Tracy Meyer is one of Northern Virginia's leading young divorce lawyers, whose poise and fundamental courtroom skills have spurred a remarkably fast rise over the last decade. For a 44-year-old litigator, there's a refreshingly grounded and non-neurotic quality to Meyer - indeed, even after nearly 20 years as a courtroom lawyer in Northern Virginia, Meyer, a Colorado native, remains free of all that East Coast irony and edginess bred into most professionals these days, and common in divorce lawyers. Colleagues say Meyer's high-plains equanimity is "a truly disarming asset" and it conceals, to some extent, a rare competitive fire. Meyer herself acknowledges her natural composure - and competitiveness: "I don't like to lose," she says. At nearly six feet tall, energetic and youthful ("I don't have the gray hair yet, which in our line of work creates a gap in credibility you have to overcome"), she's a presence in the region's courtrooms and is respected already as a skilled negotiator. Today, after several years as a partner at a well known Arlington-based firm, she is the principal divorce practitioner for Bowden Cooch & Meyer.
Growing up "in a very traditional setting" in rural Bennett, Colo., on a farm owned by her family for three generations, Meyer was something of a standout early on: She captained her high school basketball team, earning All-State recognition and was valedictorian of her class of "only 46." She earned a volleyball scholarship to Northern Colorado, but when a knee injury ended her career Freshman year ("that was a bummer"), she focused her areas of study on political science and journalism, graduating from the University Honors Program with the Department Top Scholar award in Political Science, magna cum laude. "I knew at the age of 12 that I wanted to be a lawyer, and I never once deviated from that path." She chose American University's law school sight unseen because "I could think of no better place than Washington, D.C. to learn the law," adding "it was all incredibly exciting for me." Out of law school, Meyer knew "I wanted to be in the courtroom." She joined a solo practitioner in Arlington who "handed me cases right away. I learned how to be resourceful. It was sink or swim." In 1999, she joined the downtown firm of divorce lawyer Sanford Ain; in 2002, already earning a reputation for reliability and competence, she joined the family-law team of James Korman and Carol Schrier-Polak. All along, "I've learned from the very best." She was named a partner at that firm in 2005.
Recently, Meyer joined Bowden Cooch & Meyer as the firm's primary divorce litigator, handling cases from Fairfax to Spotsylvania counties. She serves today too as a neutral case evaluator, rendering third-party opinions for the Fairfax County Circuit Court. In keeping with that role, Meyer owns a steady temperament suited to the judges she appears before; peers say she may have a future on the bench. Further, Meyer handles a much higher number of trials each year than most of her peers in divorce law, especially at this stage in her career. Three years ago, she wed Fredericksburg orthopedic surgeon Dr. John T. Biddulph. They live in Fredericksburg, and enjoy boating and the outdoors. The Colorado family farm, about 40 miles east of Denver, is safe for another generation: Her older brother now runs it.