10 Questions with Lucy Clark Dougherty


1- What’s your elevator speech? 

A colleague recently described me as a business person with legal expertise—a high compliment in my eyes. The role of a general counsel is to meld the legal perspective with the long-term goals of the business to help achieve the best results for our customers. It is a partnership and one does not work without the other. My team and I are responsible for approaching each situation with a tough-minded commitment to integrity and an empathic view that considers every angle.  

2- What is the most rewarding part of your job? 

Enabling my team and others to succeed is the absolute best part of my job. Throughout my career I’ve had the opportunity to work with leaders who encouraged me to assume responsibilities I would not have otherwise considered. I feel fortunate to be able to do the same.                  

3- What do you think is the most important trait for a successful general counsel to have? 

I’m at a loss to pick just one, so here are the three that rise to the top for me: Creativity and having the critical ability to look at a situation from various and unique angles to problem-solve; Integrity is about asking the tough questions and doing the right thing, always; and Humor to avoid taking yourself too seriously.

4- Why did you go into law? 

While I can’t jump, throw or sing, I can think and enjoy problem solving. The field of law is complex and designed to challenge those who choose to practice it. It is about recognizing and understanding the past in order to look ahead to where you are going, which given my fondness for history is one of the reasons why studying law felt like such a natural fit. I also wanted to find a profession where I felt I was using my capabilities to better the community around me.  

5- If you weren’t a lawyer, what would you be doing? 

Architecture and interior design. I’ve always loved creating beautiful, serene spaces where my family and I can feel joyful and inspired. 

6- You were a history major.  What historical figure would you like to have as a dinner guest?   

Only one?  If I’m cooking dinner, it is always fun to cook for more people, so I’ll give you my top three: a marine from the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir, world-renowned celloist Yo Yo Ma’s mother Marina Lu, and Mother Teresa. 

7- How do you like to spend your free time outside of the office?

Being new to Minnesota, my family and I enjoy exploring the Twin Cities and being tourists in our new hometown. We were watching "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" shortly before moving here, which is how we discovered one of our favorite places to eat: Kramarczuk’s. We also love exploring the Mississippi River, or taking in a show at one of the local theaters. This area truly is a remarkable place to live. 

8- What advice would you give a recent law school graduate? 

My first piece of advice is to do the basics brilliantly. It is always important to take risks and challenge yourself, but never forget the importance of the fundamentals. The second is to fight for joy. Find what makes you happy and never let go.    

9- What book is on your nightstand?   

A constant on my nightstand is A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. My daughter and I read together most nights. Kate DiCamillo’s Because of Winn-Dixie has quickly become a favorite for us both and is currently taking up residence on my daughter’s nightstand. 

10- Do you have a personal goal for 2020? 

I have the same goal for myself every year: keep listening and learning. 

Managing Editor
Nick Hansen

Executive Editor
Joseph Satter

Sheila Johnson