Chuck Slane, newly elected president of the Minnesota Association for Justice, leads what he said members call “Minnesota’s largest plaintiff’s personal injury law firm.”
Slane, a partner at TSR Injury Law, said the organization lobbies at the Legislature for “laws that are fair to consumers” and provides education and information-sharing opportunities.
Joining the association was a natural fit with Slane’s personal injury practice.
“What I enjoy about it is every case and every day is a chance to learn something new,” Slane said, with subjects ranging from traumatic brain injuries to unloading pipe safely from a semi-trailer.
He has pursued leadership roles with the association “because they did a lot for me, so I’m going to give back,” Slane said.
Slane began powerlifting to stay in shape and has created charitable events centered on the sport and coached Special Olympics teams in it.
Name: Charles Slane
Title: Partner, TSR Injury Law
Education: J.D., William Mitchell College of Law; B.A., paralegal studies, Winona State University
Q: Best way to start a conversation with you?
A: Talk about a case and strategy. I like to teach and mentor other lawyers. Hearing about their cases diving in and helping them is a great way to start a conversation.
Q: Why did you go to law school?
A: When I was younger, trying to figure out what to do with my life, I spent a lot of time reading and did a lot of reading about the Civil Rights Movement, Martin Luther King and the Freedom Riders. That drew me to that aspect of trying to give back and help other people. I figured out that law school would be a good way to get into that niche.
Q: What books are you reading?
A: I like to read about psychology and the psychology of persuasion. I’ve read, “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” and “Influence.” Those are two good books on the subject.
Q: What’s your pet peeve?
A: When you don’t look it up before you ask me. A lot of times, people will come in and say, “Hey, do you know the answer to this?” And it’s, like, “Do you know what Google is?” If it’s something you can figure out on your own, then do that, because it’s going to give you a better chance to learn instead of hearing the answer for me.
Q: Best part of your work?
A: Learning something new, each time, every case.
Q: Least favorite?
A: Paperwork. Can’t stand the paperwork. I’d rather spend my time being creative.
Q: Favorite activity away from work?
A: We have a cabin. I like to go up there and spend time with family and friends and do some fishing.
Q: Where would you take someone visiting your hometown?
A: I grew up in the Madison, Wisconsin, area so I would probably take them home to State Street on Halloween and let them experience that.
Q: Legal figure you most admire?
A: Martin Luther King. He was a big inspiration to me about the power of standing up to power, and how much you could accomplish by not physically fighting with people but just sitting there and letting them show their true colors and taking the punishment as a way to show people why it’s wrong.
Q: Misconception that others have about your work as an attorney?
A: It’s easy for people to concentrate on the glamorous part of the job. “Oh, you’re a trial lawyer. That might be great.” But what they don’t see is I that means that I read medical records late into the night, really often. It can be a grind sometimes. It’s just hard work.
Q: Favorite book, movie or TV show about lawyers?
A: If you’re in the mood for a laugh, then it’s “My Cousin Vinny.” I like that movie because it’s accurate in a lot of matters. We use clips from that movie to train lawyers on how to do cross-examinations because it’s so on point. If you’re in the mood for more of a drama, I’d say “A Time to Kill.”