Attorney Michael Jonas
Firm Owner and Principal
Preferred Pronouns: He/Him/His
Real life business experience
Juris Doctorate, Thomas Jefferson School of Law, San Diego, CA (2009)
Bachelor's Degree in Psychology, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA (2005)
Michael grew up in Northern Los Angeles County. During high school, he participated in Speech and Debate, Mock Trial, Theatre Club, and Key Club (a community service organization). His primary commitment was Speech and Debate in which he served as President both his junior and senior years. During his senior year he also participated in DECA, a business competition group. After winning at state, Michael attended the National DECA competition in Salt LakeCity, Utah.
At the end of high school, Michael was awarded the “Gift of the Gab” award for best speaker in mock trial and speech and debate of his graduating class. As a debater, his favorite types were and still are Congress Debate and Spontaneous Argumentation. Upon graduation, he was also awarded a lifetime membership into the National Forensics League, a speaking association.
Michael graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. For four years he served as an event programmer for the school’s Hillel, a pluralistic Jewish organization. During one of the years, he also served on the student executive board as the Fundraising Chair. In addition to attending interfaith dialogue discussions, community business meetings, and community outreach events, he had the pleasure of attending the Spitzer Forum in Washington D.C. The yearly forum is a time when college students across the nation meet to discuss pressing issues facing society. Upon graduation, he completed the University Leadership Program and in addition to his degree, was awarded a University Leadership Certificate.
In both high school and undergrad, Michael worked in several restaurants as a host, dishwasher, busser, and server. He also learned about business and communication as an intern in both an advertising firm and a corporate radio station company’s marketing and promotions office. After completing his undergraduate education, he worked at two nonprofit organizations. As a fundraising Campaign Executive for United Way of Santa Barbara County he served as a liaison between business and community members, meeting with and speaking to all types of people about the ability of people to work together to create social progress. That same year, he was a job coach for disabled adults, a job where he worked with and motivated clients to live active, successful lives.
Michael completed his law degree at Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California where he served as the President of the Public Interest Law Foundation for two years. During this role he managed a board, a budget, and several programs. With the support of the foundation's board he planned and executed career fairs, policy and law panels, beach clean-ups, and community fundraisers. While also attending law school, he participated in and competed on the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Competition Team. As a member he was able to learn negotiation and mediation practices and techniques both theoretically and in application through participation in off-location competitions with other law schools. He took both introduction to Mediation and Advanced Mediation, which he passed with honors. From February 2008-February 2009, Michael mediated numerous small claims court cases through the Superior Court’s Small Claims Mediation Program. In this pro bono role at the court, he mediated a variety of types of cases from Landlord/Tenant and Home Owners Association matters to car accident cases, contractor remodels gone bad, and dog bite claims.
During law school he took classes and had internships involving: contracts, property law, health law, disability law, immigration law, housing law, environmental law, and entertainment law. He was also an active member of the school’s Environmental and Entertainment Law Societies. In summer and fall of 2008, he worked as a contract reporter for Campaign.com. In this position, he reported on the presidential election process, the importance of voting, and the necessity of the public to understand both sides of an issue before making up their mind. Upon graduation in addition to his juris doctorate degree, Michael was awarded a certificate of completion from his school’s Pro Bono and Externship Office and a “Student Organization President of the Year” award, nominated and voted on by faculty and students.
After law school, Michael has had a variety of business and law experiences including: conflict resolution services, involvement in the facilitation and execution of real estate transactions and negotiations, promotions and marketing projects, and law firm client management systems. As the founder and owner of GRASP (Great Resolutions Achieve Social Progress) Mediation from 2009-2012, Michael mediated business contracts, civil claims, family, and community disputes. As a break from compensated services and to maintain community involvement, GRASP put on pro bono conflict resolution and anti-bullying seminars for local Boys and Girls Clubs and YMCAs. After law school Michael served on the school's alumni board for 4 years. During this time he worked on outreach activities for potential and current law students, collaborated on community projects with other alumni, and voted on various matters facing a law school in a recovering, but challenging economy.
From 2011-2016, Michael was a real estate advisor and agent in San Diego, California. He still holds a current CA real estate license. Throughout these 5 plus years, Michael prepared residential purchase offers and successfully negotiated contracts from escrow to close. Additionally, he compiled market trend research and prepared comparative market reports and created marketing materials for various populations. Over the course of several years, he gave presentations on rental property laws, affordable housing rules and options, and the home buying process for first-time buyers.
During 2009 to 2016 Michael was hired to work with various brands on their experiential marketing goals. As a Brand Ambassador and Product Specialist he worked at concerts, and festivals from Comic Con to Rock 'n' Roll Marathons and everything in between. He had the opportunity to work with brands including but not limited to: Jack Daniels, Puma, Dodge, Ford, Cartoon Network, Sunkist Tuna, 711, North Face, Pepsi, Svedka Vodka, Game Spot, Hillshire Farms, and Marvel Comics. Throughout each contract, Michael was tasked with a variety of marketing roles ranging from face-to-face consumer presentations to preparing and recording electronic consumer data.
Most recently before opening Rational Unicorn Legal Services LLC, Michael served as a Client Manager and Paralegal for a high-volume intellectual property law firm. In this role he retained and serviced client accounts, completed firm outreach efforts using marketing materials and original website content, and collaborated with support staff, the attorney team, and the principal attorney on a variety of client projects. During this time, he filed and maintained completed patent, trademark, and copyright applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the U.S. Copyright Office.
Currently, Michael's focus and love is centered around building and maintaining Rational Unicorn Legal Services LLC. This is the third business he has owned (a mediation company and a real estate company were the previous two). His goal is to be himself as an attorney and to not take on some random un-relatable persona. He wants to have a career that not only helps people with legal services, but is honest and stemmed upon the belief that business and community building are not dichotomous. He is thrilled to utilize not only his legal skills, but his experiences from the past (good and bad, failures and successes) to help people achieve their goals.
When not working on legal services, he volunteers at a variety of non-profits. He currently serves on three non-profit boards: New Leaders Council (NLC), Hatch Innovation, and Main Street Alliance of Oregon. “The New Leaders Council is the leading training program for progressive Millennials. NLC equips our leaders with the skills to run for office, manage campaigns, create start ups and networks of thought leaders. NLC leaders take their activism back into their communities and workplaces to impact progressive change." Hatch Innovation is a social entrepreneurial innovation incubator that enables people to build enterprises that improve communities. “Main Street Alliance of Oregon is the Oregon Chapter of the Main Street Alliance. MSA is a national network of small business coalition working to build a new voice for small businesses on important public policy issues. MSA small business owners share a vision of public policies that work for business owners, our employees, and the communities we serve.”
In his free time, Michael enjoys hiking, reading political articles, watching movies, and spending time with his amazing boyfriend Andy and unbelievably cute dog Edison.
Oregon State Bar Member, License # 173844, 2017
Multnomah County Bar Association Member, 2017
First Amendment Journalism Scholarship, Signal Newspaper, 2002
Life-time Member, National Forensics League, Speech and Debate Honor Society, 2002
University Leadership Certification, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA, 2005
Pro Bono Honors Award for Community Service Legal Work, Thomas Jefferson School of Law, 2009
Student Organization President of the Year, Thomas Jefferson School of Law, 2009
Environmental Law Boot Camp, Environmental Law Institute of DC, San Francisco, CA, 2009