News

Bar Associations, Former Justice Endorse Retention

The Hamblen County Bar Association is unanimously supporting the retention of Tennessee Supreme Court Justices Gary Wade, Cornelia Clark and Sharon Lee in the Aug. 7 election, the Citizen Tribune reports. “The Hamblen County Bar Association would urge voters to ignore the false and misleading advertisements, mailers, robo-calls and TV commercials which have been sponsored, in whole or in part, by “dark-money” groups and instead vote to keep partisan politics out of our courts,” officials stated. In Washington County, bar association members voted to support retention of the justices and to work to help educate the public about the significance of the election, and late this afternoon former Justice William Koch, a Republican, added his endorsement during a Knoxville campaign event.

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2 More County Bars Endorse Retention

The McMinn County Bar Association recently passed a resolution supporting retention of the three Supreme Court justices on the general election ballot, the Daily Post Athenian reports. "Some [of our members] are Republicans, some Democrats, some moderates, but we all felt strongly there should be no political involvement in judicial races at the appellate and Supreme Court levels," said McMinn County Bar Association President Sarah Kennedy. "We wanted to pass a resolution to show our support of the justices and our current system." In addition, the DeKalb County Bar Association adopted a resolution supporting all judges standing for a retention vote. General Sessions Judge Bratten Hale Cook II, president of the association, presented a copy of the resolution to Justice Connie Clark during her visit to the area yesterday, WJLE Radio reports.

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Nashville Bar Foundation Names 1st Leadership Class

The Nashville Bar Foundation (NBF) has named 28 attorneys to the inaugural class of its Leadership Forum program. The nine-month professional development program will kick-off in September and run through May 2015. Class members are Jeffrey Allen, Laura Baker, Rebecca Barnett, Joshua Burgener, Grover Collins, Alicia Cottrell, Jeff Gibson, Allen Grant, Sheryl Guinn, William Hicky, Lauren Kilgore, Whitney Henry Kimerling, Emily Lamb, Jennifer Lankford, Joseph McKinney, Josh Mullen, Tony Orlandi, Bart Pickett, Rachel Rosenblatt, Lindsay Schenk, Rebekah Shulman, Elizabeth Sitgreaves, Lauran Sturm, Taylor Sutherland, Jennifer Wade, Dannelle Walker, Charlotte Wolfe and Gulam Zade. The NBF also is seeking lawyers to serve as mentors for class members. Download an application or contact Traci Hollandsworth for more information.

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NBA Raises Funds for Child Abuse Prevention Groups

The Nashville Bar Association Young Lawyers Division will hold its 17th Annual Carbolic Smoke Ball this Saturday from 8 p.m. to midnight in the Reverb Room on the second floor of the Hard Rock Café in downtown Nashville. The event will feature a cocktail party with live music from the 90s cover band, "My So Called Band," heavy hors d'oeuvres, casino gaming and an open bar. Proceeds from this year's event will benefit two non-profit organizations: CASA Nashville & Prevent Child Abuse Tennessee. Tickets are $65 per person in advance, $75 at the door.

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Bradley County Bar Names New Officers

The Bradley County Bar Association has elected the following officers for the 2014-2015 bar year: Ashley L. Ownby, president; Jerry Hoffer, vice president; Rex A. Wagner, treasurer; and Daniel W. Clanton, secretary.

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Williamson YLD Elects Officers

The Young Lawyers Division of the Williamson County Bar Association recently elected the following officers for the 2014-2015 year: Katie Mathews Zipper, president; Cort Bethmann, secretary/treasurer; and Ben Signer and Wes Southerland, members-at-large. For more information about becoming involved with this group, please contact Katie Mathews Zipper.

