News

June News from Local YLD Affiliates

American Bar Association YLD – The ABA YLD Annual Meeting will be held in Chicago Aug. 2 to 5. The event features three days of learning and networking and the installation of new officers. The group’s last meeting took place in Nashville in May. Read a report of that event. For general information about the ABA YLD contact Matt Potempa at matt@potempafirm.com or (615) 255-5007.

Blount County Bar Association YLD – For more information about the Blount County YLD contact president George Maifair at george@grmbankruptcy.com or (865) 323-6719.

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Wills for Heroes Clinics Planned for August, September

The following Wills for Heroes events have been scheduled across the state. Please contact the event organizer for more details or to volunteer. To get involved in the Wills for Heroes Committee or to request a clinic in your area, please contact committee chair Bradley Carter at bcarter@runyonandrunyon.com. Learn more about the Wills for Heroes program

Cookeville, Aug. 18
Location: TBD
Contact: Rachel Moses, rmoses@las.org, (931) 528-7436

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YLD Wins Grant for DLI Program

The TBA YLD has been awarded a grant from the American Bar Association YLD to support its Diversity Leadership Institute, a six-month mentoring and leadership program for law students in Tennessee. Special thanks goes to Nashville lawyer Nikylan Knapper with the U.S. Department of Labor, who prepared the grant application. The DLI program, coordinated by the YLD Diversity Committee, will accept applications for the 2013 class this fall. Learn more about the program

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New Lawyers Join the Practice

TBA YLD members were on hand earlier this month as some 60 new lawyers took part in swearing in ceremonies at War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville. Following introductions and administration of the oath by Chief Justice Connie Clark, the group heard remarks from each justice and TBA President Jackie Dixon. Over 100 of the new lawyers and their families then attended an open house and luncheon at the Tennessee Bar Center. See photos from the event or the list of all new lawyers admitted

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Fellows Induct New Members, Honor Larry Wilks

The TBA YLD Fellows held its annual meeting, presented its annual service award and inducted new members at the YLD & Fellows Dinner, held in conjunction with the TBA Convention. New officers elected were President Angelia Morie Nystrom with the University of Tennessee in Knoxville; Vice President Andrew V. Sellers with Purcell Sellers & Craig in Jackson; Secretary Charlotte Knight Griffin with Memphis Light, Gas & Water in Memphis; and Treasurer J. Russell Parkes with Hardin, Parkes, Kelley & Carter in Columbia. Cynthia Richardson Wyrick with Ogle, Gass & Richardson in Sevierville assumed the office of immediate past president. Read more and see photos from the event.

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Service Project, Graduation Wrap Up 2012 DLI Program

Law students participating in the YLD’s Diversity Leadership Institute joined lawyers across the state at the TBA Convention in Memphis earlier this month. The group’s activities included a final program that featured young lawyers discussing what they wish they had known when transitioning from law school to law practice and a “speed networking” session with the panelists. Speakers included Mary Beard with FedEx Corporation in Memphis; Robert Gatewood with Farmers Insurance in Memphis; Rachel Moses with the Legal Aid Society in Cookeville; Alexander Wharton with The Wharton Law Firm in Memphis; Paul Whitt with Lewis, King, Krieg & Waldrop PC in Knoxville; and Brian Winfrey with The Winfrey Firm in Nashville. Read more and see photos from the group's activities.

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David Veile Takes Office as YLD President

David Veile of the Franklin firm of Schell Binkley & Davies LLC took office as TBA YLD president at the division’s annual meeting June 8 in Memphis. Immediate Past President Mason W. Wilson of Memphis was on hand to pass the gavel to Veile. At the meeting, Veile laid out his vision for the coming year. Responding to TBA President Jackie Dixon's plans to improve mentoring and ramp up public education efforts this year, Veile pledged the YLD's support for a more comprehensive TBA mentoring program and for the Law Rules project, which equips lawyers with the information they need to make presentations about the legal system to schools, civics organizations, churches and other community groups.

Veile also pledged to continue the YLD's successful service programs -- including the high school mock trial competition, Wills for Heroes clinics, iCivics training for teachers, Law Day themed-contests and Statewide Public Service Day projects -- as well as serving Tennessee law students through the Judicial Internship Program and Diversity Leadership Institute, and serving young lawyers with quality CLE, skills training and networking opportunities.

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5 Lawyers Named as Emerging Leader Award Finalists

The Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and YP Nashville have named finalists for the 2012 Nashville Emerging Leader Awards. In the legal services category, the following five Nashville lawyers were announced: Rachel Bell with Bell & Kinslow PLLC; Christy Crider with Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz PC; Kolin Holladay with Adams and Reese LLP; James Mackler with Bone, McAllester, Norton PLLC; and Matt Potempa with the Law Office of Matt Potempa PLLC. A networking reception with the nominees will take place June 28 at the Bound’ry. Winners in each category will be announced on July 26 at an awards ceremony at Lipscomb University’s Collins Alumni Auditorium.

