We are pleased to introduce Reginald M. Turner as the 2018-2019 Fellows Chair. Mr. Turner is a member of Clark Hill’s Executive Committee, Government Policy Group, and Labor and Employment Practice Group. Mr. Turner is a Benefactor Fellow and joined the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation in February 2003.
What does being a Fellow mean to you?
I am fortunate to be a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, as these distinguished lawyers comprise a global honorary society of lawyers, judges and legal scholars recommended by their peers on the basis of excellence in our profession. I’m proud of our mission to provide financial support to sustain the ABF’s scholarship that advances justice and the understanding of law.
Where were you born and raised?
Detroit, MI, where my father was a policeman and my mother worked at the public library. As the city raised me, I have tried to be a positive force in bringing our city back to its former greatness. We are making progress.
What type of law do you practice, and how did you become interested in that particular area?
My core skill set has always been labor and employment law, first on the union side, and for the last 18 years for employers. In its heyday as the automobile capital of the world, Detroit was a major union town. When ABA Past President Dennis Archer was Mayor of Detroit, he recommended me for a White House Fellowship in the Clinton administration. After my fellowship, I began a government relations practice that has grown substantially over the years with the support of my firm and our current government policy group leaders, who are among the top lobbyists in Washington, D.C.
If you had decided not to pursue a career in law, what would you have done?
As a child, I wanted to be a police officer like my father, but Dad and Mom wanted me to be a lawyer.
What are you most looking forward to during your term as Chair of the Fellows?
I hope we can broaden our reach to identify more lawyers who demonstrate the best values of our profession, so they can help us promote justice and the rule of law through the work of the American Bar Foundation.
There are many membership organizations to join in the legal field. What makes the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation stand out among the rest for you?
Our professional oath requires us to do pro bono publico work to create a fair and effective justice system, and to protect the defenseless and oppressed. We do that through the work of the ABF.
What do you do in your free time?
I like to play golf, but my handicap is in the stratosphere.