Bringing the law home to Welches
The need to help people realize "their best interests" has always played a part in Paula Walker's life, but it took some time before she learned to mix a desire to help people with the law.
"I had a good job and I enjoyed it, but sometimes you just have deep stirrings that you want to do something more meaningful," Walker said. "Law seemed to be the way I could learn the skills I needed to meet my goals."
In 2005, Walker went back to school at Lewis and Clark College in Portland to pursue her law degree.
As of this week, Walker's officially set up shop in her longtime home of Welches at Confluence Law Center, 24461 E. Welches Road to realize her dream, focusing on estate planning and estate plan maintenance.
"There was truly a driving desire to not only make a better living but make living better," she added. "I wanted to do something I felt contributed in a direct way to better the lives around me."
Walker has lived in Welches for the past 47 years and has no plans of leaving, because, she noted, "there's just something magnetic about this place we call Hoodland — the mountain."
"I'm looking forward to serving this community," she said. "It's my home. It has a strong meaning to be able to help people. I look forward to being more inserted in the community. It gives me an opportunity to be involved in this community in a way I never have been before."
Though she said she never saw it coming, Walker can trace her aspirations of advocacy back to her very first career. After earning a degree in mental health from Mt. Hood Community College, Walker worked for a time with children who had experienced abuse.
"That was a very important part of my life and my development," she noted.
With her new path as a lawyer, Walker has gone from helping youths work through their traumatic experiences to helping families prepare for worst-case scenarios by advising them on their wills.
"It's good to have something, especially if you have children or you're getting older," Walker explained. "You have a sense to the people you love, and they deserve to know what you want (in your last days)."