The Daily Record has published its 2013 list of top innovators in their fields for metropolitan Baltimore. I was surprised but quite pleased to see that Robert Santoni of Santoni’s was listed; I tend to think of Santoni’s Market in Glyndon as a great tradition rather than as a great innovator, but apparently it is indeed both.
I cannot pretend to be surprised that there are no law firms in the list, though perhaps there have been in prior years. Law is, for many reasons, conservative institutionally and ethically; many creative ideas for law practice finance, marketing, corporate structure, service delivery, promotion, tie-ins, etc., that are perfectly lawful and ethical outside of law practice are very difficult, practically impossible or ethically prohibited due to the regulation of the practice of law. This is not a criticism of the practice of law or its regulatory apparatus; innovation is not necessarily a good thing in all cases and there are paramount equities higher than innovation in the duties that attorneys owe their clients.