Jan Dils is the firm’s founder. She opened Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law, in Parkersburg, West Virginia, in 1994 as the solo attorney/employee. Today, she has a skilled and compassionate team of more than 118 serving clients throughout West Virginia, with offices in Parkersburg, Beckley, Charleston, Huntington and Logan, as well as one additional office in Charlotte, North Carolina. Her passion is fighting for people who are all too often left helpless at the hands of corporations, insurance companies, Big Pharma and government red tape. Her firm has 25 years of experience in all forms of Social Security and Disability benefits, Veteran’s Benefits and Personal Injury cases.
As our managing Social Security attorney, Gowan says that giving top priority to each and every client is one of the keys to his success. He enjoys talking with his clients and getting to know them and says that understanding their individual circumstances helps him put together the most effective case possible.
Before joining Jan Dils, Attorneys at Law, Gowan gained an impressive roster of experience in the areas of civil litigation, Social Security and Medicaid. He even co-founded a firm that specialized in Social Security Disability law. As a member of the Jan Dils team, Gowan says that he enjoys the positive environment, efficiency and organization that help everyone work toward the same goal: helping clients receive the benefits they deserve.
Heather E. Vanhoose
Heather graduated from Hobart William Smith colleges (Geneva, New York) in 1999 with a double major in political science and environmental studies. She then attended Roger Williams University School of Law and graduated in 2002. Upon graduation from law school, Heather moved to Washington D.C. and was admitted to the District of Columbia Bar. Not long after that, Heather moved home to West Virginia and practiced law for over four years with the not-for-profit firm Mountain State Justice.
There she focused on helping low-income families with consumer protection issues. Heather joined the Jan Dils team in the summer of 2007 and is now focusing on Social Security and Veterans benefits. Heather is a member of the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives (NOSSCR).
Kelly has a wealth of experience with an extensive civil litigation background. She has prepared hundreds of cases for trial, taking over 50 cases to verdict. She focuses her practice on trial work, including personal injury, product liability, and mass and toxic tort litigation. Kelly provides legal services to clients throughout West Virginia and Ohio, in both state and federal courts.
Kelly is a Parkersburg, West Virginia, native and has strong ties and active commitments to the community. She graduated from Cleveland State University in 1993 with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and a minor in Spanish. Kelly went on to graduate from Capital Law School in 1996. She has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America for Product Liability as well as Mass Tort/Class Action Litigation. Following a vehicle accident while in high school that took the life of her best friend, Kelly knew she wanted to pursue a career that allowed her to help injured victims.
Our Veterans fought for their country. Now, Angie believes it is her turn to fight for them. A member of the Jan Dils legal team since 2009, she helps Veterans obtain disability benefits, providing sound legal advice, skilled representation and, often, some needed encouragement.
Angie is a Pittsburgh native – and a diehard Steelers, Pirates and Penguins fan – who received her undergraduate degree in political science from Westminster College. Angie attended law school at the Duquesne University School of Law in Pittsburgh, where she completed an internship with the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh. She graduated in 2008.
Eric J. Foy
Striving for - and achieving - success is something that comes naturally to Eric J. Foy. His experience and education leave no doubt about his ability to succeed at the highest levels. After graduating with honors from Yale, Eric went on to complete his Juris Doctorate at Harvard Law School, where he also served as Contributing Editor of Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy.
After law school, Eric joined some of the most prestigious law firms in the Northeast and worked in private practice focusing on Social Security Disability, Personal Injury, and Workers’ Compensation.
Harold K. Carpenter
Since joining the Jan Dils team, “H.K.” has spent many hours meticulously preparing each of his cases for hearing. His attention to detail and desire to know each of his clients has been key to the success of his clients’ cases. His clients say that his friendly and reassuring personality made them feel comfortable and at ease during such a trying time.
Before joining the Jan Dils team, H.K. attended West Virginia University. After majoring in psychology, with minors in sociology, philosophy and political science, he earned his law degree from WVU as well. This explains why H.K. is an avid WVU fan!.
