Black focuses his practice on Social Security Disability and criminal cases. He has been representing clients in Virginia and West Virginia in these areas for more than two decades.
A native Virginian, he received a dual undergraduate degree in English and Political Science, and graduated with honors distinction from James Madison University in 1985. Black was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps during his graduation ceremony.
As a Marine, Black attended George Mason University School of Law and after receiving his J.D. there in 1988 he went on active duty for the next 4 ½ years. During that time he served the Marine Corps at Camp Pendleton as a prosecutor, defense counsel and legal assistance officer, among other duties. He completed his service in 1992 with the rank of Captain.
Black came to Winchester that year and joined the law firm of Chandler Franklin & O’Bryan, where he met David Kendall. During that time, he handled mostly plaintiffs’ personal-injury cases.
After 10 years, Black struck out on his own as a solo attorney, turning his focus to criminal defense and Social Security Disability cases. He joined Harrison & Johnston in 2013 and continues to concentrate in those areas.
Black has had a close working relationship with the Kendall Law Firm since 2009, when his friend David Kendall launched it.
While criminal defense and Social Security Disability are areas of law that are distinctly different from each other, Black brings the same ideals of client service to each.
“With both disability clients and criminal clients, a lot of patience is required,” he says. “There’s a lot of guiding these people through the maze of either the administrative or criminal-justice system.”
In handling criminal defense cases, Black says he enjoys dealing with the challenges that come his way. “Everyone in our criminal justice system has the right to be treated fairly and equally,” he says, “and my job is to make sure that happens.”
The Social Security Disability cases are also challenging, he says, because claimants oftentimes encounter resistance—and even bias—in seeking benefits. “But it’s a rewarding area of law to practice,” he says, “because if someone has been denied disability benefits and I’m successful, it will change the quality of their life and the lives of their family members.”
In his spare time, Black enjoys keeping fit as a long-distance runner, having run numerous marathons and being an avid long-distance swimmer. He is also a serious beekeeper.