News

House Sends Student Loan Agreement to President

The House sent President Barack Obama legislation that prevents interest rates in new federal student loans from doubling. The bill, which has been approved by the Senate, passed by a 392-31 vote yesterday evening in the House. According to the Memphis Business Journal, the bill allows federal student loan rates to be tied to the yield on 10-year Treasury notes. "This permanent, market-based plan ends the annual game of Congress playing politics with student loan interest rates at the expense of students planning their futures," said state Sen. Lamar Alexander.

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Journal to Feature Law Students in Year Long Series

If you are a law student set to graduate in Spring 2014 (or know someone who is), the Tennessee Bar Journal would like to talk to you. The Journal plans to follow several students through their last year of law school to learn what new lawyers are facing, how they approach the job market and how this may or may not differ from expectations. Students would also be asked to blog about their law school experience. Contact Suzanne Craig Robertson by Aug. 1 if you are interested. Include your law school name, areas of legal interest and a short description of your experience in law school so far.

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YLD Affiliate News for July 2013

American Bar Association YLD -- There is still time to register for the ABA Annual Meeting, which will take place Aug. 8-13 in San Francisco. In addition, ABA affiliates in Tennessee are encouraged to submit nominations for the annual National Outstanding Young Lawyer Award, which recognizes an ABA young lawyer in good standing who exhibits professional excellence, service to the profession and the bar, service to the community, and/or a reputation for or the advancement of legal ethics and professional responsibility. Nominations are due Aug. 31. For more information about the ABA YLD visit the group online or contact Nashville lawyer Matt Potempa at matt@potempafirm.com or (615) 255-5007.

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2013 Transactional Practice Offered in Nashville & Memphis

The Young Lawyers Division and TennBarU present the 9th annual Transactional Practice CLE Oct. 18 in Nashville and Memphis. This six-hour seminar will provide lawyers with the information, tools and tips needed to successfully handle transactional, traditional business and probate matters. Specifically, the course will offer practical approaches to handling real estate closings, probate matters and wills and trusts, as well as choosing the right business entity for a client. It also will cover the latest developments in health care law. The day will wrap up with a presentation and discussion about ethics and civility in the practice of law.

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Upcoming Wills for Heroes Clinics (as of 7/31/13)

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 at http://www.willsforheroes.org.

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Young Lawyers Complete TBA Leadership Program

Thirty-two attorneys from across the state, including 18 young lawyers, graduated from the Tennessee Bar Association's Leadership Law program during the association's annual convention in Nashville last month. At the group's graduation ceremony, class member and young lawyer Daniel Headrick was presented with the Larry Dean Wilks Leadership Award. The award, named for former TBA President Larry D. Wilks, is selected by the class and recognizes a class member with exceptional leadership qualities. Headrick is an associate attorney at the Knoxville firm of Paine, Tarwater, & Bickers, practicing civil litigation in a variety of areas, including employment law, product liability, personal injury and construction law. See the list of young lawyers among the group below:

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New Long Range Plan Adopted

Every five years, the YLD evaluates and revises its Long Range Plan. Under the leadership of Long Range Planning Committee Chair Stacie Winkler, the members of the committee undertook such a revision during the 2013-2013 bar year. The committee presented the new plan to the YLD Board at its summer meeting last month in Nashville. Major changes from the 2008 plan are summarized below. Questions about the changes or the plan in general should be directed to Winkler at (901) 545-7089 or swinkler@the-med.org.

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Committee Leaders Appointed for 2013-2014

Committees chairs and vice chairs also are in place for the upcoming bar year. Please feel free to contact these leaders if you would like to get involved. Want to know more about what each committee does? Get a description of each committee's activities here.

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District Reps Ready to Serve in 2013-2014

The YLD's 14 district representatives are elected to serve you, the membership, and represent your interests to the division's governing board. Please do not hesitate to contact your district representative with questions about the TBA YLD or ways to get involved. See the list of representatives below and complete contact information for this year's representatives on the YLD's website.

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YLD Affiliate News for June 2013

American Bar Association YLD – The ABA Annual meeting will take place Aug. 8-13 in San Francisco. Activities and meetings for YLD members are planned throughout the event. For more information about the ABA YLD visit the group online or contact Nashville lawyer Matt Potempa at matt@potempafirm.com or (615) 255-5007.

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Upcoming Wills for Heroes Clinics (as of 6/28/13)

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.

Lebanon, July 20
Contact: Mike Kurtz, mkurtz@leeandlee.com, (615) 444-3900
Location: Wilson County Sheriff's Office, 105 E. High St., Lebanon, TN 37087
Time: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
This event is being held in partnership with the 100 Club of Wilson County, which honors and serves local law enforcement officers and personnel.

