Meet Atlanta Attorney, Heather C. Wright. Her Law Firm can Handle Cases Through any Legal Means Necessary Including Litigation, Negotiation, or Mediation & She will use Her Years of Experience to Achieve the Best Possible Outcome.
Q: After high school, where did you feel your career path would take you?
HW: Honestly, at the time of completing high school, I was focused on getting to law school and having a career in law. Specifically, I wanted to have a well-rounded education for my undergraduate degree, so I studied finance at the University of Georgia, and then went straight to law school at Mercer University.
I knew that I wanted to practice law but did not know exactly what the “practice” would look like. I thought that my career path after law school would entail working for a prestigious firm in Macon, Georgia, for the duration of my career, but those plans changed several times before I found my path as a business owner with my own law firm. I never could have predicted how my career path would form when I was in high school. It has truly been a fun journey.
Q: What was your first job? And how did it shape or impact you?
HW: My first job was bagging groceries at our neighborhood grocer. That job impacted me in so many ways. I learned how to work hard and quickly to service our customers. I learned that you show up for work, rain, or shine, without fail. And, I got a chance to work with people of all walks of life, because a grocery store has a very diverse clientele. I also found out what FICA can do to an hourly paycheck. And, I learned that my paycheck didn’t go as far as I needed it to go. It was eye-opening and I am so glad that I worked at such a young age.
Q: Why did you decide to attend law school?
HW: I was also interested in government and justice. I have always been an advocate for causes, so law school appealed to me at an early age. Although I have a degree in finance, my talents are stronger in advocacy, argument, and story-telling, so law school was a natural fit.
Q: If we interviewed all your past clients … what is “one” common word that comes up when they describe working with your law firm?
HW: Commitment. Our team is committed to being available, approachable, honest, and tough, as befits the Client’s particular needs. Because we have a general civil practice, handling different areas of law, we remain flexible for the changing conditions of a Client’s needs. We take a team approach, letting each person’s talents best assist our Clients. We know when to be tough and we to relent with our opposition. And, we are always committed to giving the Client’s the best advice for their circumstances, even if it means walking away from a bad situation. We are committed to being there for our Clients and solving their problems through honesty, fidelity, and caring.
Q: Can you share with our audience, the types of law your firm specializes in?
HW: We handle a variety of civil litigation, corporate matters, real estate disputes, and family law. We are truly a general civil practice, serving a variety of client needs. And, we have great contacts with trusted professionals who specialize in the areas of law that we do not handle. We make every effort to ensure that anyone who contacts our office gets the help they need, whether it is our Firm or another expert. The lawyers in our Firm have more than 40 years of combined experience and have tried cases in every local and federal court. Consequently, we have ample experience to make sure that any client or potential client gets an answer or the assistance that they need.
We have handled everything from simple contracts, mass tort litigation, land boundary disputes, construction litigation, divorces, and custody matters to exhuming bodies, repossessing storm-trooper costumes, and more. Because our practice is comprised of experienced attorneys with the flexibility and skill to handle diverse conflicts, we get referrals from attorneys in more traditional, specialized practices.
In other words, we get the case referrals that other attorneys do not know how to or are not specialized to handle. We find these cases to be an interesting challenge that really lets us be creative in seeking solutions for Clients.
Q: What advice would you give to young women who want to pursue a career as an Attorney?
HW: Be prepared for an uphill battle. Women have made huge inroads in the practice of law, especially on the bench. There are tons of women judges these days and that is both a good and a bad sign for the practice. Being a judge is a huge responsibility and a terribly hard job and women bring a great perspective to the bench. But, being a judge also provides a ton of financial stability and more predictable hours, unlike private practice. Likewise, there are lots of women attorneys in private practice, but the practice of law has remained somewhat static in how large private firms operate.
