Ashley Hoover Schuette chose law over medicine, but she still ended up working in health care. In her position at CoxHealth, she advises a major health system with more than 10,000 employees and five hospitals.
What inspired you to get involved in the public service or justice system?
I started college with the intent to go to medical school, but one semester of pre-med courses like physics and calculus changed my mind. I applied for law school because I loved school, particularly rhetorical criticism and writing classes, so law school seemed to be a natural next step. Once in law school, I gravitated toward health care law. I grew up in a medical family and spent lots of days hanging out in the hospital, so being a hospital lawyer seemed comfortable and admirable. I was lucky enough to get an internship at CoxHealth after my second year of law school and then ultimately a job in the legal department and I haven’t looked back since. My grandma and my mom have both worked at CoxHealth their entire careers and I love being a part of that tradition while using my law degree.
What is something that would surprise people about you?
I am a complete germaphobe. Working in a hospital is not conducive to this, but I get by thanks to readily available hand sanitizer.
What is the best advice you have ever been given or received?
Don’t make assumptions: communication is the key to avoiding misunderstandings. For me, that often means picking up the phone and just asking a tough question or having an awkward conversation.
What has been your favorite part of your job?
I love having one client as opposed to several clients and cases. I feel like my efforts are more effective when they are concentrated. I did litigation for a few years early in my practice and did not feel that it matched my skill set. This job allows me to see all different kinds of projects through to fruition and I feel a great sense of achievement and satisfaction in that. When I can help a member of our staff with an issue, I feel that I am making a difference in the work I do. I work with a great team here and we all have a common goal and mission.