I’ve always been driven by work that furthers social justice. For my entire career, both as a social worker and an attorney, I have worked to assist those who have the least. I am passionate about helping people affected by violence and have developed expertise by working in the domestic violence field for 18 years.
Witnessing how the court system left both victims and defendants behind and failed to support families in becoming places of safety, motivated me to attend law school. After law school, I worked at the Wake County District Attorney’s Office for four years. As an assistant district attorney, I specialized in prosecuting domestic violence cases both in district and superior court. I conducted many trials and built my skills in analyzing and presenting cases to judges and juries.
I left prosecution to continue to assist families by serving as a domestic violence attorney for Legal Aid of North Carolina in Durham, representing victims of domestic violence in civil matters who otherwise could not afford an attorney. I then worked at the state level for four and a half years as the Legal & Policy Director of the NC Coalition Against Domestic Violence. In that role I trained law enforcement, prosecutors, magistrates, clerks, crisis agency advocates, and other allied professionals all across the state. I also worked to improve NC’s laws by collaborating with legislators to pass new legislation to assist in strengthening families.
Throughout my career I have brought my social work perspective to my lawyering. I bring an intersectional framework to my work with clients and systems, meaning that problems facing families and communities cannot be addressed in isolation. For example, I understand that in order to help victims of domestic violence and their children find safety, that we must also help support offenders by increasing economic opportunities. In addition, I am an LGBTQ-affirming attorney and understand the additional complications that LGBTQ-identified folks face when interacting with the court system. When I work with clients I want to both help them through the current crisis and also to understand what caused the crisis in order to assist them in being successful after their case is resolved. I bring non-judgment and support as well as legal expertise and trial skills. I graduated in the top of my law class at UNC-Chapel Hill and use my education and knowledge to represent clients in a way that makes them feel heard and simultaneously expertly advocated for.
As an attorney at the Scharff Law Firm, I will be representing victims of domestic violence and stalking in both civil and criminal cases, and defendants accused of other types of crimes. I look forward to bringing my social justice perspective to the representation of all my clients, and look forward to advocating for people in Wake County and beyond!