GREAT FALLS — The newest recipient of the John Adams Award for service went to Paul Gallardo, a practicing attorney with Flaherty Gallardo Law in Great Falls.
The award goes to a member of the Montana Criminal Justice Act Panel.
Gallardo has been practicing law as a partner with his firm for 12 years but accepted the duty with the Criminal Justice Act Panel a few years ago.
“We’re a bunch of private practice lawyers who specialize in criminal defense and we are court appointed when the Federal Defender's Office can't take a certain case because of a conflict of interest,” says Gallardo.
Gallardo is exceptionally young to win such an award and was shocked himself he won, but his peers will justify the decision to award him.
“Part of the tough part of what we do is we're dealing with people and probably one of the worst situations in their lives.
"Paul is very compassionate and steady with them when he's dealing with them in those situations,” says senior litigator Henry Branom.
“He's got a pleasant smile and he undersells. He does more than he says he will do. He's a friend. I can pray with Paul about our clients,” says Patrick Flaherty.
Gallardo also serves in the Montana Air National Guard as a Sergeant, has a deep love for his family, and is very appreciative of the recognition.
“We have the best, best judges in the country and I have the honor and privilege of standing before these guys, the best federal judges in a country. And it's a privilege for me just to be able to you to practice, and in our local courts here.”
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