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Two founding members of the Atlanta office of Miller & Martin have left after one of the lawyers’ corporate clients announced it was being bought by Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc., another of the firm’s major clients. Peter B. Glass and Ugo F. Ippolito, two of five lawyers who opened the Atlanta office of Miller & Martin in 1997, resigned. Chattanooga, Tenn.-based Miller & Martin represents CCE in Atlanta, and bottling company Herb Coca-Cola is Ippolito’s own long-time client. It took six weeks to close the $1.4 billion transaction, says Glass, who was asked by Ippolito to help with the acquisition process. CCE and Herb Coca-Cola signed a letter of intent on May 1 and completed the deal July 10, according to Glass. Miller & Martin managing partner John B. Phillips Jr. says that neither lawyer did any direct and material work for CCE while they were with the firm. The two withdrew from Miller & Martin on May 15. Until the acquisition negotiations, lawyers for both clients could co-exist peacefully without any concerns about possible conflicts. But when CCE signed the letter of intent to buy the bottler, says Ippolito, he and Glass had to step out of the fray. Ippolito, former in-house counsel for CCE, says Marvin Herb and his company, Chicago-based Herb Coca-Cola, have been Ippolito’s client for more than 20 years. Ippolito and Glass had to negotiate favorable contract positions on behalf of Herb, Ippolito says. That put them on the opposite side of the bargaining table from the Miller & Martin lawyers who represented CCE in the transaction. Ippolito says he could have quit as Herb Coca-Cola’s counsel but didn’t want to relinquish a client he’s known for so long. Glass says the two lawyers are using Kilpatrick Stockton’s office space. Right now, they’re doing post-closing work for the transaction. Both lawyers say they’re undecided about what they’ll do. They say they’ve been too busy working on the acquisition to decide but they won’t rule out returning to Miller & Martin. Herb Coca-Cola was the third-largest Coca-Cola bottler in the United States. Its two subsidiaries, Hondo Inc. and Herbco Enterprises Inc., operated in six states — Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. With the purchase of Herb Coca-Cola, CCE says it will sell 80 percent of Coke’s North American bottle and can volume. Herb Coca-Cola’s 2000 revenue was $913 million. CCE’s was $14.8 billion. Glass and Thomas J. Harrold Jr. left the firm that bore their names — Glass, McCullough, Sherrill & Harrold — at the end of 1997 to start the Atlanta office of Miller & Martin. Glass McCullough partners T. Kennerly Carroll Jr., and Luther C. Curtis left with Glass and Harrold, as well as Ippolito, who became of counsel to Miller & Martin. Harrold could not be reached for comment by press time. HASTIE JOINS HUNTON’S NEW LOBBYIST GROUP Hunton & Williams has formed a three-member government relations group that includes a local lobbyist with Republican connections. Former Oglethorpe Power Corp. director of government relations Roderick “Rod” B. Hastie has joined the new group and will work out of the firm’s Atlanta and Washington offices. Prior to joining Oglethorpe Power in 1993, Hastie worked in the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a congressional relations specialist during the senior President George Bush’s administration. During the administration of President Ronald Reagan, Hastie served in the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs and acted as a liaison between the president and locally elected officials. He also advised Reagan’s special assistant on economic development issues and arbitrated conflicts between federal and local agencies. In 1984, Hastie was a special adviser to the Deputy Undersecretary for Intergovernmental Relations at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Thurston R. Moore, Hunton’s managing partner, says the firm soon will grow its government relations practice by two or three members. Moore says the current members give the firm an “ecumenical and bipartisan” approach to lobbying the federal and local legislatures. The other two government relations group members include a former ambassador and a tax attorney. Luis Lauredo, former U.S. Ambassador to the Organization of American States and U.S. Coordinator of the Summit of the Americas, joined the firm’s Miami and Washington offices. James F. Miller, a former litigator in the Tax Division at the U.S. Department of Justice under the first Bush administration and a long-time Washington tax, foreign affairs and health care lobbyist, has joined the firm’s Washington office. Briefly … � The National Law Journalhas honored Emmet J. Bondurant II as one of the nation’s 10 best trial attorneys. The July 11 issue of The National Law Journal, a sister publication of the Daily Report and law.com, cites Bondurant for his successful defense of Wyle Laboratories Inc. and eight individuals. Bondurant, a 64-year-old partner at Bondurant, Mixon & Elmore, represented electronics distributor Wyle when Avnet Inc., a Wyle competitor, sued the company for $154 million in compensatory damages for tortious interference with employer-employee relationships. Avnet alleged that Wyle tried to conduct a corporate raid of a company that Avnet was acquiring. A Tampa, Fla., jury rejected all the claims, and there was no appeal. Avnet v. Wyle Laboratories, No. 93-4396-D (Hillsborough Co., Fla., Cir. Ct. May 14, 1993). Bondurant’s law partner P. Richard Game and Jeffrey D. Horst of Krevolin & Horst served as co-counsel in the case. In March, The NLJ recognized the verdict as one of the top defense verdicts of 2000.

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