Amy Adler, Counsel at Shure Incorporated, had an "aha!" moment while studying arts management in undergrad that led her to where she is today. While at Indiana University, Amy's goal was to work in the music and entertainment industry. She was organizing a rain-or-shine outdoor show in October and, lo and behold, it started raining sideways the day of the show. The artist wanted to cancel and everyone started panicking. What interested Amy was how everyone involved was in a back room on the phone with their attorneys, reading contracts and trying to figure out how the show could go on. She realized then that she wanted to be a part of those conversations, and she started paying more attention in her classes to the legal side of things. "That's where I found IP and contract law—I found a broader passion than just the entertainment side."
Strengths Amy's unique background is what sets her apart. She majored in arts management, received a certification in business foundation, and minored in music general studies—for which she got to take an entire course about The Beatles, and another focused on Jimi Hendrix. Working for Shure, which makes high-end microphones and audio products, Amy's educational background and "audiophile" identity sets her apart from other attorneys, as it provides her insight she uses to understand her clients' interests as a whole.
Accomplishments During law school at John Marshall, Amy helped create the Chicago Declaration on the Rights of Older Persons, which a group at John Marshall put together for a conference. The declaration had a much broader impact than originally anticipated: John Marshall formed an international working group and brought the Declaration to the United Nations. "To have the international community recognize our efforts on this broader issue was really motivating and meaningful," says Amy. "It made me optimistic for post-graduation."
Giving back to the community is something Amy continues to prioritize in her legal career. She has assisted with citizenship applications and volunteered on matters for Lawyers for the Creative Arts, among other volunteer opportunities.
Promoting the Success of Women During her experience at the UN, Amy recalls feeling "a little bit of imposter syndrome," but that being surrounded by motivational women helped. "They always reassured me that I deserved to be there just as much as anyone else." She was grateful for that support and now looks for ways she can promote women.
One important way she does that is through ChiWIP's Community Involvement Committee. Her favorite event is the Girl Scout IP Patch event, which ChiWIP holds once a year for about 30 Girl Scouts to learn about intellectual property and STEM-related fields. Amy also teaches an IP Survey course for paralegals at Harper College. The class is frequently dominated by women, and Amy encourages them to consider IP as not just an elective course, but rather a field in which they could pursue a career, and to rely on her as a resource.
Interests In her spare time, Amy loves a good DIY project. She also volunteers outside of the legal field, including for a group that organizes Chicago's "Front Porch Concerts," which aims to get people interacting with their community through a series of pop-up concerts on front porches in Chicago's various neighborhoods. She encourages anyone to check out the last show of the season this September or next summer when the concert season resumes.
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