Moritz College of Law The Ohio State University
This Month @ Moritz

Professor Dale Oesterle: Life in the Fast Lane

Before joining the faculty at Moritz, he was the Monfort Professor and Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Law at the University of Colorado at Boulder. He also has a long-running association with the University of Auckland and the New Zealand bar, working with the legislature and practicing attorneys to develop New Zealand's "companies" legislation.

Dale Oesterle
Dale Oesterle at the 2003 Moritz Conference for Corporate Counsel

In characteristically decisive fashion, Oesterle knew early he would pursue legal training. "I wanted to be a lawyer in the seventh grade. I thought it would be a good stepping stone to enter politics," he admits, although he later chose not to pursue his political ambitions. A high school and college competitive debate champion, his enjoyment of this spirited process of reasoning led him to excel as a trial attorney in corporate litigation with a large Virginia firm.

Oesterle found private practice both rewarding and challenging, but some of his former professors persisted in suggesting that he pursue a career in legal education. After some interviews, he decided to take the plunge. "I think being an attorney is a great life, and, unlike many of my colleagues, I could easily be content as a practicing lawyer. But I have never regretted my decision to reenter the classroom," he confesses.

Oesterle thrives on the "give and take" dynamics of the classroom. This year he is teaching courses in Business Associations, Mergers and Acquisitions, and Law for Venture Capitalists. His current research projects include a book on law and finance for entrepreneurs, and an article to be published in the Ohio State Journal on Criminal Law regarding criminal prosecutions in the large corporate scandals of 2002.

"I would venture to say I am one of a handful of law professors who also likes to race cars," he says with a smile. As a member of the Sports Car Club of America, he is the proud owner and driver of two fast cars: a vintage 1966 Triumph Spitfire he rebuilt from the ground up, and a 1992 Mazda Miata. He has no plans to slow down any time soon.