Born and raised in Ingham County, Sammie obtained her undergraduate degree at Western Michigan University (Go Broncos!) before leaving the Midwest to complete her legal education at Thomas Jefferson School of Law in sunny San Diego, California. While in law school, Sammie became a part of the Veteran’s Legal Assistance Clinic where she provided legal services to homeless veterans struggling with substance abuse issues. Following that experience, Sammie turned her sites to criminal defense and interned with the San Diego County Public Defender. She also served as a post-bar law clerk at the Riverside County Public Defender.
Following law school, Sammie worked as a court appointed abuse and neglect attorney representing and fighting for parents who had their children removed from their care by CPS. After gaining tremendous courtroom and client experience doing abuse and neglect work, Sammie accepted a Deputy Public Defender position in Riverside County where she handled a wide variety of cases. Sammie’s knowledge and passion for criminal defense can, at least in part, be attributed to the amazing mentors and co-workers she had while working in Riverside; many of whom are now judges or Head Public Defender in other counties.
While working with Riverside Public Defender, Sammie also coached Mock Trial at Chaparral High School in Murrieta, CA.
Although California is her home away from home (and very warm in the winter months), as a native Michigander, Sammie returned to her home state in 2019 to be closer to family. After a short stint in private practice doing everything from sexual assault litigation to family law and some criminal defense, Sammie is happy to once again represent and work with indigent clients as an Ingham County Assistant Public Defender.
You will find no bigger animal lover than Sammie. She is described as having dog ADD and loves her dogs Phil and Willow. She also enjoys traveling, camping, anything outdoors in the summertime, and she will watch just about any sport. She loves her Michigan sports teams but also is a nonconsensual Dallas Cowboys fan by marriage.