Phillips Murrah’s rowing teams, “Law & Oarder,” are on the home stretch as they prepare for their second annual corporate regatta.
Below is a brief interview with Melissa Gardner, co-captain and organizer of the Phillips Murrah corporate rowing program. Melissa is also an attorney in the Energy & Natural Resources practice group.
Q: How long has Phillips Murrah been participating in this?
A: We started in the Fall 2014 season, so this is our second season.
Q: What was the first race like?
A: It was our first race and because of two more experienced rowers, we were actually thrown into a category higher than our overall experience level. It was an exciting environment because around 50 of our co-workers and friends had joined us and were so enthusiastic that we could hear them cheering from the starting line. I think our speed and agility surprised even those people in the boat. It’s crazy how much faster you row in an actual race. Our co-workers were shocked that we beat our next competitor by three boat lengths! In fact, when we got off the water, I got a lot of comments like “wow, you guys really do know how to row.” It’s impressive what you can learn in one season of rowing together.
Q: In your estimation, how has it helped our corporate culture here at the firm. One thing I noticed is that it is a great way to get attorneys and staff together into a cool team environment.
A: Yes, I agree that it’s helped blend attorneys and staff, but I will say that I think the best part was the race. And the turn-out we had and the opportunity for all of the firm to join in a community-centric event and cheer on our own. It joined everyone in a team, even those not rowing.
Q: What other teams compete in this? I assume there’s more levels than just novice, right?
A: Yes, a variety of categories: all men; all women; co-ed (4 of each); and open (at least 1 woman). And landlubber (first year); novice; intermediate; and experienced. There are many corporations that I know participate…Devon, Chesapeake, MidFirst, St. Anthony’s, Mercy, OU Med Science, and lots of others I don’t know about.