by Jennifer Rosinski
Despite 20 years of experience in securities litigation, it took
two high school Mock Trial competitions for Kevin J. Diamond to
realize he needed to reevaluate his approach in the courtroom.
"I found that my style should be tempered. That was probably the
greatest lesson," said Diamond, a member of the Massachusetts Bar
Association's Executive Management Board. "What I learned is
subtleness is probably heard better."
A CPA and attorney, Diamond was serving as a volunteer judge for
the MBA's 2010 Mock Trial Program when he had the revelation.
Diamond saw himself in the high school student who acted very
aggressively as plaintiff's counsel.
"I found it distasteful," said Diamond, of Shea & Diamond
LLP in Holliston. "It was incredibly insightful."
This year's civil case could have been pulled from Diamond's own
case files, and was one of the reasons he decided to serve as a
volunteer judge for the first time. The case involved a parent who
lost a daughter's college fund after investing with a brokerage
firm's financial advisor.
Diamond said the experience was so rewarding that he plans to
continue serving as a volunteer judge for the program, which will
begin its twenty-sixth year this fall.
"I got more from this than the kids did. I loved it," said
Diamond, who also practices in the area of probate litigation. "I
got to see what one of my cases looked like from the bench. I got
to see both the defense and plaintiff's side."
The competition places high school teams from 16 regions across
the state in simulated courtroom situations where they assume the
roles of lawyers, defendants and witnesses in hypothetical cases.
More than 100 high schools across the state participate in the
program, which culminated in the Winsor School's triumph over
Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School on March 26 in
Faneuil Hall's Great Hall.