I already linked to this great story on a Georgia death penalty attorney turned teacher when it first appeared in The New York Times, but the piece is now in the AJC as well.
Among the interesting points in the profile of Tom Dunn who switched to teaching after a brush with death convinced him that he needed a less stressful line of work:
On the common thread he saw in his clients who ended up on death row:
After decades of accumulating such stories, Dunn said, he recognized a common thread: the lack of a supportive authority figure like a teacher, of a helping hand that might have meant “the difference between a good life and a ruined life.”
On why he chose to become a special education teacher:
During his training, he focused on special education, recalling that he saw learning disabilities “in nearly every case” on death row. He now works mainly in classrooms that blend special education students with the general population.
On whether he made the right career trade, if his goal was less stress:
“You can’t be a starry-eyed idealist and do defense work in capital cases for 20 years.”