News & Announcements

The Meeting Professional recently published an article written by Michael Pinchera about the emerging drone industry and how it intersects with the meeting industry. Brooks Pierce partner and drone expert Stephen Hartzell was quoted throughout the article.

Brooks Pierce attorney Mark Prak appeared at the 34th Annual "Representing Your Local Broadcaster" conference at the ABA’s Forum on Communications Law. The event was held on April 12 at the Encore Hotel in Las Vegas.

On April 13, Inside Counsel published a column written by Brooks Pierce partner Reid Phillips. The column discussed how young attorneys can effectively manage their practice and volunteer commitments, and included Reid’s top 10 rules for volunteering.

Brooks Pierce attorney Justin Outling will moderate Action Greensboro’s “Engage Your City” luncheon being held on April 16 at Triad Stage in downtown Greensboro.

Brooks Pierce partner Darrell Fruth served on a panel discussing North Carolina’s patent troll legislation at the North Carolina Bar Association’s 2015 Intellectual Property Law Section CLE Symposium and Annual Meeting. The event took place March 20 at the NC Bar Center in Cary.

Brooks Pierce is pleased to announce that Matthew Tynan has joined the firm as an associate in the Greensboro office. Tynan will join Brooks Pierce’s business litigation practice and also advise clients on a diverse range of energy law issues and environmental regulatory matters.

On March 24, Corporate Counsel published an article written by Marlisse Silver Sweeney covering the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's new cybersecurity report. Brooks Pierce partner David Smyth was quoted. 

North Carolina’s NextGen Air Transportation Program (NGAT) will hold an industry briefing on recent developments relating to unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), commonly called drones. The event is sponsored and co-hosted by Brooks Pierce, and will be held in the General Aviation Terminal at Raleigh-Durham International Airport on Thursday, April 2, from 3:00-6:30 p.m.

Brooks Pierce partner Elizabeth Spainhour has earned the Certified Information Privacy Professional for the U.S. private sector (CIPP/US) designation through the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP).

Brooks Pierce international law partner Charles S. Baldwin IV and tax partner Mark Davidson have been selected to speak at Export University 101, presented by the U.S. Commercial Service in Greensboro and the North Carolina District Export Council, in partnership with UPS and the North Carolina Entrepreneurship Center. The event is being held March 12 at the Elliott University Center on the University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s campus.

Brooks Pierce partner Ben Davis was selected to present at the North Carolina Bar Association’s 2015 Real Property Hot Topics Program on Friday, February 20.

Ben Norman, a partner in the Greensboro office of Brooks Pierce, has been recognized as a BTI Client Service All-Star for 2015. Published annually by BTI Consulting, the guide recognizes attorneys who have been nominated by corporate counsel for their exceptional client service.

Brooks Pierce Attorney Named One of Triad Business Journal’s 2015 40 Leaders Under Forty

On February 18, Triad City Beat published an article written by Eric Ginsburg covering Greensboro's housing-code enforcement practices. Brooks Pierce attorney Justin Outling was quoted. 

On Feb. 10, Bloomberg published an article written by Erik Larson covering jury selection in the Boston Marathon bombing trial. Brooks Pierce partner Kearns Davis was quoted.

Twenty-one Brooks Pierce attorneys have been selected to present on various topics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s 2015 Festival of Legal Learning. The festival will be held Feb. 13-14 at The William and Ida Friday Continuing Education Center on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus.

Brooks Pierce has filed a class action lawsuit against Syngenta on behalf of North Carolina farmers who claim to have suffered substantial economic losses due to Syngenta’s Agrisure Viptera and Agrisure Duracade genetically modified corn varieties. 

North Carolina Lawyers Weekly

On February 5, North Carolina Lawyers Weekly published an article written by Phillip Bantz covering the changes to the federal asset forfeiture program. Brooks Pierce partner Wes Camden was quoted. 

Brooks Pierce has been recognized in the BTI Client Service A-Team 2015, an annual report of law firms considered by clients to deliver the absolute best levels of client service. This is BTI Consulting Group’s 14th report of the nation’s leading law firms.

Brooks Pierce partner Robert Saunders was elected chairman of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce board of directors for 2015. Saunders will lead the chamber’s efforts to advance the business interests of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro area, making it a sustainable community where businesses can thrive.

