Whenever I am asked why I decided to go to law school, either by a high school student at a career day, a new acquaintance, or even my own children, the answer is always the same: Clarence Darrow. After spending an entire year as a freshman at Eureka High School researching the Scopes Monkey Trial and the cast of characters, I was fascinated by the work Mr. Darrow had done throughout his career. I was particularly struck by something he said and kept this quote on my wall until I moved out:
“As long as the world shall last there will be wrongs, and if no man objected and no man rebelled, those wrongs would last forever.”
I decided that year that I would go to law school, become an attorney, and craft a career that would allow me to “object to wrongs”. While admittedly the naïve and idealistic attitude of a child, I have not forgotten those words and still hope that my practice captures the essence of Mr. Darrow and his crusade to help the oppressed.
Understandably, my career started in the public defender’s office, fine-tuning my ability to defend the indefensible and argue the injustices of a system of oppression. As my career developed, I ultimately left the public sector and settled into my home with the Thurman Law Firm, expanding my practice into other areas of the law. While still maintaining a criminal practice, my field has expanded to family law, further allowing me to “object to wrongs”.
My early career limited those wrongs to the criminal justice system, but since joining this firm in 2012, I have been able to rebel against the wrongs committed against Jefferson County residents in many other ways. I now have the opportunity to “fight the good fight” in matters of child custody, dissolution, adoption, and a myriad of other injustices that occur on a daily basis to those entrenched in the judicial system.
My motivation to pursue a career in law was idealistic, but as I continue to grow and develop as an attorney, I realize that idealism reminds me that the desire to help people should never be lost in the daily obligations of the career I have chosen. I am here because my 14 year old self recognized this profession as one that could do extraordinary good and I hope that I never forget that and continue to object to and rebel against those wrongs.