Gonzalo Fernandez was born in Mendoza, Argentina and moved to the United States as a young child. He grew up in University City, Missouri in a bilingual and bicultural household. He attended St. Louis Priory High School, Boston College and then returned home to St. Louis where he earned his J.D. and an M.B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis in 1989. After graduate school, Gonzalo moved to Chicago, where he worked in the International Trade Department of Baker & McKenzie, the world's largest law firm with over 1,500 lawyers in offices in 150 countries.
Gonzalo is very proud of being the 1,523rd lawyer hired. As a young attorney, Gonzalo wanted to pursue his passion for trial work and left Baker & McKenzie in 1991 to take a position as an assistant prosecuting attorney with the St. Louis Circuit Attorney's Office. By the time he left the prosecutor's office, he had been named to the Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Unit and Special Victims Panel and tried over 100 cases. Gonzalo then took a position as Associate General Counsel with Anheuser Busch Companies, where he worked closely with the company's sales and marketing teams. Two years later, he founded his own law firm focusing his practice on civil and criminal litigation. In July 2000, Gonzalo merged his law practice with the law firm of Devereaux, Stokes & Nolan, a long-standing firm that focuses on plaintiff's medical malpractice and personal injury litigation.
Gonzalo is now a partner at the firm of Devereaux, Stokes, Nolan Fernandez & Leonard, where he focuses almost exclusively on catastrophic injury cases on behalf of victims and their families. He is a member of the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys, the American Association for Justice, the Hispanic Bar Association, the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, the St. Louis Lawyers Association, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys. He is licensed to practice law in the states of Missouri, Illinois, and Colorado. Gonzalo has received numerous awards and recognitions including membership in Superlawyers, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, repeated selection to Top Attorneys in Missouri and Kansas as well as Best Lawyers in St. Louis as published by Alive Magazine.
Gonzalo's fluency in Spanish has resulted in his building up a practice in which he represents a large number of Hispanics. Due to the varied needs of this client base, his practice includes not only civil trial work but also immigration and criminal defense. Gonzalo has been a member of the Federal Court's Lead Panel of criminal defense attorneys, where he accepts appointments to defend mostly non-English speaking Hispanics charged with Federal crimes in the Eastern District of Missouri. Gonzalo has represented the Government of Mexico for many years through its Consular Office in Missouri, and has worked with the local Mexican consulate in setting up a fund to provide free legal services to Mexican nationals in the St. Louis area who could not otherwise afford representation. Gonzalo focuses his practice on factually complicated personal injury litigation and has tried more than 50 cases to verdict before a jury.
Gonzalo is also active in his community and currently serves as the President of the Hispanic National Bar Association's Region that includes the State of Missouri as well as Chair of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis' Committee on Minorities in the Law. Gonzalo has also served on the board of directors for the St. Louis Downtown YMCA, the board of Accion Social Comunitaria, a grassroots organization committed to providing medical care and social services to the growing Hispanic population in the St. Louis area, and the board of directors of the St. Louis Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Gonzalo has been involved for many years with Project Kids, an organization that sets up a mentoring program between young professionals and needy at-risk children in East St. Louis. Most recently, Gonzalo has served on the Board of the Friends of the Children’s Eternal Rain Forest, the largest private environmental reserve in Costa Rica, and is currently on the Board of Trustees of John Burroughs School in St. Louis. Gonzalo appears regularly on Spanish language radio and television broadcasts designed to educate the Hispanic community on legal issues affecting their lives and lectures at Spanish parishes on recent changes in immigration laws and enforcement as well as on KMOX and various television news outlets. Gonzalo continues to dedicate his practice to civil plaintiff's personal injury litigation and serving the needs of the growing Latino community in the St. Louis area.
Areas of Practice
- Civil Plaintiff’s Personal Injury Litigation
- Wrongful Death
- Medical Malpractice
- Dangerous Products
- Civil Rights/Police Abuse
- Missouri, 1990
- Illinois, 1989
- Colorado, 2001
- Boston College B.A. - 1985
- Washington University School of Law, St. Louis, Missouri J.D. - 1989
- Washington University in St. Louis MBA - 1989
Professional Associations, Memberships and Honors
- Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys
- The American Association for Justice
- Million Dollar Advocates Forum Association
- Hispanic National Bar
- Hispanic Bar Association Of St. Louis
- Top Attorneys In Missouri and Kansas
- Best Lawyers Alive Magazine
- Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, Chair
- St. Louis Hispanic Chamber of Commerce