From his former position as a disability adjudicator for DDS, Social Security attorney Kevin Walker brings valuable knowledge of the disability process to his current role with the Jan Dils team. He understands what his clients are going through as they fight to obtain their benefits, and helps each person he works with by taking the time to fully explain each step. Kevin cites the positive working atmosphere and his co-workers’ genuine desire to help others as the thing he enjoys most about his new team.
Social Security disability attorney Lee Gyomlai is uniquely positioned to serve our clients, with a mix of military, financial and legal experience.
Originally from Texas where he holds both a legal license and a CPA license, Lee served in the U.S. Air Force and Peace Corps and built his career by working in private industry, public accounting, and trust account management.
His education and work history are incredibly diverse. Lee earned degrees from universities in North Carolina, Texas, and France, and served two years in the Kyrgyz Republic in Central Asia with the Peace Corps. It comes as no surprise that travel is one of his passions. He tries to travel to a new destination each year, adding to the list of over 20 countries that he has visited so far.
Meredith O. Johnstone
With a background that includes representation of Social Security Disability claimants and plaintiffs in personal injury cases, Social Security Attorney Meredith Johnstone brings a unique perspective to her role with the Jan Dils team.
After receiving her BA with honors from University of Kentucky, Lexington, Meredith went on to graduate from the West Virginia University College of Law.She then participated in the Clinical Law Program where she began learning about the rewards of assisting claimants in Social Security Disability claims; and successfully represented her first claimant.
Michelle "Cheli" Hunt
Practicing law is a second career for Cheli, who previously worked as an educator, coach and professional development coordinator, and as the project director for multiple federal educational technology grants in North Carolina. Cheli is the lead appellate brief writer for the firm.
Cheli’s passion for legal research naturally flowed from her professional and educational experiences, and in her second year in law school, she earned a reputation as a strong legal researcher and writer when she discovered pivotal case law that changed the presumed outcome of a class assignment, surprising both the professor and the clerk of the state court of appeals who had written the assignment. Cheli’s work as a federal appellate attorney was predicted by her civil procedure professor, who was convinced Cheli would “grow up” to put her skills to use as a civil litigator.
Attorney Miles Cary has built an incredibly successful career on helping others. But his dedication to the members of our community does not stop when he leaves the office. In fact, he’s often just getting started.
Raised on Charleston, West Virginia’s West Side, Miles graduated from Capital High School in 1997. He went on to attend West Virginia State University, where he was elected Freshman Class President, Sophomore Class President, Mr. West Virginia State and Student Body President. He was also awarded the National Outstanding College Brother of the Year from Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. After graduating from WVSU summa cum laude, he received his JD from West Virginia University College of Law, where he was president of the Student Bar Association.
Patrick Thomas Stealey
Although courtroom experience in West Virginia and Ohio prepared him to embark on his career as a VA Disability attorney, Patrick Stealey was happy to trade in the courtroom for the VA hearing room. As a VA attorney and member of the Jan Dils team in Parkersburg, Patrick has found the perfect home to pursue his passion for working with Veterans to get them the benefits they have earned through their service to their country. Patrick also has two family members who served in the military. His aunt is a United States Air Force Veteran, and his grandfather served in the United States Marine Corps. Drawing on his professional and personal backgrounds, Patrick strives to lessen the burdens of the VA compensation system through collaboration, communication; and compassion.
Associate Lauren Snyder was a member of the West Virginia Law Review. In law school, she received the CALI Award in Appellate Advocacy and Bioethics and the Law. Before joining Jan Dils, she worked in civil defense litigation. She enjoys kayaking, reading, and portrait drawing. Her favorite sports team is the WVU Mountaineers.
Contact Jan Dils
Our attorneys’ work is supported by our professional and dedicated staff members, many of whom also develop close relationships with our clients as we work our way through the applications and appeals that are necessary in some cases.
Contact Our Office for a Free Initial Consultation with a West Virginia Veterans Appeals Lawyer
We invite you to learn more about the backgrounds and qualifications of our attorneys and staff by following the links above. To discuss your specific application for disability benefits, contact us to schedule an appointment to meet with us in one of our four offices or by telephone.