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Q&A with Dallas LGBT Bar Association Member, Farrah Ahmed:

DGLBA: What type of law do you practice now and why do you like it?

Ahmed: Commercial litigation. I enjoy the complexity, its strategic nature, and ultimate result of being in the courtroom.

DGLBA: What do you like most about being a lawyer/your job–the sky is the limit on this one, it could be what you find most rewarding, what day to day things you like best, a favorite story about a client or someone you helped with your legal skills, or a relationship that you have forged since you’ve been a lawyer or in your job.

Ahmed: I enjoy helping out people, whether they are individuals or businesses. I’ve always been a problem solver (or at least try to be), and practicing law allows me to do that professionally. The practice of law gives you an infinite amount of opportunities and possibilities. It’s kind of like super powers – you can use it for good or evil. I like to think that my litigation skills help the good, or mostly good. Recently, I have been appointed by Judge Moye of the 14th Judicial District Court of Dallas County to be guardian ad litem of a minor who was injured in a car accident. Being a Guardian ad Litem is a lot of different from what I am used to as a litigator. I am honored by this appointment because I feel like I am an ambassador of the legal community on a mission to make this minor’s life better. I take pride of ensuring the best interests of this minor’s health and their future. I am hoping to finalize the minor’s settlement in the next month or so.

DGLBA: Free time hobbies, community service, etc. that you enjoy and why

Ahmed: I love to cook and read about politics and history (and pop culture). I try to volunteer as much as I can with bar organizations or other local organization, such as DGLBA or KERA.

DGLBA: Last book you read, why you did or did not like it.

Ahmed: I recently read Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, and I loved it. I enjoy David Sedaris’s writings because they are brutally honest, laced with comedy, and relatable no matter what walk of life you come from. I am currently reading Zealot by Reza Aslan. I enjoy historical studies on religions, and this book is a masterpiece of scholarship on the historical Jesus as opposed to the Christian Jesus.

DGLBA: Famous person or persons you’d most like to meet and why and if you could pick their brains over dinner, what would you ask?

Ahmed: Christiane Amanpour. Random, I know, but the woman is a legend in journalism and has truly lived life. I would talk to her about her career, the wars she has covered, and her take on the current global crises.

DGLBA: If you could travel to any place on earth what would it be and why would you want to go there?

Ahmed: There’s too many for me to list because of their respective significance. For instance, I would like to travel India (from West Bengal to Maharashtra) because I am the product of two countries that was once part of India. Traveling there would be retracing my past and former motherland. Other places I would like to visit is Israel, Greece, Italy, Turkey and Egypt because of their ancient history. I think I was the only second grader obsessed with ancient Egypt and Rome. Finally, French Polynesia because too darn pretty.

DGLBA: Favorite thing to do when you have time to relax

Ahmed: Listen to good music and cook. Cooking relaxes me and opens my creativity.

DGLBA: Favorite food and why

Ahmed: I don’t have one favorite food because I love many types of food. But if I can sum it up, spicy foods are my favorite.

DGLBA: Place you went on your last vacation and what you did

Ahmed: South of Cancun, Mexico. I sunbathed, snorkeled with sea turtles and other aquatic creatures, toured the ancient ruins of Tulum, and went to the best water park ever – Xel-ha!

DGLBA: Favorite wine? Favorite beer? Favorite drink?

Ahmed: I love red wine, especially Malbec and Pinot Noir. My favorite beer is Shiner, and favorite drink is a vodka tonic with double limes.

DGLBA: What was one of the things you have done in your life that was a big rush? Like white water rafting, jumping out of an airplane, singing on stage, acting in a play, driving a race car, piloting a plane, etc.? Why did you or did you now like it?

Ahmed: Snorkeling with the turtles in Akumal, Mexico was a big rush because I am not a good swimmer and afraid of deep waters. We actually swam out to the water as opposed to taking a boat and jumping in. Seeing the massive coral reefs, fishes, stingrays, and turtles definitely made me realize I was not watching the Discovery Channel, rather, I was actually in it.

DGLBA: Secret passion/secret wish—be a rock star? Be a chef? Be a teacher?

Ahmed: I wouldn’t mind being an acclaimed chef, or work for the United Nations.

DGLBA: Where did you go undergrad? What did you major in?

Ahmed: SMU, major in International Studies with focus in Middle East and Asia.

DGLBA: Where did you go to law school?
Ahmed: Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan.

DGLBA: What would you like to see from the DGLBA this year? Vision for DGLBA in the future?

Ahmed: I would like to see its members grow so we can become a prominent minority bar like Dallas Asian American Bar Association or Dallas Hispanic Bar Association. We have incredible members in many practice areas of law, that can greatly contribute overall to the Dallas Bar Association.

DGLBA: How long have you been a member of DGLBA? What is it that you like the most about being a member of DGLBA?

Ahmed: Over a year or so. I like the organization’s passion activism for equality (within the legal community and outside) and its contribution to the LGBT community. I was honored to help out DGLBA create a scholarship for Texas Wesleyan/Texas A&M law students. I hope that the DGLBA will continue to offer this scholarship for many years.