Troy University (B.S., Criminal Justice, 2008)
University of Oxford/The George Washington University (Post Graduate Program in Human Rights Law, 2011)
University of Aberdeen (LL.M., Energy Law, 2013)
Florida A&M University, College of Law (J.D., 2012)
Associations / Memberships
Florida Bar – Entertainment, Arts, & Sports Section
Florida Bar – Environmental & Land Use Law Section
Florida Bar – Real Property, Probate & Trust Section
Florida Bar – Young Lawyers Section
Episcopal Church of St. Luke & St. Peter, Saint Cloud, FL
Aberdeen Lodge #375 Neptune
I have worked on a variety of issues over the years and had the opportunity to experience different levels of the legal community. I am proud that I had the opportunity to gradually wade into the practice of law, where I started with small cases that were usually involving less than $50,000.00 to now dealing with cases in the millions of dollars. In my early years, I learned several areas of law and was able to help my community by providing affordable representation.
In my first year I worked part-time because I was pursuing an advanced law degree in Scotland. During this time I reviewed contracts and analyzed regulations for individuals and for the program that I was in. After my LL.M. degree, I went on to open a small office and handled issues for people on a variety of case types, including: guardianship, probate, contracts, business formation, litigation, and many other issues. This was a humbling experience because I had people coming to me with what was a major problem in their life and they were relying upon me to help them. While building my small office and having a good bit of success, a local firm that had an established history of over 90 years asked me to come work with them for a year—and so I did.
I went to work with a firm that had a well established name in the local community. There I continued to settle disputes through negotiations and litigation. I also gained exposure to substantive estate planning, real estate work, probate, and I even worked on immigration matters. This was an exciting period in my career because I was learning an incredible amount about several areas of law and I was able to continue helping people in my community. I drafted contracts, negotiated disputes for people and businesses, and litigated cases where the parties couldn’t resolve their differences. By this time, I was also being asked to guest lecture law school classes and present research at academic/industry symposiums. Then the time came for me to go back out on my own, where I could take my experiences and go to the next level in my career.
In returning to solo-practice, I found myself to be dealing with matters of great value where I saved some clients hundreds of thousands and closed multi-million-dollar deals for clients. I was becoming a trusted attorney for the business community and a solid civil litigator on contract and real estate matters. It is this phase of my legal career that I saw myself making a huge difference for my community. I took pro-bono cases for the public guardian’s office in Osceola County, Florida, where I helped elderly people get the care they deserved to maintain their quality of life and dignity; I also consulted and provided guidance for numerous small business owners and home owners. Business owners kept me on a general retainer to represent their interests and people were coming through the door asking me to protect their rights in court. It was a pleasure to be able to use my practice and talents to give back to places that provided me with much needed guidance over the years, such as my church. In addition to my practical experience, I was also gaining ground as a scholar in the energy and environmental arena.
My scholarly pursuits have become noticed by many in the community and around the world. I have published at least a half-dozen scholarly works with law review and industry journals. My research tends to center on the energy sector where I have published with LSU, Capital University, Mississippi College, and the prestigious European energy journal OGEL. I developed my profile in the environmental law community to the extent that I was asked to present research at a Tier One law school—the University of Buffalo.
I have the ability to think of non-traditional solutions to problems or said another way, to provide additional alternatives to clients. This has permitted me to resolve many differences in client disputes. I enjoy those moments where I get to call a client and let them know that we have accomplished their goals and they can now put the issue behind them. I don’t like to think about how I could have pursued something else. But, I would love to teach law. Later in life, I plan on transitioning from practice of law to teaching law.
I have lived in Scotland and I love haggis. I had the opportunity to study at the University of Oxford, where I found that I enjoy punting (where you use a pole to propel and steer a small boat in shallow water). My time in the Balkans led to developing a taste for various forms of tea. During my stay in the Middle East, I learned that Turkish coffee is superb. I also enjoy researching, writing, and gaming.
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