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Leadership Through Culture (Tim Lupinacci)

  • Episode #24

In contrast to what you might expect of the CEO of a top-100 U.S. law firm, Tim Lupinacci leads in a distinctly humble and humanistic way. He shares his leadership philosophy, one which has helped the firm foster extremely high employee satisfaction.

Welcome to To Lead Is Human. This show helps listeners envision how they can uplevel their leadership and shape cultures of accountability, respect, and candor.

Tim Lupinacci is the CEO and Chair of Baker Donelson, one of the 100 largest law firms in the United States. He is also the founder of Everybody Leads, an organization that fosters leadership among underserved communities.

“The flip side of the coin of getting all the feedback… at some point, I have to make the decision and act and execute, because you can get into this funnel of just getting feedback and feedback and feedback.”

Tim Lupinacci

Tim Lupinacci spent the first 28 years of his legal practice focused on helping financial institutions solve complex problems arising in commercial restructuring and bankruptcy matters throughout the country. The past 18 years have been with Baker Donelson, one of the 100 largest law firms in the country.

During his leadership journey at Baker Donelson, Tim chaired the Financial Services Department, the Women’s Pathways to Leadership Committee, and served as a member of the Firm’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee. He was awarded with the firm’s highest award for both advancement and support of women and advancement and support of minorities.

Four years ago, he was selected as CEO and Chair of the firm, which he has led through significant organizational change, growth, and the global pandemic. He continues leading Baker Donelson through its five-year BakerVision 2028 strategy and the execution of its Diversity & Inclusion Compact.

As a self-professed “leadership junkie”, Tim’s journey to stepping up as a leader began thirty years ago as a young lawyer after disappointing a boss with an epic failure. The boss challenged Tim (after significant yelling and tough love!) by saying he saw Tim as a strong young leader who needed to recognize that he was a leader, and step up to own his work, his career, and his ambitions.

In the three decades since, Tim has studied, read, and grown his leadership skills through hard work, being curious, trying novel ideas, failing, learning from the failures, and getting better every day. This culminated in launching a non-profit called Everybody Leads focused on empowering individuals in underserved communities with basic leadership skills and confidence to better lead themselves, lead others, and lead in the community.

For more than 30 years, Sharon Richmond has partnered with C-level executives from mid-size and small, fast-growing companies who want to up-level their leadership and build companies they are proud of. Clients accelerate their leadership by embracing mindset and behavior changes, building self-awareness and self-management skills, and focusing on the three things all leaders must ensure: focus, energy, and delivery.

Sharon’s purpose as an executive coach is to help leaders 10X their impact by leveraging the power afforded by their roles to build organizations that are forces for good, both economically and socially. She also advises CEOs on shaping organization culture and leading change.

Sharon has taught leadership at Stanford GSB, where she now helps leaders increase influence, manage conflict, and prepare to build high-performing teams.

To see a list of Sharon’s clients, please visit

Resources or websites mentioned in this episode:
Sharon’s website
Baker Donelson’s website
Tim’s LinkedIn (EQ and emotional intelligence)

Producer: Cynthia Lamb
Assembled by: Andrew Chapman
Executive Producer: Danny Iny
Audio Post Supervisors: Evan Miles and Christopher Martin
Audio Post Production: Post Office Sound
Music Soundscape: Chad Michael Snavely
Making our hosts sound great: Home Brew Audio

Music and SFX credits:
Track Title: Escaping Light
Artist: Aaron Sprinkle
Writer: Aaron Sprinkle

Track Title: Bright Future
Artist: Be Still The Earth
Writer: Marshall Usinger

Special effects credits:
24990513_birds-chirping_by_promission used with permission of the author and under license by AudioJungle/Envato Market.

To catch the great episodes coming up on To Lead Is Human, please follow us on Mirasee FM’s YouTube channel or your favorite podcast player. And if you enjoyed the show, please leave us a comment or a starred review. It’s the best way to help us get these ideas to more people.


To Lead Is Human

Every business leader has a huge impact on their organization. In this podcast, Sharon Richmond interviews successful leaders who have turned personal growth into tangible business outcomes. They discuss overcoming challenges, lessons learned and what helps them make a positive impact in their organization. Sharon offers insight and advice to help listeners envision how they can supercharge their own leadership by blending the art and science of leading with intention.