Todd Nelson grew up on Harkers Island, NC, graduating from East Carteret High School. Upon graduation, he received an appointment to the United States Coast Guard Academy in New London, CT. Todd served 20 years as a Coast Guard officer, rising to the rank of Commander and filling key leadership and command positions. While serving as the second in command at Coast Guard Group Fort Macon, the Coast Guard selected Todd to attend law school to become a lawyer for the Coast Guard. Subsequently, he graduated from the University of Miami School of Law in the top 10 of his class. As a member of the Coast Guard Judge Advocate program, Todd’s law practice included prosecuting criminal cases, providing legal advice on Coast Guard missions and activities, and advising Coast Guard service members and their families in their personal legal matters. His legal career in the Coast Guard concluded as the Chief Legal Officer at the United States Coast Guard Academy.

Upon leaving the Coast Guard, Todd continued his passion for service and helping others by serving as a teacher in the Carteret County School system. While practicing law remained in his future, Todd’s desire to give back to the community that gave him his start in life led to 11 years of successful teaching, coaching, and leading the area’s youth in the classroom and in life.

In 2016, Todd decided the time was right for him to go back to what he loved…practicing law. Todd passed the North Carolina Bar and began the journey to open Nelson Law, PLLC. A commitment to helping Carteret County families plan for and respond to life’s challenges is why Todd decided to open this firm. The Firm’s mission is to provide affordable, client-focused, expert legal options for those who call Carteret County and eastern North Carolina home!

Todd’s devotion to service and commitment to helping those in need has been evident throughout his professional and personal life. He intends that this firm will continue that lifelong pursuit and will give his best for you!


  • University of Miami School of Law, Coral Gables, FL- Juris Doctor, Graduating Magna Cum Laude & a member of the Order of the Coif (legal honor society)
  • Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL- Masters of Business Administration, Graduating with High Honors
  • United States Coast Guard Academy, New London, CT- Bachelors of Science, Marine Science

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • North Carolina Bar Association – Member
  • District of Columbia Bar Association – Member
  • Florida Bar Association – Inactive Member
  • Carteret County Bar Association – Member
  • National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys – Member

Practice Areas

  • Education Law
  • Elder & Special Needs Law
  • Estate Planning and Administration
  • Family Law
  • General Business Law
  • Traffic