Judge Sam Salario

Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal

A group of 3 people are standing at the rim of a majestic canyon on a beautiful sunny day

My preferred method of exercise is… taekwondo, which has a great community/social aspect in addition to the workout, or running.

I am most productive during the day when I… when I shut off email, put away the phone, and focus on one thing.

The best advice I’ve received about balancing work and life is… you can’t have it all (or at least having it all is the exceptional case). You have to make choices and set priorities. Also, work and life are not separate.  Work is part of life.

The one thing I would tell a stressed out and overwhelmed young lawyer is… that is normal, and that is the practice of law. But most if not all of the things you are stressed about are doable or fixable. Focus on what’s most important and move from there.

Every day I make sure to… hug my wife and kids.

If I could go back to when I was a young lawyer and give myself advice, I would say… take more (educated) risks. You cannot succeed if you are too afraid of failing.

The most relaxing vacation I ever took was… any beach vacation—up north in the summer, down south in the winter.

I wish more lawyers… would focus on problem-solving instead of problem-identification.

My role model is… I have two. My father, and United States District Judge Wm. Terrell Hodges.

Law schools should teach… what they called the “core curriculum” when I was in school (contracts, torts, property, criminal law, procedure, evidence) more than I sense they currently do. Even though the practice is becoming more and more specialized, it still strikes me how much the core curriculum is at the heart of everything and how much the core curriculum forces you to think like a lawyer. I can help you learn to write a brief, draft a contract, take a deposition, etc.  It is much harder, if not impossible, once you are in practice, for me to teach you to think.