Member Spotlight:
Defense News Editorial Team
Tuesday, June 5, 2018
by: Kyler Danielson

Section: Spring 2018

WDTL thrives through the participation of its faithful members. The Defense News is proud to highlight its members in this Member Spotlight column. In this edition, at special request from fellow WDTL members, we are pleased to introduce the current WDTL Editorial Team, including myself, Brian Augenthaler, and John Randolph.

Outgoing Editor-in-Chief: Kyler Danielson
   Advice for Newer Attorneys:
“Stay true to yourself and have hobbies. Clients and colleagues want to work with interesting attorneys who bring something new to the table. And, life doesn’t end when you leave work!”            
Kyler is a Washington native practicing environmental and land use law at Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt. She has served the WDTL Defense News as an editor since September 2015 and has been Editor-in-Chief since the autumn edition in 2016. She will soon be stepping down from the Editor-in-Chief position to make time for other service with WDTL. (Stay tuned for the next edition, with a member spotlight of the incoming Editor-in-Chief, Alice Brown!) 

Kyler grew up in the greater Seattle area. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in French and Political Science from Western Washington University. After graduation, she worked as a legal assistant in Kirkland to learn about day-to-day experience as an attorney. In that position, Kyler learned the value of clear writing and the basics of civil procedure. Her experience directed her towards a law degree, which she pursued at the University of Oregon in Eugene, OR.
For every letter, email, and pleading Kyler writes, she remembers the following quote: “If you can't explain it to a six year old, you don't understand it yourself.”[1]  She strives for clarity and consistency. 

In her free time, Kyler enjoys relaxing with her pet hedgehog, Kirby. She also sews, crochets, paints, builds furniture items, and works on other crafts. Kyler wears her homemade clothing at comic conventions and decorates her home with homemade items.

Kyler would like to thank her colleagues at Schwabe, particularly Jennifer Campbell, for connecting her with WDTL. She also appreciates her boyfriend’s help and support.

Senior Associate Editor: Brian Augenthaler
Brian is a Seattle attorney with Keating Bucklin & McCormack, Inc. P.S., where he practices governmental and insurance defense litigation.
   Advice for Newer Attorneys:
“You are allowed to make mistakes in your career. Just make sure that you inform others if you make a mistake so that it can be fixed.” 

Brian is also a Washington native, having lived in Kenmore, Renton, White Center, and other neighboring areas. In his youth, he wanted to be a movie director because wanted to develop stories. Now, Brian sees his legal career as similar to a movie director, because he is able to write his own story with the existing facts.

Brian has been involved in WDTL for nine years. He initially joined WDTL because he was seeking a job after graduating Seattle University School of Law. Through WDTL, Brian met fellow attorneys and ultimately found his position at Keating Bucklin & McCormack, Inc., P.S.

Many would be surprised to learn that Brian is a fan of pro wrestling. He drafted an article about wrestling in the WDTL Defense News several years ago, and he maintains his interest. He recently watched Wrestle Mania. Brian is a new father! His child was born in December 28, 2017. Besides parenting, Brian enjoys fishing, snowboarding, and playing video games. 

Brian practices law as if he was the managing partner of the Law Office of Brian Augenthaler, which is a subset of his firm. Applying this mindset, Brian takes full responsibility for his cases. Brian appreciates advice from a colleague that attorneys do not have control over the facts of their cases. The facts are what they are. Attorneys craft the story for clients around the facts, which cannot change.
Brian would like to thank Kristin Baldwin and Maggie Sweeney for their support throughout the years. Kristin helped him find a home with Keating Bucklin and Maggie supported his involvement with WDTL.
Associate Editor: John M. Randolph

John is an attorney at Bohrnsen Stocker Smith Luciani in Spokane. He practices insurance defense, civil litigation, general liability, and medical malpractice. 
   Advice for Newer Attorneys:
“Listen more than you talk. You only need to prove your case to the jury or judge. It is often easier to agree to disagree with opposing counsel then trying to prove your case with them.”  

In his youth, John grew up in Phoenix Arizona but moved to Washington for college. He obtained a business management degree from Western Washington University and then worked as an insurance adjuster handling complex litigation claims for over six years. Due to his experience with attorneys as an insurance adjuster, John applied to law school. He wanted to be in the front lines as an attorney rather than in the background of a case as the adjuster. He enjoys developing the arguments and arguing cases as an attorney. However, if he wasn’t an attorney, he likely would have continued as a litigation adjuster.

In one of the funniest moments of his position as an adjuster, John recalls obtaining a verbal settlement with a pro se party for $2,000.00. The pro se then called back and asked if the $2,000.00 compensated her for the hole in her foot, a claim that was neither presented nor in the medical records. John asked her for pictures to evaluate the hole in the foot, and the pro se called back later to state the hole was in her sock, not her foot and the $2,000.00 was agreed to.
The best advice John received was that as an attorney, he should strive to be like Atticus Finch and express kindness to others. “Everyone is pushing a boulder up a mountain.” Attorneys should treat others in a caring matter. Ultimately, kindness results in better answers and results.

John is a triathlete and fisherman. He lives in Spokane with his pet fish, Catnip.

John has been involved in WDTL for almost 3 years. He believes WDTL serves in an important role by presenting defense attorneys in a positive light to the community. John hopes that WDTL will have a greater Spokane presence soon.  To John, WDTL represents the promotion of professionalism and advocacy for civil defense attorneys in Washington.

John would like to thank his Sr. Partners Steve Stocker and Andy Bohrnsen for mentoring him in his development as a trial attorney.
[1] This quote is from an unknown source.