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Rising Stars: Meet Melanie Jayashankar

Today we’d like to introduce you to Melanie Jayashankar.

Hi Melanie, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today.
My story involves some moving around!  I grew up in Knoxville, TN, but went to Georgia Tech in Atlanta, GA for college. I initially graduated with an Engineering degree but decided to go to law school at the University of Georgia in Athens, GA. After law school, I spent 12 years in Jackson, TN.  I actually just moved to Memphis this summer. I love it so far!

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
I graduated from law school in 2008, right in the middle of the Great Recession.  Like many young people who graduated during that time, the first job I had out of law school was not necessarily my dream job. However, looking back, that position gave me the chance to get practical legal experience right away.  I wouldn’t have had that chance right away at a larger firm. In fact, the skills I learned at my first job were invaluable when I later started my own practice.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I have had the chance to work in several areas of the law.  Currently, I work in commercial litigation, labor and employment, and intellectual property at Wyatt Tarrant & Combs here in Memphis. Every client is important to me. I have already gotten to work on some very interesting cases. However being new to Memphis, one of my new interests is getting involved with local talent and innovation here.  We have several great programs in Memphis that provide guidance to inventors, start-ups, and emerging businesses regarding their ideas and innovations. Intellectual property can be one of your biggest assets. My role in this process would be to help these individuals and businesses identify and protect their hard work!

What do you like and dislike about the city?
Memphis is a very welcoming city. I love that Memphis has something for everyone. It is a dynamic and diverse city. What I least like is the rush hour traffic!

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