Lewis flies unique path to legal career

Law Talk profile for The Memphis Daily News

Oct. 10, 2013

When Russell Lewis IV entered the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law, he had no plans to become a practicing attorney.

Though fascinated with law, he instead wanted the critical-thinking education that such study provides.

“I had an idea that I would be able to use that in a corporate setting to be a better manager or executive,” he said.

The Crossville, Tenn., native had graduated from Tennessee Technical University with a Bachelor of Science in finance and stayed on for an Master of Business Administration. While in law school, though, he participated in mock trial and moot court, experiences that changed his career path.

“I really found that it was very satisfying,” he said.

After graduating from law school in 2005, Lewis went out on his own, “doing basically anything I could do,” he said. In contrast to his friends and colleagues who were working for large firms, concentrating on one area day in and day out, Lewis found himself having to figure out the different areas of law and how to handle a case from beginning to end.

“It was definitely challenging at the time, but I feel like it served me well because I had no choice but to make it all the way through the process,” he said. “I was in the trenches, learning as I went.”

Two years later, Lewis became connected with the Johnson Law Group, a Houston-based firm that practices in general civil litigation, focusing especially on wrongful death, personal injury, mass tort and nursing home negligence.

He currently has his own practice yet remains of counsel with the Johnson Law Group, an arrangement he says “provides me with access to resources that a traditional solo practitioner would not have. This provides me with the ability to work on a greater number of cases and cases of greater complexity.”

Lewis grew up with a veterinarian father who owned his own business and a social-worker mother who instilled in him a sense of justice he carries into cases defending his elderly clients and their families . . . (read more)