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Thursday, Feb 22, 2024

From JAG Corps to Employment Counsel


   Jennifer Maguire began her legal career as an attorney in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps of the U.S. Navy. She served six years on active duty and still serves in the Navy Reserves in the JAG Corps. She later worked as a federal prosecutor for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago, working on cases involving money laundering, narcotics distribution and wire fraud.

   What’s your favorite part of being an attorney?

The strategy and the prep. I love trials. I gunned for a lot of trials as a younger attorney. I wanted to get as many under my belt as possible. But the most fun part is preparing for trial. Thinking about strategy with your colleagues or partner and how to approach motions, depositions and that sort of thing. I love pre-trial prep.

   What qualities in your personality make you a good lawyer?

I really like research as part of the trial prep or case strategy. I like learning about current law and it’s always changing, especially in California. I was an opera singer, I had a lot of performance background so I do think as it gets to the trial stage, that really helped me. Obviously, they’re different – one’s an audience, one’s a jury, but just in terms of connecting with people and trying to find the commonality that may appear to be complicated but can be broken down into categories that’s understandable.

   What is a memorable experience in your law career?

We did have a murder trial when I was a Navy JAG my first year. I just became a prosecutor. I worked on a case with other JAGs from Jacksonville, Florida. I was stationed in Pensacola. That was fascinating and high stakes for the Navy. It did depend on a motion to suppress the accused’s confession. If defense had won this motion, we would have lost our key piece of evidence. I worked on researching the case law for our response to this motion. It was fascinating and thrilling and I spent a lot of time on it. We ultimately won so the confession was not suppressed, and he was ultimately convicted of murder. That was probably my most impressionable experience as a young attorney thrown onto this case. 

   How did you join Roxborough Pomerance?

I’ve been practicing law since 2012. Most of my background was in criminal law. I was a prosecutor for the Navy JAG Corps and for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Chicago. Mostly I’ve done felony cases in the U.S. Attorney’s office and in the Navy, court marshals. I went into private practice last year working in employment law and I joined RPNA a month ago.

   What’s the one thing you wish your clients would do more often?

I love communication. I’m always open to clients reaching out to me.

   What are your out-of-office activities? 

My husband and I have a music studio in our house. He produces music and I sing when I can. That’s sort of our fun time.

Michael Aushenker
Michael Aushenker
A graduate of Cornell University, Michael covers commercial real estate for the San Fernando Valley Business Journal. Prior to the Business Journal, Michael covered the community and entertainment beats as a staff writer for various newspapers, including the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, The Palisadian-Post, The Argonaut and Acorn Newspapers. He has also freelanced for the Santa Barbara Independent, VC Reporter, Malibu Times and Los Feliz Ledger.

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