ABOUT THE FIRM - JASON GAST
I moved to Western North Carolina in early 1996, after having recently graduated from college. I quickly settled in Asheville, which has been my home ever since.
Like many people, I held a variety of jobs over the next several years, just trying to make ends meet. But in that time, I was proud to work with both Mountain Housing Opportunities as an AmeriCorps member, and then later at the United Way of Asheville and Buncombe County. At Mountain Housing, I worked with a master carpenter, fixing low-income people’s homes that had gotten unsafe to live in; we helped make sure that our clients could continue living in their own homes, once our work was done. At the United Way, I helped raise funds during the difficult September 11, 2001, period, with those funds going to support the United Way’s core mission of supporting people’s health, education, and prosperity. Both of those jobs helped shape who I am today. And I am proud to continue to support both groups.
My wife and I moved to Knoxville for a few years so I could attend law school at the University of Tennessee. While there, and with the support of my wife, I received both a great legal education and practical hands-on experience working with actual clients through the school’s legal clinic. It was then that I decided that I would open my own law firm, once I returned to Buncombe County after law school.
I became licensed to practice law in North Carolina in August 2005. I have been a self-employed solo practitioner since then, working primarily in Buncombe, Madison, and Yancey Counties. I have worked hard with low-income clients to protect their rights and to help their families. And I have also consistently supported Pisgah Legal Services, our regional legal aid group for low-income families. I usually have at least one or two clients at a time through their great Mountain Area Volunteer Lawyer program, which coordinates pro bono legal work for certain kinds of cases when a client cannot afford a lawyer. In 2022, I received the Outstanding Pro Bono Attorney Award from the 28th Judicial District Bar, in recognition of all of the pro bono work I had done.
In 2022, I became a board certified Child Welfare Law specialist, one of only 22 in the state at that time. This certification is symbolic of my dedication to helping parents and families. I also jointly received the MLK Community Service Award in 2022, along with other Buncombe County parent defenders, recognizing our work representing parents in need.