Detroit native comes home to help city's resurgence


 When he first secured a management position in sunny Las Vegas, Lorenzo Parker was happy with the direction his life was taking. 

But eventually he realized that there was higher calling to a career in the law.

I decided I wanted to stop selling people things and actually start helping people, said Parker, age 29.

Parker was also homesick for Detroit.  He finally decided that attending Wayne State University Law School would satisfy his desire to assist others in need and make even greater contributions to his community.

People said, `Why do you want to go back to Detroit?’” he recalled. I said, `Because my city is in need. There is a need for talent. Theres a need for resurgence. And I cant help them from here.’”

Now a law clerk at Brad Thomsons Immigration Law PLLC in Ann Arbor, Parker is completing his final two classes this summer at Wayne State University Law School.

So far, his new life is falling nicely into place, he said.

Ive planned to finish in August and prepare for the bar in February and I hope to be a really solid contributor here at the office and tap into different areas, said Parker.

Parker grew up in Detroit and Farmington Hills, where he was a Free Press Dream Team football player who won a full ride scholarship to Vanderbilt University in Nashville from 2000 to 2005 to play defensive back.

After graduation, he worked in Washington D.C. and Las Vegas before returning to Michigan for law school.

This spring, Parker was selected to attend the Damon J. Keith Civil Rights Law and Legal History Spring Break Trip 2014—a trip South to meet with some of the country’s leading civil rights attorneys.

Thats where he met Thomson, who helped fund the trip.

Thomson recalls first talking with Parker at the Martin Luther King, Jr. burial site in front of the reflecting pool in Atlanta.  Parker had just finished talking with the Rev. Kenneth J. Flowers, pastor of the Greater New Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church of Detroit, who shared stories about breaking ground at the King Center, his friendship with Judge Damon J. Keith, and his relationship to Coretta Scott King.

“I turned to Lorenzo and told him to keep in touch with Reverend Flowers because he will connect Lorenzo to a lot of leaders in Detroit,” said Thomson. “Lorenzo sent me a picture yesterday with Governor Snyder at an event that he was invited to by Reverend Flowers.”

Parker is a certified sports agent in both the Canadian Football League and the National Basketball Association and is keeping an eye out for talented athletes who want to come to the U.S., and may need the services of an immigration attorney.  Thomson said he and Parker plan to specialize in visa options for musicians and athletes because of all of the international talent in Michigan.

In the meantime, Parker is doing an excellent job as a law clerk, Thomson said.

“He has developed an extensive marketing strategy to try to help Immigration Law PLLC transform from a solo-practitioner law office to a mid-size immigration law firm,” he said. “Without a doubt, wherever Lorenzo decides to focus his passions, he will be a superstar in the legal field in years to come.”

Immigration Law PLLC previously focused on Spanish-speaking community, and is now bringing on attorneys who speak Arabic.  The firm has 20 people on staff.

And we are all thankful to have Lorenzo brighten up our day, said Thomson.