I love doing what I do because I am passionate about advocacy and fighting for justice, and I have a special place in my heart for members of the military.
After high school, I received an Air Force ROTC Scholarship to attend college. I graduated from the University of San Diego, and commissioned into the Air Force immediately. Instead of going straight onto active duty, I was selected for a competitive program through the Air Force JAG Corps that allowed me to attend law school before serving my active duty time.
I attended law school at Chapman University School of Law. From the very beginning, I loved everything about law school – the theory, the case studies, and especially the legal writing. In law school, I received eleven awards for getting the top grade in a class. I was also picked to be an editor of the law school’s most prestigious law journal. I also worked for a federal appeals judge. Every year, I was ranked #1 in my class, and in 2009, I graduated summa cum laude as the valedictorian of my class.
After law school, I came directly onto active duty as an Air Force JAG. During my first assignment at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, I was identified by my boss as the best litigator in the office, despite being the most junior attorney. As a result, I was given the chance to prosecute all the high profile cases that came through, including sexual assault, larceny, and drug offenses. Given the rare honor of being ranked #1 as the junior Captain in my office was only the beginning. Throughout the rest of my career, my bosses recognized my abilities as a stellar legal advocate and legal writer. While many junior JAGs were busy prosecuting petty crimes, my skill allowed me to lead the prosecution of some of the Air Force’s most serious sexual assault cases. I was selected to be the Area Defense Counsel for Dover Air Force Base.
I began my final assignment at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California as a prosecutor. This same year, my husband began Cherkasky Law. I knew the minute the firm opened that this was the way I was going to help America’s heroes.
While I was awaiting my opportunity to punch from the Air Force, I was selected to be the Air Force’s first Special Victims’ Counsel to represent alleged victims of sexual assault. In this position, I learned exactly the extent to which the military will go to destroy a person accused of sexual assault and protect at all costs the accusers, no matter how weak or obnoxious the facts of the case.
I bring to the table what no other member of the civilian defense community offers. As a female, I understand personal responsibility. I understand what happens at the bar at 2:00 in the morning. I understand the incentive to fabricate a lie. When you’re deciding who you want to represent you, these things matter.
No matter what type of case or action you’re facing — administrative action or court-martial — I bring my passion to the fight. I’m always there for my clients, and will talk and work through every possible legal angle that exists to make sure we’re doing everything we can to salvage your career, your reputation, and your right to justice. This is how I Defend America’s Heroes.