June 2015 | by Dan Harayda
He was the dad reading law textbooks and writing briefs in the stands while cheering at his son’s baseball games.
During the off-season, he was doing homework alongside his three children.
Now, all of Todd Finn’s hard work is about to pay off.
The 51-year-old single father of three and full-time Realtor from Andover will receive his law degree from Massachusetts School of Law in Andover during its commencement this Friday, June 5, at the Collins Center for the Performing Arts at Andover High School.
Finn recalls a conversation with a cousin four years ago that set his journey toward his law degree in motion
“He told me that in four years, I was still going to be 51, with the law degree or without the law degree and that it was my choice,” Finn said. “Back in August of 2011 when I started, 2015 seemed so far away. Here it is, the finish line on Friday night and … it feels pretty good. It is going to be an amazing thing to graduate again.”
It’s been 29 years since Finn last experienced some pomp and circumstance. It was June 1986 when he earned his bachelor’s degree from Boston University.
Fast forward to 2011. While working full-time at RE/MAX Partners on Park Street in Andover, he decided to enroll in law school at the age of 47.
Finn admitted it was tough at times juggling his job and school responsibilities with life as a parent and attending his children’s numerous events.
But he stuck with it, he said, and ultimately served as a terrific role model for his teenage children, two sons and a daughter, all of whom attend Andover schools. His oldest, Isaac, is a pitcher for the junior varsity baseball team at Andover High School.
“My kids were great, always encouraging me,” said Finn, who is the third real estate agent in his office to earn a law degree. “My family has been very supportive.”
Finn, the youngest of three children, said although neither of his parents attended college, education was important to both of them. His older sister, Lisa, is a 1981 graduate of Lesley University in Cambridge and his brother, Brian, is a 1983 graduate of Bryant University in Rhode Island.
He said obtaining his law degree is a momentous occasion for his father, who is 81, and added that his mother, who passed away in April 2014 as he was completing the third year of law school, would have been immensely proud.
Interestingly, he said, his paternal grandmother graduated from The Portia School of Law in Boston in 1929. Portia was the forerunner to what is now New England School of Law. Finn said that at the time, it was very rare for women to graduate from law school.
“We seem to take it for granted these days, but there will be many women in my graduating class this year,” he said.
“He is still figuring out where his career will take him next, but said he is leaning toward family law, which he found most appealing during law school.
For now, he’s just looking forward to Friday’s commencement. He’s thrilled Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman will be the speaker, as some of his law school classmates are emergency responders.
“It will be an honor to hear him speak,” he said. “This law school has been great for so many of us.
“… It’s never too late and this school truly believes that.”
By Judy Wakefield email@example.com | Posted: Thursday, June 4, 2015 1:15 am