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There's a revolution underway reshaping the legal industry, and the next leader for Cleveland's McDonald Hopkins LLC intends to embrace the change.

Indeed, Shawn Riley plans to position the firm to be among the innovators of change, and not simply a reactor to it.

"We can chase the legal industry, do what other law firms are doing. But we want to go a bit further, maybe beyond what other law firms are doing, and look to other industries to borrow their expertise," said Riley, who became president of McDonald Hopkins on Oct. 1. "But we want to get out ahead and do these things everyone is talking about."

Riley, a 21-year veteran of the firm, begins his nine-year term as former president Carl Grassi moves out of the position and into a chairman role, retaining a seat on McDonald Hopkins' managing committee.

When campaigning for the president position, Riley said his platform included a message of adapting the business for the future.

And while some of those efforts are sure to carry an upfront investment, Riley said the financial aspect is the "least of my challenges."

"The biggest challenge will be shifting mindsets and convincing people that just because it's always been done this way, it's not the best way," Riley said.

And that's a very real issue.

Click here for the full article from Crain's Cleveland Business.

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