Like many large law firms, Beasley Allen enjoys providing a number of law students with the opportunity, as law clerks, to gain first-hand exposure to the everyday practice of law. We had an exceptional group this summer. Working at Beasley Allen allows the law clerks to learn more about the legal profession, make professional contacts in their chosen field and gain valuable skills to transition from the classroom to the courtroom. While many firms have been forced to reduce or suspend their summer law clerk programs, we are blessed that Beasley Allen was able to maintain its summer law clerk program even during this time of uncertainty.
Stephanie Monplaisir, a lawyer in the firm’s Personal Injury & Products Liability Section, oversees and organizes the firm’s internship program to provide interns with a balance of exposure to practicing law combined with numerous networking opportunities that allow interns the chance to establish and build relationships with some of the firm’s seasoned attorneys. Each clerk is assigned a Beasley Allen lawyer as a mentor. This mentor is available to answer questions about projects, practice, or law school. The clerks also attend court hearings, trials, depositions, client interviews, and Alabama Supreme Court oral arguments. Stephanie says:
Mentoring young lawyers is a unique privilege that I am very proud to handle at our firm. We feel it is important for young lawyers to get as much exposure to the courtroom as possible. We value the work and insight these clerks provide on every project and we look forward to seeing what they accomplish in the future.
This summer’s program looked different due to the limitations our firm – along with so many others – are operating under during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the law clerks have had numerous opportunities through Zoom and other teleconferencing technology to meet with the firm’s leadership as well as with several judges. They were also able to meet virtually and in-person when possible with mentors and to handle assigned casework.
The following law clerks have worked either the entire summer or a portion of it and we are glad they were able to join and assist us.
Tomi Adediji is a rising 2L at Cumberland School of Law and is working in the firm’s Toxic Torts Section this summer. When asked why he wants to be a lawyer, he said, “Having the abilities to help people and solve problems are extremely important to me. I want to be able to make a positive impact on those who need help. The idea of being the best advocate I can be for a client is important because our community thrives on working together and making meaningful change. I want to be the kind of attorney that can provide reassurance and impact for those who otherwise would not have a solution to their problems.”
Shelby Andrews is working in the firm’s Personal Injury & Products Liability Section this summer – the same section has her father and veteran Beasley Allen lawyer, Mike Andrews. Shelby is a rising 2L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. She said, “I have always been taught that if I am able to help, then it is my responsibility to do so. Becoming an attorney affords me the opportunity to stand up for those who may not be able to stand up for themselves and make a difference in the lives of others.”
Melissa Cairatti is a rising 2L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Consumer Fraud Section this summer. Melissa said, “I want to be a lawyer because I want to help those in need who might not otherwise have the resources or education to help themselves. There are so many people who are being taken advantage of and/or have no one to fight for them, and I’d like to be their advocate.”
Caleb Carr is a rising 2L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. Caleb is working as a law clerk this summer in the firm’s Consumer Fraud Section. He said, “I want to become a lawyer to help people. Being a lawyer gives me a unique opportunity to help people in my community. Most people who come to a lawyer are facing a difficult situation and need someone to help them through it. I cannot think of a better way to help people than by being in their corner during a tumultuous and difficult situation.”
Taylor Cressler is a rising 2L at the University of Georgia School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Atlanta office in the Personal Injury & Product Liability Section this summer. Taylor said, “I want to be a lawyer in order to provide greater access to legal assistance. After graduating with an undergraduate degree, I moved to New York City to pursue an acting career. Prior to my experience there, I had a vague notion that a person could generally avoid the law and all its complexities by never ‘breaking the law.’ However, in the five years between college and law school, I started my own business, had to navigate taxes, health care, and public services while starting a family, and was one of many people taken advantage of by my former landlord. Those experiences taught me not only that navigating the complexities of the law is useful and can sometimes be essential for doing things I once considered outside ‘The Law,’ but also that in many situations, an experienced and sophisticated party with expensive lawyers is pitted against someone who may not even know a lawyer. I want to be the lawyer that person gets to know.”
Rylee Davis is a rising 3L at Cumberland School of Law and is working in our Mass Torts Section this summer. Rylee said, “When I started law school, I knew I wanted to help people and fight for them. I learned quickly that becoming a plaintiff’s attorney would allow me to do just that. Oftentimes, clients come to a plaintiff’s attorney after they have experienced a life-changing event – whether it be physically or financially. I want to be the person who represents the people that have been wronged or hurt when they need it most. I want to advocate for their rights. Additionally, I hope to one day contribute to policy change that protects the people of Alabama and the United States.”
Joley is a rising 3L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law and also returned to the firm this summer. Joley has been working in our Consumer Fraud & Commercial Litigation Section. She said, “I want to be an attorney because I want to provide legal assistance to those who need help. Although the legal field is challenging, you are surrounded by intelligent, strong-willed individuals who inspire you to grow as an attorney and a person. As an attorney, you never stop learning new things. The profession keeps you on your toes, and if you work hard, it is rewarding. Attorneys make a difference in people’s lives, and through their service, they can help provide justice for those who deserve it.”
Clay Hughes is a rising 2L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Consumer Fraud Section this summer. Clay said, “Becoming a lawyer has been my goal since a young age.” He explained that by being a lawyer, “every day we have an opportunity to impact people’s lives for the better.” Clay said, “It is always my goal when dealing with clients, to do everything I possibly can to put them in a better position than when they originally came to the firm.”