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West is New President of Jackson-Madison Bar

The Jackson Madison County Bar Association elected its officers and board members for the 2014-2015 fiscal year in May. They are Matthew R. West, incoming president; Jennifer Free, vice-president; Aaron Chaplin, treasurer; and Anna Cash, secretary. The JMCBA Board will also include Joe Byrd, Danielle Hardee, Brittani Kendrick, Nathan Shelby and Kathryn Tucker. The association is composed of over 200 attorneys who are licensed to practice law in Tennessee and engage in the practice of law in Madison County.

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Loudon County Bar Association Elects New Officers

The Loudon County Bar Association has elected new officers. They are: President Ian McCabe, President-elect Chad Wilson, Secretary Travis McCroskey, Treasurer/Historian Robert G. Hinton and Past President A. Wayne Henry. The bar association also reports that its goals for the 2014-2015 bar year include holding a “People’s Law” event and two social events to highlight pro-bono opportunities.

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Lawyers Push Back Against Effort to Oust Justices

Lawyers across the state have begun fighting back against Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey’s campaign to unseat Supreme Court Chief Justice Gary Wade, Justice Cornelia Clark and Justice Sharon Lee. The Nashville Bar Association Tuesday released a resolution supporting the judges’ retention in the Aug. 7 judicial election and urged its members to vote in favor to retain. On Wednesday, a group of attorneys including former Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice Frank Drowota and former Appeals Court Judge Lew Conner met with the Tennessean to spell out their efforts to combat Ramsey, who Drowota said was using misinformation to unfairly criticize the justices in an effort to stack the court with partisan judges. “To have politics come into the courts makes absolutely no sense,” Drowota said. “You don’t want a politicized court. You want a fair, impartial court.”

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Legal Groups Form ‘Coalition for Fair Courts’

The Nashville-based Marion Griffin Chapter of the Lawyers’ Association for Women announced today that it has formed the Coalition for Fair Courts. According to the group, the goal of the coalition is to “organize the efforts of bar associations and community groups across the state to raise public awareness of the upcoming retention elections.” The group also hopes to increase voter turnout for the Aug. 7 elections. Three Supreme Court justices and all appeals court judges will appear on that ballot. The coalition webpage offers resources for lawyers and nonlawyers. Current members of the coalition include the Anne Schneider Chapter of the Lawyers’ Association for Women in Jackson, the Napier-Looby Bar Association, the Tennessee Alliance of Black Lawyers and the League of Women Voters of Nashville. Other groups interested in joining the effort should contact Elizabeth Sitgreaves, (615) 254-2291.

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MBA Memorial Service Set for May 2

The Memphis Bar Association (MBA) will hold its 2014 Memorial Service May 2 at noon at the downtown Calvary Episcopal Church. Attorneys to be honored include: Fred Acuff, Alex Barnett, Howard R. “Roy” Berkenstock Jr., James C. Blackburn, Malford A. Blankenship, Leo J. Buchignani, Susan McKwen Clark, Bill Clifton, Elizabeth Tansil Collins, Clarence J. Colbert Jr., Thomas E. Crawford, Lundy Webb Daniel, David M. Discenza, Gayden Drew IV, Dauphine Mahoney Garthright, Lyman Christian Harrell III, Leroy L. Hidinger Jr., Evie Randolph Horton, W. Thomas Hutton, Paul D. Leitch, Col. Paul J. McClure Jr., James McMahon, Etandra Fenae Miller Douglas, Charles A. Sevier, G. Donald Siemer, William J. Simmons, Sonja White-Simpson, Cecil D. Smith, Frank T. Stegbauer, Stephen K. Tapp, Richard S. Wade and William C. Wilson. Those who would like to submit a memorial about any of the deceased should email Mary Lynes or call her at (901) 527-3573.

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Nashville Bar Foundation Awards Nearly $25K in Grants

The Nashville Bar Foundation, the charitable arm of the Nashville Bar Association, has awarded $24,925 in grants to four area nonprofits to support their law-related educational and charitable initiatives. The recipients are: the Family Center was given $2,000 to develop a new child abuse prevention program that will help lawyers more effectively respond to abuse cases; the Legal Aid Society was given $10,000 to expand legal assistance for immigrant and refugee communities; Mental Health America of Middle Tennessee was given $1,500 to educate the legal profession on how to deal with clients who have personality disorders, high anxiety or mental illness; and Nashville Community Education was given $1,425 to expand The People’s Law School, a program that offers a series of free legal classes to the public about important legal issues.

