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Mentors of the year

Staff Report//September 9, 2013//

Mentors of the year

Staff Report//September 9, 2013//

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Mark B. Leadlove, 55Partner, Bryan Cave, St. Louis
Mark B. Leadlove, 55
Partner, Bryan Cave, St. Louis

PRACTICE AREAS: Commercial litigation

LAW SCHOOL: University of Pennsylvania

A mentor at Bryan Cave, Mark Leadlove is a trial lawyer with almost 30 years of experience as an advocate. Here is how mentee Brent Roam describes his approach to being a mentor: “Mark employs a three-tiered approach to mentoring: 1) he models the degree of legal acumen that he expects associates to develop; 2) he invites associates to wade into the more challenging aspects of litigation; and 3) he tactfully and privately addresses any shortcomings in the associate’s performance, while publicly expressing gratitude and affirmation for the associate’s efforts. In the heat of litigation, it is especially important for newer associates to know that someone’s got their back.”

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT? I have no one great accomplishment. But I am proud that I have been able to find the time beyond the practice of law to be of service to my country and others. I am a retired Army Reserve officer. I also am and have been actively involved on charitable boards and been involved in other activities to hopefully assist others.

WHO IS YOUR LEGAL HERO? My father, Earle B. Leadlove, is my legal hero. As a lawyer, he inspired me to become a member of the profession. He also taught me that respect is appropriately to be given to all participants in the legal process, including judges, lawyers, courtroom and administrative staff, jurors and witnesses. He enjoyed his practice and his life.

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR YOUNG LAWYERS? Reduce anxiety in your practice. Take the time and do the work necessary to be appropriately prepared for whatever task you are performing, whether it be trying a case, meeting with a client or preparing to give a CLE presentation. Do your best and do not irrationally worry about the rest of it.


Madeleine M. McDonough, 50Partner, Shook Hardy & Bacon, Kansas City
Madeleine M. McDonough, 50
Partner, Shook Hardy & Bacon, Kansas City

PRACTICE AREAS: Litigation, crisis management, FDA regulatory, public policy

LAW SCHOOL: University of Kansas; LLM in Global Health Law from Georgetown Law

As chair of Shook Hardy’s summer associate program, Madeleine McDonough has been in an excellent position to mentor young attorneys. Take it from mentee Laurie Henry: “She’s invested in her mentees — she cares about how they are progressing and how they are doing, professionally and personally. She will listen, commiserate, guide, brainstorm, and give her time whether you are working on a project with her or facing a challenge that is for a completely separate team, case or project. … Madeleine has stepped up, weighed in and counseled in the wee hours of the night and even from halfway around the world.”

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT? Building strong relationships over many years with great clients for whom I resolve difficult disputes by listening with an open mind, developing new approaches and remembering that, no matter how far apart people may be in negotiations, a mutually beneficial resolution can almost always be achieved with enough thought, commitment and creativity.

ONE THING MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU? I am a die-hard Bruce Springsteen fan.

WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE U.S. SUPREME COURT JUSTICE? Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I have had the opportunity to meet her in person, follow her incredible legal career and most recently happened to be in the front row when she issued her heartfelt dissent in Shelby County, the Voting Rights Act case delivered in June.

WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE FOR YOUNG LAWYERS? You are needed. There are always people who need legal help but are not receiving it. Find them and help them. Take excellent care of your health and seize opportunities every day to grow professionally, spiritually and emotionally.



Joel Poole, 58Chief counsel, Litigation Division, Missouri Attorney General’s Office
Joel Poole, 58
Chief counsel, Litigation Division, Missouri Attorney General’s Office


LAW SCHOOL: University of Missouri-Kansas City

Joel Poole also teaches trial advocacy at Saint Louis University. A colleague at SLU, Thomas Stewart, had this to say about him: “More than one student has commented to me over the years that it was in Professor Poole’s class where they first came to understand what it meant to be a lawyer. As this is a new award for Missouri Lawyers Weekly, it is important that the first recipients be role models of what a professional mentor can be. There is no better candidate than Joel Poole.”

WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT? Having the opportunity to serve in my current position. It has been the most challenging, captivating and rewarding experience of my professional life.

WHO IS YOUR LEGAL HERO? Senior U.S. District Court Judge E. Richard Webber. We are both from Memphis, a spot in the road in northeast Missouri. I have watched Judge Webber as he served with honor and distinction as a county prosecuting attorney, a Circuit Court judge and as a Federal District Court judge. He has been an inspiration to me.

WHAT DO YOU DO FOR FUN?  My wife, Terry, and I both enjoy cooking and entertaining, though my expertise usually involves a grill. We follow the Mizzou Tigers religiously.

IF YOU HADN’T BECOME A LAWYER, WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE DONE? A high school football coach. I love teaching and firmly believe the game can teach us valuable life lessons about teamwork, commitment, dedication and effort.

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR YOUNG LAWYERS? To never forget the importance of being a person of high moral character, and of treating others with dignity and respect. The ability to adhere to these principles will come to define you. And not only will you receive what you give, but, wherever you go, your good reputation will arrive before you.

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