From winning his first solo trial (a criminal case for Sonoma Bird Land) to the behemoth copyright battle between Oracle and Google, Robert Van Nest discusses his career, law practice, and offers advice for young trial lawyers as a guest of the award-winning podcast Hsu Untied.
Bob tells Richard Hsu that blending the technical side of a patent or copyright case with its business context is the most challenging (and fun) part of his high-stakes trial practice.
“One of the most fun and recent highlights was the Oracle v. Google trial. You don’t have too many trials where your first several witnesses are Larry Page, Larry Ellison, Eric Schmidt, Jonathan Schwartz, Scott McNealy…It was great opportunity for me not only to work with a lot of the top folks in Silicon Valley…but also at the cutting-edge of technology…Being able to present to a California jury a story of innovation, a story of change, and a story of transformative change was just wonderful,” Bob said.
Bob’s advice to young lawyers is to play to your strengths.
“Try to take the things you do the best and capitalize on those, work the hardest on those,” he said. “You can be a great trial lawyer with a lot of different styles and a lot of different approaches. Juries are looking for variety today; they are looking for diversity.”
And while he has no plans to switch career paths, or retire, any time soon, Bob said he would like to take a pro bono public interest case to trial or spend some time as an adjunct professor.
Listen to the complete interview here.