- I spend a fair amount of time working with the firm’s Managing Partner, Mike Byrne, on health law projects for various healthcare entities. Mike has been recognized for the last nine years by The Best Lawyers in America in the area of health law, so he is a great teacher. Early in the summer, I worked with Bob Waterman on a medical malpractice defense case. In my opinion, Bob is the best medical malpractice attorney in the State of Iowa and probably the Midwest, so that project was a great learning experience for me. I am currently working with Mikkie Schiltz on a project for a non-profit healthcare organization to help update its document retention policies. I am also currently working on a discovery project with Abbey Furlong for a non-profit healthcare organization. Recently, I had the opportunity to learn about secured transactions while working on a matter for Brett Marshall. There is never a shortage of exciting projects to work on at Lane & Waterman!
- I would consider myself a history buff, so most of my reading or listening is spent in that area. I particularly love learning about World War I & II. I am currently reading Churchill: Walking with Destiny by Andrew Roberts. It is a biography of the famous British statesman and Prime Minister Winston Churchill. I am now listening to a podcast titled, The History of WWII Podcast by Ray Harris Jr. The podcast, which has been running for almost ten years, gives a very in-depth analysis of each stage of World War II. I am currently on the episode addressing the German invasion of Poland in 1939.
- My favorite place to eat is Whiteys Ice Cream! Since it wouldn’t be practical to eat every meal there, I enjoy lunch at Café Express Deli, Oh So Sweet, or Lagomarcino’s. Dinner locations are Me & Billy, The Foundry, and Exotic Thai. I am a big foodie!
Brittany earned her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Minnesota and currently attends the University of Iowa College of Law. There she is a managing editor for the Iowa Law Review and is a participant in the Organization of Women Law Students and Staff. Prior to this summer, she has been a Judicial Extern for the Honorable Helen C. Adams, Chief Magistrate Judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa and as a volunteer with the Kids First Law Center.
- Typically I research a legal issue for a partner and prepare a memo on my analysis based on my findings. The day will be broken up either with a coffee run or discussing projects with partners.
- I am interested in learning more about transactional law and business litigation. It has been interesting so far to see my contracts and M&A classes in practice, and I am enjoying learning about the negotiation process.
- I’ve worked with Mikkie Schiltz on a variety of projects including statutes of limitations for theft, employment discrimination, and vaccine mandates. Scott Van Vooren has included me in on a stock purchase agreement. I worked on contract litigation issues with Mike Byrne and Joe Judge, worked on a civil procedure issue for Wendy Meyer, looked into the Illinois FOIA requirements for Ian Russel, had a quick detour into insurance and umbrella policies with Bob Waterman, and finally, surprisingly, enjoyed looking into LeClaire’s zoning ordinances for Tim Gulbranson.
- Reading: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo; Podcast: Even the Rich; Album: Sour by Olivia Rodrigo.
- As the new girl in town, I might have to choose Oh So Sweet. Their sandwiches haven’t failed me for lunch yet. Otherwise, I tried out Azteca 1 and loved the chicken and rice.
Sarah earned her Bachelor’s Degree from Augustana College, a Master’s Degree from Saint Ambrose University, and is currently attending the Loyola University Chicago School of Law where she has received CALI Awards in Legal Writing I and Appellate Advocacy. Since 2016, Sarah has worked for Deere & Company as a Senior Tax Analyst in International Tax Accounting, a Tax Analyst in International Tax Compliance, a Marketing Accountant, a Tax Analyst in Expatriate Taxation, and a General Ledger Accountant.
- I spend most days researching legal issues and preparing memos with my written analyses for partners. I’ve really enjoyed the research process and applying relevant law to the facts of particular cases. I’ve also been able to sit in on multiple depositions, which have been great learning experiences.
- I have an accounting and tax background, so I’d love to explore transactional law. I’m especially interested in learning more about entity formation, mergers and acquisitions, and trademark infringement. At the same time, I’ve enjoyed the litigation projects I’ve worked on so far, particularly employment issues.
- I’ve spent several weeks working with Bob Waterman on a medical malpractice case, where I’ve had opportunities to research various issues and prepare for depositions. We’ve also recently worked together on pre-litigation research to evaluate whether a client may have a viable cause of action based on various theories of liability. I’ve received civil procedure related research projects from Jason O’Rourke, Ian Russell, and Tim Gulbranson. It’s been a few years since taking Civil Procedure in law school… While I was a bit intimidated by the projects at first, they were great opportunities to re-visit procedural rules and see them operate in practice. Scott Van Vooren has brought me onto a transactional matter he is working on, and he’s offered wonderful mentorship there. Most recently, I’ve worked with Mikkie Schiltz and Abbey Furlong on employment matters involving the FMLA and ADA.
- I recently finished reading Born a Crime, a memoir by comedian and TV host Trevor Noah. In the book, he shares stories from his childhood in South Africa. While some stories are funny and lighthearted, Noah also writes about the challenges he faced as the child of a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother in apartheid South Africa. It was extremely well written and impactful. I love memoirs; almost all of the books I own are probably memoirs or some form of nonfiction.
- ? Hmmm… This is a hard question! I love Tuggers in Port Byron. I am not a huge burger person, but I am always down for a burger from Tuggers – they are amazing. My fiancé and I also love Los Charros in East Moline.