For Sam Azinger, a tax-planning class initially piqued his interest in estate planning.
“This class showed me the excitement of this area and ways that attorneys can help their clients and save them money,” he said. “This aligned to my interest as I wanted to stay away from high conflict areas and help people when they are at their best as opposed to the worst situations in their lives.”
While studying at Marquette University Law School, Azinger received the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for his achievements in the study of estate planning and real estate finance and development. He was also inducted into the Marquette University Law School Pro Bono Honors Society in recognition of his volunteer work with the Milwaukee Justice Center’s clinic offering assistance with family law forms, Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinics and the Domestic Violence Injunction Hearing Clinic.
After graduation, he was an intern at the village attorney’s office in Menomonee Falls before joining Willms-O’Leary in 2017.
“I can count on Sam to be the first person to the office every day,” said Maureen O’Leary, president of Willms-O’Leary. “He is an invaluable member of our team that I rely on daily.”
Azinger continues to enjoy estate planning and elder law as well as real estate, estate and trust administration, retirement-benefits planning and charitable giving.
“I am proud of Sam’s leadership in our elder law practice, which is a division of our estate planning practice,” O’Leary said. “His skill and hard work help us offer a broad range of important elder law services to our clients, such as helping to prevent elder financial abuse and assisting clients with long-term care planning.”
Azinger is a member of the Thiensville Business Association, where he serves on the board of directors as treasurer and is also a member of the Mequon-Thiensville Chamber of Commerce. Separately, he’s a trustee on the Thiensville Village Board and the vice-chairman of the Mequon-Thiensville Joint Bike and Pedestrian Way Commission.
“In addition to balancing his legal career and being a devoted husband and father of three children, he does an incredible job being involved in our local community, serving in our local government and volunteering for charitable causes,” O’Leary said.
He has this advice for anyone thinking of joining the legal profession: “It is important for young attorneys to surround themselves with the right people. You will do the best by being around people who are optimistic about your future development and those who encourage you to be the best you can be.
“I appreciate being in a small firm where I have found this type of environment, and have the opportunity to help my clients on a personal level.”