Ben Gold, RWU Class of 2006Juris Doctor
While not a Millennial himself, Ben Gold '06 has had ample opportunity to study lawyers in that category. After receiving his J.D., Gold worked in the legal departments of two city housing authorities -- in New Haven and then Danbury, Conn., and is now executive director of North Central Massachusetts Housing Authorities in Leominster, Mass. Talking with some lawyer friends in 2017, he was struck by the realization that all attorneys have stories to tell about why they decided to go to law school, and that it might be interesting to develop a platform for lawyers and law students to share those stories.
The result was Lawyer Stories, an Instagram page (now on Facebook as well) which had, by the beginning of 2019, grown to include 500 such stories. Lawyers and law students submit their stories and a photo or two, Gold edits them if necessary, and generally posts one per day. The Instagram site has more than 30,000 followers; Facebook has topped 4,000; and the result of all this growth, Gold says, is a broad-based community of lawyers—the majority of whom are Millennials. “It’s actually developed into a community,” says Gold, who recently launched a closed Facebook group called Lawyer Stories Alumni Network. “I know that people have connected with each other off of it.”
So what do these young lawyers seem to have in common?
“I think a lot of them like to build their own brand, be their own person,” he says. “They like to use social media as a tool and sort of weave it within their work.”
Also, he says, Millennials seem to value work flexibility — the ability to not be tied to set working hours. “I think they want to work when they feel most motivated and at the peak of their best working hours, rather than having a rigid, eight-to-six schedule. They also want the flexibility to work outside the office.”