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James Livingston – Quarles & Brady

By: Michaela Paukner, [email protected]//December 5, 2019//

James Livingston – Quarles & Brady

By: Michaela Paukner, [email protected]//December 5, 2019//

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James Livingston - Quarles & Brady
James Livingston – Quarles & Brady

When people stop James Livingston in the hallways of Quarles & Brady, they have his undivided attention — no matter how important their issue or what he has on his long to-do list.

Livingston is facilities manager at the firm’s Milwaukee office, made up of eight floors in the 411 Building.

“This position takes a lot of patience,” Livingston said. “I try to be engaged and present at that moment. That is something that I learned in the military. I give each situation the time that it needs.

It doesn’t hurt me to give them that minute and give them that personal touch because they are important.”

Livingston joined the U.S. Army at age 16 and became a metal worker for the Army after he graduated from high school. While on military leave in 1986, he was asked by someone at his church if he’d go to an interview at Quarles for a job in the firm’s mailroom. The church was part of a program that gave inner-city youth a chance to interview for downtown jobs, but few people were going to the interviews. Livingston went, and he received a job offer right away.

As the years went by, Livingston continued both serving in the military and working at Quarles. Over the next 25 years, he was promoted to warehouse supervisor at the firm and sergeant in the Army. He took on the role of facilities manager in 2018 — when the previous manager retired after spending 50 years at the firm.

“His superior dedication and unwavering commitment to excellence was well known at Quarles & Brady, so he was my logical choice to be the next facilities manager,” said Bob Isacson, office administrator at Quarles & Brady. “We all feel so fortunate to have him on the team and setting the standard for what excellence without fanfare is all about.”

Livingston credits his success to his work habits and character.

“Thirty years ago someone gave me a chance, and I never stop trying to make sure that’s the best choice they made,” Livingston said. “Customer service is a thankless job, so you have to take the good with the bad. At the end of the day, you have to feel special in what you do. Until you achieve that, you’re just spinning your wheels.”


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