Where are they now? Christina Ceballos-Levy

The College of Arts, Sciences & Education prepares students for life after graduation to become successful leaders in the community. We went on a search to find CASE alumni who are thriving in their careers. This is one in a series we’ve titled, Where are they now?

The average high school student doesn’t become a law clerk. Christina Ceballos-Levy did and it changed her life.

It all started with a high school essay and, of course, Ceballos-Levy’s mother, who was the secretary for criminal defense attorney Kieran P. Fallon. Her mom showed Fallon a paper Ceballos-Levy wrote in her English class. Impressed, Fallon offered Ceballos-Levy a job. He also promised he would teach her how to research, write and study crimes.

“Kieran was a brilliant man,” she said. “Any time someone who has so much knowledge and experience offers you an opportunity to serve as your mentor, you must seize upon it.”

Driven by her twin passions of writing and law, Ceballos-Levy instantly knew she wanted to be a lawyer. She started by pursuing an English degree with a minor in Political Science at FIU. Given her work, an English degree was indispensable. What she learned in class helped her organize her thoughts and sources for arguments she prepared for Fallon.

“He took me to court. He let me speak to witnesses,” Ceballos-Levy said. “He cared about what I had to say. He helped make me the lawyer I am today.”

Christina Ceballos-Levy with her husband.

In a constitutional law class taught by School of International and Public Affairs Dean John Stack, Ceballos-Levy confirmed her passion for the law. It’s also where she met her husband, although Stack joked then that she should stay away from the troublemaker.

“Professor Stack still apologizes to us whenever he sees us,” Ceballos-Levy said.

In law school at the University of Miami, she took on a part-time job at Kenny Nachwalter and served as a judicial law clerk to U.S. District Court Judge Alan S. Gold. Upon graduation, the nationally recognized firm offered her a full-time job as a complex commercial litigation attorney.

Christina Ceballos-Levy in court with fellow attorneys.

Today, Ceballos-Levy represents businesses in disputes over money or other property. She also defends clients who have been sued for professional malpractice. Her favorite cases, however, are those that have an international angle.

Even though her college days are behind her, Ceballos-Levy still considers herself a student. Twenty years, many late nights, wins and losses later, she’s always learning from those around her. It has been the process and the people she works with that she enjoys the most.

Christina Ceballos-Levy headshot

“They are my second family. Along with the law, my Kenny Nachwalter family is my calling.”

Ceballos-Levy also looks for opportunities to mentor students following in her footsteps. She shares her experiences with FIU students as a guest speaker in classrooms or at events. She always shares advice that has served her well in her own career:

“Leave a positive impression with your peers and professors, and be nice to everyone,” Ceballos-Levy said. “The people who you have in class will be the same ones you will encounter in the courtroom opposite you, in the board room or elsewhere in your career.”