I was born in West Long Branch, New Jersey and lived in Manalapan, New Jersey with my parents and siblings until I was 16 years-old. One day, before my junior year of high school, my parents decided it was time to move to Siesta Key, Florida. My father, who worked in the NYC Garment Center and who was raised in Brooklyn, retired and became a Realtor at Coldwell Banker here in Sarasota.
My mother worked as a dental hygienist for many years in Staten Island, New York and continued to do so when we moved down here, in Venice, Florida. My parents and I continued on together while I completed my junior and senior year at Sarasota High School.
Upon graduation from high school, I attended the University of Florida in Gainesville. I thought I wanted to be a journalist and already knew law school was in the works too. I stayed at University of Florida from 1996-1999, when I had to transfer for personal reasons to University of South Florida, Sarasota.
I thrived at University of South Florida and graduated with a degree in Interdisciplinary Social Sciences. My concentrations were criminology and political science. My personal accomplishment at USF was a paper I wrote on the Latin Day Parade and collective behavior. I am fascinated by human behavior to this day.
Upon graduation from University of South Florida, I had some time off, so I took a real estate class and obtained my licence for the purpose of learning real estate. Shortly thereafter, with the help and mentorship of many, I was able to attend Stetson University College of Law.
At Stetson, I was a ‘summer entry’ and bombed my first two courses. I couldn’t seem to understand how to take a law school exam because I was used to prior testing patterns in undergraduate education.
Thankfully, under the mentorship of Dean Darby Dickerson, I did what I was told and turned failure into success. I became the director of the legal research and writing clinic, improved my grades, graduated well, won awards, made lots of friends and started a scholarship at the school.
After graduation, I passed the Bar on my first attempt despite all odds and under the guidance and support of a local attorney, I worked at my first law firm for 6 months in real estate law. Because of my knack for people, skills from babysitting, clerking, waitressing common sense and help from others, I quickly was recruited by another firm.
Shortly thereafter, I learned more at my next law firm, started a program for clerks, who are now shareholders there. I am very proud of the work I participated in with regard to the many people I was able to assist in the foreclosure crisis with the help of my peers.
Simultaneously, and then at the next firm, I spent four years on local television answering questions and answers from the public on legal matters and won another award for my work during the foreclosure crisis. I’ve appeared in many national, regional publications for my work which is cool and I’m glad I made an impact for the positive during such an awful time.
I am grateful for the opportunities to thrive in adversity. I love problem resolution, repair, reverse, transformation and am a student of many attorneys who are extremely talented in their areas of practice.
Additionally, I love, love, love business, innovation, ideas, issues, creativity, solutions and honestly, strategic planning. I like to set a goal, prepare and achieve, collaboratively.
My goal is to bring transparency, compliance, service, experience, lessons learned, authenticity, advocacy and grace to my clients. I believe in self-care and compassion.