Jill-of-all-trades: Anastasia Boyko returns to her Utah roots

Aug 29, 2023 | Alumni

by Lindsay Wilcox

Anastasia Boyko, a white woman with long blonde hair wearing a black sheath dress
Photo by Stephanie Marwil

Anastasia Boyko considers herself a jill-of-all-trades because she’s held many different roles, including law librarian, Supreme Court intern, tax lawyer, banker, yoga teacher, wellness entrepreneur, career coach, leadership dean, teacher, fundraiser, and consultant. Now, as director of non-JD programs at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, Anastasia is transforming herself again.

“I often say that I have Goldilocks-ed through my career, since I have tried a lot of different things. Some have fit and others have not, but I wouldn’t know which is which without trying them on. Every work experience has informed my future roles and multidisciplinary approach to problem solving,” she says. “The common thread of my career is that I am obsessed with how we teach and train lawyers and prepare them to lead. More than anything, I am passionate about facilitating the success of others through innovation and unicorn talent.”

In 2018, the dean at Yale Law School asked Anastasia to return to her alma mater to build a new leadership program for lawyers with no blueprint or budget, which she says was a thrilling opportunity.

“It allowed me the chance to reimagine what law school should look like and to implement the many learnings from my tours in private practice, bar association committees, legal services management, in-house talent management, and legal tech and innovation,” Anastasia recalls. “The goal was to help students be more intentional and deliberate about their careers. After building the program and raising a record amount of endowed funding for its future success, I became the first leadership dean at the school. It was a career-defining experience and one that finally pulled together perfectly my prior varied experiences.”

Now that she’s in a brand-new role at S.J. Quinney, Anastasia is excited to jump in with both feet.

“I’ve spent the last two decades thinking about how to improve the legal profession for both lawyers and non-lawyers through the JD lens. But the pool of people who want to help improve the profession and society at large is much larger than those getting a JD,” Anastasia says. “I am excited to look at how we can create an ecosystem through non-JD programs to enable professionals with skills to make the law more accessible to everyone. The current opportunity to create different offerings is further enhanced by Utah’s existing entrepreneurial ecosystem and our flexible regulatory sandbox model, which gives us a chance to experiment with different ways to provide legal services to our community and expand access to justice.”

As she sees the Master of Legal Studies (MLS) and microcredential programs as different entry points for those interested in law, Anastasia says the two options allow someone to understand the rules and regulations that impact their industry and that they can then decide whether they want to pursue a JD.

“The feedback we hear consistently from our MLS graduates is that the experience was an invaluable way to get familiar with the law and how it impacts their current jobs and their lives. This degree helped them to reason through problems and improve their writing to be stronger thinkers and better problem-solvers,” Anastasia expresses. “My hope is that by integrating the MLS and microcredential offerings into the existing JD offering, we can provide a menu of learning options for students of all ages and interests with regard to the law. This will also have benefits beyond their careers and will positively impact our civic fabric and undergird democratic principles.”

Anastasia says she is thrilled to be back in Utah and at the U, where she spent her undergraduate days and plenty of hours in the old law building.

“At the end of the day, working with kind and smart people is what makes work fulfilling. The people I have met at SJQ are genuinely kind, hard-working, and entrepreneurial, and that is a gift,” she says. “I was born to coal miners in Soviet Ukraine and then got the opportunity to build a new life in America, randomly being placed in Salt Lake City. I am the child of courageous and hard-working parents who sacrificed everything to set me up for success. I’m excited to work with students across the law school. I’m committed to partnering with my colleagues at the College of Law and across the university to fashion a robust offering for anyone wanting to learn the law and its role in improving our lives and bettering our communities.”

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