Attorney at Law Magazine Jacksonville Publisher Tom Brady sat down with Lindsay Tygart to discuss her career and mentors that encouraged her.
AALM: When did you first know you wanted to become an attorney? What is your main focus?
Tygart: I think deep down I knew I wanted to be an attorney from a very young age. I come from a family of attorneys. My dad, my two brothers and two of my uncles were circuit court judges here in Jacksonville. I majored in dramatic art and art history in college because I knew I could major in anything and still go to law school. Being a lawyer lets me do what I love – help people, use critical thinking and analysis, and talk.
Today, my practice centers around representing injured people and their families, specifically in medical malpractice and nursing home neglect cases. I love what I do and I feel very fortunate that people who are in a tough predicament place their trust in me to help them. After all, I became a lawyer to help people and ensure that individual rights are protected.
AALM: Do you have any mentors or professors that encourage you?
Tygart: Oh absolutely! You cannot have a successful legal career without having someone to talk with and bounce ideas off. It is essential. Whether it is a case related question or an ethical dilemma, it is so important to have someone you respect and trust to assist with those issues. I have been incredibly fortunate to have some amazing mentors. First and foremost, my dad, Tom Tygart, who instilled in me the love of the law and the passion of helping people. Tom Edwards, who has the most brilliant legal mind. He is an expert at thinking outside the box on issues, framing cases for the jury, and analyzing the law. Eric Ragatz, who has the most incredible work ethic and who somehow manages to be a great husband, dad, boss, and friend, all while running a law firm and handling a full caseload.
AALM: What do you find particularly rewarding about being an attorney?
Tygart: I became an attorney to help people and fortunately, for me, I am able to do this on a daily basis in my practice. However, being an attorney has afforded me so many additional opportunities that I never knew even existed. I was lucky to get involved with the Jacksonville Bar Association when I first started practicing. Through my service with the association and, specifically, the young lawyers section, I have met the most innovative and compassionate people while working with so many programs that benefit local citizens. For the past nine months, I have had the privilege of serving as the president of the young lawyers section. This past year, we put on some truly remarkable charity events, raising thousands of dollars for good causes.
Throughout high school and college, I did a lot of volunteer work and I knew I always planned to continue my public service, but never knew that being a lawyer would provide me such rewarding opportunities, which are truly good for the soul.
AALM: What do you enjoy doing outside of work? Hobbies? Sports?
Tygart: I love spending time with my family. My husband and I had our first baby girl, Salem Grace, in March 2015 and she is the light of our lives. She is a little over a year old now and just being able to watch her grow up and discover new things is the most amazing gift. Most of our free time is spent with her and our two black lab rescues, Mia and Molly. But my husband, Fraz, and I also love to travel and spend time with our friends. We also love college basketball. March Madness is our favorite time of the year!