Full Time Practice

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Meet Lauren Martin

Lauren E. Martin is an attorney in Tustin and Chino, California (in Orange County).  Her practice includes estate planning, probate, trust administration, and trust litigation.  She graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara in Political Science and earned her J.D. from Whittier Law School.  Immediately after law school she did pro bono work with the Legal Aid Society of Orange County and did some criminal and federal appellate work.    We are excited for you to meet Lauren!
What do you enjoy most about what you do? 
I love meeting with families every single day.  I consider estate planning and estate resolution to be the true family law.  Unlike breaking families apart, estate planning gives me the opportunity to really get to know the interpersonal dynamics involved in wealth preservation, asset protection and business succession planning.  I love helping parents prevent future conflicts between their children.  I love helping children protect and preserve the health, wealth and dignity of their aging parents.  I love helping small business owners pass along their hard-earned talents and books to their loved ones.  In short, I love the people I get to help every day, even in the midst of tragedy.
Has your path in law differed from your original expectations?  If so, in what way? 
I've known I wanted to be an attorney since early in high school, but never dreamed I'd own my very own practice!  Even when I went back to law school after a career in public affairs, I wasn't sure I'd begin practicing for many years.  I started school with an 8 month-old son, and finished law school with a total of three children.  It was hectic.  I wasn't planning on working until all three were in grade school but life has a way of throwing us curve balls.  Like many, I think I spent many hours in class dreaming of becoming a prosecutor but always knew I wanted to be more involved with my clients' lives over the span of many years.  I also knew I wanted to avoid the grind of billable hours as much as possible.  So in the end, I think I've ended up right where I always wanted to be.
What are your future professional goals? 
I'd like to make a gradual shift so that my base of clientele come from Orange County.  I'd also like to help Legal Aid Clinics and the Courts with their ongoing efforts to provide pro-bono estate planning services for the elderly.
How do you juggle your personal and professional lives?  
I don't juggle well.  That's the truth!  As a single mother, I struggle with the daily demands of parenting three young children while launching a practice.  Motherhood is my top priority and so I've focused a lot of my energy on strengthening family and church ties to assist me when I'm unable to be there for my kids.  I've been sure to partner with attorneys who also focus on the family.  That allows those in our firm the flexibility to be with our families and attend school events, sporting events, and church duties as much as possible.  The key is cooperation and delegation.  I don't believe I can do it all, and I don't even try.
Tell us about your family. 
I have a 7 year-old son, 6 year-old daughter and 4 year-old son.  All three are wonderful and love coming to explore different courthouses with me when we go on family vacations.  They love running the halls of the Santa Barbara court house most of all.  My oldest plays guitar.  My youngest breaks guitars.
What advice would you give to other women either interested or already working in the law? 
I definitely encourage other women interested in working in the law to pursue their passion vigorously.  Women have a unique ability to empathize with clients.  Furthermore, in a profession historically dominated by men, it is wonderful for female attorneys to share war stories and mentor one another so that we can become stronger professionally.  I'd also encourage women to ask other women how they have chosen to balance their personal and professional lives.  No two women handle their loads the same.  It's helpful to have a variety of perspectives when determining how best to manage the stresses of family life with this rigorous profession.
Any final thoughts? It's a blessing to be part of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society.  I can't say enough about how much the attorneys have mentored me, encouraged me and uplifted me.
Learn more about Lauren's practice here: www.trustandprobatelawyer.com

Monday, April 6, 2015

WIL Member Nominated as Professor of the Year

JRCLS Women in the Law member, Andrea J. Boyack, has been awarded Professor of the Year at the Washburn School of Law in Topeka, Kansas.  This award provides an opportunity to recognize outstanding instructors who motivate, challenge, and inspire excellence in students; who contribute to an understanding of an advancement in legal education; and who are respected by law students and peers alike.  Professor Boyack will be honored at the 2015 Commencement Ceremonies on May 16th and in Vol. 54, No. 3 of the Washburn Law Journal.

