Davenport Evans Lawyer Vince Roche was recently named to the Augustana University Alumni 40 Under 40.  In “Augustana,” the Alumni publication, the 40 Under 40 are described as, “Innovative thinkers, ambitious entrepreneurs, creative masterminds, compassionate healers, and service-minded men and women whose ideas are building stronger communities here and around the globe.”  The following Q&A appeared in the publication’s Spring 2015 edition.

Q. How did you choose Augustana?

A. I wanted to stay in the Sioux Empire but also wanted a top-notch education and Augie was the perfect fit for those twin aims.

Life at Augie

Q. Favorite class and why?

A. Peter Schotten and Sandra Looney. Both of them pushed me to think outside the box and approach complex issues from different angles.

Q. Best Augie memory?

A. Meeting my wife, Andrea.

After Augie

Q. Tell us about your journey after graduating from Augustana – first job, grab school, travel, etc.

A. After I left Augie, I attended law school at the University of Virginia School of Law.  Following graduation, I took a job at a large law firm in Chicago. I practiced in Chicago for five years and moved back to Sioux Falls in 2008 to take a position at Davenport, Evans, Hurwitz & Smith, LLP, where I have practiced since.

Q. Tell us about your career – what’s an average day like?

A. I am a commercial litigator. My average day involves communicating with multiple clients and strategizing with them on the most efficient and cost-effective way to bring their dispute to an end so they can get back to focusing on their business. If we can’t resolve it, then we have to take the case to trial.

Q. Greatest challenges and best rewards of your current role?

A. The greatest challenge for me is when a judge disagrees with a legal argument I make. I’m a very competitive person and I don’t make arguments I don’t have a chance of winning. So if a judge doesn’t see things my way, I sometimes take it even harder than my own client. On the flip side, the most rewarding thing for me is successfully resolving a case for my firm’s clients.  Nothing makes me feel more professionally fulfilling than orchestrating a favorable result for a deserving client.

Q. Greatest professional accomplishment thus far?

A. Obtaining dismissals of several high-stakes lawsuits on behalf of firm clients.

Q.What’s next for you professionally?

A.Continue to grow our firm and represent our clients effectively and aggressively.

Q. If you could offer a prospective or existing Augie student some advice, what would you say?

A. Augie may not be located on either coast, but don’t let that fool you into thinking you could be getting a better education somewhere else. I had people from Harvard, Stanford, Princeton and Yale in my first year law school section and never once did I feel their college education had better prepared them for the challenges o flaw school.  The education you receive at Augie is world-class and don’t let anyone tell you differently.

At Home

Q. Tell us about your family.

A. My wife, Andrea, is also an Augie grad and is a hospital pharmacist at Avera.  We have two boys, 7 and 5, with a third little boy on the way. I am also very close with my parents and younger brother and sister.

Q. What’s given you the greatest personal satisfaction since graduating Augie? And why?

A. Being a father to my sons and a husband to my wife. Although I love my job, it pales in comparison to the joy I get from spending time with my family.

Q. A foundation for life at Augustana begins with our five core values – Christian faith, Liberal Arts, Excellence, Community and Service. How did your time at Augustana help to ensure those values remain central in your life?

A. The core value that was most engrained in me at Augie was excellence. When I started at Augie as a freshman, I thought I could just skate by with minimal effort. That notion was quickly dispelled. To a person, none of the professors at Augie are willing to accept less than a student’s full effort and that is how it should be. I am forever grateful.


Davenport, Evans, Hurwitz & Smith, LLP, located in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, is one of the State’s largest law firms. The firm’s attorneys provide business and litigation counsel to individuals and corporate clients in a variety of practice areas. For more information about Davenport Evans, visit www.dehs.com.