What’s your best advice for clients embarking on a legal journey?
Just remember that the relationship between a lawyer and a client is actually a “relationship” and you should always feel comfortable speaking to your lawyer. You should trust in their commitment to advocating your position.
How did you decide to go down the path of being a lawyer?
I knew I always wanted to help people, guide people, and since I was never into science, being in the medical profession was not an option. Instead, I chose to be a lawyer. I loved getting to know people from all walks of life and using their life experiences as well as mine to help people through difficult times.
What is your motivation for going on in spite of adversity?
I am fortunate to be the mom of 3 beautiful strong girls. No matter what I have faced, I stay motivated not just to provide for them but to teach them that you never give up…I want then to learn that even when life is throwing you curveballs or throws speed bumps in your road, you find a way to navigate the issues and push through. I tell them all the time that it may not be easy but it will be worth it – knowing you never gave up and gave it your best.
What has been your compass in life?
My compassion for life has always been to help others. I was not blessed like my mom and brother with the trait of cooking and feeding the stomachs of those in need. Instead, I have been committed to helping people through life’s obstacles
How do you like to navigate tough decisions?
I am never afraid to ask questions or learn new things. I am smart enough to know that even the smartest people don’t know everything. When I feel like an issue is above my understanding, I am fortunate to be surrounded by great legal minds that point me in the right direction and from there I give my all to learn and be great.
Who has helped you most along your professional journey?
I was so fortunate to meet an amazing man named Michael Gaffney when I was only 19 years old. He took me under his wing and began teaching me about the legal world to help me decide if it was of any interest to me. He introduced me to this amazing legal world and amazing people that helped open so many doors to my future. As the first person to ever graduate college in my family, I had no idea where to begin and I will be forever grateful that he directed my path.
What do clients need to know most before deciding on any particular direction?
Clients need to always know the truth about risks. It is so important for an attorney to lay all the cards on the table – all of the best and worst scenarios. I have never been in the business of just taking any case that comes across the desk. It is always important to really assess your clients needs and how best to get there, even when it is not the route they believe to be best. Clients: never let a lawyer “promise” you anything – not only is it unethical but it is untrue.
What is your proudest legal legacy?
I think my commitment to always doing the best thing for my client even when it was not the easiest road. I have never wavered from doing what was right and fighting. I know that I have always remained true to my character and I have never sacrificed my integrity in any legal decision.
What differentiates you from other lawyers?
I have had the very unique opportunity of being part of this firm for over 20 years. I have held the position of receptionist, secretary, legal assistant, paralegal, bookkeeper, court runner, office manager and attorney. I have had to navigate the legal system in so many roles and I think that has helped round me into a relatable lawyer. It is so important to have relationships with all court staff, from the bailiff to the Judge and everyone in between. I think that my years of experience in so many roles in the legal profession make me asset to my clients.