Bret was born and raised in Arizona. He grew up in Prescott and attended Northern Arizona University (NAU), graduating in 1992. He instantly fell in love with the Northwest during his first trip to Oregon and attended law school at Willamette University, graduating in 1995. At Willamette, he was a published author for the Willamette Law Review and was also on the Moot Court team.
Bret began his legal career in 1995 in Bellingham as a criminal prosecutor. He had the great fortune of meeting Eric Roy in 1997. The two of them practiced together in the satellite office of Seattle law firm Julin Fosso before starting their own firm, Roy & Simmons, on January 1, 1999. They remained law partners and great friends until Eric’s untimely death from brain cancer at age 52 in 2016.
Bret is an experienced civil trial attorney focusing on school district and city defense, insurance defense, personal injury and commercial litigation. He has tried over 40 jury trials in 7 Washington counties, has arbitrated over 150 cases and argued several times at the Washington Court of Appeals and Washington Supreme Court. His mentors were his dad, a former trial attorney in Arizona (and combat Marine in Vietnam), and his former law partner, Eric Roy. They taught him the importance of being prepared, effectively determining what is important from what does not matter and engaging in tough advocacy while being respectful to the other lawyers and parties. Bret has spent over 24 years successfully arguing cases to juries, judges and arbitrators.
When not practicing law, Bret enjoys spending time with his family, playing drums and engaging in outdoor pursuits such as hiking, running, backpacking, fly fishing, river rafting, sea kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding. He was a long-time board member of the Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association and is a founding member of the Liam Wood Fly Fishers and River Guardians.