The Lawyer Inquiry: Barbara Cahalane

Barbara Cahalane was born in Dublin in 1959. She is a qualified barrister and director of communications at the Law Society.

What was your first job?

Peeling hard boiled potatoes for potato salad in a restaurant in Bad St Peter Ording, Germany.

What was your first ever salary as a lawyer?

I studied at night for admission to the Irish Bar. When I was called in 1990 the day job paid £24,000.

What would you have done if you hadn't been in public relations?

Master chef/restaurateur.

What was you most satisfying professional moment?

So far, persuading the Irish Law Society to publicise disciplinary cases, but the best is yet to come.

What was your most embarrassing professional moment?

Full-page press advertisements announcing a name change by my then employer, the Federation of Irish Employers, the morning before the decision was due to be ratified by its council.

What do you least like about being a lawyer?

Habitually weighing-up both sides of the argument.

And the best thing about being a lawyer?

Habitually weighing-up both sides of the argument.

Who do you admire most, and why?

Grudgingly, Peter Mandelson for still keeping so many people on message so much of the time.

Which famous person or historical figure would be your ideal client, and why?

Colin Firth – need I say why?

Which Web site do you visit the most?