Do Hee Jeong, corporate counsel for live-event technology platform SeatGeek, is helping fans find their seats, albeit from the legal chair. Jeong is SeatGeek’s first product counsel and has built out the role while also supporting R&D, payment & risk, and government affairs teams. The attorney is also an associate board member of Apex for Youth, a nonprofit working to empower Asian and immigrant youth from low-income families.
Learn more about Jeong’s early surprise that being in the courtroom shouldn’t be his career goal, the value of Legally Blonde’s underdog story, and how not fitting into the mold has helped get Jeong exactly where he belongs.
Who was your first fictional legal inspiration and why?
“Inspiration” may be a bit strong given the comedic nature of the movie. However, Elle Woods from Legally Blonde is literally the first fictional legal character, from the best of my recollection, that has left an impression on me.
I love a good underdog story and I think Elle Woods was memorable to me because she was an unconventional character who broke traditional expectations and paved her unique path forward. I grew up in five different countries and grappled with a lot of different identities during my adolescence, particularly as an immigrant and person of color growing up in the US. I did not fit into a particular “mold” and felt that I also had to create my own journey to get to where I am today.
Being a lawyer is empowering, in that I can do almost anything with my legal degree and the skills I develop from my practice. I am particularly excited with my current role because product counseling is a relatively new field and I have a lot of flexibility and support at my company to transform this function in ways that align with my interests and values.
What is one of the biggest misconceptions about being an attorney or the legal function itself?
I will be in court all the time! I now know that that’s the place we want to avoid!
On a more substantive (but I promise, related) point, I knew that being an attorney would be a high-stress role. I thought this would be because of its adversarial nature (looking at you, Suits and The Good Wife). As a transactional attorney however, because my role is to assess and forecast risks, I am kept up at night from what I possibly do not know I do not know.
What is the most meaningful case or pro bono experience you’ve worked on?
As part of the Interdisciplinary Child Advocacy Clinic in law school, I represented two middle school brothers who fled from the drug cartels in Honduras through their family court proceedings, as part of their process of obtaining Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) in the US. In addition to legal representation, we also worked with students from the university’s social work program to provide the brothers with counseling for their trauma and resources to help with their transition to a new country. The deep personal bonds and the trust we were able to create with the two brothers and their family were incredibly meaningful and humbling for me.
Find Do Hee Jeong on LinkedIn.