1. Why did you become a lawyer?
As a kid, I was always in awe of people who were good communicators and advocates. I learned that the best way to develop those skills was to get a legal education. I also had a passion for politics, which naturally led me to pursue a legal career. In making the decision to apply to law school while working for the University of Colorado, I reached out to one of the general counsel for the university. I learned about his diverse practice and all of the issues he handled for the school. That really appealed to me. I have always been the type of person who wants to help someone, and I appreciate an intellectual challenge.
2. What sparked your interest in serving as a DBA delegate to the ABA?
I am passionate about Denver and Colorado and was interested in representing my state on a national level. Colorado has a lot of good attorneys, and we are progressive in our thinking when it comes to diversity and inclusiveness. I wanted to share some of these best practices with attorneys from different states. In addition, the ABA House of Delegates is a unique group of lawyers and is considering novel issues that are being presented to attorneys. I wanted to be involved in those changes and solutions for challenges that the modern attorney faces.
3. What are some of your aspirations in this role?
I hope to hear from Denver attorneys about potential resolutions that they would like the ABA House of Delegates to consider. Colorado has very successful attorneys, and our practices can be utilized on a national level.
4. What have been some of the most rewarding aspects of your career so far?
The people that I have met, worked with and worked for. I have enjoyed meeting people in the Denver legal community and learning from those around me — whether at my job at Gordon & Rees, at various bar association events or through volunteering for different organizations.
5. What is the best thing about practicing law in Denver?
Besides Denver being the best place to live, the Colorado Women’s Bar Association has proven to be an amazing organization that I am consistently thankful for. Having the support and mentorship of so many amazing women is something that has helped me both professionally and personally. Additionally, I love being close to the University of Colorado Law School because I continue to develop relationships with my former classmates and get the opportunity to work with the school.
6. How do you achieve work–life balance?
I believe you have to consider work–life balance in the long term. There are going to be times in your career where your main priority is work, and there will be times that are primarily devoted to friends and family. Life is going to happen, and you have to be ready to commit to whatever is in front of you at the time.
7. What advice would you give new lawyers?
Being a new attorney is not easy. The legal landscape has evolved, and it can be difficult to find a job. But if you are a good person and work hard, it is worth the fight. Being an attorney is a rewarding career, and there are so many opportunities to provide value — you just have to embrace the difficulties.
8. How has having a background in journalism helped you be a better lawyer?
My background in journalism has helped me with interviewing people and recognizing what people care about. One of the things you do as a journalist is identify newsworthy stories. This translates to the legal profession in many ways and helps with analyzing what might interest a judge or juror. I also learned to work under tight deadlines!
9. What is your favorite board game and why?
My favorite board game is Cranium because everyone has their categories that they excel at and those that take them out of their comfort zone. It brings people together.
10. If you weren’t a lawyer, you’d be:
An entrepreneur. D
EDITOR’S NOTE: Do you know a DBA member who should be featured? Email nominations to Jessica Volz at email@example.com.