As you probably know if you’re reading this, in December the Second Circuit upended insider trading law for “tipping” cases by (1) giving some structure to the definition of the personal benefit that must come to the original tipper, and (2) requiring that tippees farther down the chain know that the original tipper’s personal benefit was.  The ripple effects from the decision in United States v. Newman have come quickly and have already been dramatic.

Brooks Pierce partner Kearns Davis was quoted by reporter Erik Larson in Bloomberg's coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing trial.

Thirty-six Brooks Pierce attorneys have been recognized in the 2015 edition of North Carolina Super Lawyers, an annual listing of the state’s leading lawyers. Twenty-seven of the firms’ attorneys were named “Super Lawyers” and nine attorneys were named “Rising Stars.”

Brooks Pierce is pleased to announce that veteran attorney Ann Stuart has joined the firm’s Wilmington office as of counsel. Stuart brings more than 35 years of experience in commercial real estate law to the firm.

The North Carolina General Assembly kicked off the 2015 session this week. With this being the “long” session that is expected to last until the summer, Legislators may consider any number of issues that could affect business and job creation in our State.

On January 15, 2015, the Wall Street Journal Online edition published an article written by Jennifer Levitz covering the final phase of jury selection in the Boston Marathon bomber trial. Brooks Pierce partner Kearns Davis was quoted.

The loosening of trade and travel restrictions with Cuba that President Obama announced last month takes effect tomorrow, January 16, 2015. The White House explained that the changes are designed to “chart a new course” in relations with Cuba, reopening diplomatic relations with the country and signaling a relaxation of the U.S. embargo and sanctions that have been in place for more than fifty years. The policy and regulatory changes are likely to provide business opportunities for North Carolina companies, but along with those opportunities may come risks—both legal and otherwise. Despite the changes, companies wishing to do business involving Cuba or Cuban nationals should use caution and be sure to comply with applicable laws and regulations, including Treasury and Commerce Department rules.

On January 6, North Carolina Lawyers Weekly published a guest column by Brooks Pierce partner Reid Phillips, in which he shared New Year's resolutions for lawyers.

Sixteen Brooks Pierce attorneys have been recognized by their peers for inclusion in the 2015 edition of Business North Carolina’s “Legal Elite,” a listing of the state’s top lawyers in business-related categories. In addition, Brooks Pierce partner Charles Baldwin was inducted into the “Legal Elite” Hall of Fame, becoming the fifth Brooks Pierce attorney to be selected for inclusion in this group.

FOCUS magazine's winter publication featured a cover story on Brooks Pierce attorney Will Quick, who has been named president of North Carolina State University's Friends of the Library board of directors.

The University of North Carolina School of Law recently honored Brooks Pierce attorney and former North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Henry Frye with a commissioned portrait. The portrait, painted by John Seibels Walker, was a gift from the Class of 2013 to honor Frye’s legacy as a trailblazer in the profession.

Brooks Pierce recently recognized the firm’s attorneys who made significant contributions to pro bono matters in 2013.

Four Brooks Pierce attorneys recently received the 2014 Pro Bono Award from the Greensboro Bar Association (GBA). Kyle Woosley, Nicole Crawford, Alex Elkan and Kim Marston were recognized for their representation of Mary’s House, a Greensboro nonprofit that provides housing and support services for homeless mothers recovering from substance abuse and their children.

Brooks Pierce attorneys Henry Frye and Jim Phillips have been named to the annual list of the Triad’s Most Influential People published by the Triad Business Journal. The list recognizes individuals who are having a profound impact on the region, whether its through their workplace or their community involvement. This year’s list includes 113 of the Triad’s top leaders.

Brooks Pierce is pleased to announce that Elizabeth Troutman has joined the firm as an associate in the Greensboro office.

Brooks Pierce is pleased to announce that 27 of the firm’s attorneys have been named to the 2014 Super Lawyers Business Edition, an annual guide to the nation’s top business law firms and attorneys.

Bob Singer, a partner in the Greensboro office of Brooks Pierce, was recently named to the board of directors for the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC). Singer is one of 17 business leaders from across the state appointed to the board, which will hold its first meeting on November 21.

Bill Cary, a partner in the Greensboro office of Brooks Pierce, presented a report on alternatives to shoreline hardening at the 2014 National Summit on Coastal and Estuarine Restoration, held November 1 to November 6 in Washington, D.C.

Brooks Pierce has been named a “Highly Recommended” law firm in North Carolina in the 2015 edition of Benchmark Litigation, the only publication to focus exclusively on litigation firms and attorneys. In addition to the firm-wide ranking, eight Brooks Pierce partners were named either a “Local Litigation Star” or a “Future Star.”