While it is better than when I first graduated 20 years ago, it is still a business reality that most partners at Firms are men, and most firms do not have a good way to deal with female attorneys building a practice while also having a family. Those realities are a harsh truth of the practice. Since the billable hour requires an attorney to work those hours, it is hard for women to climb the ladder at big firms, if they chose to have a family. And, it is hard to have a family during the years when you are trying to learn how to practice law and build a client base. For this reason, a lot of women leave private practice for government practice, the bench, start their own firms, or leave the practice altogether. You have to think about these things before law school, because once you have the student loan debt from law school, your options are limited by your finances as well. It is a lot to balance and that is even before you actually learn what it is to be an attorney, which brings its own set of challenges. Like marriage, I suggest that anyone thinking of a career in law, research the practice, the finances, and go into it with a sober mind and much contemplation.
Q: Which woman inspires you and why?
HW: Ruth Bader Ginsberg is a huge inspiration of mine, because of her complete commitment to her craft. Personally, I do not agree with a lot of her political or judicial stances, but you have to respect her work ethic, her strength, her grace, and her determination. The kind of commitment and character it takes to put yourself through law school at a time when women were not welcome there, while raising an infant, and helping your husband complete law school while he is being treated for cancer. Wow. That is a type of character that I hope to demonstrate to others in my life. I admire her a great deal.
Q: If you turn back time, what would you’ve done differently in your career?
HW: Nothing. Every experience that I have had has made me the person that I am today. I absolutely love my practice, even on the awful days. I love that I have the ability to help others solve problems, build businesses, and help their families. And, I hate math, so that finance degree was never going to be my true calling.
Q: What are some of the challenges you feel women face today?
HW: We still live in a male dominated world that pays little attention to the perspective of women, so it is always going to be different for women in the workforce and society at large. I still get treated poorly by men in my profession simply because I am a woman. It is frustrating and I do not see things changing quickly for women, especially in the workforce. There are always going to be “those guys,” and rather than fight it, I just seek to learn from it and use those attitudes against them. Actually, I prefer it when men underestimate our team. It just makes winning that much sweeter. So, yes, while I see challenges for women, I chose to pick my battles, so that our Clients and our team can succeed.
Q: Do you have a hidden talent?
HW: I sing. It isn’t so “hidden,” since I am a member of my church’s choir. I love to sing. I have even been known to sing absentmindedly in the office, especially when I am drafting a really good legal brief.
Five Things About Attorney Heather C. Wright
1. If you could talk to one famous person past or present, who would it be and why?
Mother Teresa. Nuff said, right?!?! All joking aside, I truly would love to speak to her about her work, her faith, the church, and her early experiences with God as she was inspired to find the Sisters of Mercy. I took a class at Mercer’s McAfee School of Theology a couple of years ago on Moral Leadership and she was one of many moral leaders that we studied. I just fell in love with her. She was full of grace and mercy for others while also being an incredibly effective leader. And, the stories of her handling of the sick and needy are awe-inspiring. She is a true saint.
2. Favorite band & song?
The Beatles. I even have two cats named “Eleanor” and “Rigby.”
Song: “One” by U2. Also, my second favorite band. I personally consider the Beatles in a class of their own, like Beethoven.
3. What was your favorite candy as a kid?
Sweet Tarts. I love movies and used to eat those by the tubes when we would go to the movies when I was a kid.
4. What app can’t you live without?
Amazon. I am a busy person, love books, hate shopping, and love getting presents. So, I cannot live without 24-hour free shipping. It is like Christmas and my birthday nearly every day at the office and the house. It saves me so much time and energy, so I can get the things we need while enjoying a hot bath and a glass of wine. Who needs video games, social media, and other apps, when you can order paper towels and food from your bathtub? This is why my Husband now calls me the “Procurement Department.” I even ordered a lime tree recently. How great is that?
5. What inspires you?
The stories of the people that I come into contact with every day. In the practice, I get to meet such a wide variety of people, who do amazing things or have amazing problems. It inspires me to learn about others, which is why our Firm has remained a general civil practice, because our entire team loves learning and helping others. I find that inspiring.