Shannon K. Gordon is quick with a joke when asked why she went to law school.
“Growing up, my mother told me I either needed to be an actress or a lawyer because apparently, I had a flair for the dramatic,” she said. “The better answer to that question is that for me, it is about the opportunity to help people solve problems, especially when the solution to that problem may otherwise be out of their reach.”
Today, she helps people find those solutions in the family law practice she co-owns with her husband. But she also assists others through her extensive pro bono work which includes guardian ad litem cases.
“Necessarily when you are being brought into that circumstance, there is something unfortunate that is happening with the family,” said Gordon, a Denver native. “But it is important to me to do this kind of work to really ensure that these children are not being overlooked, that their best interests are being represented, and that, frankly, they have a voice in court. It is really important that these kids have an advocate on their side who can go to court and speak to the judge or whoever about what is in their best interests.”
A 2010 graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law, where she was president of the Law School Emissaries, Gordon does considerable work for Jackson County Court Appointed Special Advocates. She sits on its board of directors and served as honorary chair of the organization’s carnival event last year.
Other pro bono work includes her time with Legal Aid of Western Missouri’s Volunteer Attorney Project and with Military Matters, a Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Foundation program in which she represents military vets in need of legal help. She is active with Mother’s Refuge in Independence where she donates needed items and gives presentations on legal matters.
She’s also active in the legal community where she remains a frequent presenter at CLE conferences regarding guardian ad litem and other domestic law matters.
“Shannon’s tireless work providing pro bono services to the members of this community, especially children, makes her well-deserving of recognition,” writes her nominator.
As for Gordon, who spent time with two different firms before becoming a partner in her present firm, she says she’s just glad to be in a position where she can help others.
“For me, it goes back to problem-solving and to recognizing that when people call your office and they are seeking out an attorney, there’s a really good chance that you are finding someone at a very low point in their life, a very difficult time for them. It is about helping people navigate these issues and finding a way to craft a resolution,” she said.
“It is about understanding that for these people, this is an overwhelming process and they could very well feel lost and without options,” she added. “My objective is to help them see that these options exist.”