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Vidalia Power Couple Unites Skills to Practice Law Together

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Longtime Toombs County Chief Magistrate Judge Rizza O’Connor surprised citizens across the area when she resigned from her position to practice law with her husband, fellow lawyer Daniel O’Connor. Rizza has served as Chief Magistrate Judge for eight years and believes that this new endeavor will offer a new opportunity for serving others.

According to the judge, the decision to join her husband’s law firm of Mackey Bryant & Daniel O’Connor Law Firm has been a topic of discussion for years. “In our household we talk about law anyway,” she noted. “Right now, it was good timing. My husband started getting busier, and now that he owns the law firm, it has turned into a small business.”

The decision to join the firm also directly stemmed from a conversation the couple had about their children’s future. She observed, “We have two small children, and we were talking about what would happen to our children when we died. Even as lawyers, we had wills; but taking that step further to realize that wills don’t plan for everything made me want to help others be reassured that they will be taken care of. We did research, we educated ourselves, and now we have a great plan and a trust for our children’s future.”

The former judge’s duties in her new attorney role will focus on real estate, wills and trusts, and business law.

“I told him (Daniel) for years that if I could, I would be a public servant all my life if I could – I did not see myself working in the private sector,” she said. “But this is just another way that I can serve the public in a different manner.”

When asked about his thoughts on his wife joining the practice, Daniel praised Rizza’s ability. “She has had a wonderful career as a judge, and I am very excited for all we will be able to do working together at the firm.”

The power couple has seen accomplishments throughout their lives, through the practice of law and their appointments as judges. In addition to his law practice Daniel serves as Vidalia Municipal Court Judge. It is working together to help families plan for their future and to help businesses to be successful that drives their public servant passion.

“We are getting to help families and businesses just like ours,” Rizza commented. “We really get the chance to know these people, and to give them security and reassurance, and that is one of the best feelings in the world.”

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