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Legal Jobs

I became a lawyer the way I suspect a lot of people become lawyers, I followed the path of least resistance. When I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life, it turned out that I had put myself in a position where I could go to one of the top law schools in the country. Then I spent nearly eight years practicing in the state and federal courts. Eventually, I decided I was working too hard at something I didn't love, so I started over.

US Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
Contract Staff Attorney
June - September 1997

After I had been admitted to graduate school at Georgia Tech, I needed to wind down my solo practice while still making money. Fortunately, the Ninth Circuit needed someone to help address a backlog of pending habeas corpus cases. In addition to making recommendations on disposition of the habeas cases, I also provided recommendations to the appellate judges on emergency matters involving criminal and immigration appeals.

Solo Legal Practitioner
September 1995 - June 1997

As a sole practitioner, I specialized in the area of criminal appellate practice. My cases primarly came by appointment from the California Courts of Appeal for the First and Sixth Appellate districts. In addition, I represented clients in the United States Courts of Appeals for the Fifth and Ninth Circuits and performed work on a contract basis for other criminal defense attorneys.

US Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
Criminal Motions Attorney
December 1994 - September 1995
Supervising Criminal Research Attorney
September 1992 - December 1994
Senior Attorney
January 1991 - August 1992
Staff Attorney
May 1990 - January 1991

Between 1990 and 1995, I worked as a staff attorney for the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. During this time, I held a number of progressively more responsible positions, beginning as a staff attorney and ending as a motions attorney with a stint as a supervisor in between. For most of the time I was with the Court, I worked primarily on federal criminal law issues, although at various times I addressed issues of significance in civil law areas as well.

My duties for the Court consisted primarily of assisting the appellate judges to make decisions with regard to cases on appeal to the Court or motions filed in the Court. In this capacity, it was my responsibility to read and evaluate the arguments presented by parties on appeal and then present my recommendations both orally and in writing to the appellate panel assigned to decide the case.

Office of the Public Defender,
Contra Costa County
Deputy Public Defender
January - May 1990

During my short time with the Public Defender's Office, I practiced in the areas of juvenile criminal law, family law and misdemeanor criminal defense of adults. I covered a general criminal calendar on a daily basis, wrote and argued motions on a variety of subjects, prepared and participated with little or no supervision in hearings and/or trials in Municipal, Juvenile, and Child Protective Services courts, and negotiated plea bargains.