From a young age, Chris Stidham knew he wanted to make an impact, not only in his career, but also in his community.
Stidham has worked as the Clerk-Treasurer for the City of Portage since 2012. In May of 2016, he finished up law school, became a licensed attorney in October, and now serves as an attorney for Rhame & Elwood.
“I have been in Portage almost all my life, moving here in 5th grade,” he said. “I have a wife and kids here and I think there are so many exciting things happening in Portage.”
The city has had its challenges, he said, but everyone needs to focus on the good that is happening.
“Portage schools are outstanding, we have upgraded our fire and police stations, we are paving roads, developing the downtown, improving the lakefront, and people are working together to make it happen,” he explained.
Being in public service, Stidham is front in line, working towards a vision he and his fellow Portage residents see for the community.
“It takes a lot of work to get it done,” he admitted of being in public service. “You need to have a thick skin and the capability to let things roll off your shoulder, all the while keeping your eye on that vision.”
On the legal front, Stidham focuses on three primary areas of family law, collection, and Municipal and Government. Each area has their own challenges, but all come down to having respect for the law.
On the family side, Stidham and the Rhame & Elwood legal group are often helping people through their most trying times, working through divorce, custody issues, estates, and wills.
“We are their advocate and counselor, making sure we are there for them during events that can be overwhelming,” Stidham said.
In collections, the firm is helping firms get paid for their work, and ensuring they can focus on what they do versus getting buried in how to make sure they are compensated.
Finally, helping on the Municipal and Government business, Stidham is building on the strong foundation that Rhame & Elwood started years ago.
“There is tremendous respect for what John (Rhame) and Ken (Elwood) have built,” he said.
Stidham’s desire to make an impact is a reminder to all that what it comes down to for him is giving back, practicing law for the right reasons, and ensuring what you are doing is helping the community to success.