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In an Of Counsel interview last October, Mortimer Caplin told of the inspirations, challenges, and rewards that together explain why “there’s something special about being a lawyer.” Beginning with a tribute to his father’s role in his decision to become a lawyer, Caplin explained his dream of teaching, which, despite the aftermath of WWII, he achieved on accepting a position at the Law School. As the 1960s approached, Caplin received a phone call from Ted Sorensen, John F. Kennedy’s speechwriter and aide, asking him to serve on Kennedy’s IRS task force. Caplin accepted the position and worked on an IRS plan that would become a focus of the Kennedy administration. While Caplin was serving as the commissioner of the IRS, he had the distinguished honor of witnessing President Kennedy personally address the IRS, the only president to do so in U.S. history. Caplin spent the latter part of the interview discussing his firm, Caplin & Drysdale, and his intent to maintain the firm’s smaller and more intimate size. As a lawyer, teacher, and inspiration to many, Caplin continues to practice and run his firm, all while maintaining the philosophy that “besides representing clients, we [lawyers] have an obligation to society to make sure it works correctly and do what we can to make society better.”
The courts and judges are under pressure from too much litigation, but W. Moultrie Guerry enjoys retirement! He recently celebrated his 80th birthday, “but feels pretty good,” and after a three-month illness in July, is back to golf and long walks with his golden retriever.
Michael L.B. Kaplan writes, “As my classmate Joe Hilton reports that he is still happily working, I’d like to report that I’ve retired twice.” Kaplan’s first retirement was in October 1990, as a vice president and chief counsel of the Mutual Life Insurance Company of New York (after 30 years), and his second, in July 2004, was as deputy general counsel and deputy secretary of Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey (after 13 years). Kaplan’s wife retired as chief of the dental service and director of the general practice residency program at Morristown (New Jersey) Memorial Hospital on January 1, 2006. As their 9-year-old grandson is too busy with his own social life to entertain them, the Kaplans say they are now looking for ways to entertain themselves.