When people think of the phrase “To protect and serve” they generally think of law enforcement, not an attorney. But that is exactly what got me into personal injury law. I get to protect those that have not only been injured physically, but also misinformed of their legal rights. When someone is injured, they are looking for someone they can trust. My mission is to keep my clients from being taken advantage of by insurance companies. I fight for my clients in the court or in negotiating a favorable settlement.
To protect and serve is part of my nature. As the middle child of five children, I found myself protecting my younger siblings (mainly from the older ones) and standing up for my older siblings as well. In fact, the experience of protecting my family bled over to me protecting my friends as well (because friends are family). The art of negotiating also started as a child for me. I wasn’t going to get much, if anything, given to me (typical middle-child statement, I know). I learned at an early age that I was going to have to negotiate my way into anything – whether it be who goes to the store or gets the last pop-tart.
Embracing my role as a mediator within my family is what eventually led me to the decision to become an attorney. I have always been empathic to the underdog and also had a drive to help those who may need an extra hand. Now I have the opportunity to actively be there for my community.
I’d like to think of myself as the attorney you’d actually hang out with. I enjoy sharing laughs over dinner, a game of cards, sporting events, or just about anywhere you can find a large group of people. I got the traveling bug after serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Santiago Chile (ya pho!) and love learning about new cultures. I like mind puzzles, trying new restaurants, and playing any sport with a ball (and even some of the ones without). I’ll try anything once (within reason) and would like to one-day taste blowfish.
My wife, Jeanteil who I married in 2005 has been on my education journey with me from the beginning. I attended the University of Nevada Las Vegas where I graduated in the top 1% of my class, majoring in Criminal Justice (“protect and serve”, right?) and Psychology. Once I graduated my wife and I decided to leave our home in Las Vegas with our then 3-year-old daughter and another daughter on the way for law school at Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. Upon graduation, I found an extern opportunity in Utah. We now have 3 very active daughters that keep us busy going to musical plays, dance recitals, and cheerleading competitions (hoping at least one will try MMA).
Utah has been so good to us since our arrival in 2011. I have fallen in love with all Utah has to offer from the diverse restaurants (reminds me of Vegas) to the outdoor activities. I’m thankful I get to call Utah home and my neighbors, my family.