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Hi I'm Sam

I'm a husband and a father of four children. I'm a criminal defense attorney. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up partly in Texas, but my parents moved to Utah when I was six years old. In 1995, I served an LDS mission in Kyiv, Ukraine. I have been married since 1999 to my wonderful wife. We were married while we were in college, and had our first child, a son, just under a year later. Since then, I have continued through my four-year degree in Economics and gone on to complete law school, during which time we added two girls to our family. I started practicing law in 2005, and we had our fourth child, another boy, in 2007. I am a criminal defense attorney, and plan to remain in that line of work perhaps until I retire. I consider myself a Democrat. I have run three marathons, and hope to run a few more before I get too old for it. I love music, and I believe there is good music in just about every genre (with the sole exception of techno/rave, which I hardly classify as music). I love to sing, and I usually get a chance to sing a solo or in a small ensemble every few months.

Why I am a Mormon

I have two parents that are faithful members of the Mormon Church, and I grew up attending faithfully every Sunday. Even so, my parents always taught me that I needed to find out for myself whether the Church was true. When I was about 16 years old, we had a Church camp where we went up in the mountains for a few days. At that time in my life, I was struggling with living some of the things I had been taught, and I felt I needed to know for myself whether the Mormon Church was the true Church of Jesus Christ on the earth today. I went off into the woods by myself, and at first I felt a little foolish getting on my knees, and felt distracted by some of the things around me. However, I sincerely wanted to know, so I got down on my knees and prayed to Heavenly Father to know whether Jesus Christ was the Son of God, whether the Book of Mormon is true, whether Joseph Smith was a true prophet of God, and whether the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is God's prophet on the earth today. I didn't see an angel or hear a voice, but I felt an overwhelming feeling of love and peace wash over me, and in that moment I knew that the things I had been taught as a child and a teenager were true. I have struggled at times since then with living some of the commandments, but I have never wavered in that witness that I received when I was 16 years old.

How I live my faith

I am a counselor in the "bishopric" in our ward, which consists of the bishop and two counselors. My job is to assist the bishop in overseeing the spiritual and temporal well-being of the members of our ward. We extend "callings" (or assignments), with the help of the Holy Spirit, to the members of our ward to serve in various areas of the ward. Our ward is a relatively young ward. Most of the people in our ward have younger children, but we also have a fairly large youth group. My specific responsibilities, among others, are to work with the three-woman Presidency of the Young Women's organization in our ward as they teach values and leadership to the teenage girls in our ward, to work with the "Sunday School" presidency in our ward, which oversees the gospel teaching that happens in the ward, and to work with our choir conductor in planning the music in our meetings and elsewhere. Like every active male member, I also have three specific families that I watch over--visiting them at least once a month and helping them with whatever they need help with. I love to teach, so I try to use every opportunity I can to get in front of a class. I am inspired by the people in our ward that serve and give without any thought of personal gain, and I hope to be more like them someday.