Jessica Franquiz – Office Manager & Paralegal
Jessica is originally from Miami, Florida, and moved to SC ten years ago to be closer to family. Jessica obtained her Associates degree in Paralegal Studies from Greenville Tech in 2015, then went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from Kaplan University with a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies in 2017. Jessica held the title of President of the South Carolina Upstate Paralegal Association from 2017-2018. She is active with volunteering in her community and helping those in need Jessica happily serves as Lauren Taylor Law’s billing specialist, senior paralegal, and office manager. In her spare time, Jessica enjoys cooking, reading, traveling, photography, and is dog mom to her two fur babies, Boomer and Bonnie.
Allison Fultz – Legal Assistant
Allison grew up in the small town of Steele, Missouri. She made her way to the East Coast to attend The College of Charleston where she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. After finishing her undergraduate degree in three short years, she entered into the expedited Spring Admit program at the Charleston School of Law in the Spring of 2019. There she participated in numerous organizations including the Women in Law Association, the Christian Legal Society and served as the student liaison for the Charleston County Bar Association Law Student Division. Allison also interned for South Carolina for Criminal Justice Reform where she spent countless hours researching police policies on use of force. Prior to joining the Lauren Taylor Law team, Allison served as a personal injury paralegal for 4 years. In her free time, Allison enjoys exercising, attending church with her family, and traveling. She previously traveled to Togo, Africa to teach English and computer classes during the Summer of 2017.
Melissa L. Douthit – Associate Attorney
Melissa was raised in a small town outside of St. Louis, Missouri. She attended Avila University in Kansas City, Missouri, and earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and minors in psychology and theatre. Two and a half short years later, in December 2014, Melissa graduated cum laude. During college, she worked under the Administrative Assistant to the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, served as a freshman mentor, was involved in the Medaille Honor Society and Campus Ministry, and interned with the Honorable Robert M. Scheiber. Melissa’s passion for helping the Dear Neighbor, the mission of Avila University, led her to pursue her law degree and attend Washburn University School of Law. She obtained her Juris Doctor in May 2017.
During law school, she served as a January Section representative in the student bar association, worked as a reading clerk for the Kansas State Senate for the 2016 session, served as a study group leader, was a representative of the BARBRI Group, clerked with Alderson, Alderson, Weiler, Conklin, Burghardt, & Crow, LLC, and served as a legal intern in the Family Law Clinic. During her time as a legal intern, she and her co-counsel prepared and presented testimony before the Senate Committee of Judiciary relating to an amendment of the Protection from Abuse Act and Protection from Stalking Act, which was passed. Melissa comes to Lauren Taylor Law after working for over two years in an insurance defense firm, learning the intricacies of litigation and research. Melissa enjoys crafting, traveling, and spending time with her husband and three dogs (Duke, Anora, and Leela).
Ekta Patel – Associate Attorney
Ekta was born in Toronto, Canada but was raised in Summerville, South Carolina. She attended the University of South Carolina and earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health in May 2015. During her time at USC, Ekta went on a 2-week mission trip to the rural villages of Costa Rica and Panama where she discovered her passion for helping others. Soon after her undergraduate studies, Ekta realized law was her calling and so she set off for law school. At the Charleston School of Law, Ekta participated in numerous programs such as Phi Alpha Delta, Student Ambassador, Business Law Society, and the Adult Guardianship Assistance and Monitoring Program. Ekta obtained her Juris Doctor in August 2019. Ekta comes to Lauren Taylor after working in a civil litigation firm, learning the intricacies of litigation and research.
In her free time, Ekta enjoys traveling, trying new restaurants, working out, and every fall you can find her cheering on the Gamecocks and Denver Broncos.
Amy Baker – Paralegal
Amy came to the Lowcountry with her family in 1990 after her father’s retirement from the Air Force. She graduated summa cum laude with her Associates degree in Paralegal Studies from Miller-Motte Technical College (North Charleston) in 2006 and has worked as a family law paralegal since 2015. Amy earned the Certified Paralegal designation through the National Association of Legal Assistants in 2017 and has been active in the NALS organization at the local and state levels, having served as Chapter President of the Legal Staff Professionals of the Lowcountry from 2019-2020 and Functional Director of Marketing from 2018-2021. Amy is passionate about advocating for domestic violence survivors and LGBTQ+ rights in the family law system. Amy’s free time is often spent reading and writing fiction and poetry, taking photographs of her favorite Lowcountry sights, singing bad karaoke, fishing, traveling, and spending time with her children and pets.
Cristie Wisecarver – Legal Assistant
Cristie is a native of Tennessee but South Carolina is home! She resides here with her four wonderful children and her two mischievous pets. Cristie has an undergraduate degree in Human Services with a concentration in Criminology from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Cristie is a certified yoga, spin, barre, kickboxing, weight training, and step instructor. She loves staying active and teaching group fitness classes. She also enjoys being involved with her community and advocating for children. Cristie volunteers at Hope Center for Children and The Carpenter’s Table. She is a certified Guardian Ad Litem, was a foster parent in 2015, and in 2016, had the privilege of officially adopting her beautiful one-year-old daughter from foster care.
Andrea Lauren Odom – Paralegal
Andrea was born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina. She serves as our paralegal in the Greenville office and provides assistance to our lawyers and clients. She received her Associate’s in Paralegal Studies from Greenville Technical College with Honors and has several years of experience working in the legal field. Andrea enjoys creating art, reading, and spending time with her family. She is a new mother to a beautiful daughter.