Matt Kallner - Behind the Scenes


Once a month, C Magazine sits down with a prominent Columbus figure to understand their vibe at 5:01. This month, Matt Kallner, attorney and lobbyist for many celebrated local and national businesses, took a minute to shoot the breeze about his career and life in general.

Do you remember what your first job was? It was a paper route when I was 10 years old.

What are you going to do with your first day of retirement?
I’ll probably think about what my next job will be.

What are you afraid of? Being irrelevant.

What Columbus public figure do you admire the most?
Mayor Coleman. He takes on the tough issues, and he loves what he does. He really is the man.

If you could have a drink with anyone, alive or dead, who would you pick and what would be your poison? A well-aged scotch with Abraham Lincoln.

What is your finest accomplishment? Professionally: helping develop Easton. Personally: having my kids tell me that they love me every day.

What do you know now that you wish someone had told you during your school days? You have to get up off your ass more times than you think you do.

What did you want to be when you were 12?
I wanted to be Joe Namath’s successor.

What’s your favorite Columbus restaurant? Any restaurant Jeff Mathes owns.

What should people spend more time doing? I think people need to stay in the present. When you spend your time regretting the past and worrying about the future, you lose the moment.

What would have been your other profession? Teaching and coaching in middle school, when kids are most impressionable.

Drink of choice? A Kallner Cosmo at Due Amici. That’s my drink.

How do you relax after work? I don’t, and that’s my problem.

What is something most people would be surprised to learn about you?
That I was born in Appalachia, and that my whole family is from there.

What would you say is the most important characteristic of a true friend? Loyalty. Someone who would stand next to me during my darkest days.

What’s one of your guilty pleasures? Late-night pizza.

What band’s music has inspired you the most?
The Beatles. They are timeless. I’m utterly amazed that my young kids like The Beatles.

You can take three things with you to a deserted island. What would you choose to bring? A chef, a mobile kitchen and a king size bed with high thread count sheets.

What would be the title to your autobiography?
Behind the Scenes.