How to Build a Law Firm That Represents “The People”

Sep 8, 2020

When President Lincoln assured a crowd at Gettysburg that government, “of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth,” he likely didn’t realize just how far reaching an effect it would have. He spoke the phrase in reference to the sacrifice of the soldiers who died on the field at Gettysburg to, in the context of his speech, further the cause of emancipation. If a government was truly to be “of the people, by the people, for the people,” it should include all, not just some, of the people.

During the speech Lincoln also stated that the job wasn’t done and that it was up to all who remained to keep fighting for the nation’s “new birth of freedom.”
It was a lofty, undeniably ambitious goal, and one the nation as a whole has never fully managed to accomplish, though not for the lack of effort by many people since.
Despite more than 150 years passing between that speech and today, the words have in many ways stood the test of time. They are still used as a rallying cry for fair representation and having your voice heard, regardless of who you are.
Whether or not Lincoln intended the speech to be an aspirational message that would resonate for hundreds of years or a short-term way to bolster the spirits of a reeling nation, it has continued to influence ever since.
The message isn’t just relevant to governance. Businesses – including law firms – can also take those words to heart and operate accordingly.

What Makes a Law Firm “of the People, by the People, for the People”?

Saying an organization is “of the people” or “for the people” may mean different things based on the context of what they do. It may be a reference to diversity – is a law firm’s staff diverse and representative of the people they serve?

“For the people” may more specifically refer to the type of work they focus on – are they fighting for the rights of under-represented groups frequently trod upon by entities or other groups that wield outsized power and influence?

The Dressie Law Firm is proud to embody both ideals of “by the people, for the people.” The law firm is comprised of a diverse group of attorneys, paralegals, legal assistances and customer service specialists from a range of backgrounds, most of whom are Atlanta natives or long-time Atlanta residents.

We have several fluent Spanish speakers on staff to help us better represent a huge, vibrant part of the Atlanta community that is too frequently underrepresented by our state and city’s legal community.

Additionally, some of the services we offer, especially in regards to workers’ compensation representation, give a voice to vulnerable workers who are sometimes taken advantage of by employers who think they can get away with it.

Helping People When They Need It Most

It’s not all that common for white collar workers to seek a free consultation for an injury they sustained behind a desk in their office. Those injuries – like carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) – certainly happen, but not at nearly the same rate as injuries in the agriculture, fishing, transportation, manufacturing, warehousing and retail industries.

Unsurprisingly, it tends to be the most physically demanding jobs performed in sometimes dangerous environments that result in more frequent injuries.

Workers in these industries also tend to have fewer benefits and lower wages than white collar workers. They’re more likely to speak Spanish exclusively or be better at communicating in their native language, which can make the workers’ comp or insurance claim process more difficult to navigate.

The lack of resources, their need to keep their job and an often-justified fear of employer retaliation for pursuing an injury claim often means they don’t get the care they need after an on-the-job injury.

To put this into perspective for Georgians: approximately one in seven residents work in agriculture, forestry or a similar field. As of 2016 these workers were contributing $73.3 billion to Georgia’s economy each year. This not an inconsequential demographic, although their contributions don’t always receive the appreciation or acknowledgement they deserve.  

Many low-wage workers are perpetually in a financial position where they can’t afford to go long without employment. The risk of losing one’s job due to filing an injury claim is too great for some of these families. They are afraid of termination, workplace harassment or other forms of employer retaliation, and may not seek treatment even if it’s necessary.


At the Dressie Law Firm, we’re committed to fighting for every injured worker, regardless of circumstance or field of work.

Meet Our Atlanta Personal Injury Team

Being injured and having to deal with frequently hostile insurance companies or employers is intimidating for anyone, but you don’t have to deal with this unfamiliar territory on your own.

If you want to work with a diverse group of lawyers who truly care about you, your injuries and the impact those injuries are having on your life and family, the Dressie Law Firm is here for you. We encourage you to read through our bios, learn a bit more about our attorneys, legal assistants and paralegals and contact us at 770-756-6333 for a free consultation.