Dawson Orr: The Roots of Health & Wellness Month
May has not always meant “Health & Wellness Month” to the The Florida Bar YLD. The desire for help making quality of life a bigger focus felt by so many young attorneys came to the forefront in late 2014, during the tenure of former Florida Bar YLD President Michael Orr. Under former President Orr’s leadership, the YLD engaged young lawyers across the state through a general membership survey. The insightful feedback the YLD received brought to light the importance so many young lawyers place on quality of life.
Unfortunately, it also underscored the difficulties many face in finding the time, finding ways, or finding the necessary support to make health and wellness part of their daily or weekly routines.
Alerted to these issues, YLD leadership took action – in an effort to inspire and empower young lawyers across the state to incorporate health and wellness into their busy lives, the YLD launched the first Health & Wellness Month a few weeks later.
While the YLD’s state-wide initiative is only in its second year, the importance of such issues is not new to former President Orr. His Jacksonville, Florida based firm, Dawson Orr, has long placed an emphasis on quality of life, and has employed a number of means to improve the health and wellbeing of attorneys and staff alike.
At the office, every Dawson Orr employee has an adjustable desk and can alternate between standing and sitting, instead of being sedentary for long periods. In May, the firm provides a healthy breakfast for all employees on Mondays, and takes lunch time walks in downtown Jacksonville on Wednesdays.
The firm also recognizes the importance of getting away from the office to unwind and recharge. The firm’s “Spa Day” also takes place in the month of May, together with an annual firm retreat at a local resort. Dawson Orr has also provided access to personal training and fitness opportunities.
Perhaps most importantly, the firm’s focus is not on the billable hour. Dawson Orr attorneys are not burdened with a monthly quota that causes substantial stress to so many attorneys. Instead, the firm’s focus is on the results of its clients -with successful results comes professional enrichment, an essential element in a balanced life and legal practice.