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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 Memphis lawyer Ahsaki Baptist with Wyatt, Tarrant & Combs, who prepared the grant application and serves as chair of the YLD Diversity Committee, which runs the program. Applications for the 2014 class will be available this fall. See the list of all grant recipients.

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New Lawyers Join the Practice

TBA YLD members were on hand earlier this month as new lawyers took part in admission ceremonies at War Memorial Auditorium in Nashville. Following introductions and administration of the oath by Chief Justice Gary Wade, the group heard remarks from TBA President Jackie Dixon. Close to 200 attorneys successfully passed the bar exam in February. Over 100 of them and their families attended an open house and luncheon at the Tennessee Bar Center before the ceremony. See photos from the event. See the list of all new lawyers who passed the February bar.

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Fellows Induct New Members, Elect Officers

The TBA YLD Fellows held its annual meeting and inducted new members at the YLD & Fellows Dinner, held in conjunction with the TBA Convention. New officers elected were President Andrew Sellers with Purcell Sellers & Craig in Jackson; Vice President Charlotte Knight Griffin with Memphis Light, Gas & Water in Memphis; Secretary J. Russell Parkes with Hardin, Parkes, Kelley & Carter in Columbia; and Treasurer Lisa Richter, the 19th Judicial District Child Support Referee in Clarksville.

The group also welcomed six new members: Nashville lawyer Danielle Barnes with the State Department of Human Resources; Wes Bryant with Hardin, Parkes, Kelley & Carter in Columbia; Effie Bean Cozart with the Hunt Law Firm in Memphis; Brentwood lawyer Sherie Edwards with State Volunteer Mutual Insurance Company; TBA Vice President Bill Harbison with Sherrard & Roe in Nashville; and Chuck Holliday with Law Offices of Jeffrey A. Garrety in Jackson.

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Service Project, Graduation Wrap Up 2013 DLI Program

Law students participating in the YLD’s Diversity Leadership Institute joined lawyers across the state at the TBA Convention in Nashville this month. The group’s activities included programs on diversity on the bench and the importance of public and pro bono service. On Saturday, the group presented basic legal information about debtor/creditor issues, landlord/tenant relations, orders of protection and self-representation to women in the Nashville Rescue Mission’s Life Recovery Program. Graduates of this year’s class are Shana Berkeley, Brett Knight, Kimberlee McTorry, Daniela Quintero and Ashley Upkins from the Belmont College of Law; Aisha DeBerry from the Duncan School of Law; Anthony Adewumi, James Cobb, Jayniece Higgins and Jerry Ivery from the University of Memphis School of Law; Sonia Boss, Cynthia Brown, Cole Rogers, Mike Sandler and Tracey Williams from the Nashville School of Law; and LaToyia Trotter and Yesle Yi from the University of Tennessee College of Law.

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Chattanooga Lawyer Takes Office as YLD President

Chattanooga lawyer David McDowell took office as president of the TBA’s Young Lawyers Division during the TBA’s convention earlier this month. He succeeds David Veile of Franklin. McDowell, an attorney with Gearhiser, Peters, Elliott & Cannon, took the opportunity at the YLD Annual Meeting to announce a new pro bono public service project to educate librarians across the state about OnlineTNJustice and the Tennessee Alliance for Legal Service’s new legal information website LIFT. The goal of the project is to empower librarians with the knowledge they need to direct local residents to legal resources. The statewide service project grew out of an initiative by former District 13 Representative Chuck Holliday, who traveled to Henderson, Madison and Gibson counties to educate local librarians on the websites.

Also taking office at the division’s annual meeting were President-Elect Stacie Winkler with the Regional Medical Center in Memphis; Vice President Rachel Moses with the Legal Aid Society in Cookeville; Secretary Troy Weston with Eldridge & Blakney in Knoxville; and Treasurer Steven King with Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz in Memphis.

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New YLD Affiliates Approved

During the TBA YLD’s annual meeting, members of the division voted to recognize two newly formed county affiliates. First approved was the Montgomery County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division. Jacob Mathis, president of the group and a lawyer at The Kennedy Law Firm in Clarksville, will sit on the TBA YLD Board by virtue of his position. Also approved was the Williamson County Bar Association Young Lawyers Division. Its first president, Kristen Corn, also has a seat on the board. Corn works for the City Attorney’s Office in Franklin.

