Dublin-Worthington News Stories

Member Spotlight: Joe Patchen

Friday, June 18, 2021 By: Paul J. Cynkar
Advancing the Leadership Mindset
Finding Success in the Success of Others
This is another in a series of member profiles based on discovery interview questions that were designed to get an up close view of the traits and strengths of some of the members who provide leadership to this organization.
Membership Spotlight:  Joe Patchen
A Convivial and Colorful Connector
Tell us about yourself.  Give us three facts that include information about your family, your career and your pastimes.
I grew up in Worthington, attended Worthingway Middle School, Worthington High School, Boston College (during the Doug Flutie era) and law school at The Ohio State University.  My wife, Sara (a special education teacher) and we still live in Worthington.  Our kids, Sam and Addie, attend Thomas Worthington High School. I have been a business and real estate attorney since 1987 at the law firm of Carlisle, Patchen and Murphy. In my spare time I like reading, history, politics and military history and bicycling. My current hoppy is building model airplanes

How long have you belonged to Rotary?  What’s the best thing about membership?

Initially I joined the downtown Columbus Rotary but it wasn’t a good fit for me.  Courtney Chapman and Tim Shear encouraged me to join the Dublin-Worthington Rotary in 2017.  I feel that Rotary gives me so many opportunities to engage in, and serve, the community.  I enjoy being part of the program committee and connecting with the speakers who add a learning component to our AM and PM meetings.

As you look back on your life and your career, where and when did you have the biggest impact on others?  Who was impacted and how?

Sometimes it is hard to see the impact I’ve made.  I had a leadership role with the Clintonville Chamber of Commerce during an especially trying time for them.  I have done, and continue to do, pro bono legal work in the tenant/landlord arena.  Work in this field has accelerated during COVID.  I have made an impact with numerous clients over the span of my career but I’ve also served on the boards of several businesses and not-for-profits.

As you look back, which of the opportunities you’ve had has been the most fulfilling to you personally?  Why?


One of my strengths is problem-solving so I am most fulfilled when I get the opportunity to do what I do best. I love thorny thought problems that also involve diplomacy.  Most often these are technical problems involving humans.  My profession provides lots of opportunities to do engage in technical problems with some very complicated human elements too.

Describe the most challenging project you’ve ever worked on.  What was your role?  What was the result?  What did you learn?

The most colorful ones always come to mind.  Once I helped save a family farm from being turned in to a mini-bike track.  Many of the challenges involve real estate situations, business partnerships and family matters and they all involve emotion.

What are some things you are passionate about?  What really excites you? What gets your adrenalin flowing?  What makes your heart sing?

I like to see cooperative efforts, especially when it helps to bring a community together.  I am thrilled when people put away their differences.  I think I am a combination of secretary of defense (right and wrong/black and white) and secretary of state (negotiations, resolutions and wise choices.)

What are you especially skilled at?  What is something that others often tell you that they think makes you stand out?

I think I’m a good issue spotter for clients – it is important to see the wider picture and not get too fixated on one aspect.  Also, resolving or structuring solutions for feuding owners is a niche for me.

When you have a moment to sit back and think (dream) about your future, what do you think about?  What things would you like to do in your life that you haven’t gotten around to yet?  Is there something else you would like to accomplish?

I’m fifty nine years old with kids still in high school.  Retirement is not in the immediate future but school events, sports, graduation and college definitely are.  Sometimes I think about travel.  My bucket list includes the Zion National Park, Yellowstone National Park and Moscow, Russia.  (Please note that I took Russian language classes at Worthington High School.  I’d like the opportunity to apply my learning.)

If you could choose anyone (alive or deceased) to have lunch with, who would it be? Why?

Ben Franklin…he was convivial and interesting.  (Editor’s note:  Joe is a lot like Ben Franklin.)
 

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