Integrity, intellect, industry, initiative and impact. These are the “5 I's of Professionalism” which Jacob Willard dutifully studied and chiseled into his character as a proud police officer - sworn to protect and serve the citizens of Tacoma. When he was younger, this was his greatest achievement and so he lived it with Honor and Valor.
He spent over a decade on the Tacoma Police Department, immersed in the culture and spirit, always willing to put his life on the line for Justice (or take part in fun community programs). He inherently felt compelled to do his part in actively 'righting the wrongs' in our society and setting a great example for the youth. Like most police officers, his predisposition to helping others, resolving conflict, and ensuring peace determined his career path in civil service and law enforcement.
However, as Jake and his family evolved, so did his purpose. Although he belonged to the most trusted fraternal family in the U.S., he felt compelled to use the communication skills and legal knowledge that he learned as a police officer for a higher cause and in a more economically impactful venue. Most importantly, for his family, he needed to minimize the exposure to life-threatening circumstances that every law enforcement personnel is subject to.
Becoming an attorney seemed like the most logical next step for evolving police officers. Working alongside the Courts, Jake naturally took to the intricacies of law, how words dictated order and, through Contracts, facilitated all commerce and business. It fascinated him enough to make Contract Law his main focus at the University of Washington School of Law, which he excelled.
Whereas some attorneys skipped out on important life experiences and epiphanies on their direct path to getting the qualified to practice law, Jake took the path of Honor and Valor. Rather than just learning from books the art of negotiation, effectively communicating with all personalities and constructive problem-solving in sometimes dire circumstances, he practiced and fine-tuned his skills in the front line through 11 years of public service.
Ethics and negotiation, for some lawyers, is just another course to pass to get a law degree. Their undeveloped resolve, neither exercised nor tested, in both life and career, often is unable to resist the temptations offered by the corrupt and deceitful. Good intentions alone are useless when pressured and cornered.
For Jake, his ethical standards were put to the test every day. And even now, to remain steadfast in his values and morals is still of upmost importance to him. So much so that even after becoming a lawyer and offered a comfortable starting salary with Vick, Julius, McClure, P.S. representing the police union, he opted to instead to join our team and assist in our mission.
The days of putting himself in the middle of potentially dangerous people to diffuse high conflict situations have long past. However, he still uses those crucial communication and mediation skills now, everyday, in business negotiations and breach of contract matters.
To Jake, his abilities were best invested into the community, its' citizens and their livelihood - our clients - building your businesses and solving your problems. The law is his greatest resource and he is sure to put it on your side.