McCleskey Expands to the Concho Valley
The McCleskey Law Firm has opened a San Angelo office – led by San Angelo native Will Griffis, who will be practicing with his father – longtime San Angelo attorney Don Griffis.
The office is an extension of McCleskey’s Lubbock office offering full legal services to San Angelo, the Concho Valley and beyond with 90 years of experience practicing in West Texas. “We’ve had an interest from people in the San Angelo area and some of our existing clients have a presence in that area which also makes sense for us,” said Jerry Kolander, McCleskey’s managing partner.
McCleskey – which began in Tahoka in 1928 – has attorneys licensed in Texas and New Mexico and clients across the United States.
“Our entire firm will be available for clients in the Concho Valley,” said Kolander.
The idea for a San Angelo office blossomed when Will’s wife Leslie was named principal of Ballinger Junior High School a few months ago. Instead of Will leaving McCleskey – he and his family lived in the Lubbock suburb of Shallowater – the firm saw an opportunity.
Will talked with his dad about working together. “Will wanted to know if I’d be willing to be active in the practice,” said Don, who also grew up in San Angelo and had recently retired from his law practice. “I thought about it and liked the concept,” said Don, adding his feelings were reaffirmed after attending a McCleskey partners’ meeting in Lubbock. “I was impressed with the quality of people around the table,” Don said.
His son is excited to practice with his dad. “For years I thought it would be fun to practice with him, but the opportunity didn’t exist before he retired. The firm was 100 percent behind the idea,” said Will.
Don was born in Lubbock, but his parents eventually moved to San Angelo, where his dad, Bill, then practiced law. After Don graduated from high school, he went on to graduate from the University of Texas School of Law. While in college, he volunteered for the Marine Corps in 1963 and after graduation was commissioned as a second lieutenant.
Don served in Vietnam as a legal officer and an infantry officer. He later wrote a book – “Eagle Days” – about his time in Vietnam. When he came back from Vietnam, Don taught military law at The Basic School at Quantico. When Don’s brother Will, was killed in Vietnam, he returned to San Angelo to practice law with his dad. Will was named after his uncle.
Don practiced with his father for seven years before his father passed away. Don continued with the firm which grew and went through mergers until he retired the end of last year.
Now comes the opportunity to practice with his son. “I couldn’t pass that up,” said Don. Will added: “I know how much he loves the practice of law. Now to get a chance to be around him more and practice law with him is going to be a pretty awesome experience.” “And I get to do what he did with his dad,” he added.
Will not only followed his father into law, but also was a Marine – serving in Iraq. “I’m naturally very proud of Will serving in the Marines and being a lawyer … and all our children who are making a contribution in the world,” said Don. “His mother and I am very proud of them.”
Law and the military run through the Griffis family.
- Will’s twin brother Jim is an attorney in Fort Worth.
- His sister Abby Griffis Cox is married to an attorney and lives in Atlanta.
- His youngest brother John served in the Air Force and works in finance.