Who are you?
I am Fred James. I am a lifelong Iowan, born and raised in Des Moines.
I am the eldest of five siblings. I am a husband and father. Each of these roles defines who I am and gives my life purpose.
Who do you represent?
I represent individuals, people, whose lives have been changed through no fault of their own. I take great pride when a new client comes into my office, shares their personal story, and asks if we can help them. There is no greater honor or responsibility.
What do you do when you are not working as an attorney?
When not working I have two passions. The first is traveling with my wife Rose exploring places we have not been before. Travel allows us to meet and connect with people who may be from different backgrounds and cultures. We enjoy being ambassadors for Iowa. In the end, we are not so different.
My second passion is cooking and sharing a meal with family and friends. Unfortunately, the legal process is long and drawn out. Cooking lets me be creative in a short period of time, and we get to reap the benefits. Sharing a meal with others allows us to come together in friendship and fellowship.
If you weren’t an attorney, what would you be doing?
I honestly do not know. I grew up the son of a trial lawyer. The parents of my closest friends were lawyers. As a youngster, my friends and I would argue about whose name went first for our fictitious law firm. I would frequently spend time on Saturdays at my father’s office in the Fleming Building. I was able to watch him at the Polk County courthouse. Because of those experiences, I met many Judges and other lawyers. From a very young age, I knew I wanted to be a trial lawyer.
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
I took a year off between my time at Coe College and the University of Iowa to attend a semester-long program at the Colorado Outward Bound School. The program consisted of 4 weeks of mountaineering, two weeks of learning the corporate side of COBS, three weeks of technical rock climbing, and 3 weeks of winter mountaineering. The program was both physically and emotionally challenging.
What is your favorite part about your job?
It is hard to isolate a single favorite part of being a trial lawyer, but, if I must choose, I will say the intellectual challenge. Each person’s case is unique. There is no cookie-cutter approach to representing injured Iowans.