Yuma Attorney Receives Arizona Public Defender Association Lifetime Achievement Award

YUMA, Ariz. (T3, KECY) – One of our local legal advocates has been recognized by the Arizona Public Defender Association.

Yuma Deputy Legal Advocate David Shapiro won the “Lifetime Achievement Award.”

Shapiro has served for 23 years as a public defender in rural Arizona counties including Yavapai, Cochise and now Yuma County.

“It was a really nice award to receive, although I didn’t think I deserved it that much, but it was nice,” said Assistant Legal Advocate and award winner David Shapiro.

Shapiro also lived an adventurous life before becoming a lawyer.

“I think it’s funny because he got this lifetime achievement award, but actually his life was a lot more interesting before he was a lawyer,” said legal advocate Bill Fox. “I mean he punched cows. He was an actor on stage and on screen. He used to ski with Billy Kidd. He was a semi-pro baseball player and he tried out for the Oakland Athletics.”

Shapiro started out as a cowboy in the American West, in New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada and California. He later joined the Shakespeare Company Conservatory and later became an actor in Los Angeles.

In fact, he says it was his acting career that inspired him to become a lawyer after a conversation with his fellow actors.

“I actually said to them, ‘Do you see me as a lawyer?’ as if that wasn’t possible,” Shapiro said. “They said, ‘Well, you’ve already played one, so people must think you look like a lawyer,’ and that gave me an idea that stuck with me.”

Shapiro attended law school at Southwestern University School of Law.

“I think all of those things led him to be the attorney he is,” said public defender Bill Fox. “Someone who is comfortable in front of people and someone who is able to give people information and do it well.”

Congratulations on your Shapiro Award.

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