By Stacie Jones
Originally published in the 2013 Idaho Law Magazine
Taylor Fouser's legal career began to take root as early as elementary school.
"When he was in the third grade, he wrote his first contract that set the limits of when and where I could hug him," chuckled Taylor's mother, Trudy Fouser. "He amended it in the sixth grade so that I couldn't hug him in the state of Idaho."
It was no surprise when Taylor proclaimed in junior high that he was going to practice law some day. Now, in his third year of law school, he is well on his way to achieving his goal of becoming a litigation lawyer.
Next spring, Taylor will become the fourth member of his family to earn a degree from the University of Idaho College of Law, following in the steps of his mother, Trudy Fouser '81, his father, Scott Fouser '82, and his stepfather, Jack Gjording '66.
Taylor points to his mother, Trudy, a prominent Idaho trial lawyer at Gjording Fouser in Boise, for helping to shape his career path.
"I can remember being six years old at the dinner table and my brother, sister, and I would pretend we were jurors while my mom would try to persuade us in her client's favor... with us, she always won," Taylor said. "As I grew older, I never stopped being her pretend juror and would watch her during trial whenever possible. It just happened to be what really interests me."
Trudy said her influence in Taylor's decision to practice law was unintentional.
"We joke that he must have been the only one of our children that we forgot to warn because it can be a very challenging profession," she said. "But he really seems to thrive doing it."
For Trudy and Taylor, who both earned their undergraduate degrees outside of Idaho, returning to their home state to attend law school was a strategic choice.
"I had lived some place else and knew I wanted to come back to start my career," Trudy said. "If you want to practice in Idaho, I think you gain a huge competitive advantage if you go to the University of Idaho. You come out immediately with a great professional network."
Growing up in the shadow of a lawyer family has taught Taylor a lot about the legal profession, including one important lesson that will surely guide him as he embarks on his own career.
"I've learned that you don't try to be someone you're not, especially as you go through trials," he said. "Find out who you are, find your own style, believe in what you're doing, and do it in an ethical manner. It has seemed to work well for all of them, and I'm sure it will work well for me."