Joseph A. Malizia (Joe) is not a fan of bullies. Professionally, he is equal parts zealous advocate and compassionate human being. Due to his unique background, Joe is very familiar with a wide variety of legal challenges both inside and outside the courtroom. He joined Goodsell + Oviatt, LLP in May of 2021 and focuses on personal injury, insurance bad faith, business litigation, and government affairs.
Joe is originally from Emporium, Pennsylvania, a small town located in the rural stretches of the North Central region of the state. He is a 2002 graduate of Cameron County High School; a 2007 graduate of Edinboro University of Pennsylvania (B.A. Political Science, summa cum laude); and a 2011 graduate of The Pennsylvania State University Dickinson School of Law.
Joe is also a veteran who served 15 years in the U.S. Marine Corps. He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve in 2002 and achieved the rank of sergeant by 2007 while serving at his unit in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the fall of 2008. Following graduation from law school in 2011, he entered active duty and served as a Judge Advocate in Okinawa, Japan and Quantico, Virginia before being honorably discharged in 2017 as a captain. While serving as an officer, Joe also graduated from the Expeditionary Warfare School, Marine Corps University.
After leaving the Marine Corps in 2017, Joe worked at the family firm of Malizia & Malizia PC in his hometown 2017 to 2019. In early, 2020, he and his wife relocated to State College, Pennsylvania where Joe maintained a solo private practice. In late 2020, Joe and Martha, his wife, made the decision to leave their native Central Pennsylvania and head west. They arrived in South Dakota in early 2021 with Joe joining Goodsell + Oviatt LLP and Martha beginning work for a federal government agency as a dentist shortly thereafter.
Joe has a broad array of interests and hobbies. In college, he was a student athlete who played NCAA Division II football for four years, helping the Edinboro University Fighting Scots to achieve back-to-back-to-back league titles from 2003 to 2005. He was also actively involved in student government and served as its president in the fall of 2007. In law school, he was a high-achieving participant in both mock trial and appellate competitions and was named to the Order of Barristers Honor Society. His other notable awards, decorations, and distinctions include being a Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Scholar Athlete (2003-2006), Judge Alexander F. Barbieri Administrative Law Award (2011), and a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (2017).
Joe is licensed to practice law in South Dakota, Pennsylvania, the Federal District Court for South Dakota, and the Western District of Pennsylvania Federal Court. He is also certified to practice before military tribunals arising under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. He is a member of the South Dakota Bar Association, the South Dakota Trial Lawyers Association, the Pennington County Bar Association, the American Bar Association, the Pennsylvania Bar Association, and the American Association for Justice.
In his spare time, Joe enjoys music, community involvement, hunting and fishing, and riding his motorcycle with Martha in the sidecar.