Giselle Girones, an associate attorney at Shullman Fugate, is a member of the Jacksonville Bar Association Young Lawyers Section board of governors. She recently was selected as a 2018-20 fellow of The Florida Bar Business Law Section and is public relations director for the Jacksonville Women Lawyers Association.
Who or what inspired you to become a lawyer? I’ve always been interested in the law. Although I am the first lawyer in my family, I credit my success to the hard-working and ambitious qualities instilled in me by the role models in my life, specifically my mom, sister and grandmother.
One person (other than my partner) who inspires me:
I work with incredible people who inspire me every day to be the very best version of myself, but I think I would have to say U. S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
How do you relate your undergraduate degree to your practice of law?
My degree ties in nicely with my practice of media and intellectual property law. When communicating with clients it is extremely helpful to have a background in media and understand the industry terms. Having this background also helps with the intellectual property side of my practice, as understanding marketing and advertising principles allows me to provide additional insight to match client needs. Of course, my degree was also writing-focused and that has helped tremendously in my career.
How did you decide your practice area? And why have you chosen that?
I was always interested in the entertainment and media field and my experiences during my undergraduate career working with one of the largest music labels in the industry, as well as a college football team, really fueled that passion. Now, I have the opportunity to represent media organizations as well as businesses and individuals in both media and intellectual property matters with a focus on First Amendment issues. It’s gratifying to know that I am helping individuals, businesses and the media protect their rights and ideas.
What has been the biggest change in your practice area since you passed the Bar?
There seems to be a rise in libel suits with the current social and political climates. Our firm is defending more libel suits than it has in a long time with new demands for retraction coming in more frequently than ever before.
If I could change anything in the legal system, I would:
Facilitate the judicial process in order to expedite simple cases to avoid lengthy waiting periods and unnecessary fees, although that is easier said than done.
What community service have you pursued and why that?
My service in multiple leadership roles in the legal community locally, statewide and nationally allow me to dedicate my time to organizations that not only make our profession better, but also extend service to those outside the legal community. Through Bar service, I also have participated in Holidays in January and Rendezvous on the Rooftop. I really enjoy fundraising and partnering with organizations that make a difference in a child’s life, however small. I also mentor a few law students and have found that experience incredibly rewarding, as I recall having the same questions and am happy to serve as a resource to them and help ease their journey.
What’s your advice for new lawyers?
Take every opportunity as a learning opportunity. You are going to mess up, but do not dwell on your mistakes, Instead, embrace them and understand what went wrong so that you are continuously growing and learning as a practitioner.