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Young Lawyer Receives TBA Award

At the annual Lawyer’s Lunch held during the convention, Nashville lawyer Marisa L. Combs received a President’s Award from outgoing TBA President Jacqueline Dixon for her work as co-chair of the Ethics & Professional Responsibility Committee’s Transition Subcommittee. The recently created subcommittee worked diligently this past year to present a comprehensive plan on how lawyers can plan for the transition of their law practice in the case of death, disability, retirement or incompetency. Together with Chattanooga lawyer Hugh Kendall, Combs drafted proposed changes to the rules governing this issue, as well as materials for lawyers to use. Combs and Kendall also produced a seminar on the topic. The transition issue arose after Combs assisted with the closing of former TBA President and Springfield lawyer Larry Wilks’ law office after his untimely death. Combs, who once worked for Wilks, now practices with Lewis, King, Krieg & Waldrop where she handles construction law and professional liability defense.

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Young Lawyers Recognized with Awards

At a dinner and awards ceremony on the last night of the TBA Convention, outgoing YLD President David Veile recognized several young lawyers with awards for their service to the organization, the profession and the community. Those honored included Shauna Billingsley of Franklin, Ian Hennessey of Knoxville, Brad Carter of Clarksville, Troy Weston of Knoxville, Will Holloway of Franklin, Adam Moore of Knoxville, Stacie Winkler of Memphis, Joe Fanduzz of Knoxville and Nathan Shelby of Jackson. Read more about their awards.

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Vacancies Filled by YLD Board

At the YLD’s first board meeting of the bar year, voting members of the board elected four lawyers -- Bryce McKenzie, Jason F. Hicks, Nina Kumar and Nicole Grida -- to fill vacancies. Read more below.

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Chattanooga Lawyer McDowell Takes Office as YLD President

Chattanooga lawyer David McDowell took office as president of the TBA’s Young Lawyers Division during last week's convention and announced a new pro bono public service project to educate librarians across the state about OnlineTNJustice and the Tennessee Alliance for Legal Service’s new legal information website LIFT. The goal of the project is to empower librarians with the knowledge they need to help local residents seeking legal assistance. Also taking office at the division’s annual meeting were President-Elect Stacie Winkler of Memphis, Vice President Rachel Moses of Cookeville, Secretary Troy Weston of Knoxville and Treasurer Steven King of Memphis. McDowell succeeds David Veile of Franklin.

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Young Lawyers Honored by Nashville Chamber

The Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and YP Nashville today announced the finalists for the 2013 Nashville Emerging Leader Awards (NELAs). Finalists in the legal services category are Chris Bowles of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings; Andrae Crismon of the Legal Aid Society; Matt Potempa, attorney at law; Gabe Roberts of Sherrard & Roe; and Casey Gill Summar of the Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville. Potempa is a member of the TBA Young Lawyers Division Board. Gill is the incoming chair of the TBA Entertainment & Sports Law Section. A reception to honor the finalists will be held June 27 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Bridge Building. The Awards Ceremony will be Aug. 1 at Lipscomb University’s Collins Alumni Auditorium.

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First Duncan Graduates Speak Out on Experience

Three students who recently graduated as part of the inaugural class at the Lincoln Memorial University Duncan School of Law spoke to the Citizen Tribune about their experience and the mood among students given the school’s initial failed attempt to win ABA accreditation. One expressed concern about the lack of communication between administrators and students during the process, while another lamented that the school’s accomplishments and contributions to the community get overlooked as negative coverage of the accreditation issue seems to have defined the school. They all expressed hope that the school would ultimately succeed as it reapplies for ABA recognition.

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YLD Affiliate News for May 2013

American Bar Association YLD -- The ABA YLD held its 2013 Spring Conference May 16-18 in Minneapolis. In addition to great programming and public and member service projects, the conference featured a dinner dance at the popular tourist destination, Nicollet Island, and a boat tour of Lake Minnetonka. The ABA Annual Meeting will take place Aug. 8-13 in San Francisco. Finally, affiliates with programs they would like to submit for an Award of Achievement have until June 15 to do. For more information about the ABA YLD visit the group's website or contact Nashville lawyer Matt Potempa at matt@potempafirm.com or (615) 255-5007.

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Tennessee Team Places 7th at National Mock Trial

The TBA YLD Mock Trial Committee would like to thank all of the lawyers and judges who participated in the district and state mock trial competitions. This year's state competition, which took place March 15-16 was a great success, culminating with the Kingsport Area Home Education Association (KACHEA) being named the 2013 champion. The team went on to represent Tennessee at the 2013 National High School Mock Trial Championship in Indianapolis, Ind., earlier this month and placed seventh out of 48 teams!

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