Who Is Marc Luber?
Title: Founder, JD Careers Out There
City: Los Angeles, CA
Law School: Chicago-Kent College of Law in Chicago, IL
College: University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI
Other Career: Before founding JDCOT /jay-dee-see-oh-tee/, I was a legal recruiter, helping attorneys with their careers throughout the state of California. Prior to that, I used my JD to work in the music industry. My full bio is below.
Who is Marc Luber?
Hi there. I’m Marc. It’s my mission to help you find and break into a fulfilling career. I’ve been helping lawyers with their careers since 2003, when I first became a legal recruiter. Whether you’re considering leaving the law or you’re navigating a traditional law career, I can help you. I’ve been there. I’ll share my story below with the goal of you finding take-aways for your own life.
I was fortunate that by the end of my teens I knew I wanted to work in the music industry. Coming from suburban Chicago with no family connections to the industry, I didn’t know what it would take to break in. When I turned 19, I wrote a letter to concert industry pioneer Bill Graham asking how I could one day be him. His assistant wrote back that Bill suggested I do lots of internships and either get a business degree or a law degree.
Since I was struggling with something as basic as Econ 101 at the University of Michigan, I concluded that business school was out and I’d be going to law school!
So I did music internships during college and networked in the music industry. After graduation, I jumped right into law school at the Chicago-Kent College of Law. I spent one summer in Los Angeles interning for the manager of Crosby Stills and Nash (that’s a classic rock band, not a law firm) and the other summer in New York as a summer associate in the legal department at a major record label. I discovered then that practicing law wasn’t the best fit for me.
By the time I graduated and became a member of the Illinois Bar, Bill Graham was no longer living. Still, I called his former assistant to ask if there were any jobs available at his company. There weren’t. So I did the rational thing – I drove to San Francisco, showed up at their office and said, “I’m here!”
I was offered a 3-month internship in the band management department. The idea of interning after earning a law degree seemed crazy to me. It was hard to wrap my head around doing grunt work and not getting paid.
However, I learned to look at this a new way: Sure, school costs a lot of money (although it cost less back when I graduated). But we learn more from real life experience than we do in a classroom. If I’m going to get to learn more and not have to pay for it while also getting the opportunity to make lots of contacts in the industry I want to break into, then it’s worth embracing some risk. You never know where opportunities like this can lead. So I gambled and became an intern.
On the final day of my internship, I got hired! A woman I became friends with via networking within the company hired me to work on the Rolling Stones U.S. concert tour. So while my friends were starting jobs at law firms and complaining about their day-to-day experiences, I was getting to live out my rock & roll dreams….and get paid for it (not a lot, but this was just Year 1 and I’m a long-term thinker).
Was I using my law degree?
But did the experience and contacts I made in the industry ultimately lead me to jobs where I would use my law degree?
And to better money?
After the tour, I moved to Los Angeles, got a job in the marketing department of a major record label and managed bands that I loved.
This experience soon led to my getting hired as a result of my law degree. My next jobs involved a mixture of music licensing (IP licensing) and sales. Licensing is one of the great alternative careers for lawyers.
Was a law degree required for these jobs?
But my background made me uniquely qualified for these positions. It helped me set myself apart, sell myself as the perfect fit and get hired to do exciting work.
Then, after several years in the industry, both my interests and the industry changed. I no longer wanted what I had chased for so long. This was like my “leaving law” moment. It was time for some soul searching. I had to figure out who I was and what I wanted.
I came up with a collection of introspective questions and forced myself to write down the answers. These are the basis of the questions in my FREE self-assessment tool, The Career Mirror. Click here to sign up for your copy:
I also met with a career counselor and took the Myers Briggs MBTI® Personality Assessment (find out more at the link). I decided to change careers to something where I could continue to put my law background, strengths and interests to use, yet have more control over my financial destiny.
I wanted to prove to myself that I could make a successful career change and continue to reap the benefits of having earned a law degree.
As a legal recruiter, my role was to match young, employed lawyers with new jobs at my clients, who were law firms and corporations of varying sizes. This work had me talking to lawyers about their careers every day. Interview coaching, resume writing and career counseling were a big part of my role.
Through my daily conversations, I’d learn what was making lawyers happy and what was making them unhappy. As you can imagine, around 50 conversations a day over several years provides a lot of good intel on this topic!
It turns out that I’m not the only one who went to law school who doesn’t like practicing law. In fact, if you’re thinking, “I hate being a lawyer,” the first thing you should realize is that you are not alone.
Talking to so many people who felt stuck inspired me to use everything I’d learned from my experience and help others. So I built Careers Out There & JD Careers Out There, two sites dedicated to sharing career advice by video. My goal – and the goal of all of our video guests – is to help you find and build a fulfilling career.
On my first website, Careers Out There, I host talk show-style informational interview videos with professionals in a wide variety of careers. COT partnered with McGraw-Hill Education in 2011 to provide career videos for high schools across the country.
The videos on JDCOT follow the same format as COT videos, except they solely focus on the different types of lawyers and alternative careers for lawyers. As a bonus, I also ask guests for professional development advice filled with tips on practical skills and soft skills, specifically for lawyers and law students.
By joining the JDCOT membership, you get access to the full archive of career & professional development videos. I encourage you to check out the site and find out more about how JDCOT can help you:
For individualized help, I’ve got virtual office hours! Please visit the career coaching page.
For media & bloggers
I’ve been interviewed for a number of podcasts and blogs, and have written posts for a number of websites. Please contact me at the link if you are a journalist or blogger looking to interview an expert on career advice, the legal job market, alternative careers for lawyers, or related topics.
If you have a short deadline, put “urgent” in the subject line, and I will respond quickly. Click here to download my headshot or a JDCOT logo to use with your story. Full Resolution versions are available by email.
ABA Journal: JDCOT Named Best Career Site in 2013 Readers Poll
Above the Law: Law Degree Can Help You With A Wide Variety of Career Paths
Huffington Post: What They Don’t Teach You In Law School
The Atlantic: Helping Lawyers Find New Direction
JD Blogger Podcast: How To Be Happy As A Lawyer
Think Tank with Garland Robinette: Lawyers Who Don’t Practice
Looking for a guest speaker?
I have spoken at law schools and conferences about finding your career, alternative careers for lawyers and interviewing. I can also host webinars on these topics for your audience. Find out more about my story above. If you’re interested in bringing me to your school or meeting, please send us a note through the contact form.