Name Partner Gene Graham has been with WGB&C since 1990. A graduate of the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Gene has been practicing law for 34 years and has been repeatedly recognized as one of the most accomplished attorneys in the community, being named among Kansas City Best of the Bar and among the Top 50 Attorneys in Kansas City by Missouri & Kansas Super Lawyers.
Gene has expertise in the practice areas of employment discrimination, sexual discrimination and harassment, racial discrimination, consumer law, and whistleblower matters, and has made his career representing people who are abused and mistreated by corporate America. Learn more about Gene in our Attorney Spotlight:
Why did you want to become an attorney?
“I chose to become a lawyer because of my father, Gene P. Graham Sr., who was the finest man and trial lawyer I have ever known. He was also the most influential person in my career and life. I think about him and miss him every day.”
What do you enjoy most about WGB&C?
“I’ve always surrounded myself with exceptional lawyers and our firm is a unique blend of different strengths and talents. I’ve had the same paralegal for 27 years and she is really an exceptional paralegal. My fellow partners are all very supportive, so we’ve assembled the right blend of skills and talent and personalities. There is never any tension and there never has been.”
What is your most significant memory or case from your career?
“One of the most memorable and significant cases from my career is also one of the few jury trials I ever lost. It was a race discrimination case in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and is a case that truly opened my eyes to how prevalent racial discrimination can still be in the southern parts of the state. I had no idea how ingrained it was in the culture before that case and it made me want to continue to turn my attention toward civil rights cases.”
What is the best thing about being a plaintiff’s lawyer?
“I’ve learned that corporate America is dishonest and in it for themselves. Representing people who are abused and mistreated by these large corporations is fulfilling and if you can level the playing field for them then it is truly substantial. Every day you feel like you’ve accomplished something significant, and you’re really fighting the good fight every day.”
How do you work to balance career and family?
“I don’t feel the need to balance it because my family comes first and we’ve always stressed that around here. You can always find enough time to accomplish things at work. We strive to put family first and the work takes care of itself. My children and wife inspire me more than anything else.“
What is the best advice you can give an up-and-coming attorney?
“Choose your spouse carefully, because you can’t perform well in a stressful legal practice unless you have a support system outside of work. I would have never gotten where I am without a very loving, supportive, and understanding wife.”
How do you like to spend your time outside of work? Any hobbies?
“I spend a lot of time with my family. I fish a lot because I live on a lake so that makes it pretty easy to do. I also like to play golf and of course I am a very avid Mizzou fan.”