LMJ Scholars Class: 2005
Originally From: South Carolina and Washington, DC
Current Location: The Netherlands
Current Company: Roku Inc.
Tarik learned about the LMJ scholarship while completing a law school preparedness program. We recently reconnected with Tarik to talk about how the scholarship impacted his career and what he is up to now.
What did receiving the LMJ Scholarship mean for you and for your legal education?
I formed careerlong and life-long relationships with a number of the people at my program sponsor, the Dupont Company – one being Tom Sager, who was the General Counsel. Tom Sager is one of the most respected advocates for diversity in the legal profession and to have him as a mentor has been extremely valuable. In addition, it was really important for me to be able to have those relationships with well-respected attorneys and also attorneys of color who are working in the field and get their guidance on how to approach my law school education.
What are some ways MCCA and the LMJ Scholars Program have been helpful to you in your career?
I can’t emphasize enough the mentorship and sponsorship aspect of MCCA and LMJ. For a lot of students of color in particular, thriving in law depends on strong relationships with mentors and sponsors whose guidance can have an outsized impact on your career. It’s not always about someone who can get you a job – it’s also about information and access to wise counsel. You can’t walk out of law school and start building those kinds of relationships without somewhere to start. Those connections and relationships have been the greatest gift of the LMJ Scholarship.
What advice do you have for someone applying to LMJ about the scholarship and about their larger legal career?
The scholarship is what you make of it, so view it as an opportunity to build your legal career on a strong foundation with people who are interested in seeing you succeed. Be proactive in getting to know your program sponsors and the staff at MCCA. They are your cheerleaders.
What are you doing now?
Today I am Director, Business and Legal Affairs at Roku, Inc. Previously I was Associate General Counsel at a company called Veon Ltd which is a global telecom company focused on emerging markets and servicing over 240 million customers around the world. By training, I am a capital markets and securities attorney. As a public company, we have certain information that we are obligated to share with investors on a regular basis and I make sure we share that information accurately and in a timely manner. Prior to my time at Veon, I worked at Bank of America Corporation in Charlotte, NC and at Sherman and Sterling LLP in Sao Paulo, Brazil. I was also an attorney at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and K & L Gates LLP and I began my career as an International Trade Policy Negotiator, all in Washington, D.C.