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Bose finds career satisfaction in winning clients’ trust

Mary Bose - State Public Defender’s Office (Staff photo by Kevin Harnack)

Mary Bose – State Public Defender’s Office (Staff photo by Kevin Harnack)

For Mary Bose, establishing a trusting relationship between a client and attorney is more than important: “It’s everything.”

Bose is a client-services specialist in the Wisconsin State Public Defender’s office in Wauwatosa, where he performs duties ranging from providing support to clients to obtaining records on cases. Specifically, Bose noted, she supports clients in need of protection or services and works on cases involving the termination of parental rights and sometimes mental health.

In essence, she is there to establish a foundation of trust with clients. This is especially important considering that many of these clients, who are in effect being represented by a public defender because they can’t afford a private attorney, view her office as part of the system that got them to this point.

To combat that perception, Bose has to prove to clients that her office is on their side.

“Once that trust happens and you can feel that trust, I feel like I’ve done my job,” she said.

In nominating Bose, Jessica Moeller, assistant state public defender, said she goes above and beyond the call of duty in parental-rights cases. Clients involved in these cases usually have either a case manager or a social worker who supports them in a number of ways.

There are times, though, when that does not happen, Moeller said.

Bose steps in to fill that void by checking in with clients often and providing them with support and encouragement. She will remind them of appointments and help them schedule services.

She also offers support throughout trials by gathering records, getting in touch with witnesses and attending hearings with clients so they won’t feel alone if they have no other family or friends coming to support them.

“We have a fairly large office of attorneys and Mary is our only client support specialist,” Moeller wrote, “yet she is always able to make time for that new case.”

Bose said one of her biggest motivators is her desire to work with people. She also enjoys watching the judicial process unfold and knowing she has a role to play.

Bose gives a lot of credit to her family. Bose has two children and a husband who is “extremely supportive,” she said.

“It helps to be married to the best person I know.”

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