When he’s not working on major real estate transactions, Boise Ding ’93 can often be spotted perfecting his double axel at the Pasadena Ice Skating Center in Pasadena, California. This spring the Los Angeles Mayer, Brown & Platt associate won first place in the men’s masters division, for the fourth year in a row, at the U.S. Adult National Figure Skating Championship in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
A leading skater at the U.S. Adult Nationals since 1996, Ding trains about 20 hours per week “including weights, ballet, and ice time. I work with four coaches and spend $20,000 a year on training, juggling the time with the 2,000 hours I bill at the firm.”
“Balancing work and skating can be stressful and exhausting, but I would not have it any other way,” says Ding. “The physical and creative demands of the sport provide a good counterbalance to my legal work.”
Ding had skated only sporadically since childhood when he took up the sport again as a 2L “to have some fun, and get some exercise.” While skating in a New York rink “for [his] sanity,” when he was a first-year associate at Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett, Ding caught the eye of Sonya Dunfield, former coach of Olympic champion Dorothy Hamill. He studied with Dunfield for two years before moving to Los Angeles and still considers her his “top consultant.”
Ding says he doesn’t have his sights set on the Olympics or full-time professional skating, but like many in the nationals, he competes because he loves “the challenge of serious competition” and the “camaraderie among skaters.”
He’s currently training for this year’s regionals in November in Anaheim, California, and the nationals in April in Lake Placid, New York. Says Ding, “I’d like to add a triple toe loop to this year’s program.”