On June 18, 2011 I presented my ethics CLE, “Old-Fashioned Ethics in a Newfangled World,” at the North Carolina Advocates for Justice (NCAJ), http://www.ncaj.com/, Paralegal Summer Conference in Wilmington, NC.

It had been a crazy month, and I was mainly focused on getting to Wilmington to give my speech on Saturday morning, and then heading straight from the conference to Topsail Beach to meet my family for vacation.

The official 2011 NCAJ Annual Convention kicked off Sunday morning, and I wasn’t paying much any attention to the events, since the paralegal conference ended on Saturday. I somehow missed even seeing a flyer for the annual convention.

So while I was dragging my suitcase into the hotel elevator, I was confused by the following conversation:

Lady:  You here for the paralegal conference?

Me [chirpily despite my suitcase kicking my butt]: Why, yes, I am!

Lady [grouchily]: I sure wish Erin Brockovich was the keynote speaker for the paralegal conference.

Me [no idea what she’s talking about]: Uhhh…me, too! That’d be awesome.

As soon as I get to the hotel room, I tell my co-worker, a talented associate and former paralegal, about the weird conversation on the elevator, like, duh, doesn’t everyone wish Erin Brockovich was the keynote speaker at their conference, but what was up with that?

That’s when I learned that Erin Brockovich was scheduled to be the keynote speaker for the 2011 Annual Convention. I wondered who I’d have to kill to get in the room, but it turned out I didn’t have to kill anyone. My co-worker saved me a seat.

As I sat down, my co-worker leaned over and whispered, “You have GOT to see Erin’s shoes!”

Erin confirmed during her terrific speech that she only wears stilettos, and I did get to see them after my boss pretty much shoved me into the line of peeps Erin was graciously meeting and greeting after the keynote festivities concluded.  I am not only ridiculously shy, but I’d had a contact lens mishap that morning and was wearing my four-year old glasses with the out-of-date prescription lenses for the legally blind. (I’m lucky I even found her in the crowded room.) I wasn’t aiming for a picture but an attorney in line behind me snapped one anyway.

I wish you could see Erin’s shoes!

Erin was an amazing guest on the December 2009 edition of The Paralegal Voice podcast at Legal Talk Network: http://legaltalknetwork.com/podcasts/paralegal-voice/2009/12/erin-brockovich-an-inspiration-to-the-paralegal-world/. Even if you don’t listen to any of the other podcasts, listen to this one. Erin is a true advocate for the paralegal profession, and now I can say she is just as real and wonderful in person as she was on the telephone during the podcast recording.

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