And one Little Rock firm in particular also finds the time in a busy schedule to serve the community in a big way.
The latest KARK Community Service Award Small Corporate Humanitarian Finalist is Jack Nelson Jones Fink Jiles & Gregory.
"I think we're fortunate to have law firms and partner businesses and individuals who want to give back to the state and therefore help individual people," says the firm's Sheffield Nelson.
Nelson knows Arkansans take care of each other. That spirit of sharing permeates the law firm. Partner Don Jack serves on the St. Vincent Hospital Board, and promotes community service within the firm.
"What I like to try and do is encourage everybody around here to participate in any organization that they truly believe in. If you truly believe in an organization, then you'll give it your best," says Jack.
The other senior partner, Steve Jones, also has a theory about corporate public service. "Y'know, I guess it's a combination of our view of the role of lawyers in society, and that means we have attracted a certain kind of person, and those are people who believe in giving back," says Jones.
The partners' philosophy is reflected in the firm's staff, most of whom are involved in at least one organization. Debby Linton serves several, including the Junior League because of its emphasis on community education. "Part of Junior League's mission is to serve women and children in the community. The community projects of Junior League are why I chose to be involved," Linton says. "My most recent thing was to chair the Easter Seals event recently and it was a very succesful event. We raised $548,000, and that was the third time I've chaired such an event."
That event honored Nelson's good friend, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. And it was Nelson's crusade that inspired the legislature to raise the natural gas severance tax, resulting in millions for state highways. "We make a living out of this community, and we oughta be giving back to this community. That's just, I think, an absolutely basic concept," says Nelson.
The Jack Nelson Jones firm is one of three businesses nominated for the 2009 Small Corporate Humanitarian award. The awards will be presented on July 10, at the Reynolds Performance Hall on the UCA campus in Conway, and admission is free.