Since 1984 I have been a biomedical researcher. I was drawn to a new field "Bioinformatics" - which uses computers to answer biological questions. My work in this field, especially in the area of the Human Genome Project, is known within the scientific communities. I have worked both in academic and private research organizations - including my work as a scientific founder of a Biotech company.
In 2005 I decided it was time for "Life 2.0" and spent the next four years earning a law degree by taking classes three nights a week for four years. I did this while continuing my full-time job as a researcher. In 2009 I was awarded my law degree, magna cum laude, and passed the North Carolina Bar a few months later.
I was driven to learning the law by two factors. First, by looking at the field of genetics, at present time, it was clear to me that there would be many areas where laws will be passed and legal precedents will be set. I am concerned with issues such as patient rights, patentability of genes, and genetic discrimination (just to name a few).
Second, my research did not put me in a position where I felt I could directly help specific individuals. It was my goal upon passing the NC Bar Exam to work with people in the community to provide legal solutions to challenges they may face.
Thus, my practice is split into two broad areas.
The first I call "Entrepreneurial & Biotech Law."
This is where I work with scientists, venture capitalists and bankers, universities, and other organizations to provide counsel on legal issues. This might include legal work regarding intellectual property, patents, protecting patient rights, etc.
The second broad area is "General Practice."
This is where I use my skills and knowledge to help people with legal problems. I take a traditional "country lawyer" approach to my practice. I am there for my clients and will even travel to their homes of businesses to help them. Though I call this area "General Practice," I do not practice in ALL legal areas; the areas in which I do practice can be seen here or at my website (www.ajclegal.com).