Campbell Law 45th Anniversary Alumni Spotlight: Rick Gammon ’81

Photo of Rick Gammon

Nominator:  Sonya DuBree, Class of 1994

Sonya DuBree graduated in 1994 from Campbell University School of Law. Her class is best known for its 100% Bar passage rate. She currently is a partner and founding member of Raleigh Family Law. 

Nominee:  Rick Gammon, Class of 1981

Rick Gammon is of counsel at Gammon, Howard & Zeszotarski after 27 years of private practice and 16 years of consulting clients in select matters. 

After his freshman year at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Gammon left UNC to become an officer with the Raleigh Police Department.  He left RPD approximately three years later to return to academics.  Gammon received his undergraduate degree from Campbell University in 1976. He then went on to graduate with honors from Campbell University School of Law in 1981.  During his time as a law student, Gammon served as president of the Student Bar Association.

Gammon is married to DuBree and has an 18-year-old stepson, Luke Morton, Morton is a member of the Cardinal Gibbons Class of 2021 and will attend UNC-Chapel Hill in the fall.  Morton intends to follow the family tradition and attend law school as well. He hopes to practice criminal law.

Q: How does your nominee embody your definition of leading with purpose?

Handling offenses ranging from murder to white collar federal crimes to traffic violations, Rick has consistently achieved stellar outcomes for his clients while maintaining the highest ethical standards. His professionalism and work ethic have served as a model for lawyers for decades, and he continues to volunteer to speak to Campbell Law students in an effort to pass along his experience and wisdom. 

Rick has been involved in countless high-profile criminal matters in both state and federal court. He has represented defendants in over 15 capital murder cases, including the well-known Food Lion triple murder case, triple murder cases of Alton Green and Larry McNeil.  Rick earned his nickname “LockJaw” during the Eric Miller murder investigation when he refused to reveal confidential information after his client’s death. 

Rick has represented a number of judges and politicians in his career.  Rick was appointed by the Governor of North Carolina to be a special prosecutor in the then Lt. Governor of NC Jimmy Greene’s bribery case.  At the request of large corporations, Rick has consulted internationally.

Rick’s devotion to his profession and the community was clearly demonstrated in his appointment to the North Carolina State Bar’s Disciplinary Hearing Commission (DHC) for a total of nine years. He also served as the DHC Chairman for three years.  These years of service clearly reflect his constant desire to give back to the legal profession while insuring that the public receives the utmost in legal service.

Rick has received a variety of awards over the years, including, but not limited to, the Bunn Memorial Award (for graduating first in his Police Academy class in 1973) and the 2005 James Iredell Award (which is presented each year to an individual that has made significant contributions to the legal profession.  Additionally, he was repeatedly selected as one of The Best Lawyers in America, and he was named to Business North Carolina’s Legal Elite for over ten years. Claiming he retired in 2005, Rick has repeatedly come out of retirement to represent clients when he has strongly sympathized with their plight.

Simply put, Rick has led by his actions-doing for his clients, doing for the profession, and doing for the community.  Though it may seem like a cliché, in Rick’s case it is not-Rick has demonstrated leadership with purpose by living the North Carolina motto:  Esse quam videri (“to be rather than to seem”).  He has lived his leadership with commitment and humility.  His career epitomizes what we, as lawyers, should aspire to be.