BARBARA GRAHAM: Shoes For All Walks of Life - Part IV
Welcome back to our "Shoes for All Walks of Life" series! This month we feature yet another fierce female, Barbara Graham, a woman who definitely wears many hats (or, in this case, shoes)!
Barbara and I met years ago when I designed a brochure for her unique combination of legal practice areas. To learn more about Barbara's firm, go to: blg-law.com
Since that time, Barbara and I have been very good friends - we've run a half-marathon together, practice yoga in the beautiful setting of St. Louis' Forest Park, enjoyed countless concerts together, and enjoyed raising our kids! Barbara's son, Evan Martin, is an exemplary student studying Math and planning to pursue his MBA upon completion of his undergrad degree. He is also a stud baseball player for Southern Illinois University - Carbondale, being named a Freshman All-American by Collegiate Baseball in 2020! Barbara can always be found in the stands, enthusiastically cheering on her talented son!
Evan Martin, SIU Carbondale, being congratulated by his teammates
for his first college baseball home run.
Barbara was a single mom for most of Evan's childhood, but as fate worked it's magic, one of Evan's teammates had a pretty awesome dad, and now Cliff and Barbara have a blended family with Evan, Joe and Emily!
A supporter of the St. Louis entertainment scene, Barbara is a member of the Board of Directors of the University City Symphony (where she also plays clarinet with the Symphony) and provides legal services to the Kranzberg Arts Foundation’s Music Artists in Residency Program. In the past she has served as Chairman of Performance Coordination/Artist Relations for the US Bank St. Louis Jazz Festival and the St. Louis Art Fair, has been a panelist for numerous entertainment industry conferences, including the Urban Network Conference in Palm Springs, CA, Inspired Music Entertainment Seminars, Hood Magazine Conference, Streetwise Entertainment and Missouri Black Expo. She was profiled as a “Woman on the Move” in The Flipside Newszine, October 2003, and is has been a faculty member for Fontbonne University’s Sports and Entertainment Management program, and taught entertainment law at Nelly's Ex'treme Institute for five years. As a parent concerned about issues such as climate change, gun control and women’s reproductive freedom, she is active with Moms Demand Action, Missouri ACLU and Missouri Democrats, and works with the League of Women Voters to register voters.
For Part IV of our "Shoes for All Walks of Life" series, we are very proud to introduce you to, Barbara Graham!
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO PURSUE A CAREER IN LAW, AND IN THE AREAS OF LAW IN WHICH YOU PRACTICE?
When I finished my undergrad (business degree) I worked in retail management for about 8 years. Although I loved the creativity and excitement of the fashion world, I didn’t like the politics or having to always work nights and weekends. I decided to get an advanced degree that would get me a job where I could work more “normal” hours, and it was between law school and an MBA. After law school I ended up at one of the top domestic relations firms in the St Louis area. When I was in undergrad, I had started as a music major and continued to have a love for music, and the music industry, which made me curious about entertainment law. After a few years with the domestic relations firm, I attended some continuing ed classes in entertainment law and audited a class here in the St Louis area. I was lucky enough to have a cool boss that allowed me to add that practice area at the law firm, so I started working in the entertainment law field at that job. Now I am out on my own, and my firm does both domestic relations and entertainment law.
WITH THE PANDEMIC, HAVE YOU FOUND YOU DO A LOT OF WORK BY ZOOM – ONLY WORRYING ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE WEARING FROM THE WAIST UP?
Yes. With the exception of one county, all of my court appearances are on Zoom or Webex. I also do most of my client meetings on Zoom.
WHEN YOU RETURN TO THE OFFICE AND THE COURTROOM, DO YOU THINK YOUR CHOICE OF CLOTHING AND SHOES WILL CHANGE FROM WHAT IT WAS BEFORE. WHETHER YES OR NO, EXPLAIN WHY YOU FEEL THIS WAY?
I am guessing that once we return to court we will be back to more regular court attire. In recent years I was not one to wear a suit to court, usually nice pants with a blouse and cardigan. Shoes are usually nice flats. It is hard to concentrate on presenting a good case in court when your feet hurt!
Barbara is wearing the Reece pointed toe flat in Ivory Leopard Calf Hair.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE THINGS TO DO OUTSIDE OF WORK?
I am a parent of a college athlete, so I love to go to his games on the weekends (he is about 2 hours away). I also like yoga, running and horseback riding.
HAVE YOUR FOUND YOUR SHOE WANTS/NEEDS HAVE CHANGED OVER THE YEARS, AND IF SO, HOW?
Yes- I used to put fashion over comfort. I can’t believe some of the shoes I wore when I worked in retail, where I spent about 8 hours a day on my feet. Now it is much more important to me to be comfortable. I also like having shoes that I can wear to work and also to a ball game.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT THE WALKING CRADLES SHOES YOU ARE WEARING IN THESE PHOTOS?
The two dressy shoes [Payton high heeled pump and Reece pointed toe flat] don't feel at all like dress shoes! I could probably be on my feet all day in either pair - and they look so nice, too! As far as the Delta sneakers, I have worn them every day since the photo shoot in place of the cute little sneakers I had been wearing to work since the pandemic started. They are incredibly comfy and I love that I can slip them on and off with no socks!
Barbara is wearing the Payton 3" platform pump in Black Leather.
WHAT IS A MESSAGE YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH EVERYONE (ABOUT ANYTHING)?
I'm a person that always tries to find the bright side of any situation. Although the pandemic caused a lot of disruption to our lives, look what we got out of it - most restaurants now have a smooth and efficient takeout process, you can buy a microwave at Walmart and they will bring it out and put it in your car, all the new movies are out on Netflix, and people are no longer driving long distances for a 30 minute meeting or a 10 minute court hearing. I am so much more efficient having the majority of my court appearances on Zoom. My clients appreciate it as well, as it saves them time and money. So, it is worthwhile to think about the lemonade that you get when life gives you lemons!
We are very grateful to Barbara for being part of “Shoes for All Walks of Life.” Thank you for joining us to learn more about the women who wear Walking Cradles and their multi-faceted lives. We will feature a different fabulous female each month and we hope you look forward to reading their stories as much as we enjoy working with them. Although, is it really work when you love what you do so much and get to spend time with such amazing people?!
Until next time...
Leave a comment
Comments will be approved before showing up.