KCUR recently featured Seyferth Blumenthal & Harris LLP (SBH) named member Charlie Harris in an article for a series of stories aimed at showcasing Black success stories in Kansas City.
Harris serves as the centerpiece for a larger discussion on success stories for Black business professionals in Kansas City. The article, part of a series titled “Recognizing Black Excellence,” looks at how he and others in the community have overcome a stigma or misconception that they don’t belong.
In the opening paragraphs, KCUR reporter Laura Ziegler details not only Harris’ legal career, but also his life away from the office and courtroom and interests in classic cars, sports, music and more.
“But Harris is much more than an attorney. He’s a renaissance man with wide reaching passions and talent,” Ziegler wrote in the article, which can be read here.
Harris later details an incident early in his legal career when a fellow attorney at the large firm where he began his career asked him to make copies. Because of the dearth of racial diversity at the firm at time, the senior partner incorrectly assumed Harris was part of the administrative team responsible for this task, as opposed to a former federal law clerk, a published author and a member of the UMKC School of Law Law Review. KCUR then details studies that back up the anecdotal stories that Black professionals — men and women — have a more difficult time advancing in their careers to leadership positions.
Even while climbing to become a nationally recognized labor and employment trial lawyer, Harris acknowledges the inherent challenges in that journey while also maintaining a healthy balance in his life.
“Harris is proud of his success at work, but says faith, family, relationships and music are higher on his list of priorities,” Ziegler wrote.
A member at SBH since 2008, Harris served as the first African American president of the Missouri Bar. He is a nationally recognized attorney who has also served as special master and general receiver for state and federal judges in complex wrongful death, commercial and business litigation.