Monday, March 9, 2015

WIL Chair Karen Clemes Announced as First General Counsel for UVU

Congratulations to Karen Clemes, Chair of the JRCLS Women in Law Committee.  Karen has been appointed as the first General Counsel for Utah Valley University.  She will begin April 1, 2015.  Karen will be leaving her position as Associate General Counsel at Ancestry.com to join UVU. 

Read the full announcement here: http://blogs.uvu.edu/newsroom/2015/03/09/uvu-appoints-first-ever-general-counsel/

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

William & Mary JRCLS WIL Section Hosts Ethics Lecture

On Monday, February 23, 2015, the Women in Law section of the William & Mary JRCLS Chapter hosted a wonderful lunchtime event with Virginia Supreme Court Senior Justice Elizabeth Lacy, who delivered an insightful lecture on maintaining high ethical standards while practicing law. The William & Mary Women’s Law Society co-hosted, and W&M professor Jayne Barnard graciously provided faculty support.

Justice Lacy has had an extraordinary career. Amongst her many accomplishments, in 2009, she participated in the Commission on Ethics 20/20, a committee appointed by the American Bar Association with the purpose of determining what recommendations should be made to update the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct in light of modern technological advances. In addition to being a successful professional, she and her husband have raised four children.

First, five students had the opportunity to enjoy a delicious lunch and talk with Justice Lacy in a smaller group setting. Immediately afterwards, she addressed approximately 40 students for a lecture on her experience in ethics. One key takeaway that she emphasized was the importance of all lawyers learning to be a fair counselor within the rules of ethics – not an overly zealous advocate who fights to the death for every client with the mindset of winning no matter what. A zealous, but ethical and courteous, advocate knows when it is appropriate to strongly advocate, but will also counsel the client on the pros and cons of settling at the mediation level. Judges will remember an attorney who crosses the line between a legal counselor who advocates respectfully for a client and one who argues overzealously and inappropriately.

Justice Lacy’s counsel on ethics is sure to prove invaluable for us students as we pursue our individual career paths in the practice of law.

Article written and submitted by Courtney Hagge, student at William & Mary.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

WIL Presents Award to Nancy Van Slooten at Annual Conference Reception

JRCLS WIL Chair, Karen Clemes, presents award at Reception

Nancy Van Slooten, Award Recipient, Former International Chair of JRCLS
 During JRCLS’s recent annual conference, the International Women in Law Committee (WIL) hosted a reception for all attendees.   WIL was pleased to present its first annual WIL Service Award to Nancy Van Slooten for her many years of service to JRCLS, including previously serving as the first female International Chair of the JRCLS. During the reception, WIL Chair Karen Clemes reminded attendees of WIL’s mission:  “We affirm the strength and contributions that women lawyers bring to their legal practices, communities, and families. We strive to promote fairness and equal opportunities for these women.” A major goal of WIL is to encourage full participation of women lawyers in JRCLS – whether they are practicing full-time or part-time, working in a non-legal role, or not practicing at this time – and to help them feel welcome and safe in such participation.
Conference attendees enjoy reception hosted by WIL
Delicious food served at the reception
All are invited to read about ways to promote WIL in local chapters in our previous post.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Four Ways that WIL Has Made Law School More Enjoyable

Author, Megan Nelson, with Ginny Isaacson,
Chair-Elect of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society
With law school graduation just around the corner, I’m grateful that I’ve generally—and genuinely—enjoyed these past three years.  This is true, even after many late- or all-nighters, more than a few tears, and fleeting moments of longing for the simpler days that existed before law school.  As I’ve reflected on why I’ve enjoyed law school, I largely credit my involvement with the Law Society and, specifically, with Women in the Law (WIL).  Here are just four ways that WIL has made law school more enjoyable:

WIL has given me the confidence and contacts to succeed in my career.

When I was a 1L, I wasn’t sure what I would do after law school, but I was quite certain it would not be litigation.  Deep down, I thought that arguing cases in a courtroom seemed fun, but I assumed that litigation was a no-go for someone like me who generally dreads confrontation and who values “balance.”  

