Many people have achieved great recognition in the world of law and
Many famous lawyers, however, have been fictional: Perry Mason, Ben
Matlock and Ally McBeal.
Even the most inspirational lawyer of the 20th century is fictional: To
Kill a Mockingbird's Atticus Finch, who in depression-era's racist
Alabama defends an unjustly accused black man against the charge of
raping a white woman.
Author Harper Lee based the character on her father, an honorable
southern lawyer in whom she found the character of Atticus.
Law journals are filled with testimony from lawyers who trace their
choice of profession to the influence of Atticus Finch. One Notre Dame
law school professor observed that the most influential textbook he
taught from was To Kill a Mockingbird. A Michigan Law Review article
maintained that "No real-life lawyer has done more for the self-image
or public perception of the legal profession."
In 1962 Gregory Peck played the role of Atticus in the film adaptation
of the Pulitzer Prize winning novel, winning the Academy award for
It was magical casting. Gregory Peck was a civil rights activist and
recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom award, a gentleman of
great dignity and humility. Harper Lee gave Peck her father's pocket
watch in appreciation for his role in the film. It was used in the famous
courtroom scene when Atticus defended the unjustly accused Tom
Robinson. Lee observed, "In that film, the man and the part met."
Hollywood has given us many action heroes: Indiana Jones, Rocky,
Superman and James Bond.
But in 2003 when the American Film Institute ranked the greatest
heroes in film history, they selected Atticus Finch number one: a
proper tribute to an inspiring character and a great actor.
We do not have Atticus Finch in our firm, but we aspire to have his
integrity and success. We have successfully represented defendants in
all areas of criminal law.