February 2020 Outstanding Volunteer of the Month

Every month, Southern Arizona Legal Aid’s Volunteer Lawyers Program (VLP) recognizes a legal professional for their voluntarism. The award is a distinct honor. Of the 533 attorneys and paralegals who volunteer their time, twelve are recognized annually for their dedication to access to justice.

Paris Chacon is the Award recipient. 

Born and raised in Tucson, Paris attended Flowing Wells High School. While there, she interned with a public defender and this peaked her interest in the legal field. She worked for a while with a document preparer to get her foot in the door as she attended Pima Community College. After obtaining her Associates Degree in Paralegal Studies, she obtained her Certified Legal Document Preparer license in 2009. She worked for others for about two years but soon hung up her own shingle, Affordable Paralegal Solutions, and has been doing family law pleadings, estate planning documents, informal and formal probate, and articles of incorporation for LLCs since January 2010. Paris loves the work and likes the variety. She feels she has been lucky to find the space to help people who would not otherwise be able to get legal services (either Legal Aid or an Attorney). They can often be overwhelmed and not understanding the process. Additionally, she is a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst (CDFA). In her career, she has discovered that the quality she likes most in a lawyer or legal professional is honesty and integrity but also kindness.

Paris has been volunteering for about three to four years at the Attorney General’s Office for the Civil Rights Division as a mediator. She does employment related mediation and is trained in family mediation as well. Recently, she attended a training given by family law volunteer attorneys on presenting domestic relations classes and has jumped into teaching divorce and paternity legal information classes at SALA. She has been volunteering since November and will often step in when another presenter has to pull out suddenly. She enjoys volunteering both teaching, because she gets to hear about all the different and interesting circumstances in people’s lives, and in mediation, because she knows that if people can come up with their own agreements they are more likely to follow through with them and are more invested in making the agreements work in the future. She is saving some people from traumatic or endless litigation, which is the value of conflict resolution. She has compassion for people who are in stressful situations and enjoys helping them through these situations and listening to people tell their stories.

With her husband Gary Kraft, Paris has a 15 year old son, Tyler, a 13 year old daughter, Madie, and two stepsons, Cole and Carter, 18 and 15 years old respectively. Madie is into softball and Tyler and Carter skateboard. Cole is in a successful local band, Rough Draft. Paris and Gary like to travel with the family, and usually travel back East. Paris loves to do yoga and dotes on her two small Chihuahuas, Mini and Winnie. She enjoys reading, especially anything business and self-improvement related, and her favorite author is Stephen R. Covey. If she was not doing her legal work, she would most likely have a career in mental health because there is such a large need. Nothing cheers her up more than spending time with her family.