North Carolina Certified Family Law Legal Specialist, AAML Fellow
I limit my practice to issues involving marital relations and family law. I have been asked by many people why I practice in the area of family law and have often questioned this myself. The answer lies in the fact that when people come to me for assistance, they are often at a difficult crossroads in life, with choices to make that can dramatically alter their future. It is a time that I, as an attorney, can have a significant and positive impact on the life of that person and assist that client in moving forward toward a better future.
I am a Board Certified Specialist in Family Law by the North Carolina Board of Legal Specialization, having been certified in November 2003. I am also a qualified Mediator and assist other attorneys and their clients in coming to amicable resolutions of their issues without the necessity of court intervention.
In 2009, I was inducted to fellowship in the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. AAML Fellows across the United States are generally recognized by judges and attorneys as preeminent family law practitioners with a high level of knowledge, skill and integrity. There are less than 1,700 lawyers in the United States that have been granted this prestigious fellowship.
I attended Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, where I received my undergraduate degree in Political Science in 1992. I subsequently received a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1995, and was licensed to practice law by the State of North Carolina later that year.
I began my practice in 1995, and shortly thereafter became a sole practitioner until July 2000 when I merged my practice into the firm of Gum, Hillier & McCroskey. I work in Asheville, North Carolina, but also take cases in surrounding counties and judicial districts in order to provide full services to existing and potential clients.
In 2009, I was first voted by peer review to the North Carolina Rising Stars, Super Lawyer’s™ special category for young lawyers, and was voted to that list again in 2010. In 2012, I was nominated to Super Lawyers™ main list. Super Lawyers™ publicizes the top 5% of best lawyers in every state based on peer review. I’m also honored by the peer-review list Best Lawyers in America and have been on that list for several years. In 2015, Best Lawyers named me the Family Law Section Lawyer of the Year for the Asheville area. In early 2010, I received Martindale-Hubbell’s AV® Preeminent ™ rating, an honor granted through peer review of other AV® Preeminent ™ rated lawyers in North Carolina. In 2011, I was first listed in Business North Carolina Legal Elite.
It has always been important to me that I give back to the community. For the past several years, I have taught youth martial arts and jiu-jitsu to local children and have been an instructor in numerous women’s self-defense classes and rape awareness and prevention classes for community organizations.
I am an outdoorsman and an extreme sports enthusiast. An admitted adrenaline junkie, I chose Asheville as home because of the pristine beauty and abundant natural resource it offers. Whenever humanly possible, I load up and head off to the great untamed to rope in my share of the wild side.