Picture of Jimmy Camilus

Joint Degree Graduate Heads to Carlton Fields

Jimmy Camilus

By Catharine Skipp

Jimmy Camilus

Joint Degree Graduate Heads to Carlton Fields

By Catharine Skipp

When Jimmy Camilus throws his mortarboard into the air in front of friends and family, he steps into the next phase of a career decades in the making. The J.D./LL.M. in taxation will be making the move to Orlando, Florida, to the storied 120-year-old Carlton Fields to work in their real estate and commercial finance group.

While at Miami Law, the Lauderdale Lakes, Florida, native threw himself into a host of activities and experiences to take full advantage of all the school has to offer, including as a Summer Legal Academy Deans Fellow; member of the Black Law Student Association, and he even practiced walking backward as a Student Ambassador.

“I am very excited to begin my legal career as a real estate and commercial finance associate at Carlton Fields,” said Camilus. “My path of study wasn’t a straight line; I’ve tried a bit of just about everything. Some people know what they want to do from 1L year, while others, like me, were still figuring that out."

“I think Miami Law is great at letting students find what’s out there for them,” he said. "I’ve done everything from winning motions in a clinic to being selected from the NFL contract negotiation competition and obtaining a tax LL.M. at the same time as my J.D. After thoroughly analyzing my interests and experience, I felt that a career as a transactional attorney was perfect for me.”

Miami Law best choice for South Florida student

The 30-year-old, fluent in Haitian Creole, horseback riding, and one-time semi-pro football player, came to Miami Law as a second-year transfer student from Barry University, Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law, Orlando, where he received a grade-on invitation to law review on the Children and Family Law Journal and the Environmental and Earth Law Journal. He studied abroad in Spain, joined the Sports and Entertainment Law Society, and received a merit-based scholarship and an essay submission stipend.

At Nova Southeastern University, in Davie, Florida, he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies, was vice president of the Black Student Union, a member of the Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Chapter. At Broward College in Fort Lauderdale, he received an Associates of Science in Paralegal Studies and was vice president of the Paralegal Eagles.

“Several factors went into my decision to attend Miami Law. Location was one of my big three. Miami is a beautiful city to be in if you are going to take on something as hard as studying law. The proximity to my family and friends in Broward also made the location very appealing to me,” he said. “Miami Law has an engaging alumni network that has welcomed me with open arms, and I am proud to call myself a ‘Cane. The extensive course offerings and joint degree programs also suited very well to someone looking to get the absolute most of their law school experience.”

Camilus has grown through three clerkships. – gained through the help of the Office of Career Development. At Todd R. Friedman P.A., he assisted with class action and multi-district litigation cases preparing for litigation by conducting interviews, researching, and drafting responses and motions. At Wilborne Law, he researched tax implications, analyzed domestic and international structures, drafted legal blogs dealing with blockchain ledger technology, and worked on complex business research and case review. At Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy LLP, he researched and drafted petitions, prepared visa application packets for filing, communicated with clients and beneficiaries, and assisted with various other business immigration needs.

“I’ve always been a hard worker and had the skills to succeed in law, even when I didn’t know it,” he said. “I had never met a Black lawyer prior to college, so that was something I could not picture, but at Broward College, I noticed the lack of representation in the legal field and switched to paralegal studies. I met my first three Black attorneys/professors there.

“These last few years have been some of my hardest, but they’ve made me strong,” said the new father of a baby girl. “The most valuable lesson I learned at Miami Law was to always push for success. I was fortunate to have a strong support system – the Black Law Students Association, both past, and present and classmates like Ted Delcima and alumni Christopher Lomax. He helped me believe in myself at times when my confidence wavered.

“The advice I would give to my first-year self is that it’s all a marathon and not a sprint,” he said. “What once seemed like far away goals are now only starting points to much greater things.”

Read more about Miami Law's Tax LL.M. Program