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Did you ever wish you had a road map for success? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a set of life instructions that would always lead you to be a “better person and a better lawyer”. I was in attendance in support of my niece Catherine Dines, Esq. who was sworn in as a new attorney at the 2016 New York State Bar admission ceremony in Rochester. The new lawyers, their families and everyone there including a group of appellate court judges received just such a set of “life’s rules” from keynote speaker, Hon. Lawrence J. Vilardo.

The life lessons he spoke of really hit home because as children we lived next-door to each other on the west side of Buffalo and I knew his parents, Lawrence and Dolores Vilardo and of their core values based in love of family, respect, honesty, integrity and work ethic. I asked for permission to share his speech here because lawyers young and old will benefit from these words of wisdom. Of course he agreed, but humbly made it clear that he learned it all from his parents.

We all innately know these common sense maxims of life, but thanks to Judge Vilardo nicely codified below are ten of the “Vilardo Family” life commandments that will help us all make a difference in the world.

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