From a young age, Michael Patrick O’Brien always wanted to be a lawyer or a writer. He has been fortunate and blessed to be both. Mike is a Catholic writer and lawyer from Salt Lake City, Utah. In 2015, he started writing about his friends the Trappist monks who lived at the now-closed Abbey of the Holy Trinity in Huntsville, Utah. Those efforts resulted in several newspaper articles, a weekly blog (The Boy Monk), and his first book, Monastery Mornings, published by Paraclete Press in August 2021. Mike is now working on several other writing projects, including stories about the monks and their Ogden Valley neighbors and a children’s book about his adventures with the monks.
Mike has been writing and lawyering for most of his adult life. He graduated from Saint Joseph High School in Ogden, where he edited the school newspaper and was on the debate etam. His first real job not involving fast food was working as a cub reporter for his hometown newspaper, The Ogden Standard-Examiner. He wrote for his college newspaper while earning a degree in Government and Theology at the University of Notre Dame. He did movie reviews for a weekly tabloid during and just after law school at the University of Utah.
Since law school, Mike has worked as a partner at the Utah law firm of Parsons Behle & Latimer. He advises business clients on employment issues and represents many news media outlets, including The Salt Lake Tribune and the Utah Media Coalition (including The Deseret News and a number of other Utah media) on various First Amendment and publication matters. He also is a mediator in employment disputes and has served on many local nonprofit boards.
Mike is married to Vicki, a retired preschool teacher. They have three children, Erin Kathleen, Megan Mary, and Daniel Patrick. Erin is a second-grade teacher and her husband Adam Dahlberg teaches grade school technology. Megan is a professional dancer, choreographer, and movement artist. Danny just graduated from college and is an aspiring athletic trainer. Mike also is grateful for a grandson named Wally, two grand puppies, and a large and loving group of extended family and friends.