When I began working in family law, I realized just how unusual my experiences growing up in two households had been. My parents divorced when I was in elementary school, an event that, in hindsight, was handled remarkably well. At multiple points in my career in family law, I have thought back to their break up and how their level-headed attitudes and actions kept me out of the middle of their divorce. They allowed me to go through it without pushing their own fears, anxieties, or agendas on me.
As Z Family Law, LLC’s Legal Assistant, I pay my parents’ sanity forward to our clients through their most challenging times. I formally joined Z Family Law’s staff in January 2019, after working with Christy at Avery and Upton for three years. I share in the vision of Z Family Law’s goal to provide client-oriented, compassionate legal representation. I play a role bringing this vision to life by serving as the backbone of Z Family Law’s day-to-day operations, managing the minutia of scheduling and court filings and discovery and all the zillions of other little details in between that are essential to the successful completion of any family law matter.
Z Family Law founder Christy Zlatkus is one of my closest friends and one of the most inspirational leaders I have ever met. Our camaraderie and deep friendship set the tone for our firm’s warm, supportive culture. Most of our clients will spend at least a few hours in my office poring through their financial details and recounting details of the circumstances that led them to our firm. In these challenging moments, I use humor, steadfast emotional support, and a bit of dry wit to diffuse the tension so many of our clients face in the midst of family law proceedings.
Both Christy and my husband Chris will admit that my attention to detail belies a laid back silliness that helps put our clients at ease. While I have a reserved demeanor— indeed, I’m happiest when knitting or spending time with Chris and our dog Lulu— many of our clients come to know my proclivity for launching a few sarcastic comments to keep things light. I’m not above bringing in a disco ball and throwing a five-minute dance party to help alleviate pre-trial tension. After all, Legal Assistance comes in many forms, be it disco balls or discovery.
I am an extremely empathetic person and find our work deeply rewarding. Prior to my career in family law, I was a veterinarian technician for nearly a decade, after obtaining a Bachelors of Science in Zoology from the University of Maryland. I like to think that my calming presence with animals translates to a professional approach that emotionally grounds our clients.
It is an honor to work to improve the lives of others, people and animals alike. I love being part of Z Family Law because I have the opportunity to tangibly support our clients through some of the most painful, challenging situations they will ever encounter. I love offering support, both administrative and emotional, to help our clients through their family law proceedings.