Nixon Peabody LLP
U.S. Marine and Nixon Peabody LLP Counsel Kevin Saunders said that the motto of officer candidate’s school, “ductus exemplo”—or “lead by example,” has carried him through his service and legal career.
“If you are unwilling to roll up your sleeves and jump into each case, you are not being an effective mentor or leader,” said Saunders, who enlisted in the Marines in 1991, and has previously worked as a JAG attorney, Marine officer instructor and an infantry company commander deployed in Iraq.
His military experience drives him to give back to the community and provide service to pro bono initiatives, including the Veterans Outreach Center, Inc., where he serves on the board. He also co-founded initiative, “One Team, One Fight,” which works to address veterans’ various needs.
Todd Baxter, executive director of the Veterans Outreach Center, Inc., said, “Kevin is a shining example of Rochester’s homegrown leadership talent. He is a hardworking, dedicated professional who works well with community leaders, and shows a determination to achieve goals.”
Saunders said he manages to balance his home, work and volunteer time by maintaining habits developed as a Marine, including waking up at 4 a.m. every morning.
Saunders has received the 2014 N.Y. State Bar Association’s President’s Service Pro Bono Award for the 7th Judicial District for his work on behalf of veterans. In 2011, he received the Pro Bono Award from the United States District Court for the Western District of New York State.
He said his awards are on his walls, but the ones that mean the most to him are pictures drawn by his daughters as well as the Alpha Company flag given to him after his successful 2009 deployment to Iraq.
“The latter was a way of my Marines saying thank you for guiding them and bringing them all home,” he said.