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Ceremony Welcomes New Lawyers to Practice

Members of the Tennessee Supreme Court today welcomed the latest class of attorneys to join the practice of law in Tennessee. About 60 new lawyers took part in the ceremonies at War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville. Following introductions and administration of the oath by Chief Justice Connie Clark, the group heard remarks from each justice and TBA President Jackie Dixon. An open house and luncheon at the Tennessee Bar Center followed the ceremonies.

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YLD Award Winners Recognized at 2012 Board & Fellows Dinner

Members of the outgoing TBA Young Lawyers Division Board gathered on June 8 for a final dinner and award ceremony recognizing service during the past year. The event also featured the annual meeting of the TBA YLD Fellows and a graduation ceremony of the Diversity Leadership Institute class. In what has become a tradition, the evening ended with a gavel pass from all former YLD presidents in attendance to incoming president David Veile of Franklin. Photos taken by Barry Kolar and Stacey Shrader

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David Veile Takes Office as YLD President

David Veile, with the Franklin firm of Schell Binkley & Davies LLC, took office as the TBA Young Lawyers Division (YLD) president at the division’s annual meeting June 8. Also taking office were President-Elect David McDowell of Chattanooga, Vice President Stacie Winkler of Memphis, Secretary Marisa Combs of Nashville and Treasurer Steven King of Memphis. Two contested elections were decided at the meeting, with Knoxville lawyer Paul Whitt retaining his seat as East Tennessee Governor and Nashville lawyer Mary Beth Haltom being reelected as Middle Tennessee Governor. Jackson lawyer Ashley Holliday was elected to fill a vacancy for West Tennessee Governor. Members of the outgoing TBA YLD Board gathered that evening for an award ceremony

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Service Project and Graduation Wrap Up Law Student Leadership Class

Law students participating in the TBA Young Lawyers Division's Diversity Leadership Institute (DLI) met today in Memphis for a final program and graduation. The class attended the annual Lawyers Lunch and then spent the afternoon at the National Civil Rights Museum learning about the role the city of Memphis played in the civil rights struggles of the 1960s. On Saturday, the group will hear from a panel of young lawyers discussing what they wish they had known when transitioning from law school to law practice and will have the opportunity to do some “speed networking.” Later in the day, the class will participate in a cleanup and painting project at a local Boys and Girls Club. The class graduation ceremony also will take place this weekend in conjunction with the TBA’s annual convention. Learn more about the DLI

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Employment for Law Grads Hits 18-Year Low

The law school class of 2011 has more depressing news as employment hit an 18-year low, according to data released yesterday by NALP. Nine months after graduation, 85.6 percent had jobs, but not quite 66 percent of them had jobs that required a law degree. This is down 9 percent since 2008. Only 12.5 percent had jobs that preferred but did not require a law degree, up from 10.7 percent for the class of 2010. The National Law Journal has more

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May News From Local YLD Affiliates

American Bar Association YLD – The 2012 ABA Spring Conference that took place in Nashville May 3–5 was a great success. The conference brought together over 325 young lawyers and legal experts from all practice areas and practice settings as well as from six countries. At the meeting, the TBA YLD was named a top four finalist for the “Next Steps Challenge,” which was created to recognize the best YLD affiliate diversity pipeline programs. The TBA YLD’s own Stacie Winkler and Matt Potempa were recognized as Stars of the Quarter for their work planning the meeting. For information about the ABA YLD or to get involved contact Matt Potempa at matt@potempafirm.com or (615) 255-5007.

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Make Plans for Celebrate Pro Bono 2012

Bar associations and legal organizations across the country will hold pro bono clinics and events as part of the national Celebrate Pro Bono effort this fall. The official Celebrate Pro Bono week will be Oct. 21–27, but Tennessee lawyers will hold events all month long. If you are interested in organizing an event in your area contact TBA Access to Justice Coordinator Sarah Hayman or call (615) 383-7421.

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Next Wills for Heroes Set for Sept. 22

The following Wills for Heroes events have been scheduled across the state. Please contact the event organizer for more details or to volunteer. To get involved in the Wills for Heroes Committee or to request a clinic in your area, please contact committee chair Bradley Carter.

Lebanon, Sept. 22
Location: Tressler & Associates PLLC, 212 North Castle Heights Ave.
Contact: Todd Tressler, (615) 444-2345.

