I once heard someone tell a parable involving an old master and a young apprentice. The apprentice, frustrated by his inability to learn quickly, asked the master, “How do I stop making mistakes?” The master responded, “With experience.” The apprentice then asked, “How do I get experience?” The master replied, “With mistakes.” I want to talk about why experience is important.
Many people have asked me what a judge can do to help solve the opioid crisis facing Brown County. Some are small business owners who can’t find enough reliable employees who are not coming to work high. Others, like me, experienced the loss of a family member. My niece, Lodi Seastrom, died from a heroin overdose in 2007. When the question is “What should we do to solve the problem of drug addiction and overdose in our community?” I answer, “Everything we can.” But the problem and its solutions are not simple.