Dan Heyd cites an array of influences that have shaped his life, among them:
- His late father, Charley, who began his own legal career as a clerk for John Weld Peck, judge of the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Charley Heyd eventually launched his own firm, building his career mostly on litigation and trial defense work. “Dad set the example. ‘Just get it done – this is not a debate.’ He pushed me to do well.""
- The fact he’s the oldest of five boys. “That shaped a lot of who I am. Mom and Dad made it clear I was the one who had to be responsible and set a good example.”
- His wife, Mary Lee, and their three children. “My family is a source of pride, love and support. They also can get quite expensive at times.”
- His experience with the people and the clients of Graydon, both of whom have impacted the way he practices law. Dan joined the Firm in 1986 and serves as the trusted legal advisor for clients on various legal matters primarily related to business transactions.
“With Graydon, you get responsiveness and a team that will walk through walls for our clients,” he says.
“It’s not uncommon to see the most senior lawyers in the firm, sleeves rolled up, working side by side with younger folks to get the job done. We’re big on getting in the car and going to our clients, being there during crisis moments, not just being on the phone. We can do that because we have people who are really good at working together. You don’t see the focus on ‘my own numbers’ that you find with other firms.”
Then there’s the accent on community service. A former parish council president of Our Lady of Visitation in Mack, Dan is now on the parish’s finance committee. He also serves on the Special Events Committee at UC’s Goering Center, geared to helping family businesses succeed, and is a member of the HCDC’s Business Center Advisory Committee, an economic development organization. Previously, Dan served on the Board of WCET-TV, Cincinnati’s public broadcasting station, and as chair of Wesley Community Services, which provides Meals on Wheels and other services aimed at helping seniors stay in their homes. As with many of his Graydon colleagues, that’s just the short list.
A law firm should serve several purposes for its attorneys, Dan says. It should provide meaningful, challenging work and a chance to make a difference in its community, for starters.
“The opportunity to get involved isn’t just tolerated, it’s encouraged – and for the right reasons. It’s not just about generating work. It’s about giving back. Which, by the way, is how you develop as a person and as a leader. If you were to do an inventory of all the organizations in the city that Graydon lawyers are involved in and the boards where we serve, you would have one mighty long list.”
“The result is, when you say someone from Graydon recommended you talk to this person or that in this town, they listen. I’m very proud of that. I think we all are.”
Dan practices in the general business area representing closely-held businesses on a wide variety of issues including mergers and acquisitions, succession planning for management and ownership, contracting, and technology transfer and protection issues. He serves as a trusted legal advisor to manufacturers, high-tech companies, design professionals and health care practices. Dan also practices in the area of real estate and construction law, primarily assisting owners, developers, design professionals, contractors and subcontractors with deal formation strategies and contract negotiations.
Dan has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America for his work in Corporate Law. Based on the grading and comments of his peers, Dan is recognized with an AV Rating, the highest rating given to lawyers by Martindale-Hubbell.
When not practicing law Dan enjoys spending time with his family and friends, trap shooting, traveling and cheering on the Cincinnati Reds and Xavier University Basketball.