TBA Law Blog

Posted by: TBA News on Dec 31, 2018

Journal Issue Date: Jan 2019

Journal Name: Vol 55 No 1

Former Tennessee Senate Majority Leader Mark S. Norris was officially sworn in as the newest U.S. district judge for the Western District of Tennessee in a private ceremony on Nov. 8. A public investiture ceremony will be held on Jan. 11. Norris was nominated to the federal district court by President Donald Trump and confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Oct. 11, 2018. He fills the seat left vacant when U.S. District Judge J. Daniel Breen took senior status in 2017. Breen is a former Tennessee Bar Association president.

S. Morris Hadden, at right center, a former Tennessee Supreme Court special justice and current managing partner of Hunter, Smith & Davis, was recently honored at a celebration marking 50 years of service with the firm. After receiving his law degree, Hadden, center, served as a special agent with the FBI for three years. He then joined the firm’s Kingsport office where he built a litigation practice. Hadden is a previous member of the TBA Board of Governors and currently a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.

Nashville lawyer Austin Moore has joined the law firm of Riley Warnock & Jacobson where he will focus his practice on business litigation. Moore previously served as a law clerk for Davidson County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Brothers. He earned his law degree from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis in 2016.

Bass, Berry & Sims has named Erica Bell Vick as new chair of the firm’s Government Advocacy & Public Policy practice. She succeeds J. Richard “Dick” Lodge, who retired at the end of 2018. In her new role, Vick will advocate for clients before the Tennessee General Assembly and state executive branch departments, agencies and commissions. She also provides advice regarding campaign finance and ethics laws.

John R. Tarpley, a shareholder in the Nashville office of Lewis Thomason, has been selected to serve on board of directors for ALFA International, a global legal network. Lewis Thomason is one of 145 firms affiliated with the group, which provides clients with high-quality, cost-efficient legal services worldwide. Tarpley will serve a three-year term. Tarpley is a former Tennessee Bar Association president.

Burr & Forman LLP recently announced that it would acquire Carolinas-based McNair Law Firm. McNair’s 84 attorneys – serving in seven offices across North Carolina and South Carolina – joined the firm effective Jan. 1. The acquisition expands Burr & Forman’s footprint to 19 offices across eight states.

Memphis attorney Lang Wiseman has been named deputy to the governor and chief counsel for Governor-elect Bill Lee. Wiseman will step down from his role on the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees to take the job. Wiseman, who founded the Memphis firm of Wiseman Bray, currently serves on Gov. Bill Haslam’s Council for Judicial Appointments and is vice chair of the Advisory Commission to the Supreme Court on Rules of Practice and Procedure.

Colonel Robert D. Pickle, a TBA senior counselor, was inducted into the University of Tennessee Army ROTC Hall of Fame on Nov. 9, 2018. The program was held during Veterans’ Day weekend ceremonies at the World’s Fair Park in Knoxville. Pickle, a 1961 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Law, practiced at the Pickle Law Firm in Saint Louis.

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Middle Tennessee recently announced the 2019 class of 30 Under 30, which recognizes Nashville’s most active young professionals and philanthropists. TBA members among the group are Alé Dalton, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings; Michael Hill, Bass, Berry & Sims; Casey Miller, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings; Kaya Porter, Lewis, Thomason; Lauren Spahn, Shackelford, Bowen, McKinley & Norton; and Adelee Traylor, Butler Snow. Honorees will be recognized at an event on Feb. 2 at the Sheraton Hotel.
Memphis lawyer Earl W. Houston II, a director and shareholder with Martin, Tate, Morrow & Marston, has been appointed to an ex officio position on the USLAW Network board of directors. In this new position he will represent the organization’s Diversity Council and serve as a liaison between the two entities. Houston is also a member of the Memphis Bar Association Board of Directors, Local Rules Committee for the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee and the Board of Court Reporting.

Grayson Jones has joined the Music Row law office of Russell A. Jones Jr. as an associate attorney. She will focus on entertainment and intellectual property law. Jones graduated with a minor in music industry studies from the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. After graduating, she worked in creative licensing and strategic marketing at Columbia Records Creative Agency in Los Angeles. She returned to her native Nashville to attend Belmont University College of Law, graduating from the school in 2018.

