Our associate attorney, Jessica Steele, has been with The Foster Firm since 2015. Outside of her practice within the Law Firm, Ms. Steele volunteers her professional time to assist foster parents with their legal issues. She also continues to be an independent legal consultant for a Florida non-profit for foster parents called Go Foster!, Inc. Prior to joining The Foster Firm, Ms. Steele worked as a trial attorney for the State of Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF). From her years within DCF, she became a skilled advocate both in and out of court. From legal drafting to courtroom appearances, Ms. Steele has the professional experience and capacity to fight for a successful resolution to your case. Ms. Steele believes that each case is unique and requires individual attention so that a creative, and workable solution can be reached.
Ms. Steele is proudly a "double Gator," having graduated from the University of Florida with her undergraduate degree and juris doctor. Ms. Steele was a Summa Cum Laude graduate with a bachelor of arts in sociology and minors in business in Spanish. Her love for the Spanish language continued throughout law school and she was the first non-native Spanish speaker to do two internships during the summers. Her first internship was with the Instituto Interamericano de Derechos Humanos (IIDH- Inter-American Institute of Human Rights) in Costa Rica; the sister organization to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. Her second internship was in Chile with the Centro de Estudios de Justicia de las Américas (CEJA-Judicial Studies Center of the Americas). Ms. Steele also aided with a law and policies conference in the U.S. and in Uruguay. Working with these international intergovernmental organizations was monumental in forming her perspective for her legal practice. Ms. Steele also worked during the summer of 2005 in the political section of the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines. Coming from a human rights and diplomatic background has given her an edge as a very well-rounded attorney with diverse practical experience.
Ms. Steele has been to 25 different countries and lived in 8 of them. However, she considers herself to be "from" Niceville, as she graduated from Niceville High School and her family continues to reside in the area. Ms. Steele is a CrossFit Level 1 Trainer, photographer, and Spanish tutor. In her free time, she enjoys going on dates with her fiancé, and any activity that involves the beautiful Emerald Coast or her Aussiedor puppy, Diesel Steele.
Here is the biographical information for my legal assistant:
Before engaging in his sucessful private practice for the last couple of years, Ricky Dayaram began his career as an Assistant Public Defender in the First Judicial Circuit in Okaloosa County. As an Assistant Public Defender for three and a half years, Ricky has defended hundreds of clients involving charges from misdemeanors to felonies that are punishable by life in prison. Ricky has experience in several areas of criminal law including: Assault & Battery, DUI, Drug Possession, Drug Trafficking or Sale, Sexual Offenses including Sexual Battery and Lewd or Lascivious Molestation of Children, Weapons & Firearms offenses, Burglary, Robbery, Thefts, and Violations of Probations/Community Control. Ricky’s time as an Assistant Public Defender afforded him the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of the criminal justice system to aggressively represent his clients. Ricky also represents clients in civil litigation matters, including personal injury. Ricky is also admitted to the Federal District Court of the Northern District of Florida.