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Smith, Currie & Hancock has merged with two construction boutique law firms. Thomas J. Kelleher Jr., the firm’s managing partner, says Smith Currie combined with Atlanta’s five-lawyer Smith & Fleming and Florida’s five-lawyer Cummings & Snyder. The three firms’ construction practices and client bases complement each other, Kelleher says. Cummings & Snyder attorneys include F. Alan Cummings, Patricia A. H. Snyder, George Berwig, W. Guy McKenzie Jr., and Daniel T. Young. Snyder says Cummings and Snyder will be partners at the merged firm. Smith Currie had discussed a merger with the Cummings firm for two years, Kelleher says, calling Cummings “one of the most respected construction lawyers in Florida.” The firm has offices in Tallahassee and Ft. Lauderdale. The 10 new lawyers, says Kelleher, will allow Smith Currie to expand its reach in the construction law field. The firm has always done work in Florida, he adds. For the Cummings firm, the merger means access to government construction contracting and labor law expertise, says Kelleher. Before the merger, he says, the Cummings firm was not as active in those areas. According to the Martindale-Hubbell Law directory, Cummings & Snyder clients include the state of Alabama, the Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority, the Florida Transportation Builders’ Association Inc. and Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. Smith & Fleming lawyers include partners Kent B. Smith, Robert O. Fleming Jr., George D. Wenick and Peter M. Crofton. All will also be partners at the merged firm. The only Smith & Fleming associate, James W. Copeland, also joined Smith, Currie & Hancock. Name partners Smith and Fleming were partners at Smith Currie in the early 1980s, says Kelleher, but left Smith, Currie to start their own firm. Martindale-Hubbell lists Alabama Electric Co., Cousins Properties, Hitachi Transport System-America, Home Depot USA and the Macon/Bibb County Water and Sewer Authority as Smith & Fleming clients. Kelleher predicts the addition of the 10 lawyers will boost Smith Currie’s revenue by 15 percent to 20 percent. Within the firm’s construction group, he says revenue should increase by about 25 percent because of the additional work. Smith Currie’s construction clients include Birmingham Steel Corp., the Georgia Highway Contractors Association and Turner Construction Co. The firm now has 48 attorneys in Atlanta, seven in Charlotte and five in Tallahassee and Ft. Lauderdale. IP MANAGING PARTNER William H. Brewster, the head of Kilpatrick Stockton’s intellectual property practice, will succeed Tim Carssow as managing partner in April. Brewster says Kilpatrick Stockton’s executive committee nominated him for the position in December. Carssow, says Brewster, decided to step down because being a managing partner “can be thankless and at times it can occupy a lot of time.” Brewster, 38, joined Kilpatrick Stockton in 1987 as an associate and was elected to partner six years later. He practices in the fields of trademark, copyright, false advertising and unfair competition. Carssow, who has been an Atlanta office partner since 1976, became managing partner in April 1996. He will resume his commercial real estate practice on a full-time basis in April. Carssow says five years as managing partner is enough. He feels it’s time to “turn over the reins.” In the past five years, Carssow estimates he spent 75 percent of his work time managing the firm. It’s important to have an IP partner as head of the firm, Carrsow says, because of Kilpatrick’s growth in that area. He notes that in the past year, the firm has added 50 IP attorneys and 30 technology attorneys. Wyck A. Knox Jr., chairman of the firm’s executive committee, says one of the firm’s strengths is its IP and technology work. “Bill will help us spread that talent and enthusiasm across all of our practices and offices,” says Knox. “He is the first IP attorney to head a large firm in Atlanta.” Management of the firm also includes chief operating officer Paul Bellows and two deputy managing partners. Evelyn H. Coats is the deputy managing partner for attorney resources. Richard E. Fay, who works in Kilpatrick’s Charlotte office, is the deputy managing partner for practice groups. Kilpatrick Stockton has 535 lawyers in 11 offices in the Southeast, Washington, London, Stockholm, and Brussels, Belgium. There are about 280 attorneys in Kilpatrick’s Atlanta office. Kilpatrick Stockton has more than 100 patent, trademark and copyright attorneys with over 80 IP lawyers in the Atlanta office. ASSOCIATES RAISING FUNDS The money for the Associates’ Campaign for Legal Services has been counted. Arnall Golden Gregory associate Tracey M. Roberts, who founded and spearheaded the fund-raising campaign, says a total of $69,145 was collected from 455 associates in Atlanta law firms. Roberts says she started the campaign to raise money for lower-paid colleagues who work with poor clients after what she calls “bad press” about whopping raises for young lawyers last year. She launched the campaign last July and finally counted the collected funds last month. Roberts says 30 Atlanta law firms participated in the fund-raising campaign. Some firms matched all or a portion of their associates’ donations. Volunteers raised funds door-to-door, asking associates for donations. Roberts says she plans to keep the campaign going in years to come. The eight legal service organizations to benefit from the campaign are: the Atlanta Legal Aid Society, the Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation, the Georgia Justice Project, the Georgia Law Center for the Homeless, the Georgia Legal Services Program, the Georgia Volunteer Lawyers Foundation, the Georgia Resource Center and the Southern Center for Human Rights. Briefly … According to a report in the National Law Journal, 41 law firms donated three or more of their 2000 annual billable hours to pro bono work. Three of those firms have offices in Atlanta. Baker, Donelson, Bearman & Caldwell, Hunton & Williams, and Sutherland Asbill & Brennan all reached the 3 percent mark, which is the amount of pro bono work suggested by the American Bar Association. Sutherland Asbill & Brennan tax partner N. Jerold Cohen has been elected chairman of the American College of Tax Counsel. The ACTC is an honorary organization of tax lawyers who have been admitted into the practice of law for at least 15 years. The group supports tax policy research. W. Melvin Haas III, head of Constangy, Brooks & Smith’s Macon office, has been appointed as chairman of the employment law committee of the Georgia Defense Lawyers Association. The committee instructs the association on trends and issues within employment law. Alexia T. Wells, a full-time paralegal at Gambrell & Stolz, has been awarded the Georgia Association of Paralegals (GAP) pro bono award. GAP presents the award annually to a paralegal who has offered pro bono legal services to clients who are unable to pay reasonable or customary legal fees.

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