Robert L. Johnson, Esq.
Associate Attorney
Gibbons  P.C.
Newark, N.J.
Age: 37

From being a professional basketball player in France to becoming a corporate professional, Robert L. Johnson used his struggles as motivation to persevere and achieve success. An associate attorney at Gibbons P.C., Johnson specializes in mergers and acquisitions, where he puts to use his knowledge of commercial banks and governmental agencies as they relate to mergers. Prior to Gibbons, Johnson served as assistant counsel to the office of New Jersey Governor Christopher J. Christie. He made recommendations on which bills were to be signed into legislation, vetoed or conditionally vetoed.

 

As a student athlete at Rice University in Texas, Johnson struggled with his grades in his first year, but graduated with a dual degree in sociology and political science. Moreover, his high grade-point average earned him a place on the academic all-conference team, as well as on the Western All-Conference first team. “I learned a valuable lesson about not quitting and pushing through adversity,” he says.

 

Johnson embarked on a basketball career that led him to Chalon, France, but the difficulties he encountered made him leave that country prematurely. “Daily living experiences, such as being able to communicate with people, watching television or news … contributed to the challenges of living alone in a foreign country,” he recalls. “Learning to depend upon myself in a foreign country definitely helped me to grow personally.” Back in the United States, Johnson initially pursued his Juris Doctor at the Thurgood Marshall School of Law in Texas and finished his first year in the top 15 percent of his class. He transferred the following year and in 2007 earned a Juris Doctor from Seton Hall University School of Law in New Jersey. Among his community service activities, Johnson supports Derrick Johnson’s Defend the Dream Foundation, of Kansas City Chiefs Derrick Johnson, a Kansas City, Mo., nonprofit that helps local, at-risk children and youths.

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