Dylan Martin is a rising 3L at Cumberland School of Law and also returned to the firm this summer. He has been working in our Consumer Fraud Section. When asked why he wants to be a lawyer, Dylan said, “I want to be a plaintiff’s lawyer because it provides me the opportunity to serve others in a unique and essential way. I want to be a voice for my clients, who may have otherwise gone unheard. Without plaintiff’s lawyers, like those at Beasley Allen, many injustices would go unchecked every single day.”
Charles McKay is working in our Personal Injury & Products Liability Section this summer and is a rising 2L at the University of Alabama School of Law. When asked why he wants to practice law, Charles said, “Lawyers are uniquely positioned to positively impact every aspect of society. From criminal cases to civil suits, lawyers have the responsibility of ensuring that the justice system actually produces justice. I want to advocate for those who have been wronged, and being a lawyer will best allow me to do that.”
Alex Messmore is a rising 3L at Cumberland School of Law and returns to the firm this summer. She has been working in our Mass Torts Section. Alex said, “Becoming a lawyer gives me the opportunity to be in someone’s corner, even when they might think they are all alone. We all need someone on our side, and the legal profession allows me to fight for those who need fighting for.”
Slade Methvin is a rising 3L at Cumberland School of Law. He joins his father, Tom Methvin, at the firm this summer and has been working in the Mass Torts Section. Slade said, “I want to be a lawyer because I have always felt led to help others, and I cannot think of a better way to help others in their time of need than this profession. Being able to put someone’s mind at ease during a time of hardship is something that really drives me to become the best lawyer I can be.”
Joe Mitchell is a rising 3L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. Joe returned to the firm and has been working in the Consumer Fraud Section this summer. He said, “My parents taught us to help others when they cannot help themselves, my law school professors have taught me the law, and the lawyers at Beasley Allen are teaching me how to practice law. Because I realize that I have been fortunate in all three respects, and because I believe God expects each of us to fully use what we have been given, I know that becoming an effective advocate for others is what I am supposed to do with my life. Being an attorney is the way I can best do that. Though many people enjoy helping others, some of us are fortunate enough to find a profession that will allow us to do that every day.”
Sydnee Pasquarello is a law clerk in the firm’s Toxic Torts Section this summer. Sydnee is a rising 3L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. She is working to become an attorney because, she said, “There are a lot of people in our country who suffer from injustices and inequalities every day and being a lawyer will allow me to be a voice for those people.”
Gerald Ruddick is a rising 2L at The University of Alabama School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Consumer Fraud & Commercial Litigation Section this summer. Gerald said, “I want to become a lawyer because this country needs great lawyers; the average citizen is not equipped with the skills and/or knowledge to navigate the increasingly technical and complicated legal system to no fault of their own. Lawyers serve as a crucial accountability system against large corporations and the government who otherwise would use the law as a device to insulate themselves from unethical or illegal behavior. I would like to become an asset to that accountability system and help the lives and welfare of those who seek my service in doing so.”
Alex Sallas is a rising 3L at Faulkner University Thomas Goode Jones School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Consumer Fraud section this summer. Alex said, “I want to be a lawyer because I am passionate about helping those who cannot help themselves. There are many people who depend on others to be their voice and their advocate. A career in the legal field will give me an opportunity to speak for those whose voices are ignored and advocate on behalf of those who cannot advocate for themselves.”
Willie Scott, Jr.
Willie Scott, Jr., is a rising 2L at Cumberland School of Law and is working in our Mass Torts Section this summer. He recaps a story about his senior year of high school at Huffman High Magnet School in Birmingham, Alabama, when he knew he wanted to be a lawyer. “I was given an opportunity to compete on the Mock Congressional Hearing Team. It was there that I met a man that would change my life. He was an attorney, chosen to coach the team. He told us of how he had recently argued a case in a country in Africa against a private Chinese diamond mining company. The mining company had stolen the land from the inhabitants and was extracting diamonds. He successfully argued the case and won back the land rights of the diamond mines for the native inhabitants. He changed the lives of those people and gave them the opportunity to profit from their land. Hearing that story sealed the deal for me. I then knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be an advocate to protect those persons who cannot protect themselves. I knew I wanted to be a lawyer.”
Campbell Walker is a rising 3L at Emory University School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Atlanta office this summer in the Personal Injury & Product Liability Section. Campbell said, “I considered law as a profession since high school because I thought my natural interests and abilities would lend themselves well to the law. After graduating from undergrad, I worked at another plaintiff’s law firm in my hometown of Mobile, Alabama, and had such a good experience with my coworkers and the projects that I felt it was the right choice for me. After seeing how the folks at that firm were able to help people so greatly, I was drawn to doing similar work in civil justice.”
Elizabeth Weyerman is a rising 2L at Cumberland School of Law and has been working in the firm’s Toxic Torts Section. Elizabeth was inspired to go to law school through a desire to help people during the most challenging situations in their life, to give a voice to the voiceless, and to help the general public through hopefully helping solve policy issues. She believes being an attorney will allow her to follow the commandment of Proverbs 31:8 that states, ‘Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.’”