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Judge Upholds Requirement for Memphis-Shelby County Consolidation

The 2010 federal court lawsuit over the failed attempt at consolidating the city of Memphis and Shelby County governments has failed as well with an order Wednesday from U.S. District Judge Thomas Anderson granting a motion for summary judgment by defendants in the case. The proposal for consolidation lost by a large margin in the county outside Memphis, although it was approved by a narrow margin within Memphis. The lawsuit filed in 2010 challenged on constitutional grounds the state law requiring that such a charter must be approved by dual majorities in separate referendums for consolidation to take place. The Memphis Daily News has more.

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MBA Memorial Service May 2

The Memphis Bar Association will sponsor its Annual Memorial Service on May 2 at Calvary Episcopal Church. The memorial will honor 28 individuals within the Memphis legal community who have died. If you know a member who should be included or would like to write a memorial about any of the honorees, contact Mary Lynes at (901) 527-3573.

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Napier-Looby Banquet Honors TSU Professor

Nashville’s Napier-Looby Bar Foundation on Thursday will honor Tennessee State University (TSU) professor Robert Smith for his efforts to help black students, the Tennessean reports. Smith, who teaches constitutional and criminal law at TSU and has coached the school’s mock trial team since its inception, will receive the Z. Alexander Looby Lifetime Achievement Award at the organization's annual banquet and award ceremony. Three other attorneys also will be recognized during the banquet. They are Sheila Calloway of the Davidson County Juvenile Court, attorney Cynthia Fitzgerald and Jerrilyn Manning of the Nashville public defender’s office.

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If You Did It, Flaunt It With a TBJ Announcement

The Tennessee Bar Journal has a new opportunity for lawyers and firms to promote outstanding achievements, new associates, new partners, mergers, awards and any changes within the firm. Now, Professional Announcements are available at special, lower-rate pricing. You can tell more than 12,000 of your peers about your accomplishments by placing an announcement in the Journal. For information or to place an announcement, contact Debbie Taylor at 503-445-2231 or Debbie@llm.com. To have an announcement placed in the April issue, please contact her before Feb. 18.

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Mickel Installed as CBA President

Timothy L. Mickel, a partner in the Chattanooga law firm of Evans Harrison Hackett, was installed as president of the Chattanooga Bar Association (CBA) at the association’s 116th annual meeting on Jan. 22. Mickel was sworn in by Hamilton County Circuit Court Judge W. Neil Thomas. Mickel has served on the CBA Board of Governors since 2009. He also serves as president of the Justices Ray L. Brock, Jr. and Robert E. Cooper American Inn of Court and is a past chairman of the Board of the American Red Cross of Greater Chattanooga, the Chattanoogan reports.

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Napier- Looby Annual Barrister’s Banquet Feb. 20

The Napier-Looby Bar Association will host the 10th Annual Barristers’ Banquet and Awards Program at the Music City Center in Nashville on Feb. 20. Cocktail reception begins at 6 p.m., followed by dinner and awards presentation. This year’s honorees are Sheila Calloway of the Metro Nashville Juvenile Court, Cynthia Fitzgerald of the Law Offices of Cynthia Fitzgerald, Jerrilyn Manning of the Metro Public Defender’s Office and Robert Smith of Smith Hirsch PLC. Please RSVP by Feb. 12.

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CBA to Hold Memorial Service

The Chattanooga Bar Association (CBA) will hold a memorial service on March 7 at 11 a.m. in the Hamilton County Courthouse. Those remembered will include the Hon. Edward A. “Butch” Synder, Ralph Russell Armstrong, former Tennessee Bar Association President Charles Gearhiser, Allan Geschwind, John Lee III, Ben Haden and J. Guy Beatty Jr.

