Much easier, if you
remember that everybody represents a
client and everyone’s going to take a
position and be adversarial. As long
you’re not taking things personally and
as long as you don’t put things personally
to people, it always makes things easier.
You know that person and you know that
you can say certain things to that person
and explain to them your position and
they’re hopefully not going to take things
personally. It’s a great benefit, that
Q What about outside the office? What websites do you look at? Do
you look at any racing websites?
I really don’t. I wasn’t that
interested in the racing. It’s one of the
reasons I came back to practicing law. It
was more of a business opportunity to
restructure the team itself. Website-wise,
I’m a sports guy. I’ll certainly read the
CBS Sports site. I’ll read about the
Pittsburgh Penguins. I’m a Philadelphia
Eagles fan. I’ll of course read the papers,
both locally and nationally.
Outside of my office, I’m more of an
activity guy. I like to play golf. I like to
play ice hockey. I like to do outdoorsy
stuff. I like to go skiing. I also like to
just do a lot of walking. I like to travel.
I adore going to different places and
learning a little bit about them.
Q What have been some of your favorite trips?
My trip to Europe—and
Italy, in particular—was one of my
favorites. That trip took place back in
2000. It was a friend of mine and I, and it
was right after I took the bar. We flew to
Italy and spent time there. We were in
Switzerland, Amsterdam, and Prague,
and then went back to Italy for three
weeks total. Just last September, I took
my dad to Ireland for the Penn State
football game that took place over in
Dublin. That was a great experience.
My trip to Peru, and Machu Picchu,
was a really cool trip. The wife of a
close friend of mine from college is
Peruvian, and they wanted to have
their child baptized in Peru. They
asked me to be the godfather, and I
went down there for the christening.
I went to Machu Picchu while I was
there, and that was just such a wild
experience. It was an Inca site on top
of this mountain, about 8,000 feet
above sea level. It’s amazing what
the Incas did when they were around
in just building this civilization.
It was really an incredible place.
These ruins were actually only
discovered by Western civilization
in 1911. It’s really a beautiful place.
There’s Machu Picchu, which is where
essentially all the Incas lived and
farming was done, and then there’s
another place called Huayna Picchu,
which is another mountain, a peak
that goes above Machu Picchu. You
climb another 3,000 or so feet, and
you can look down on Machu Picchu.
That was wild experience. Quite
frankly, I’m a little afraid of heights,
and there’s this really narrow trail that
just drops. Fortunately I had a guide
who walked through it with me and I
couldn’t be happier that I did it. When
I was at the top, there’s no handrail,
no ropes—nothing like that, but an
amazing view. It was a really scary,
but once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Q What might people who know you only professionally be most
surprised to learn about you?
While I’ve been
practicing law for 15 years now, there
was one year in 2006 when I ran a
drag racing team. I left the practice of
law to serve as the executive vice
president of a drag racing team. I
moved to LA, where our car was being
built. I ran the finances, the business
itself, and the day-to-day operations.
We were sponsored by Scion, in
particular, and during the summer
months, we went from event to event
to event throughout the United States
to do a little drag racing.
Q How did that situation come about?
My best friend was the
owner and driver of the team. He was
having trouble being the driver and
owner and all the things that go along
with those jobs and also at the same
time run the business. So he asked me
to come on board. At the time I was 32,
and I said, “Well, this is like a once-in-
a-lifetime real opportunity.” I just
decided to give it a shot.
My friend still does some racing to this
day. He’s no longer drag racing, but he
still does some racing. He’s involved in
the performance automotive industry,
along with some other businesses.
Q When you left, did you know it was just going to be for a year?
No. When I left Campbell
& Levine, I assumed I would be doing
this type of work for the rest of my life.
What ultimately happened was that I
realized it wasn’t something I wanted to
do for the rest of my life.
Ironically, at the time I was realizing
that this wasn’t what I wanted to do,
Doug Campbell and Stanley Levine
called and said, “Paul, you’re closer
to the younger lawyers out there. I
know you aren’t doing this anymore,
but do you know any lawyers about
five years out of school who would be
interested in practicing bankruptcy
work?” My response was, “Well, maybe
me.” After we came to terms and I
came back, they told me they were
hoping that would be my response.
There were no bridges burned with
my friend. I just went to him and told
him this isn’t what I want to do for
the rest of my life. I can still do this
work, but I can do it in my capacity
as a lawyer at Campbell & Levine.
That’s what I’ve been doing ever
since. I still represent his businesses.
Q Do you have a “bucket list?”
I don’t know if I have a
bucket list per se. There are certainly
things in my life that I really like to do. It
all relates to going to different places and
experiencing different cultures. I’m
realizing that there’s so much in this
world to experience. Even within the
United States, there are so many
different things to see and cultures and
ways people do things, never mind
going outside the United States.
Living in Pittsburgh and going to Peru,
it was just a completely different culture
and different people, but it was great.
Going to Ireland—they’re wonderful
people. The land was incredible. I’ve
never seen green that green before.
There are a lot of places I’d like to go.
I’ve never been to Asia. My niece, who
was adopted by my sister, is Korean.
She’s from Seoul. One of the things
I’d like to do is take her to Korea so I
can let her experience that—she’s 12
years old right now—but at the same
time, I'd get to experience it too.
That’s one of the biggest things I like
to do—just to experience different
cultures and to see different things. J