New Leadership Law class announced

The Tennessee Bar Association today announced the members of the 2011 Leadership Law class. The class of 34, selected from attorneys across the state, will meet for its first session in early January. Leadership Law is designed to equip Tennessee lawyers with the vision, knowledge and skills necessary to serve as leaders in their profession and local communities.

See the list of class members

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Court: TCA


Ben H. Houston, II., Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Sonya G.

Theodore Kern, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Muhammad I.S. and Tessa D.S.


Petitioners, custodians of two minor children, filed this action to terminate the mother's parental rights. Following an evidentiary hearing, the Trial Judge found there was clear and convincing evidence to support termination, based upon willful failure to support/visit and persistent conditions. The Court also found that the evidence was clear and convincing that termination was in the children's best interest. On appeal, we affirm the Judgment of the Trial Court.

With Concurring Opinion

Court: TCA


Gregory H. Oakley, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Providence Crossings, LLC.

Patricia R. Young, Brentwood, Tennessee, for the appellees, SC Realty Capital, L.P., SC Capital, LLC, and Smith Realty Interests, L.P.


Purchaser of landlocked property brought action against the sellers, seeking to recover damages allegedly caused by the failure of the sellers to complete a road extension or otherwise to insure reasonable access to the property, which had been purchased for development of multi-family rental units. The trial court granted summary judgment to the sellers, finding that the right of the purchaser to proceed with the action was extinguished when the bank that provided financing for the development of the property foreclosed on the loan secured by the property and subsequently sold the property to another entity. The court concluded that the purchaser did not have standing to pursue the claims. Finding that a genuine issue of material fact exists as to whether the purchaser's cause of action was included in the assets foreclosed upon, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand for further proceedings.

CLEMENT concurring in the judgement


Court: TCA


Carlyle Urello, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the defendant/appellant, Tyler E. Lawson.

Patrick L. Looper, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the defendant/appellee, Teresa Yokley.

Melanie E. Davis, Maryville, Tennessee, for the plaintiff/appellee, Eddie Ward.


In this action to enforce a contract to purchase real estate, the Trial Court declared the contract enforceable, the seller had breached the contract by refusing to sell to plaintiff, and held that a third party who had a lien against the property tortiously interfered with the sale. The Trial Judge rescinded the quit claim deed to Tyler Lawson from Yokley and assessed costs and damages. On appeal, we reverse the Trial Judge and hold the contract became unenforceable because plaintiff did not comply with the conditions set forth in the contract.


Election 2010
Congressional News
Legal News
TBA Member Services

Election 2010
Haslam win puts GOP in control of the state
For the first time since Reconstruction, Republicans now control the Tennessee governor's office, the state House and the Senate. Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam led the sweep, prevailing over his Democrat challenger Mike McWherter with 65 percent of the vote, reports the Knoxville News Sentinel. Today, Haslam met with Gov. Phil Bredesen to begin planning for a smooth transition of power. He will announce transition plans tomorrow (Thursday) at 9:30 a.m.
See vote results from all races
GOP gains 14 in state House
Unofficial but complete election returns show that Republicans picked up 14 seats from Democrats while losing none they held in the 106th General Assembly. That means the GOP goes from a slim majority of 50-48 (with one independent) to a more comfortable margin of 64-34-1.
The News Sentinel has the list of seats that switched
Williams to step down as state House speaker
State Rep. Kent Williams, an independent from Elizabethton, said today that he will step down as speaker of the state House and support Rep. Beth Harwell, R-Nashville, for the position. Others considering a run at the top post include Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada of Franklin, Rep. Harry Brooks of Knoxville and Charles Sargent of Franklin. Rep. Gerald McCormick, R-Chattanooga, had been mulling a bid for speaker, but told the Chattanooga Times Free Press that he will instead run for majority leader and support Casada for speaker. Republicans will meet Dec. 8 to vote on new leadership.
Read more in the Knoxville paper
GOP picks up 1 in state Senate
In the Tennessee Senate, Republicans held their own and picked up one seat, giving them a 20-13 majority. The pick-up came in the 25th District where Republican Jim Summerville won over 10-year incumbent Democrat Sen. Doug Jackson.
The Dickson Herald reports
Congressional News
Chattanooga lawyer wins, GOP picks up 3 U.S. House seats
In his first bid for elected office, Chattanooga attorney Chuck Fleischmann easily defeated Democrat John Wolfe and six other independents in yesterday's election. He succeeds U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp, R-Tenn, who resigned his congressional seat to run for governor. Statewide, Republicans gained three seats for a 7-2 majority in the state's U.S. House delegation. In the 4th District, Scott DesJarlais defeated Democrat incumbent Lincoln Davis, while in District 6, Diane Black won the seat vacated by retiring Democrat Bart Gordon. In the 8th District, Republican Stephen Fincher prevailed over state Sen. Roy Herron in the race to succeed retiring Congressman John Tanner.

Election shakes up Senate Judiciary Committee
Tuesday's election results, coupled with retirements and other circumstances, mean there are going to be openings for new members and new chairmen on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee. Of the 12 Democratic senators now on the committee, three will not be back: Russ Feingold (Wis.), who lost on Tuesday; Ted Kaufman (Del.), who was filling a vacancy; and Arlen Specter (Pa.), who lost his party primary. Feingold and Specter also chaired subcommittees, which now will be open for new leadership.
Read more from The Legal Times
Legal News
Death penalty opponents try to block import of drug
A group opposed to the death penalty filed suit Tuesday to try to prevent a British company from exporting a drug that is one of three drugs used in lethal injections in the United States, including Tennessee. The group is calling on the British government to regulate the export of sodium thiopental. The U.S. has been experiencing a shortage of the sedative, leading some states to halt or slow the pace of lethal injections while searching for alternative sources of the drug.
The Tennessean has the story
County jail likely to be decertified
The fate of the Rhea County Jail lies with the Tennessee Corrections Institute after Monday's follow-up inspection by the agency, but county officials expect it will be decertified. An inspector was at the jail this week to see what progress had been made to remedy chronic overcrowding that has plagued the jail for years. The inspector will submit his report on Dec. 1, at which time the institute will determine the jail's fate.
Read more in the Herald News
Memphis Law names new staff
Chelsea Dubey has been named Director of Special Events and Communication for the University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law. She previously was coordinator of special projects for the university's office of Alumni Programs and Constituent Relations. Before joining the campus staff in 2008, Dubey was communications manager for the Indianapolis Art Center. A resident of Germantown, Dubey holds a degree in communication and public relations from Michigan State University.

Services set for Mary Woodroof
Details are now available regarding funeral services for Mary Woodroof, the long-time executive secretary at the Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility. Woodroof's family will receive visitors Nov. 9 from 9 to 10 a.m. at the Spring Hill Funeral Home, 5110 Gallatin Pike, Nashville 37216. Immediately following visitation, a funeral procession will depart for the Middle Tennessee State Veterans Cemetery, where a graveside service will be held. The cemetery is located at 7931 McCrory Lane, Nashville 37221.

TBA Member Services
CompuPay offers deals for TBA members
CompuPay is proud to serve as the official payroll services provider for the Tennessee Bar Association. To serve Tennessee attorneys the company is offering two months of free payroll processing for all TBA members and waiving set up fees for members with up to 99 employees.
Learn more about CompuPay's benefits

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About this publication: Today's News is a compilation of digests of news reports of interest to Tennessee lawyers compiled by TBA staff, links to digested press releases, and occasional stories about the TBA and other activities written by the TBA staff or members. Statements or opinions herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Tennessee Bar Association, its officers, board or staff.

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