Springfield, MO

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Attorney/shareholder, Miller & Sanford PC, 1845 S. National. Miller & Sanford is a full-service law firm dedicated to high-quality service for its clients, including cost-effective results in a timely fashion, problem solving and preventing legal problems through appropriate planning. The company has provided legal services to area businesses and individuals for more than 50 years. The 15 attorneys in the firm practice law primarily in the areas of business, corporate law, taxation, employment, probate, estate planning, real estate, zoning, insurance, personal injury, construction, products liability, medical malpractice and workers' compensation. Powell started with the firm in August of 1985 as an associate and became a shareholder in 1992. Powell is a member of the American Bar Association (Forum on the Construction Industry), the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association and the Missouri Bar. He is also president of the Court Appointed Special Advocates, a member of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, a Leadership Springfield and Leadership Springfield Board alumnus, counsel to the History Museum for Springfield-Greene County and an elder in First & Calvary Presbyterian Church.

Age: 38.

No. of years in Springfield/area: Lifelong resident.

Education: Bachelor of arts degree, cum laude, from Southwest Missouri State University in 1982, and juris doctorate, with honors, from Drake University in 1985.

Early career: Powell's father, Jack Powell, was a circuit court judge for 19 years, so he "grew up at the courthouse," he said. While in high school, he had the occasional lawn-mowing job. "I spent two eye-opening summers as a volunteer at the Greene County Juvenile Office, spending one summer as a detention counselor," Powell said. During college, he officiated high school boys' and girls' basketball games and ran errands for the law firm of Bonacker & Reynolds. While in law school, he was a research assistant to Professor James A. Albert.

Current projects: "I am lucky in that my profession allows me to work on a variety of different problems for a variety of different clients. My work with Court Appointed Special Advocates provides a unique challenge. Most people don't realize how many children reside in foster care as a result of abuse or neglect. Providing a CASA volunteer to help those children is a priority. I hope I can always be involved in a project that helps kids," Powell said.

Management philosophy: "At Miller & Sanford, we try to develop and implement a team approach," Powell said. The lawyers and staff work together to meet the client's needs. "From the client's perspective, I try to provide responsible and practical advice and advocacy that is consistent with the client's goals and instills in the client a sense of confidence," he added.

Spare-time pursuits: Attending his kids' athletic events, playing golf, dabbling in collecting antiques.

Family data: Married for 11 years to Cristen Wagoner Powell, owner of The Quilt Sampler on the Plaza. A son, Matthew, 9; and a daughter, Sarah, 7.

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