From The Kansas City Business Journal
Up Close: Pat Woolley, leader of Polsinelli Shughart PC’s science and technology group by Reporter Paul Koepp
How did you know you wanted to be a lawyer?
When I was an undergraduate at Kansas State, I was a microbiology major. My dad has his Ph.D., so my intent was to go get a Ph.D. as well. But as I did more and more work in the lab, I killed almost everything I ever touched. I killed bacteria. I killed fruit flies. I had a really incredible ability and knack to wipe out my cell cultures. So I kind of concluded at that time that perhaps I needed a different career, and just kind of on a whim I decided to go to law school.
It’s expected now that to be a full-service firm, you need to have a well-developed IP department.
I think it would be hard right now to be a full-service firm and not have an IP practice. So much of what we do in this country is innovate, and so much of how we drive the economy forward is through technology and innovation. Those companies aren’t like the companies in the ‘40s and ‘50s, where they had huge pieces of real estate with hundreds of workers. Those kinds of companies still exist, but everyone is now touched by technology, whether it’s the software they develop to make their processes more efficient or they’re a company that only focuses on that, to biotech companies. As a result, it’s driven the growth of the practice.
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