Most great trial lawyers bare their clients' souls in their quest for Victory, but few bare their own in their personal struggle to be real.
Gary lays it all out in the dramatic story of his life - the good, the bad and the ugly. His pain throbs as he reaches the bottom, and his joy abounds as he learns to live with success and the love of his life. This journey, one that few of us have the courage to travel, much less admit, has made him a greater champion of the powerless and a better person. --Morris Dees, nationally known trial attorney and founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center
Getting a Winning Verdict In My Personal Life: a trial lawyer finds his soul begins with a heartrending jury trial loss in a high-stakes products case he had hoped would be his long awaited breakthrough. As he sits alone in his car, emptying a six-pack to fill the hollow in his heart, Gwilliam starts us on a retrospective journey of his life. It's quite a ride. …Throughout it all, there is a sense of a complex being who has opened his soul for our inspection, consequences be damned. It's somewhat disturbing and not a little puzzling. It's also interesting.
<BRGwilliam isn't afraid to write about things of which he's not proud, and it's a long list. There are two failed marriages and numerous family tragedies. We witness his professional losses, both in the courtroom and at the firm. We experience the pain and personal anguish of a bright mind chained in a dark place. If this is the story of a soul, then we come to understand something about the damned.
Of course, damnation cries out for redemption and in this regard the author does not let us down. … His own life healed, we see Gwilliam embarking on a life mission to minister to others suffering the pain of addiction. It's a moving turn of events. --Bill Daniels, The Advocate Magazine, September 2007
J. Gary Gwilliam's new book, Getting A Winning Verdict In My Personal Life: A Trial Lawyer Finds His Soul, is a riveting autobiography by a well-known, successful courtroom lawyer who talks openly about his losses, failed relationships, and his addiction to alcohol-- things lawyers never mention-- in a brutally honest way. Never has a well-known lawyer written a book that so openly bares his soul for the entire world to see.
Gary's life is one of extremes. He transforms himself from a gang member to prosecutor, morphs from a staunch conservative into a liberal Democrat, from alcoholic to being sober, from follower in his professional life to leader, and from wild party guy to devoted and loving husband. These are just a few of the personal transformations that are recorded by gifted storyteller Gary Gwilliam.
But Winning Verdict is more than just a sordid, legal tell-all book. Through the stories in his book, Gary tells us that where you start out in life is not necessarily where you will end up, a point clearly illustrated when Gary takes us on the spiritual journey he describes in his book. Lawyers, judges, and others connected to the legal profession who have read Gwilliam's book enthusiastically endorse it. Gary's story is a prime example of what can happen when people face the worst in themselves, and by doing that, learn how to bring forth the best. All of us need wisdom like that. --National Employment Law Association
About the Author
J. Gary Gwilliam has long been one of the nation's most successful and respected attorneys. For more than a dozen years, he has also been a powerful mentor for attorneys and others who deal with such challenges as alcoholism and overwork. In 2005 the ABA Journal featured him on its cover and in its story of how attorneys find that some of life's most important lessons come from defeat. As president of the California Trial Lawyers Association, he led the defeat of bogus tort reform propositions that would have severely limited consumer rights.
Gary vigorously advocates on behalf of employees and consumers who have been wronged by the actions of others. He also fully integrates his spiritual practices with his legal practice, so that trial preparation includes meditation as well as thorough legal strategizing. People who work with him enjoy a model of disciplined work balanced with compassion and a great sense of humor.
Gary's personal life centers on his soul mate, Lilly, their grandchildren, and a love of traveling. They have travelled the world together and live an active and full life.
Gary is a compelling speaker. He often speaks to people of all professions on topics including stress release, sobriety, spirituality, work-life balance and integrity at work.