Four Brooks Pierce partners will speak about some of the top legal issues facing digital marketing at the 2014 Internet Summit, being held November 11 – 13 in Raleigh, North Carolina. Digital marketing and media attorneys Stephen Hartzell, Charles Marshall, Elizabeth Spainhour and Thomas Varnum will present alongside top industry leaders, including Apple Co-Founder Steve Wozniak and top executives from companies such as LinkedIn, Twitter, ESPN, Google and Yahoo.

Law firm Brooks Pierce, which has a deep media and entertainment practice, is pleased to sponsor the 20th annual Cucalorus Film Festival, being held November 12 – 16 in downtown Wilmington, North Carolina. Thomas Varnum, a partner in the firm’s Wilmington office, serves on the Cucalorus board of trustees.

Brooks Pierce Partner Nicole Crawford has been selected to speak alongside Guilford College President Jane Fernandes at the upcoming “Di(ver)sabilities in Business” forum, being held Wednesday, November 12, at Guilford College in Greensboro.

Brooks Pierce is pleased to announce that 32 of its practice areas received tier-one metropolitan rankings in the 2015 edition of U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms.” Twenty-five of the firm’s practice areas received a tier-one ranking in Greensboro, and seven practice areas received a tier-one ranking in Raleigh.

On October 15, 2014, Brooks Pierce partner Kearns Davis gave insight to Charlotte NPR affiliate WFAE regarding the Patrick Cannon case.

Brooks Pierce attorney Justin Outling was recently elected chairman of the Greensboro Minimum Housing Standards Commission.

Brooks Pierce partner David Sar was one of three presenters who spoke at a CLE on October 9th.  Sar discussed IP issues relevant to craft brewers and those in the brewing business.

Brooks Pierce has hired three new professionals to direct key areas within the growing firm: Gail Cutter as recruiting director, Laura Hudson as marketing director and Teresa Plunkett as director of information technology.

Triad Business Journal

On October 3rd, Triad Business Journal published an article about patent trolls by Katie Arciera quoting Brooks Pierce partner David Sar.

Brooks Pierce is pleased to announce that six attorneys have been selected to become partners (owners) in the firm: Eric David, Clint Morse, Joey Ponzi, David Smyth, Thomas Varnum and Ed West.

Brooks Pierce Partner Coe W. Ramsey will speak at the 2014 World of Bluegrass event hosted by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) in Raleigh, North Carolina, September 30 – October 4.

Ramsey will serve as a panelist at a session titled “The Big Negotiation: The Nitty Gritty of Contracts and Riders” on Sept. 30. The interactive discussion will explore the complexities of contracts and riders and discuss what individuals can do, either as a presenter, venue operator or performer, to minimize their liability and maximize the odds that both parties are satisfied with the agreement.

Brooks Pierce Partner Charles Marshall has been selected to speak at the Agio Cyber Security Incident Response Luncheon on Wednesday, October 1, at Grandover Resort and Conference Center in Greensboro, North Carolina.  Marshall, alongside FBI Special Agent Devon Ackerman and Agio CEO Bart McDonough, will lead an in-depth discussion on cyber security for top business leaders in the Triad and the surrounding area.

Brooks Pierce Partner Stephen Hartzell served as a panelist at the 2014 Broadcast Education Association (BEA) District II Regional Conference in Boone, North Carolina, September 26-27. 

Hartzell led a session titled “UAS in the USA: The Regulatory Climate’s Commercial Freeze.” The discussion looked at the regulatory climate of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), commonly known as drones, including North Carolina’s recently adopted legislation and its implications for the use of drones by broadcasters for newsgathering, promotions and other purposes.

Brooks Pierce will host an event for the members of the Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) on Wednesday, September 24 from 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. at the firm’s Greensboro office. The keynote speakers, Brooks Pierce Partners Charles Marshall and David Sar, will highlight potential legal pitfalls that companies may face when conducting digital media or marketing operations.

Brooks Pierce partner Ed Turlington spoke at a joint meeting of the Boards of Directors of the NC Technology Association and the Council for Entrepreneurial Development (CED) on September 16 in Raleigh. The meeting was part of CED’s Tech Venture Conference 2014, which was attended by 700 information technology leaders and entrepreneurs from throughout the Southeast.

