Shelton returns home after traveling globe

The Memphis Daily News/The Memphis News

Jan. 1, 2014

Before settling in for a career in law, Jack Shelton, an associate withHarris Shelton Hanover Walsh PLLC, needed to quench his thirst for travel.

Having graduated from Colorado College with a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and a minor in French, Shelton had different plans altogether.

“I thought I might be a writer after that. I really didn’t know what I wanted to do,” he said. “Turns out I wasn’t very creative, so I didn’t end up going that route.”

The route he did take led him to Tokyo to teach English and live the life of an expat for a year and a half. Shelton said the experience teaching what was essentially a foreign language was “amazing.”

“It definitely gives you a lot of respect for how difficult our language is and a lot of the nuances in our language that you don’t really think of and subtle differences in meaning that you don’t ever really appreciate until you’re trying to explain them to somebody else,” he said.

Shelton took a vacation to Thailand during that time, having stumbled across it in a traveler’s guidebook, and “fell in love with it.” He moved into a gym there to learn the martial art of Muay Thai, a form of kickboxing.

Though his father is Harris Shelton member Max Shelton, there was no pressure from his family to follow in those footsteps. But when he returned to the United States, he took his love for writing and the natural ability there to the University of Tennessee College of Law.

“I tend to be more on the analytical side of the spectrum than on the creative side, so it was really a better fit,” Shelton said.

Along with an interest in writing, he’d packed a wealth of travel experiences, an interest in sailing from childhood and a love of languages – he speaks French and Spanish – to focus on maritime law.

“I always wanted to do something international,” Shelton said of the unique practice he picked up in the mountains of Tennessee.

But it wasn’t only the school that piqued his interest. While there, through a professor, he met the chief legal officer for BBC Chartering & Logistic, a German shipping company with one of the largest fleets of special heavy lift cargo vessels in the world. Shelton moved to New Orleans to attend Tulane University Law School for his Master of Laws (LL.M.) in admiralty . . . (read more)