My outlook changed, however, as I became acquainted with several women litigators through WIL.  While attending a regional WIL Conference as a 2L, I distinctly remember a certain panelist’s story of how she—like me—never pegged herself as a litigator.  Through guidance from a mentor and divine intervention, however, her misconceptions melted and she became a full-time—and eventually a part-time—civil litigator.  Over the past few years I’ve been fortunate to meet other women litigators through WIL who have opened my eyes to practicing litigation, through their words and by example.  (I am also very grateful for wonderful male attorneys in the Law Society who have mentored me.  I cannot overstate the value of mentors, whether female or male.)

Thanks in part to the encouragement and experiences I’ve gained through WIL, I was fortunate to land a good job after graduation that will allow me to practice both litigation and transactional law.  (In fact, it was a reference from a female lawyer that secured my initial interview for this position!)  I am grateful for WIL, which has given me the confidence and contacts to succeed in my career.   

WIL has given me opportunities to serve and develop leadership skills.
While serving as my school’s WIL representative during my 2L year, I enjoyed helping organize several events with the local WIL Committee.  Through the same role, I even had the daunting but fun opportunity to moderate a panel at a regional WIL Conference in 2013.  I’ve found these and other opportunities to be tremendously enriching.  I also recently served as student co-chair for the Annual Conference held in Phoenix.  Although not specific to WIL, I probably would not have had that opportunity without my previous experiences working with professional chapter members through WIL.  That assignment was one of the hardest projects I’ve yet undertaken, but the leadership lessons I learned were priceless. 
Author, Megan Nelson

WIL has opened doors to making new friends and maintaining ties with longer-time friends.

I have made many wonderful friends through WIL.  As a 1L, I registered for the Annual Conference held in D.C. without knowing anyone beforehand.  On the first day of the Conference, I met two women law students who also happened to live in Arizona.  We bonded over the next few days and have become even better friends over the past two years after they both coincidentally transferred to ASU.  I’m grateful for my friendship with them, and with other women who I have met through WIL.

I’ve also been pleasantly surprised at how WIL has helped me reconnect with friends from the past.  At the WIL Breakfast during the 2013 Annual Conference, I was overjoyed to run into a woman who I had known from years before in Pennsylvania, whose daughters were my childhood friends.  Although I had not seen this woman in over fifteen years, I had looked to her from afar for many years as an example of a valiant mother and attorney.  Coincidentally, I ran into yet another “long lost friend” at the WIL Breakfast at the Leadership Conference in 2014.  Reconnecting with these women, and others, has been both sweet and fun.

WIL is fun.

When all is said and done, there are other organizations I might have joined during law school that would have provided mentoring, service and leadership opportunities, and friends.  However, with the demands of law school and only so many minutes in the day, I am grateful I have chosen to spend time with WIL.  Whether attending WIL-sponsored events or simply hanging out with WIL friends in non-WIL settings, I always feel a unique, uplifting energy when associating with these women.  Spending time with WIL has been a smart—and FUN—use of time during law school, and I look forward to staying involved for years to come. 

Megan Nelson is a third-year law student at Arizona State University, where she serves as executive editor of Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science, and Technology.  After graduating in May 2015, Megan will practice at Fabian & Clendenin in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Megan is originally from California and currently resides in Tempe, Arizona.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Women Speakers at the 2015 JRCLS Annual Conference Part 3

