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The Fewel Family Legacy

In 1971, Scott Fewel took his first steps as a law practioner. He was a member of the premier class to graduate from McKenzie Hall, the former location of the University of Oregon School of Law. Twenty-nine years later, his son, Chance, was in the first class to graduate from the Knight Law Center. The Fewels both have fond feelings toward the Knight Law Center.

“The building was great for taking classes,” said Chance, who appreciated the unique atmosphere and proximity to restaurants on East 19th Street.

Scott, who spent his first two years at Fenton Hall, did not enjoy the move to the “cement monastery,” as he calls McKenzie Hall.

“The Knight School is so much cooler than anything I went through,” Scott said. “I think it’s pretty special.”

Though the Fewels both ended up at Oregon Law, their reasons for being there were very different. Scott graduated from the University of Oregon with a political science degree, and because of the time frame when he went to school, “preferred going to school over Vietnam.” Chance’s desire to “be something rather than do something” aided his decision.

While the buildings made an impression on the Fewels, it was the faculty who made the real difference. Scott, who studied basic law courses, remembers former Oregon Law Dean Chapin Clark as one of his favorite professors. Frank Lacy, whom he described as the “absent-minded-professor type,” also left a lasting impression on him. Chance, who studied litigation and criminal law, appreciates Leslie Harris and Margie Parker for their helpfulness and intelligence.

Both Fewels remain close to their roots. Scott lives in Corvallis, while Chance lives in Portland. At 66, Scott still practices government law and feels that doing so in a smaller community allows him to slowly fade away rather than quit.

“Working 60 percent of the time has made me realize I am proud of the education Oregon Law gave me,” Scott said. Licensed in Oregon, Washington and Colorado (though only practicing in Oregon and Washington), Chance focuses on family law at Goldberg Jones, a firm that represents husbands and fathers in family law matters.

“I enjoy it,” Chance said. “I still get into court like I did when I was a court-appointed attorney and still feel like I’m helping people.”

Both Fewels continue to enjoy inspiring careers.

“Having law as your expertise allows you to be more perfective in a complicated society,” Scott said. “It has equipped me with the skills to handle the complications of everyday life.” As he grows older, this includes understanding MediCare, which makes him a mentor among his peers.

Chance, quoting another memorable professor of his, Maury Holland, said, “Being a lawyer is nothing more than being a professional problem solver. I like to think that’s what I do.”


Oregon Law » Oregon Lawyer Online » Autumn 2012 » The Fewel Family Legacy