Brent E. Baxter
Brent Baxter joined the law firm Manning & Murray, PC, in Arlington, Virginia in September 2008. While his practice currently focuses on estate planning, estate administration, elder law and fiduciary litigation, he is experienced in a broad range of civil practice areas in the general district and circuit courts of Arlington and other local jurisdictions.
What brings you the most satisfaction in your work?
While I thoroughly enjoy solving legal puzzles and drafting eloquent estate planning documents and court pleadings, the most satisfying part of my practice is relating to clients as they find themselves in unfamiliar and stressful situations. Most clients are not familiar with estate planning terminology and techniques, or the difficulties life presents in dealing with an elderly or disabled parent or relative. I try to remove clients’ stress, using my natural ease and empathy in relating to people and my experience to show clients a pathway to restoring order to their situations.
When you’re not practicing law, you play guitar in The Buzz Hounds (Arlington magazine, March/April 2018.) How do the two sides of you coexist?
For a long time, I never mentioned my band to clients or talked about it much at work. I thought it might make people take me a little less seriously as a lawyer. Over time, I loosened up about it and felt more comfortable revealing my intense interest in playing music.
Arlington County Circuit Court Chief Judge William T. Newman, Jr. once told me that he thought my involvement in the performing arts makes me a better lawyer. He should know–Judge Newman is also a dual-life jurist/actor and performer. Not only is music a nice outlet for me, but performing is about using skill to package into a product for communicating ideas (and feelings) to others. There is quite a bit of that in the way I like to practice law.
Recognized for Pro Bono Advocacy, Arlington County Bar Association, 2017
Foundation’s Finest Award, Arlington County Bar Foundation, 2015 (Director, past Chairman, past Treasurer)
Selected to help lead Mount Olivet UMC’s “Holy Discussions” about welcoming the LGBTQ community, 2014