Amy Kingston has a long-held dream: to be a lawyer who makes the world a better place. She’s one step closer to that dream this December when she earns a juris doctorate from the University of Idaho’s College of Law.
“I always wanted to be an attorney,” says Kingston, known as “Ames” to her friends and family. “The people I looked up to as a child were attorneys, and I got along well with them. I always thought a legal career would be something I could be good at.” Her work experiences, ranging from Web marketing copywriting to operations accounting, taught her tremendous lessons and helped her develop a solid work ethic. “As an operations accountant, I learned how to assemble lots of variables into a coherent and accurate representation of the company’s financial position.”
Her habit of working with numbers is combined with what she says John Miller, professor of law, calls an “inner nature of peace and conciliation.” For Kingston, a future career in tax law seems like a good fit.
She grew up in both Ketchum and Idaho Falls, and credits her father, Dave, as her inspiration. She saw success defined by him through the family-owned Kingston Companies.
After graduating from Idaho Falls High School, she went on to assemble an impressive academic background — earning her bachelor’s degree in economics and a master’s of business administration from Arizona State University. Then, she headed back to Idaho — home — to pursue the first leg in a two-phase law track.
Powerful memories will keep her connected to the University of Idaho. Through her work with the College of Law Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic, she had the opportunity to represent a client in front of a federal judge in a case against the Internal Revenue Service. “It was the first time I realized the duties, responsibilities, and fun that I knew were the reasons I chose law as a career in the first place,” relates Kingston.
Her work as treasurer for the Student Bar Association reinforced the place for teamwork within the law profession. “I worked to improve the treasurer position and learned that my colleagues were as interested as I was in being collaborative, not competitive,” she says. “That approach and supportive attitude is present not only in the College of Law, but in the university, in general.”
After December graduation, with her juris doctorate in hand, she heads back into law classrooms in January 2008 at the University of San Diego to pursue a master of laws degree (LLM) in taxation law. That’s the final piece to prepare her to return to Idaho, hang out a shingle, and watch her dream unfold. “I will evaluate my choices and see where my instincts lead me,” she says.
Kingston also understands the need to balance life and career. She is a runner, snowboarder, and wakeboarder, and loves to hang out with her two dogs, Higgins, a yellow Labrador, and Carter, a golden retriever.
“I predict that Amy will become one of Idaho’s preeminent business leaders,” says Richard Seamon, associate dean of the College of Law. “She has shown us her energy and imagination, and her can-do attitude that are all so necessary in the legal world. She has a true heart and a very clear and level head and has a strong commitment to improve the world around her.”