Every month, Southern Arizona Legal Aid’s (SALA) Volunteer Lawyers Program (VLP) recognizes a legal professional for their legal volunteerism. The award is a distinct honor and highlights the dedication and commitment of 12 individuals each year who give their valuable time and expertise to the community. Mr. Thomas M. Bayham, Esq., is the December 2023 Outstanding Volunteer of the Month Award Recipient.
Thanks to our volunteer private attorneys, the Volunteer Lawyers Program serves more than 10 percent of SALA’s clients.
One of those attorneys, Tom Bayham, began volunteering with SALA in 2003, and worked with us for more than a decade. We are grateful that he recently renewed his volunteerism and attended our three-part series for family law. Family law is one of our largest needs for legal assistance for low-income Arizonans.
Tom was born in Phoenix and earned a bachelor’s degree at Arizona State University. He moved to Tucson to attend the James E. Rogers College of Law and earned a juris doctorate in 1990. His firm, Bayham Law Office, PLLC, focuses on civil litigation, insurance defense, and personal injury.
Tom always knew he wanted to be a lawyer. His father was a lawyer in Phoenix and passed away when Tom was just 3 years old.
Tom says he’s seen so much throughout his career that it’s given him a strong foundation to advise and help people in tough situations. “There usually aren’t many easy answers, though,” he adds.
Starting his own law office was probably the most daring, although certainly rewarding, thing he’s done. Discovering how time-consuming the administrative side of a law practice came as a bit of a surprise. “It’s never just about going to court. There are so many moving parts to practicing. We need to be up on technology, accounting, human resources, and everything else that goes with operating a law office.”
That busy schedule – in addition to a well-rounded list of hobbies, such as camping, hiking, reading, and spending time with family, including his two adult children, Amanda and Chase – is just one of the reasons we’re so appreciative Tom makes time to share his expertise and commitment to our community.