By Cary Shuman
Attorney Nicole M. Bluefort, a rising star in the Greater Boston legal community, has been selected for a seat on the North Shore Community College Board of Trustees.
Bluefort, who has law offices in Lynn and Boston, was notified by Governor Charlie Baker’s office last week about her prestigious appointment.
“I’m very excited to become a trustee,” said Bluefort. “I had ties to North Shore Community College. I was an adjunct professor and taught classes there for a couple of years. I taught in its American Bar Association-approved paralegal program.”
Bluefort said she has always respected NSCC’s work with students and the excellent foundation that they receive at the college.
“It didn’t take me being a student there to know the value of a degree from NSCC, she said. “Being a teacher there, I got the opportunity to learn a little bit more about their mission and their goals for their students. I remember as an adjunct professor that they were inspired by my background as a graduate of Lynn public schools and my career in the law profession. I think I was able to encourage my students to really see community college as a stepping stone to doing amazing things.”
She looks forward to working with NSCC President Dr. Patricia Gentile, whom the attorney described as “a fantastic college administrator.”
Bluefort attended Lincoln-Thompson Elementary School and Breed Middle School and graduated from Lynn Classical High in 2002. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Communications and Hispanic Studies from Boston College, studying one semester abroad in Spain. She received a Juris Doctor degree from Northeastern University Law School and a Master’s degree in Public Health from Tufts University School of Medicine in 2010.
Asked why she chose to pursue a second graduate degree at Tufts but chose law over the medical field, Bluefort responded, “I always had a love for the medical field and science, but I also had a love for communicating with clients, being an advocate for clients, defending their rights – so I decided to pursue a career in the legal field.”
Following her graduation from law school, Bluefort secured a position as judicial clerk for the Massachusetts Appeals Court, working with Justice Frederick Brown, the first African-American to be appointed.
“I had the opportunity to help Justice Brown draft decisions on criminal and civil cases,” she said. “After I finished my two-year tenure, I decided to open my law practice (that has offices at 583 Chestnut St., Lynn, and 60 State St., Boston) and the rest is history.”
Bluefort’s staff includes Office Manager and Senior Paralegal NoreldaKanani of Lynn, Attorney ArielaGragg of Lowell, and Paralegal Angelica Sanchez of Salem, and Attorney Rafaela Serrano of Cambridge. Attorney Philip Webber of Dedham also assists the practice.
The law practice has grown steadily since its opening six years ago. She considers herself a general practitioner who handles matters in family law, criminal defense, probate, civil litigation, immigration, real estate and estate planning.
“It’s been exciting to have the growth we’ve had in the practice,” said Bluefort. “ I have a great mentor, Attorney Donald Stewart. I can certainly say he was instrumental to my success.”
Bluefort said growing up a diverse city like Lynn has served as a beneficial experience in her legal career.
“I think it made me well rounded,” said Bluefort. “. Having experienced such diversity in Lynn, I just had a renewed appreciation for the fact that I had that exposure, because in the end I knew it would allow me to be of better service to my clients.
At Classical where she was ranked 28th academically out of 330 students in her class, Bluefort was a member of the concert and jazz bands where she played the flute, the National Honor Society, and the drama club. Having been involved in community service and mentoring projects, she knew she wanted to return to the city after law school.
“When I decided I was going to open up my own practice, it was a no-brainer to come back to Lynn and do it,” said Bluefort. “It came full circle for me, to be able to return to Lynn and commit myself and be of service to the community. I used the tools of my education to be that advocate that people needed in the community.”
Bluefort said she is grateful to her parents, Sam Bluefort and Jeannette Bluefort, for their support.
“They were definitely amazing role models for me and pushed me all along to pursue education,” she said. “I was always one of the youngest students in my class and had some early challenges, but they always made sure I had a tutor and that encouragement, motivation, and extra attention early on allowed me to be successful in my middle school and high school years and later on in life.”
Bluefort is proud of the fact that she is the first person in her family to attend college.
“For me to go to college and achieve other degrees, this is really an accomplishment for my family and me,” she said. “I always feel that what I am doing, I am doing it as a representative of the community as well.”
And now Attorney Nicole M. Bluefort will be helping current college students in her esteemed role of trustee at NSCC.