Chasing the Shadows: Blind lawyer uses technology to deal with ‘nuisance.'

March 3, 2009
Connecticut Law Tribune, Vol. 34, No. 9

At the age of 12, Mark W. Heaphy lost his eyesight as the result of a lengthy battle with Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, a potentially fatal skin disease that attacks mucous membranes.

He endured multiple surgeries to his eyes and esophagus. Two years of his childhood in Virginia were spent in hospitals.

But Heaphy did not let a sudden life-altering disability keep him down. In fact, he's continued to go about his life as he hoped, describing his vision impairment as simply "a nuisance."

"All kids have different kinds of challenges to overcome. Kids are resilient," Heaphy told the Law Tribune in an interview. "You have to deal with that sort of thing. Things have turned out OK."

That is an understatement. Heaphy, now 38, just made partner at Wiggin and Dana in New Haven and chairs their information technology and sourcing group. The position requires extensive travel, as Heaphy has routinely handled negotiations involving millions of dollars in such places as Chicago, Atlanta, London, China and India.