SARAH BARRINGER GORDON (SALLY) the Arlin M. Adams Professor of Constitutional Law and a Professor of History at the University of Pennsylvania.  She will be speaking with Professor Paul Bender of Arizona State University during the general session at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, February 13, 2015.  They will speak on the topic The New Law of Religious Freedom: Hobby Lobby and The Town of Greece Decisions.  Professor Gordon is a widely recognized scholar and commentator on religion in American public life and the law of church and state.  Her first book, The Mormon Question: Polygamy and Constitutional Conflict in Nineteenth-Century America (Univ. of North Carolina, 2002), won the Mormon History Association’s and the Utah Historical Society’s best book awards in 2003. Her new book, The Spirit of the Law: Religious Voices and the Constitution in Modern America (Harvard, 2010), explores the world of church and state in the 20th century. She is currently working on a third book, tentatively titled The Place of Faith, about religion and property across American national history. Professor Gordon serves as co-editor of Studies in Legal History, the book series of the American Society for Legal History, and is on the boards of the William Nelson Cromwell Foundation and the McDowell-Hartman Foundation. In 2011 she received the University of Pennsylvania’s Lindback Award for distinguished teaching, and in 2004 and 2009 the Law School’s Robert A. Gorman Award for Teaching Excellence. In 2012, she was appointed a Distinguished Lecturer for the Organization of American Historians.  Professor Gordon earned her B.A. from Vassar, her J.D. from Yale, her M.A.R. (religion) from Yale, and her Ph.D. in history from Princeton.

CHRISTY SMITH is Operations Counsel at Clear Channel Outdoor in Phoenix, Arizona. She will be speaking on Friday, February 13 at 2:30 p.m. with Aubrey Stock of Norton Rose Fulbright and Gordon Wright of Cooper & Scully. They will be speaking on the topic A New Generation of Lawyers: Practice Challenges for Women, Men and Families. Christy earned her B.A. from Arizona State University, and her J.D. in 2000 from Brigham Young University. She has been at Clear Channel Outdoor since 2012; her career highlights before that time include employment at the Arizona Department of Administration, chair for the Governor's Regulatory Review Council, Deputy General Counsel at the Office of the Governor—Janice K. Brewer, Assistant General Counsel of SunCor Development Company, and also practice with Gallagher and Kennedy, and Squire, Sanders & Dempsey L.L.P. She is active in several community organizations, including the Phoenix Chapter of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society, where she served as past chair.
EILEEN DOYLE CRANE is the Prelaw Advisor at Utah Valley University and Coordinator of the Center for Prestigious Scholars.  She will be speaking at the presentation for students on Thursday, February 12, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. with Lew Cramer, President of Coldwell Bank Commercial.  Their topic will be Networking Survival Skills.  As the founding director of the BYU Prelaw Advisement Center, Eileen helped BYU undergraduates be accepted at 170+ ABA-approved law schools in the United States.  Eileen attended J. Reuben Clark Law School, fulfilling a dream she had had since she was five years old when she used to put her name on her attorney-father’s professional cards.  She started teaching at UVU in the Legal Studies Department while in law school, teaching Culture of Law and Health Care Law.  She served as the president of the Western Association of Prelaw Advisors and the chair of the Prelaw Advisors National Council.  For the past 25 years, Eileen has presented at national and regional conferences on financial aid, career planning, and networking.  Eileen currently serves the chair of the BYU Law CSO Jobs Committee and co-chair of the Media & Outreach Committee.  She also serves as the vice-chair of Leadership Training in the J. Reuben Clark Law Society, along with six other dedicated team members, as she and her committee help emerging JRCLS chapters develop into strong chapters all over the world.
JENNIFER GIFF is a member of the Gila River Indian Community.  In 2011 she joined the in-house legal staff for the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community providing legal counsel and advice for the Community’s enterprises.  She will be speaking on Friday, February 13, 2015 at 4:30 p.m. with Professor Bob Miller of ASU.  Their topic will be Economic Development on Reservation Lands.  Ms. Giff earned a B.S. from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University in 1989 and received a J.D. from Arizona State University in 1995.  She served the Gila River Indian Community as in-house legal counsel from 1996 to 2010.  From 2000 to 2003 she was licensed as a Special Assistant United States Attorney to prosecute individuals committing crimes within the Community in the U.S. District Court of Arizona.   Ms. Giff has lectured at Arizona State University, American Indian Policy Institute, Tribal Financial Managers Certificate Program since 2009.  In spring, 2012 she taught Tribal Law & Government at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University.