My experience as the son of two parents with big health challenges is what led me to the work I do today. My mother has wrestled with Parkinson’s Disease for more than two decades. My father suffered a major stroke in May 2001. For many years, even as I tried to be a loving son to both of them, I began to notice just how little I knew about the larger systems that were playing increasingly big roles in their daily lives- things like the ins and outs of Medicare’s Part D prescription drug program. I was curious about how I could make their lives better by knowing more about these systems. (I sometimes wished I could back in time and plan for the big changes in their lives, but absent a time machine, that just wasn’t possible.)
Over time, as I learned more about how to meet their needs and as I grew into assuming more responsibilities (for my father in particular), I also learned that there were entire legal specialties devoted to serving people whose needs were quite similar to theirs. I soon found that I could pursue a career in the areas of elder law & the related area of special needs planning. I had a great opportunity to turn some of the biggest challenges in my family’s experience into a source of strength and direction.
While at Georgia State University College of Law, I gained invaluable experience interning at the two senior-oriented divisions of Atlanta Legal Aid Society. Atlanta Legal Aid’s Georgia Senior Legal Hotline trained me to provide quick advice on a broad range of legal issues facing aging Georgians, from consumer matters to landlord-tenant disputes to questions about public benefits. The Senior Citizens Law Project gave me the opportunity for more in-depth advocacy for a smaller number of clients, whose cases often involved probate issues, Medicare, and Social Security benefits. After graduation from GSU Law, I was chosen from dozens of applicants nationwide as one of three 2010-2011 Borchard Foundation on Law & Aging fellows. As a Borchard fellow, I had the privilege of continuing to work for Atlanta Legal Aid Society, this time as an attorney.
After completing my fellowship, I launched my own private practice. Today, I find great satisfaction in serving clients across Georgia who need help in the areas of elder law, estate planning, & special needs planning.