Getting to Know “The Anywhere Man”: A Q&A with Nick Allard (Part 4)
The BLS Advocate sat down with Nick Allard, the incoming dean of Brooklyn Law School, when he was in town on April 2nd, for a casual lunchtime Q&A at Panera Bread. We were fortunate that he brought along his lovely wife and high school sweetheart, Marla, who helped us get to know the real Nick. This is the final part of our 4-part interview by David A. Shapiro, ’12, with additional questions from Julie Adler, ’12. Parts 1-3 are available here.
NA: Marla has three superpowers. One is that she can get anybody to talk about anything at any time. The second superpower is if we go to a restaurant or any place else, there could be a huge line—she’ll walk right in. And the third superpower is she can return any item to any store at any time without a receipt, even if the store doesn’t sell the item.
DS: That’s a powerful skill.
NA: She can return a prom dress to a hardware store.
DS: Will you guys be at the rope-line at Cipriani? Will you guys be lobbying the big firms and stuff like that on behalf of students? Where can we spot you?
NA: I don’t know what kind of mythical idea you have there, but we will be lobbying—I will be lobbying on behalf of Brooklyn Law School period, full stop. In all the different arenas. Maybe that’s why the Board and the faculty thought it was a good idea to, you know, hiring a professional advocate, it’s not such a bad thing.
DS: What do you say to a student right now who is unemployed and very worried about getting a job?
NA: It’s very hard. Don’t give up. It’s not easy and we will give you all the possible support that we can. We can’t get the job for you, can’t guarantee a job, but we understand how tough it is, and we know finding a job is not about numbers, it is about individual people.
DS: What’s your favorite restaurant in the city?
NA: Why choose? Look at me—you can tell I’ve got plenty! There are a lot that I really like. I like Queen!
DS: I have not been there yet.
JA: Me neither.
DS: How many times you been there?
NA: Just look at my waist-line. Tip: The Caprese salad is to die for, but there is enough Mozzarella for the defensive line of the Jets. And, uh…
MA: We tried Noodle Pudding.
NA: Noodle pudding I like.
MA: And the Happy Diner on Montague Street.
[cross-talk about Diner’s correct name]
NA: I love Happy Days. Happy Days is well-named.
JA: I always pass by it and I’ve never been inside it.
MA: You order there and boom, it’s there. It’s like magic, you order and in three seconds, it’s there.
NA: I like Happy Days and I like the St. Clare.
MA: Oh, have you been to St. Clare Diner on Smith Street?
MA: Can you tell we like it? We’ve been there three times recently—that is how much we’ve been there.
DS: Which one is that? Is that the 24-hour one? Oh I haven’t eaten there, either.
MA: Guys, if you get a dinner there, you can take home enough for three nights.
JA: Really? I have to go [there]!
DS: So you guys have been around here.
JA: Yeah, you guys know this place better than we do.
NA: You may forget this, but first of all, my son recently worked for a summer in the Brooklyn DA’s office. I was sworn in at Cadman Plaza for the New York Bar.
MA: Our son lived in Brooklyn.
NA: Park Slope.
MA: Now he’s in Manhattan, but he worked one summer at the DA’s office.
JA: Where is he now?
MA: He’s at Columbia [Law School].
NA: My mother was born in Brooklyn and my grandmother worked at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. She was a navy nurse.
JA: That’s where we have our annual Barrister’s Ball. The law school prom.
MA: The Barrister’s Ball! How fun is that?
DS: Yeah, you are invited to that, as well.
MA: What exactly is the Barrister’s Ball? A formal dance?
DS: Yeah, it’s our prom. Law school prom.
MA: You have a law school prom! Aww!
DS: Yeah, I wore a tux and everything.
JA: You’re going to be there next year, so get excited.
MA: Is it a real big deal?
DS: Yeah, lots of people go.
MA: We are the world’s worst dancers, I will say that.
JA: That’s okay. Normally the deans don’t dance, so…
DS: You won’t be expected to dance. You could start a tradition.
NA: A man has to know his limitations.
MA: We’re really bad dancers.
DS: That’s all right—come up with a dance.
NA: I’m like the Priest Brother in Saturday Night Fever.
MA: We’re Chatty Cathy’s. But we’re bad dancers.
JA: Yeah you’ll just schmooze at the ball, that’s okay. They won’t make you dance.
DS: I think that’s all.
JA: I think we’re done!
MA: I think getting to know the students is so fun, I really do.