Association's youngest president will lead group in 2011-2012
NASHVILLE, June 1, 2010 — Memphis lawyer Danny Van Horn will take office Thursday as president-elect of the Tennessee Bar Association at the association's annual convention in Nashville. The move puts him in line to assume the presidency in June 2011 as the youngest member of the TBA to hold that office.
Van Horn practices law at the Memphis firm of Butler, Snow, O'Mara, Stevens & Cannada PLLC, where he focuses on commercial litigation, including business torts, unfair competition, insurance disputes and product liability. He earned his law degree in 1997 from Vanderbilt University Law School and returned to Memphis to work for Armstrong Allen PLLC. He joined Butler Snow in 2005.
Van Horn has been extremely active in the Tennessee Bar Association (TBA). He served in the TBA Young Lawyers Division for many years and was elected president of the group in 2005. Following that assignment, he joined the TBA Board of Governors as the District 9 Representative. For the past two years, he has chaired the association's Continuing Legal Education Committee, which plans legal education seminars for lawyers around the state. He is also a graduate of the TBA's Leadership Law program.
Van Horn also has been active in the American Bar Association, serving as a member of the Standing Committee on Membership, a member of the House of Delegates and YLD Assembly speaker, the second highest national YLD officer. In addition, he is a member of the Memphis and Mississippi bar associations.
Among his many accomplishments, Van Horn has distinguished himself in the field of pro bono service. Two years ago, he launched an effort to raise funds and attorney involvement in free clinics for HIV-positive patients. In addition, he is the co-founder of the Atticus Finch Referral Network. Named for the lawyer who took on an unpopular case in the book To Kill a Mockingbird, the network links attorneys willing to provide free legal advice with needy Memphians. He also served on the Memphis Bar Association Access to Justice Committee and received Memphis Area Legal Services' Pro Bono Service Award in 2006. Last year, Van Horn was instrumental in passage of new Supreme Court rules that provide greater funding for legal aid agencies in the state.
In the community, Van Horn has been active in the Phoenix Club, the Greater Memphis Chamber of Commerce, Boy Scouts of America and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis, serving on boards and in other positions of leadership.
In speaking about plans for the 2011-2012 bar year, Van Horn says he will work collaboratively to promote access to justice (providing for those who cannot afford legal services), access to opportunity (increasing diversity in the profession) and access to professional development (empowering lawyers to reach their career goals). This "All Access" campaign will include programs that expand meaningful opportunities for qualified individuals to join the profession at all levels, and to end hidden barriers to personal and professional development. "We will build on the foundation that has been laid by past TBA leaders to serve our members and all Tennesseans, every day," Van Horn said.
Taking office along with Van Horn will be President Sam Elliott of Chattanooga and Vice President Jacqueline B. Dixon of Nashville. Elliott is a member in the Chattanooga firm of Gearhiser, Peters, Lockaby, Cavett & Elliott, where he practices in the field of civil litigation. Dixon is a partner in the firm of Weatherly McNally & Dixon PLC, where she focuses on personal injury and wrongful death, domestic relations and probate cases.
The 2010 Tennessee Bar Association Annual Convention will be held in conjunction with three other legal organizations -- the Tennessee Alliance for Black Lawyers (TABL), the Tennessee Asian Pacific American Bar Association (TAPABA) and the Tennessee Lawyers' Association for Women (TLAW). This joint meeting structure allows the groups to address common issues and concerns. It also offers opportunities for additional education, long-range planning, and recognition of attorneys who have performed outstanding legal work and community service.