GTLA's President, Fred Orr, was featured in today's Atlanta Business Chronicle. The article, "Commitment to law lands Orr at head of GTLA," depicts his personal journey to practicing law.
Laying down roots inside Atlanta was a natural move for Orr, who not only attended undergraduate and graduate schools at Emory University, but grew up in the public school system of southwest Atlanta, attending then-Brown High School, where he made quite an impact as a student leader and athlete. Although setting up shop in Decatur was the natural choice, pursuing a law degree was not.
"I didn't know any lawyers, had never been in a law office, but I was always interested in politics and law," said Orr.
Orr had been offered scholarships to attend both Emory University and Georgia Tech after graduating from Brown High School. Though a fan of the Yellow Jackets then and today, Orr opted for Emory, where his older brother was already enrolled as a student (and could offer a free daily ride to school). At the suggestion of a fellow student, Orr pursued a law degree.
"I really fell in love with law in law school," said Orr.
Orr speaks of his commitment to GTLA and what it has meant for him to become president.
The recently installed 52nd president of the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association (GTLA) is humbled by his appointment.
"I never expected to be president [of the GTLA]," he said. But when the call came in 2006 telling him he'd been nominated to be fast-tracked into this leadership position, "I couldn't refuse," Orr said. "I was stunned, flattered and honored, and still a little shaken, that I am where I am. So many other people worked long and hard."
Orr built his reputation through hard work and fairness. As president of the GTLA, Orr will direct a 50-year-old membership organization of more than 2,000 Georgia attorneys, all dedicated to protecting the public and ensuring the public's right to the civil justice system.
Orr credits the GTLA for teaching him the skills that not only helped him define his views as a trial lawyer, but served as the foundation from which he built his career.
The article discusses some of Orr's more well-known cases and paints the accurate picture of a fair-minded leader in the legal community.
"I've been know to tilt some windmills," said Orr, who, at nearly 67 years old still plugs away at work seven days a week.
"I'm not sure that I've ever been satisfied with the status quo of anything. I hope to strive for the best at all times, particularly in my practice and my relationships."