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A firm claiming to be Nashville, Tenn.’s first all-black firm has joined forces with the city’s first all-woman firm. “We certainly like what it says to the community–that our lawyers look like the faces of Nashville,” said Margaret Behm, name partner at the merged firm, Dodson, Parker, Dinkins & Behm P.C. The latest merger brings together nine lawyers from three firms. Ms. Behm was formerly a partner at Shipley & Behm, which she said became the city’s first all-woman firm when it was formed in 1981. When her partner Marietta Shipley was named a state trial court judge, Ms. Behm merged her practice with Dodson & Associates in 1988. Williams and Dinkins, known for its civil rights litigation, traces its roots to the city’s first all-black firm, founded in 1928. The firms joined forces less for strategic reasons than because the lawyers enjoyed working together, Behm said.

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