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For many father-son attorneys, Father's Day will be business as usual

Time with dad today will move from the courtroom to the patio for some area lawyers
by Paula Burkes Published: June 15, 2014

Three years ago, longtime Oklahoma City business attorney Jerry Tubb argued a case in federal court, and his boy came to watch the proceedings.

His son wasn’t a kid on school break, but a seasoned attorney and partner from another firm who’d assisted on the lawsuit.

“I was delighted to watch him and would’ve regretted if I didn’t invite myself to come over,” said Jeremy Tubb, then a partner with Crowe & Dunlevy law firm.

Changing places

Their shared work on the case was an epiphany for Jeremy, who — thirsting for more opportunities to work alongside his dad — made the hard decision two years ago to leave Crowe, after 17 years with the firm, and join his father’s small firm of Fuller, Tubb, Bickford & Krahl.

“Now I collect new dad memories once a week,” said Tubb, 44. a labor and employment law attorney. “I can hear him coming down the hall every morning, and we have a ritual that he stops in my doorway and we chat about how our days look.”

Jerry Tubb, 74, who contracted polio as a teenager, uses a motorized wheelchair.

“Because we now share the attorney-client privilege, we can reveal facts on the cases we’re working on and strategize about things,” Jeremy Tubb said. “Of all my lunch buddies, my dad tops the list.” J.T.’s Barbeque and Catering in Del City ranks among the pair’s favorite spots.

“Jeremy, who’s president of the local chapter of the federal bar and mayor of Lake Aluma, has brought a lot of energy to the firm,” Jerry Tubb said. “He is recognized and reputed as knowing what he’s doing and doing it well, which is what I always worked at,” he said.

Working together

A similar desire to work with his dad in his mentor’s golden years spurred Oklahoma City patent attorney Mick McCarthy, 54, to rejoin his father Bill, 80, and brother Randy, 49, in the intellectual property practice of Hall Estill law firm in February.

A mechanical engineer for 12 years, Mick McCarthy, after graduating from law school, worked with his family as a patent agent and patent attorney, before starting his own firm in 2008.

For a long time, he thought his father’s management style was arbitrary, said McCarthy, likening his dad to the boss in a Dilbert cartoon, who in one strip held up a can of red paint and told Dilbert he “spray painted out all the stupid stuff.”

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by Paula Burkes
A 1981 journalism graduate of Oklahoma State University, Paula Burkes has more than 30 years experience writing and editing award-winning material for newspapers and healthcare, educational and telecommunications institutions in Tulsa, Oklahoma...
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