Distinguished Lemoore High alum opens private criminal law practice

By Ed Martin, Editor
Criminal Defense Attorney William "Bill" Parry
Criminal Defense Attorney William "Bill" Parry

William “Bill” Parry, 44, is a self-made man. The 1991 Lemoore High School graduate was a standout student, a top-notch athlete (basketball), member of the student council, and the school’s pick for the prestigious leadership program Boys’ State.

Let’s face it, Parry was no slouch when it came to his school work habits. As a senior he was the school’s Tiger of the Year and served his final two years of high school as the editor of the school newspaper, The Tiger Tribune.

The second son of longtime educators Les and Pat Parry went on to a distinguished academic career at Fresno State where he graduated magna cum laude, a Latin term indicating a high level of achievement. He also has an older brother Tom, a vice principal at Carmel High School.

The 1995 Fresno State grad, upon graduation, was ready to challenge the world and prepared himself for life and a career. The proud recipient of a bachelor of arts degree in English could have done just about anything.

Instead, Parry became an attorney. But don’t hold that against him.

All kidding aside, Parry had been thinking about a career in law since he was an over achiever in middle school. “Even back in the eighth grade, I knew I wanted to be a lawyer,” said the personable Parry as he sipped coffee from a Starbucks cup in Hanford.

“I’ve always wanted to be a lawyer,” he insisted, “as far back as in eighth grade when I can remember being in Ms. Pike’s social science class at P.W. Engvall, talking about vocations. “In high school and college, at job fairs, I would always gravitate right to the attorneys and ask questions and seek advice.”

Since his 1998 graduation from the San Joaquin College of Law where he was a member of the Law Review, the college’s student bar, and a two-time recipient of the Leon S. Peters Leadership Award, Parry passed the difficult California Bar Exam and went to work, initially as an administrative hearing officer for the City of Visalia and the Visalia Police Department. He also worked as a criminal defense attorney for Kapetan Brothers Law Firm, and from 2001-2013 was a litigator in the Hanford law firm of Kahn, Soares & Conway. From 2013 to 2017 he was the managing shareholder of the Hanford office of the Hammerschmidt Broughton Law Corp.

Just this past month, after working for others, Parry decided to open his own law office. He is the sole owner and founder of William Parry Law, a criminal defense firm located in Hanford. He opened his office officially on Jan. 5 and plans to focus on criminal law.

“I just always had a dream in the back of my mind that I wanted to set up my own law firm under my own name. I’ve worked for and with some excellent attorneys over the years, but it’s always been a dream of mine to hang my own shingle and help out people my way the best that I can.”

Why focus on criminal law? “Of all the areas of law, criminal defense clients are the ones who need the most help,” said Parry. “Of course, it’s important to at times to get legal assistance to protect your property or your money, but when your very freedom is at risk and when the stakes are the highest, I’ve always just held the constitution in a very high regard and I’m proud to be a criminal defense lawyer.”

The outgoing, friendly lawyer, who has a fondness for the music of Tom Jones – he’s seen him live 10 times and the playlist on his phone consists of the singer’s entire repertoire – isn’t shy about fondness for his community either. He currently serves on the Kings County Fair Board of Directors and since 2005 has been a member of the Lemoore High School Foundation for Educational Excellence board. He was inducted into the Foundation Hall of Fame in 2011.

He’s also a member of the Kings County Bar Association and served four consecutive terms as its president.

He’s currently the president of the Lemoore Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and in 2011 was honored by Fresno State as one of the “100 Most Distinguished Alumni” from the  school’s Arts and Humanities Department. He also sits on the board of directors for the Fresno State’s Advisory Board.

“I would like my clients to think, and hope that they would be able to look back, and say that I did a good job for them,” insisted Parry, “and that I fought hard for them, and that I was a good attorney, respected by my clients and my peers in the legal community. That would be my hope first and foremost. Ultimately you want to be respected and be recognized as someone who did an honest, good day’s work.”

Parry, because of his track record, could have ended up elsewhere, in a big law firm in San Francisco or Los Angeles, but instead chose to remain close to his roots. “I was born and raised in Kings County,” he said. “I had many opportunities elsewhere, but I like it here and I wanted my business here.”

It’s also a good place to raise his two sons, Evan and Owen.

Parry is a big believer in American jurisprudence. “Criminal defendants and criminal defense clients all too often have a stigma attached to them. But after having done this and represented people in this community for 18 years, I know that bad things can happen to good people, and it may sound a bit idealistic but I truly believe that everyone is entitled to a defense under the Constitution.”

William “Bill” Parry’s law office is located in Hanford at 802 N. Irwin St. Suite 202. His phone is 559-904-7530 and email address is attorneywilliamparry@gmail.com.


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