This week in our MHC Life series, we speak to recently promoted Health & Prosecutions Partner, Shane Reynolds. Shane talks us through his career journey and an interesting fact people don't know about him.
Tell us a bit about you and your career journey to MHC – what inspired you to get into this career?
My inspiration into law came from transition year work experience with a general practice solicitor in Athlone. His varied daily work appealed and I remember being impressed by the hustle and bustle of the lawyers at a settlement meeting outside the Law Library.
After studying law at NUI Galway and an Erasmus year at Université de Poitiers, my first interview with a law firm was with MHC at our then Fitzwilliam Square premises in 2004. I made it to the final round of interviews but unfortunately was not selected as an apprentice! All's well that ends well as after nine years of prison (visits consulting with clients) and Garda Station detentions (my clients' arrest, not mine) with a leading criminal defence firm I made it back in one piece to MHC in 2013.
I succeeded in making Judge William Hamill, now deceased, laugh or at least mildly smirk after he queried the rationale behind a particular piece of road traffic legislation. I suggested that I could ask the former Minister for Justice for his opinion as he happened to be appearing as a senior counsel in the courtroom beside us that day. Despite my awful quip Judge Hamill granted my client's application to restore his driving licence.
Talk us through a typical day for you during the COVID-19 pandemic…
Our human alarm clock wakes us at 6am. I then either do the breakfast shift, morning playtime and a run, or a lie-in and a run. I'm at my fold-up desk by 9am.
I try to keep as much normal routine as possible. Regulatory investigation and prosecution advices particularly in environmental law are keeping me and our team occupied. Most of my clients are state bodies and they are all thankfully still in employment.
My week WFH is broken up by a busy court list in Dundalk every Thursday dealing with urgent child protection law cases. I make sure to stop off at my favourite fishmonger in Dundalk after court to pick up dinner. Remote working has always been part of my daily life as attending courts around the country invariably entails working in the evenings from home.
Gardening or DIY tasks in the evenings are usually rolled over until the following day / weekend as I catch up with a few more emails for an hour or so on the couch.
What has been your biggest learning so far WFH?
Keeping in regular touch and picking up the phone to colleagues and clients has definitely helped with morale and motivation. Like many I was always more inclined to send the email before calling but remote working has allowed me to connect with my contacts on a more human level.
One thing most people don't know about you
Due in no small part to being able to write at great speed I came first in Ireland in Leaving Cert for History in 1999. Not sure how the poor examiner managed to decipher my scrawl!
What sports/hobbies/pastimes do you enjoy?
I enjoy running and cycling in the park with my wife and one year old. We love to have BBQs when the weather allows.
What tv shows have you binge watched during lockdown?
The Last Dance, Pure Mule and Peppa Pig!
Read more about Shane's appointment as a Partner in our Health & Prosecutions team here