Felix Neboh and his three brothers have always tried to make their parents proud and he is hoping to be sworn in recently as a Texas attorney accomplished that goal for him.
Eugene Neboh is in his senior year of pharmacy school at Southwestern Oklahoma State University; Richard Neboh is currently trying to get into medical school. and Dexter Neboh is a student at Odessa College.
Her parents are Stella Neboh, a pharmacist, and Eugene Neboh, a respiratory therapist.
A 2010 Permian High School graduate, Felix and his brothers played soccer throughout high school. Felix was a broad receiver and also played in college.
Neboh, 28, recently joined the DeAnda and Sarabia law firm in Odessa. The firm mainly deals with criminal defense, personal injury and family law. In addition to the Odessa office, there is one in Midland.
Neboh began his college education at the University of Texas at El Paso and moved to Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, where he completed a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice with a minor in political science in 2015.
He graduated from Oklahoma City University with a law degree. Neboh was sworn in by 446th District Judge Sara Kate Billingsley.
The ceremony was a “top five experience” in his life because of all the work he put into it.
Neboh has a daughter who turned 1 in November.
“… Studying for the bar was definitely hectic. I had just had a little girl at the time, so I really had to balance to study for the bar alongside my dad. … ”
Neboh took a two-year hiatus between college and law school; Part of that was spent making his soccer dreams come true, and part was running a shoe shop.
His mother Stella accused him of not running a shoe store in his entire life. A fan of Law & Order and other cop shows, Neboh said he knew he wanted to do something in the criminal justice system and eventually decided to study law.
“… I had dreams of playing professional football, but I needed a backup plan. It doesn’t always work that way. I knew I wanted to do something in this area. I wasn’t exactly sure what to do until I graduate … ”said Neboh.
His first year in law school was challenging because of the pressure on students. It’s not just about listening to the teacher. They pepper you with questions about cases.
“… it’s all up to you, so you have to be really, really prepared for class …” said Neboh.
Neboh graduated from law school in May and prepared for his bar exam from May to September. He took the bar exam in New Mexico and carried his score over to Texas.
“So I’m actually licensed in New Mexico and Texas.”
“I passed New Mexico and my score was high enough to transfer to Texas,” said Neboh.
Right now, most of the cases he’s working on are virtual. Neboh said he doesn’t expect to be on trial until about June.
He said he was looking forward to a personal court.
“Because (with) technology you never know when it’s going to mess up and that’s the bad thing. Communicating with customers on a computer is very different from leaning over them and being able to tell them something. … I’m really looking forward to being in an actual courtroom because I haven’t been able to do that since I was licensed. All I’ve done is through Zoom, so I definitely look forward to getting back to court. “
Neboh was born in Odessa and grew up there. He said it was easy for him to return. He said his parents are known in the community and that he and his brothers have always felt supported here.
The law, he said, never seems to end, and you can never get too complacent or learn too much.
“… I really just look forward to practicing and learning through experience. … This is my first year, so learning from people who have been doing it for over 10 years … I’m really looking forward to that, “said Neboh.
His advice to younger people is to dream big but always have a backup plan.
“… You can really do anything you want, no matter where you come from. It doesn’t matter if you’re from little Odessa or Houston. If you want something bad, or if you are able to do work or are willing to do work, anything can be achieved. You shouldn’t let your location try to define where you are going or how high your ceiling is as I never did. Always be proud of where you are from. I know Odessa is not much, but as I said, it’s home and I carry it with me wherever I am. “
Sarabia said Neboh had real drive and passion. His desire to help his community also made him unique.
“… There are other candidates I’ve spoken to and it’s very clear that they want to learn that they want to be a good lawyer, but their secondary goal is to go. We will return to work in Dallas and Houston and improve these communities, ”Sarabia said.
“(With Felix) All of his questions revolved around the Permian Basin in Odessa-Midland. And his focus was on getting back here, staying here and really being a pillar of the community and being a professional in the community. It means a lot to me because I wasn’t born here but grew up here and went to Odessa High and went to Lubbock and came back right away. Then that was my goal, too, and it’s a real response for me when someone wants to come back and take part. He’s a trainer. He’s helping kids train, which is amazing to me, and he’s already involved in the community where most people really don’t have that type of contact. “
Sarabia said he felt Neboh would go far.
“He’s a shooting star,” said Sarabia.
Wherever Neboh lands, he said, he’ll go high and far because he’s smart and sharp.
“He’s learning at a rate that impresses me for a freshman lawyer. He accepts challenges. He doesn’t back down from a challenge. Even now, we are still in the few days he was licensed and he just accepts these challenges and is ready to go. He is ready to enter this courtroom when we go into the courtroom. He’s already with Zoom and is currently handling more controversial hearings than I did in my first six months as a licensed attorney, ”Sarabia said.
“We are his biggest supporters. We want him to succeed, not just because he’s part of the law firm, but just because we need great lawyers in this community, ”he added.