Posted by John Kilpatrick Ph.D. on Feb 16, 2022
Past President Jeff, honored guests, fellow Rotarians, it is my extraordinary privilege and pleasure today to introduce you all to the world’s newest Rotarian, Ashley Burman, classification Legal Services.  Ashley comes to us as a new Young Rotary Leader and is proposed by Tabitha Claus.
Ash, as she’s known to her friends, is an attorney with the Seattle litigation boutique of Harrigan, Leyh, Farmer, and Thomson.  Ash graduated from U.W., and after working in the private sector for several years, she began a 6-year sojourn to the wastelands, and by “wastelands” I mean Chicago and New York.  All joking aside, she began her journey by attending one of America’s premier law schools, the University of Chicago.  She must have done pretty well there because she was recruited to the New York office of the world’s fifth-largest law firm, Jones Day.  Ash quickly settled into their defense litigation practice, with cases involving the Federal Trade Commission, the SEC, and the Justice Department.
If you’re not familiar with Jones Day, there is an old saying that if astronauts ever set up a permanent settlement on the Moon, there will already be a Jones Day office there.  Weirdly enough, though, none of their 43 offices is in Seattle.  Ash, unfortunately, missed Seattle and her family, and so joined Harrigan Leyh late last year.  She is working on civil litigation, representing local and county governments and sewer districts in litigious matters.
Ash grew up in Federal Way.  As a Husky, she majored in political science and economics, and volunteered on many local and state political campaigns as well as being involved in the undergraduate law review.  Now that she’s back in Seattle, she’s heavily involved with the King County Bar Association, particularly their public policy committee and their litigation committee.  She’s also part of the Young Professionals Committee at the Washington Policy Center.  Ash is passionate about elections, and her involvement in the public sphere is one of her big drivers.
Ash describes herself as “outdoorsy”, and while she enjoys snowshoeing, camping, and hiking, she says her main hobbies center around writing, painting, and reading.  During COVID, she’s been working from home – as have so many of us – and says she misses the synergy with other attorneys in an active office.  Right now, her main collaborators are her two roommates, Freya, her Norwegian elkhound, and her cat PeaCat.
I asked Ash about her motivation to join Rotary.  She noted that working in political campaigns, she found that elected officials across the board consistently listed “Rotary” as community involvement.  She is already becoming involved with Seattle 4 and has already joined the Community Service Committee.
With that, Past President Jeff, it is my very real pleasure to introduce the World’s newest Rotarian, and our newest Young Rotary Leader, Ashley “Ash” Burman, classification Legal Services.
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