After wading through the minutiae of corporate politics for many years, it only felt natural for Attorney Natalie K. Howard to take full control of the trajectory of her legal career and found her own law firm straight out of law school. For Attorney Howard the path hasn’t been easy, but it’s been worth it. Today, she remains the founding and managing attorney of her firm, where she offers unmatched legal representation throughout Metro Atlanta while custom tailoring every aspect of her clients’ experiences.
Share who you are to the readers.
I am the founding and managing attorney at The Law Office of Natalie K. Howard LLC in Duluth, Georgia, which is a boutique law firm focusing on the areas of business law, labor/employment law, and family law.
Tell us about our firm and what you do.
BUSINESS: From a business standpoint our firm operates as a “one-stop shop” handling all legal aspects of our clients’ business matters including but not limited to entity formation, licensure, real estate leases and purchases, contracts, vendor procurement, buy/sell agreements, copyright/trademarks, regulatory compliance, employment matters, and dispute resolution measures such as negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and litigation.
EMPLOYMENT: Under employment law our primary focus is employment discrimination cases and wage and hour disputes on behalf of employees. We also ensure our employer clients follow state and federal employment law guidelines.
FAMILY: Our family law division handles domestic matters such as divorce, custody, child support, legitimation, modifications, wills, and trusts.
What advice would you give to female college students about the opportunities for women in the legal profession?
If you want to be a happy lawyer, be driven by a passion for service. Lawyering is the ultimate service profession. Even when you own your own firm like I do you still have a “boss” – your clients. Your job is to only make moves that are in their best interest. Their best interest should be your ONLY interest!
What would you suggest to Legal firms that are interested in retaining and advancing more qualified female staff?
I feel black women are naturally strong advocates. If you really think about it, who else advocates for you in your life like a black woman? Whether it’s your wife, mom, grandma, or those highly-protective aunts, black women have been zealously looking out for the best interests of those around them since the beginning of time. It is only natural that we would excel to heights of sheer irreplaceability in an advocacy-driven profession such as law.
Why did you choose to work in – and stay in – the legal field?
My own personal childhood experiences motivated me to pursue law as a profession. As a child of divorced parents, I was drawn to service to help minimize the impact of divorce on children, as well as understand and teach the dynamics of successfully co-parenting and blending families to those who need it. I’ve also carried an entrepreneurial spirit from day one and wanted to assist people who
look like me in achieving and sustaining that American dream.
What book(s), blog(s), podcast(s) do you recommend?
The Purpose-Driven Life by Rick Warren, Becoming by Michelle Obama, and The Bible by the one true and living God!
What changes do you foresee in the legal profession of the near future (3-5 years)?
I believe father’s rights advocacy is on an upswing. As a result, we’ll see more fathers getting equal parenting time or even primary physical custody of their children as compared to the current historical data.
How do you see yourself participating in shaping the future of the legal profession?
I’ve recently had the pleasure of joining a dynamic, ground-breaking movement in the legal profession called The Collective Legal. We are a group of Black female attorneys and professionals dedicated to providing comprehensive services to the Black community in the way of legal advocacy, business support, financial services, mental health support, and crisis management. It is a novel and monumental movement that I’m confident will strengthen the global landscape of Black advocacy.
Describe one person who has been an important mentor to you and how that person helped shape the direction or focus of your professional life.
I’d have to say my husband and daughter are my “mentors”. On the tough days they remind me of why I became a lawyer and motivate me to hang in there, keep up the fight and stay on the journey to improve the representation of Black people in the legal profession.
Please share a personal rule or principle that you follow
Stay humble, and always keep learning.
How can the readers connect with you?
Contributing Writer – Dr. Cozette M. White, Advisory Accountant and Tax Expert. Learn more about Dr. Cozette M. White at www.cozettemwhite.com.
All images by Leah Rae Photography