I graduated from law school in 2003. I thought it would be helpful to give you an idea of who I am and how I got here.
I started my legal career working with a large law firm that represented big companies in commercial disputes. I was fortunate to see first-hand how cases were handled when these companies could not resolve their disputes outside of court. Several years later, I switched gears a bit and had the opportunity to join the leadership team of a start-up company and help them build the largest single-site aluminum plant in the world. We had the challenge of building the company and its culture from the ground up, and this is where I learned the value of safety.
Our company was in the business of manufacturing and selling aluminum for use in consumer products as well as commercial and residential construction. It was not until I was working in this company that I heard terms like personal protective equipment (PPE) and lost time incidents (LTI’s). I learned about standards provided by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and regulations set by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA). At one point, we were 26,000 people strong, building a plant in very tough weather conditions. We did everything in our power as a company to ensure the safety of our workplace as well as our products. Our core values revolved around safety – first, last, and always. We practiced what we preached. We did not sacrifice the health of our people or the quality of our products for bigger profits. We created a safety culture second to none and set benchmarks for others to follow.
Through this experience, I learned that not all companies put safety first. Not all companies follow the rules and regulations regarding the safety of our workplace or the products that we use. These companies are putting corporate profits over the safety of people, and that is not acceptable. I believe that the only way I can keep my own family safe and the only way our community can be safe, is if all companies follow certain rules and regulations. We have come to expect that companies and manufacturers make the right choices when it comes to safety. In the event that they do not, I believe we should use our legal system to make them change their ways.
The University of Texas School of Law, Austin, Texas Doctor of Jurisprudence, May 2003, Order of Barristers
University College London, London, England Study Abroad Program, Fall 2002
The University of Texas, Austin, Texas B.B.A. in Finance, August 1994, Cum Laude Graduate
State Bar of Texas, 2003
National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Master Advocate
American Association for Justice