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Attorneys Honored at CBA Annual Meeting

The Chattanooga Bar Association (CBA) honored seven attorneys at the 116th Annual Meeting yesterday. Michael N. St. Charles of Chamblis Bahner Stophel was awarded the Ralph M. Kelly Humanitarian Award; Lee Davis of Davis & Hoss was awarded the President’s Award; B. Paul Hatcher of Duncan Hatcher Hixson & Fleenor was awarded the Albert Hodge Volunteer Award; William P. Aiken Jr. was awarded the Harry Weil Zealous Practice of Law Award; Paul R Leitner of Leitner Williasm Dooley & Napolitan was awarded the Joe Chambliss Lifetime Achievement Award; and H. Eric Burnette of Burnett Dobson & Pinchak and Kirby Yost of Chambliss Bahner & Stophel were jointly awarded the Young Lawyer Division Volunteer of the Year Award. To learn more about the honorees, visit the CBA website.

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KBA Elects Officers, Presents Award

At the Knoxville Bar Association’s Annual Meeting last week, Wade V. Davies assumed the presidency, and the organization elected Tasha C. Blakney as president-elect, Amanda M. Busby as secretary and Wayne R. Kramer as treasurer. The following were elected to the Board of Governors: Charles E. Atchley Jr., Wynne du Mariau Caffey, Dawn Coppock and Keith D. Stewart. Also at the meeting, John T. O’Connor II was presented the KBA's highest award, the prestigious Governor’s Award. In making the presentation, Bill Vines said “John T. O’Connor II has been described as one of the hardest working lawyers in the Knoxville Bar and he is a worthy recipient of the Knoxville Bar Association’s Governors’ Award.” Also at the meeting, James P. Moneyhun Jr. was introduced as president of the Knoxville Barristers, the KBA's Young Lawyers Division.

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Washington County Bar Names New President

Amber Floyd Lee, an attorney with Cox and Lee in Johnson City, is the new president of the Washington County Bar Association. Other officers are Vice President McKenna Cox, Secretary Kris Hatcher, Treasurer Robert Bates and Communications Officer Suzanne Cook.

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Pickett Named NBJ Contributor of the Year

A news item in yesterday’s issue of TBA Today included a summary of the Nashville Bar Association’s Annual Meeting. One award that was accidently omitted from the story was the presentation of the Nashville Bar Journal's (NBJ) Contributor of the Year Award to Bart Pickett.

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KBA Annual Meeting This Friday

The Knoxville Bar Association will hold its Annual Membership Meeting Friday at 8:30 a.m. at the Main Assembly Room of the City County Building. Wade V. Davies is set to assume the presidency of the association. Other officers poised to be elected are President-elect Tasha C. Blakney, Treasurer Wayne R. Kramer and Secretary Amanda M. Busby. Members also will select three members for the Board of Governors and one member to serve as the Government/Public Sector representative on the board. Those nominated to date are Joshua M. Ball, Wynne du Mariau Caffey, Robert R. Carl II, S. Dawn Coppock, Timothy M. McLemore and Keith D. Stewart. Charles E. Atchley Jr. is the only candidate thus far for the government position but nominations for all of these seats may be made during the meeting.

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MBA Annual Meeting Set for This Week

The Memphis Bar Association will hold its annual meeting Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the University of Memphis Holiday Inn, 3700 Central Ave. Members will toast the achievements of outgoing President Linda Warren Seely and welcome Kirk Caraway as the 2014 president. The group also will present two awards. Jim Garts will receive the Judge Jerome Turner Lawyer’s Lawyer Award and Stacie Winkler will receive the Sam A. Myar Jr. Memorial Award. Tickets are $40 per person. To reserve a seat, please contact Charlotte Gean at (901) 527-3574.

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