March 11, 2016

Member Spotlight: Meet Austin Kaplan

Kaplan, AustinHow long have you been a member of the Austin Bar and what is your favorite thing about the organization?
I joined the Austin bar in 2010, and realized that the Austin Bar is like a big family and Austin Lawyer Magazine is the best way to keep tabs on our family members. I get the local news, appellate updates, helpful writing tips, and information on upcoming events. Plus, I get to chuckle along with Claude Ducloux’s column.

What do you like most about being in the legal field?
As lawyers we have the power to affect positive change in our communities. If we encounter injustice, we are vested with the power to take direct action to stop it. That is awesome. But, we also have the big responsibility to use that power wisely.

If you weren’t a lawyer what would you be?
Professional Dragonboater.

What’s the craziest job (other than lawyer) that you’ve had?
Live Band Karaoke Host.

If you were a character in a movie or a TV show, which character would you be?
Paul Rudd from the movie Clueless, in a montage, reviewing documents late on a Friday night, set to popular music.

As part of the #austinbarinaction campaign, how are you making your world a better place to be?
From 2012 until earlier this year, I served as Chairperson of the City of Austin’s Ethics Commission. As Chair, I presided over 28 ethics/campaign finance hearings, and I helped to get citywide reforms passed that closed ethics loopholes, increased compliance, and improved the financial disclosure system.

Kaplan was awarded the Austin Under 40 Award in the legal category and 2016 Austinite of the Year.