Holly Fisher is from Topeka, Kansas, where she practices energy and utilities law with a focus on real estate acquisitions and capital project related issues. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Utah and her law degree from Washburn University School of Law. Thank you, Holly, for answering our questions!
What have you done since law school and where do you work now? Since law school, I worked in private practice as a litigator in Kansas City, MO and surrounding areas. Then worked at the Kansas Board of Pharmacy and the Kansas Corporation Commission, litigating in an administrative setting. Currently I work at ITC Holdings Corp. – an independent electric transmission utility.
What do you enjoy most about what you do? I love the variety of matters I get to work on, from Real Estate matters to Contracts to Administrative/Regulatory matters. I also really like the people I work with in every department including construction, land agents, engineers, and the attorneys in our legal group.
Has your path in law differed from your original expectations? If so, in what way? My path has been very different than I expected. I went to law school with every intention of practicing in the energy industry since I focused on Oil & Gas law and NOT on litigation. However, my first job led me to litigation, which I really enjoyed. When I was able to stop commuting to the Kansas City area, I worked for the State of Kansas at a couple of different agencies, again mainly as a litigator. I never expected to work in a health-related area as I did with the Board of Pharmacy, but I was grateful to work in Topeka and it was a good job to have while I interviewed with the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) – the state agency that regulates public utilities. I found out about ITC Holdings Corp. while I was at the KCC, and when I looked into it further, I knew this was where I wanted to work.
What are your future professional goals? I want to continue to learn about new subjects and advance in the legal team at ITC.
How do you juggle your personal and professional lives? I am blessed with a supportive husband and children. We have to communicate all of the time in order to make sure we can manage our schedules and activities. In the end, it is great teamwork!
Tell us about your family. I am married to Scott Fisher who is an IT specialist for Bimbo Bakeries. There are four great kids in our family, although two and a daughter-in-law are not really “kids.” My son Jordan and his wife Rachel live in the Seattle area and the two of them work for tech companies. Next is Bryan, and he lives in Salt Lake City while he works full time, is in school part time (seeking a degree in Music Production), and plays in two alternative rock bands. I’m proud to say that one of them – Heartless Breakers – has been signed to a label and released a full-length album in March! Then we have Kristin, a senior in high school who is a percussionist, plays in the Topeka Youth Symphony Orchestra, works at Cold Stone, and will be attending Utah State University in the fall. Our youngest is Tarrin, a freshman in high school who swims competitively, plays trombone in the high school Jazz Band, and is also busy with Boy Scouts and other church activities.
What advice would you give to other women either interested or already working in the law? For women interested in seeking a law degree I often suggestion that first, they be certain that they want a career in the law – there are a great number of attorneys in the world, and the competition can be tough. I believe a person should love what they are doing and not just be doing the work for the money. Second, for young women who have just completed their undergraduate degrees, I suggest that taking some time away from school between completing their undergraduate degree and starting law school can be a very good thing. Real world experience was invaluable to me in law school and provided me the ability to prioritize and schedule myself during law school.
For those who already work in the law, we have all experienced the sometimes polar demands of work and family. My advice is to remember why we work – we love the law, but we love our families too. Work-Life balance is a struggle in any job, but maybe even more so in the law. Remember that there is no text, call, or email that is more important than time with our families.