Alumnus of the Year Award
Ulice Payne, Jr., Bus Ad '78, Law '82
It was, perhaps, a fateful three-day snowstorm and the realization that "opportunities present themselves that you hadn't planned for" that led Ulice Payne to a successful career in law. Despite his key role on Marquette's 1977 national basketball championship, Ulice's dream of an NBA career didn't materialize. Disappointed and stuck indoors during a snowstorm, he pored over the LSAT study guide and practice exam his brother dropped off during a Thanksgiving visit. It was then that he decided law was for him.
Ulice is president of Addison-Clifton LLC, a global trade compliance advisory company. This follows his previous roles as president and chief executive officer of the Milwaukee Brewers and managing partner and chair of the international business team for the Milwaukee office of Foley & Lardner, LLP. He also was Wisconsin Commissioner of Securities in 1985–87.
Ulice's previous experience as a customs attorney, focus on nurturing business relationships and attention to a changing world has helped fuel Addison-Clifton's success. Since the Sept. 11, 2001, tragedy, Ulice has helped clients address concerns about supply chain security and import tax rules.
Relationship-building is important. "It's a people's world," he says. "If you focus on the needs of people and what's important to them, you'll find a way to succeed in serving them."
Active in the Milwaukee community, Ulice serves on numerous corporate and charitable boards, including as chair-elect of the national board of directors for the YMCA of the United States and chair of the board for the Bradley Center Sports and Entertainment Corp.
"Being a graduate of Marquette University Law School is the most important thing that's happened to me in my professional life," he says.
Lucky for Milwaukee — and Marquette — that it snowed so heavily for three days more than 30 years ago.