Nashville lawyer John Wingo has joined the board of directors for Williamson Inc., an organization that works to develop an educated workforce, strong community leaders and top-tier economic development. He will serve a three-year term. Wingo, a partner at Stites & Harbison, works in the firm’s Business Litigation Service Group where he handles business transactions and commercial litigation.

The national law firm of Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker has opened its first office in Tennessee. The Nashville office, located at 3102 West End Ave., Suite 400, Nashville 37203, can be reached at 615-324-7840. It will be managed by TBA member Jeffrey Melcher, regional managing partner of the Atlanta office, and Stratton Horres, Southwest regional managing partner overseeing the Dallas, Houston and Louisville, Kentucky, offices.

Gov. Bill Haslam appointed Christopher V. Sockwell as circuit court judge for the 22nd Judicial District on Nov. 15, 2018. Sockwell replaces Judge Robert Jones, who retired in October. Sockwell will hear cases from Giles, Lawrence, Maury and Wayne counties. He previously practiced with Boston, Holt, Sockwell & Durham in Lawrenceburg. He also served as city judge and city attorney in nearby Ethridge.

Former Court of Appeals judge and onetime Nashville law director Patricia Cottrell is now set to become the city's first-ever chief compliance officer. An appeals court judge from 1998 to 2014, Cottrell was announced in December as Mayor David Briley's pick for a new position that will oversee a “comprehensive review” of ethics regulations in the city's procurement process — and whether they're being followed — among other responsibilities.

Shundra Crumpton has joined the Nashville office of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings as a member of its Litigation Practice Group. Crumpton earned her law degree from Vanderbilt University Law School where she was a member of the Legal Aid Society Board, Black Law Student Association and the Labor & Employment Law Society.

The firm also announced that C. Meade Hartfield, a partner in the Birmingham, Alabama, office, has been appointed the inaugural chair and a founder of the Women in the Law Committee of the Alabama Defense Lawyers Association (ADLA). Hartfield practices in the firm’s Banking and Financial Services Practice Group and represents financial, medical, automotive, aviation, industrial, insurance and environmental clients.

Rainey Kizer Reviere & Bell recently added two new attorneys to its practice. Christie Kizer Burbank has joined the Chattanooga office, where she will focus on health care regulatory and transactional law matters. She previously practiced at Miller & Martin in Chattanooga. Hugh Francis has joined the firm’s Memphis office as an associate attorney. He will represent health care clients in malpractice cases.




JAMES E. BRADING died on Nov. 28, 2018, at the age of 85, at his home in Johnson City.  A U. S. Army veteran and a 1961 graduate of Yale Law School, Brading practiced law in Upper East Tennessee for nearly 50 years, first with Wilson, Worley & Gamble, then as a sole practitioner, and finally with Herndon, Coleman, Brading & McKee, where he spent the bulk of his career. He served for one year as a Circuit Judge for Tennessee’s First Judicial District. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the ETSU Quillen College of Medicine, to which Brading donated his body for medical education.

Longtime Columbia lawyer JERRY CAROTHERS COLLEY died Nov. 23, 2018. He was 91. Colley obtained his law degree from Vanderbilt University Law School in 1951. He practiced law for 65 years, serving on the Tennessee Supreme Court Board of Professional Responsibility, as a member of local bar associations and the American College of Trial Lawyers. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials be given to First United Methodist Church, 222 West Seventh St., Columbia 38401. Condolences may be shared online at www.oakesandnichols.com.

Kingsport attorney JOHN D. PARKER JR. died Nov. 7, 2018, following a brief illness. He was 67. Parker graduated from East Tennessee State University with a psychology degree and later received his law degree from Nashville School of Law. A lifelong resident of Kingsport, he practiced law there for 34 years. He also served as a magistrate in Sullivan County. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society, 871 N. Weisgarber Rd., Knoxville 37909, or First Broad Street United Methodist Church, 100 E. Church Circle, Kingsport 37660. Condolences may be shared online at www.hamlettdobson.com.