Special to The Persian Observer
By Fred Parvaneh
June 4, 2018
Iranian-American Nadia Davari is a Scientist turned Attorney. An experienced Lawyer whose practice bridges entertainment, new media, corporate and business law, Nadia works with a wide range of clients including Digital Media companies, new business start-ups, production companies, movie studios, television networks and investors.
Nadia practiced law as an associate with the law firms of Rosen and Anderson and later Barnes Morris. She is currently the Managing Partner at Nadia Davari, Esq.
Nadia graduated from UCLA with a B.S. in Molecular Biology and later attended USC Law School where she participated in the Hale Moot Court Honors program.
Nadia is a member of Beverly Hills and Los Angeles County Bar Association and is a regular guest lecturer at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts.
We recently had a chance to speak to Nadia about her career and thoughts on Iran.
Fred Parvaneh : Please tell us about your background. Were you born in Tehran? What were the circumstances that led your family move to the U.S. (residing in Los Angeles)? What are your (both positive and negative) memories of Iran? Have you traveled back there recently?
Nadia Davari : I was born in Tehran. When we left Iran, I was a very young girl attending a heavily academic all-girls school. I enjoyed life, my friends, my classes, and my relatives. I also loved the esthetics and the topography of the city of Tehran. We initially came to the USA because my older brother was preparing to attend university. My father started working here and my parents decided to stay so the family could remain together. We all missed Iran and my parents had a very hard time convincing me to stay.
I am now very Iranian-American, appreciate both cultures and consider myself as being a part of both. I recently visited Iran after being away most of my life and I enjoyed my visit immensely.
FP : You are currently a practicing attorney, yet your B.S. from UCLA is in Molecular, Cell, and Development Biology and Genetics. Why the change of mind? What led you to Law School ?
Nadia Davari : Often times, students wanting to attend Law School select a Humanities degree or a similar program for their undergraduate degree. For instance, there are those who want to be Patent Attorneys that select a technical or science undergraduate degree before going to Law School.
In my case, I have always loved science and math. From a young age, I was encouraged to think about medical school. When I was at UCLA, preparing for my applications to medical school, I decided to volunteer in the hospital. That’s when I changed my mind. I could not bear seeing all of that suffering. I briefly thought about other healthcare related fields but I was not interested in any. One day as I was talking to a friend who was attending UCLA Law School, I decided to take the LSAT (the Law School Admissions Test). I actually, liked studying and taking the exam. It was just a series of puzzles and riddles. That’s when I decided to apply to Law School. As a medical doctor, one is in the practice of taking care of patients and their health. As an attorney, I feel like I am doing the same but in a different way. I counsel and protect my clients.
FP : You are a partner in a law firm that is well known in the media industry and have secured a reputation as an expert in entertainment law. How did this focus come about? What are your thoughts on your status and your affiliations with Hollywood celebrities?
Nadia Davari : When I was at USC Law School, I took an Entertainment Law class that was taught by practitioners. I enjoyed everything about it. I realized that Entertainment Law is an amalgam of many of my interests. It involves Intellectual Property, deal making, negotiating, interpersonal skills, creativity in resolving issues, and protecting clients. It is definitely not an area of practice for the weak of heart but that’s one of the reasons I wanted a career in entertainment law. I thrive on proving everyone wrong. The more I hear “no” the more I get motivated.
This may seem cliché, but for most of us who do this for a living, we don’t think of it as interacting with celebrities per se. They are just clients with work that needs to get done.
FP : In our earlier conversations you seemed very passionate about developing good relations between USA and Iran. How did this advocacy come about and are there any charities or movements that you are involved in?
Nadia Davari : Iran is a country with a long history and a rich culture. The points that we have in common far outweigh the differences. I know that Iranians, for the most part, love Americans and the West and want to be a part of the world dialogue. The majority of Iranians are born after the Revolution of 1979. They are the generation of social media. It’s time to move on and to come together through conversation, art, culture, and points of interests rather than the same old tired rhetoric of fear. We need to talk to resolve issues and to facilitate change.
My interests are diverse. I am involved in a number of cultural organizations. Also, I am working to join a political organization to represent our voice and concerns as Iranian-Americans. I also work with a group of physicians who have a foundation for raising awareness and money, conducting research, and finding cures for brain related sciences and diseases.
FP : What are you most proud of so far both in your personal life and professional career?
Nadia Davari : I am proud that I have never compromised my beliefs or integrity. I am proud that I have kept my promises to myself and achieved and done the things that I promised myself I would do. I am proud that I am able to help and contribute to the lives of my clients. I am also grateful that I have had this opportunity. I thank my mom for being the guiding angel of my life.
FP : What are your future aspirations and where do you see yourself in the next 10 years both professionally and personally?
Nadia Davari : I hope that I remain healthy, and able to continue to do what I am doing now, and to contribute and make the world a better place even if it’s in the smallest way possible. I also aspire to produce a movie or two that you will want to watch. I actually don’t think these are lofty ideas. I think it is possible to achieve these goals.
FP : If you can give one message to our readers, what will it be?
Nadia Davari : Sometimes it takes a while to decide what it is that you want to do. Not everyone is on the same timeline or pre-determined path. I have come to believe that it is far better to take the time to ‘figure things out’ than to regret.
Follow Nadia Davari on Twitter @NadiaDavari and Instagram @Nadia.Davari