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Register Today for 2012 Convention

Pre-registration closes today for the TBA's 131st Annual Convention, scheduled for June 6-9 at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis! Don’t miss this chance to join your colleagues for the largest annual gathering of the Tennessee legal community. This year's event is packed with interesting programming and fun activities. Highlights include a visit to the famed Stax Records Museum of American Soul Music, a Bench/Bar luncheon featuring Bill Courtney, the dynamic coach at the center of the Academy Award winning documentary "Undefeated," and high-quality CLE programming on the new Code of Judicial Conduct, tips for growing your practice and more. The TBA YLD will hold its annual membership meeting and elections on Friday, June 8, at 4 p.m. at the hotel. All members are invited! Learn more and register online

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McCallie Places in Top 20 at National Mock Trial

The McCallie School of Chattanooga represented the state of Tennessee at the 2012 National High School Mock Trial Championship in Albuquerque earlier this month, placing 16th out of 46 teams. In addition, McCallie student Christian Talley was named one of seven outstanding attorneys in the competition. The Tennessee team squared off against schools from Alabama and Kansas, as well as St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic from Guam, which placed eighth in the competition, and Hinsdale Central from Illinois, which placed ninth. The case, which the students had just one month to learn, centered on the assassination of a Department of Homeland Security agent by a former CIA operative who had taken up contracting work. Following apprehension, the assassin turned informant and testified against a U.S. congressman accused of covering up a million-dollar fraud involving the theft of natural gas. Read more about the team in the Chattanoogan

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Tennessee Lawyers Turn out for ABA YLD Meeting

The American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division held its spring meeting in Nashville earlier this month. During the weekend, Nashville lawyer Matt Potempa and Knoxville lawyer Troy Weston organized a Project Salute clinic to help veterans obtain federal benefits. Lawyers from across the country gathered at Operation Stand Down in south Nashville to serve more than 20 veterans. Also during the meeting, Memphis lawyer and YLD Diversity Committee Chair Ahsaki Baptist spoke to attendees about the YLD’s Diversity Leadership Institute – a six-month leadership and mentoring program for diverse law students. The program was named one of four finalists for the ABA’s Next Steps Challenge Grant. TBA YLD President Mason Wilson was on hand to accept the award for that recognition.

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YLD Election Set for Next Week

All members of the Young Lawyers Division are invited to attend the YLD Annual Meeting and Elections set for next Friday, June 8, in Memphis. The meeting will take place at 4:30 p.m. in the Hernando DeSoto Room of the Peabody Hotel. The hotel is located at 149 Union Ave. in downtown Memphis. Members will decide the outcome of two contested elections, one for East Tennessee Governor and one for Middle Tennessee Governor. Learn about the following candidates on the YLD's election page:

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CASA Fundraiser a Success

The Jackson-Madison County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division raised money for the local CASA agency with a wine tasting event last week. The event drew about 100 people to support CASA, which advocates for neglected and abused children in the court system. The Jackson Sun covered the event, which sponsors hoped would raise $3,000 for the agency.

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Jackson YLD Hosts Wine Tasting for CASA Tomorrow

The Jackson-Madison County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division will host "Pour Your Heart Out for CASA" tomorrow, May 24, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Charlie Bulldog's in downtown Jackson to benefit Madison County CASA. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Admission includes appetizers and various types of wine to sample. Contact YLD President Terica Smith at (731) 426-1337 or terica@wtls.org for more information or to buy tickets.

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Advice: How Young Women Lawyers Can Succeed

The number of female lawyers in large law firms doesn’t tell the whole story, as the tally for female lawyers in leadership positions is still "depressingly low," says Colin O'Keefe, who is editorial manager at LexBlog Inc. He interviews attorney-mediator and Forbes blogger Victoria Pynchon about the numbers and the hope they give. If you want the law to be your career, she says to young female lawyers, and if you want to practice the most sophisticated and complex law with the brightest people in the world, here’s some good advice for you. Watch the interview from Forbes

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Memphis Lawyer Finds Unique Path to the Law

After spending three years in Washington, D.C., as a writer and editor focused on the pharmaceutical industry, Memphis native Adam Eckstein realized that "lawyers could accomplish a lot in their day-to-day activity" and decided to pursue a career in the law. He earned a degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law and returned to Memphis to clerk for Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Janice Holder. After his clerkship he accepted an offer to join Martin, Tate, Morrow & Marston because firm lawyers seemed "thrilled" to be there and "genuinely excited" about their work. He hopes it will be a place to grow personally and professionally. Read more about his journey in the Memphis Daily News

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McCallie Places in Top 20 at National Mock Trial

The McCallie School of Chattanooga finished in the top 20 at the 2012 National High School Mock Trial Championship in Albuquerque last week, placing 16th out of 46 teams. In addition, McCallie student Christian Talley was named one of seven outstanding attorneys in the competition. The case, which students had just a month to learn, centered on the assassination of a Department of Homeland Security agent by a former CIA operative who had taken up contracting work. Following apprehension, the assassin turned informant and testified against a U.S. congressman accused of covering up a million-dollar fraud involving the theft of natural gas. Read more about the team's experience in The Chattanoogan

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