[Lawyers] take the major things—the demons that plague people in their lives and make it so that they can’t sleep, so that they get no peace—and [they] break them down and help people conquer those demons.
As the first alumna of BYU Law to serve as president of the Utah State Bar, Heather Orme Farnsworth (‘02) is proud to represent the association of legal professionals in her home state. “Utah is often very innovative. We are on the forefront of a lot of programs,” she says. “We have leaders who are interested in taking risks when needed to improve things.” Farnsworth, who will be sworn in as acting president of the Bar in July of 2020, plans to focus on increasing access to justice, promoting work-life balance, and encouraging unity within the membership of the Bar.
Melinda Bowen, a 2010 graduate of the J. Reuben Clark Law school, says her “passion in the law is promoting inclusiveness.” So, when she helped form the Utah Center for Legal Inclusion, she began a project that has been “the culmination of everything that I’ve ever wanted to do.”
The BYU Law alumna was recently named to Housing Wire’s “Women of Influence” list, which recognizes women whose work is moving the mortgage and housing industry forward.
“I wasn’t always planning to pursue law,” said Judge Ryan Nelson, “I had actually started out as Pre-Med at BYU.” It wasn’t until after serving an LDS mission in Antwerp, Belgium, that Nelson realized that his true passion and skill set lay within the law.
When a cow escaped from a small farm in Richfield, Utah it was hit and killed by a dairy truck. The dairy threatened to sue the farmer, who had very little money, for the damages caused to the truck. The farmer’s lawyer and personal friend, Michael Bailey, told the dairy, “Not only are we not going to pay for the truck, but if you bring this up ever again, we’re going to make you pay for the cow – and by the way, the cow was pregnant.”
“If you endanger the children of American Samoa, you endanger the welfare of American Samoa”—that was the closing argument she hoped would resonate with the jury. . .
“We tried mentoring programs in the past that had done some good, but they never really developed into sustainable programs, and we wanted to try a different approach that would help build longer-lasting relationships,” says Gayla Sorenson, the law school’s assistant dean of external relations. “Just because you are a law student and someone else is a lawyer, that doesn’t mean you will click.”
Burton is currently serving as the Utah State Bar President and has a powerful aphorism and motivational message – “invite others to serve.”
Often, when alumni are asked to “give back,” thoughts simply turn to money. That’s a little myopic.
“SoloSuit provides a simple platform for debtors to respond to a lawsuit in as little as 10 minutes.”
Tim Overton (Class of ‘07) equates serving others with empowering them as he draws on his unique life experiences, personal values, and the ideals instilled at BYU Law.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is encouraging people to emulate the ministry of Jesus Christ by finding ways to share their time, love, and resources with those in need. . .