National Law Journal

On September 8, 2014, the National Law Journal published an article written by Brooks Pierce attorneys Darrell A. Fruth and Andrew Rodenbough addressing new weapons to combat so-called “patent trolls.”  The article identifies new strategies that savvy companies across the country are adopting to respond to patent demand letters and patent infringement lawsuits.

At its September meeting at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex, the War Memorial Commission unanimously elected Brooks Pierce Partner Reid Phillips as its new chairman. 

A September 2, 2014,  Inside Counsel article by Amanda Ciccatelli featured the perspective of intellectual property attorney Darrell A. Fruth on recent developments in state and federal patent law and what they mean for businesses in North Carolina.

Chris McClure, a government relations and policy advisor in the Raleigh office of Brooks Pierce, was recently ranked in the top 4 percent of the Most Influential Lobbyists registered in the North Carolina General Assembly’s 2013 legislative session. The state has 742 registered lobbyists.

Brooks Pierce partner Ed Turlington spoke at the NC Digital Government Summit on August 28 in Raleigh. The Summit was attended by over 250 information technology leaders from state and local government in North Carolina. Turlington’s presentation was entitled “10 Things That IT Leaders Should Know about the 2014 Legislative Session.”

In the August 22nd print edition of the Triangle Business Journal, reporter Lauren K. Ohnesorge includes comments from Raleigh attorney Stephen Hartzell for insight regarding the current status of drones in North Carolina.

The North Carolina General Assembly has completed its 2014 session. During this “short session,” Legislators focused primarily on adjusting the second year of the State budget enacted last year, but also considered a number of other important issues. 

In the August 20th Triangle Business Journal TechFlash Blog, reporter Lauren K. Ohnesorge calls on Raleigh attorney Stephen Hartzell for insight regarding the current status of drones in North Carolina.

The 2015 edition of The Best Lawyers in America© recognized 46 Brooks Pierce attorneys as industry leaders. Nine of the 46 attorneys were also named Best Lawyers® 2015 "Lawyers of the Year" in Greensboro for their respective practice areas. This honor is awarded to one attorney per practice area in each metropolitan area.

Kearns Davis, a partner in the Greensboro office of Brooks Pierce, was recently named to the Greensboro Police Foundation board of directors.

Brooks Pierce attorney Stephen Hartzell is closely following the developments in law related to unmanned aerial vehicles- more popularly known as drones.  Stephen has been quoted in an article called “Keeping an eye out:  New NC law regulates drone use” written by Amanda Lehmert of the News & Record.

Mary’s House, a Greensboro nonprofit that provides housing and support services for homeless mothers recovering from substance abuse and their children, has received a critical financial boost as part of an agreement to end a years-long legal battle with the state of North Carolina over the right of Mary’s House to receive federal funds. The disputed funds are a part of the former federal Emergency Shelters Grant Program, which provided money to states specifically to help support individuals and families coping with homelessness. The program is administered in North Carolina by the state Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS).

Mark J. Prak, a partner in the law firm Brooks Pierce, was inducted into the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters (NCAB) Hall of Fame at a dinner held as a part of the NCAB 2014 Annual Convention on June 23rdat the Washington Duke Inn and Conference Center in Durham, North Carolina.

Insider Trading, Investigations, SEC Litigation

You don’t see this every day. On Friday, the SEC filed a subpoena enforcement action seeking production of documents from the House Ways and Means Committee and documents and testimony from one of its staff members, Brian Sutter. This is fascinating to me for so many reasons. The almost certainly unhappy respondents in this case haven’t yet responded in writing, so the factual details in this blog come from the SEC’s supporting brief. They may not be true.

Seven Brooks Pierce practice areas and 15 of the firm’s attorneys are ranked among the best in North Carolina in the 2014 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. The listing of the leading lawyers and law firms in the country is published annually by Chambers and Partners.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently recognized Brooks Pierce partner George House for his role in the cleanup and redevelopment of the Landia Chemical Company Superfund Site in Lakeland, Florida.

Kearns Davis, a partner with Brooks Pierce, was recently appointed to the North Carolina Equal Access to Justice Commission.

Jeff Oleynik, a partner in the Greensboro office of Brooks Pierce, serves as the current president of the Law Firm Alliance and recently led the semi-annual meeting held at the Boston Harbor Hotel.

James T. Williams, Jr., a partner in the Greensboro office of Brooks Pierce, recently received the Distinguished Service Award from the Greensboro Bar Association.