Emory Law Alumni, Faculty, Among Daily Report’s Annual “40 under 40” List

August 30, 2013

The lawyers labeled as up-and-comers for 2013 by the Daily Report include several Emory Law alumni and Barton Child Law and Policy Center Executive Director Melissa Carter.

Jeremy Berry 97C 03L, 38, is an associate with McKenna Long & Aldridge, where many of his clients are elected officials and politicians (or aspirants).

“Berry does the usual sort of political volunteering, serving on the board of a Democratic organization, Red Clay Democrats, and knocking on doors on weekends,” the Report profile reads. “But his day job as an associate at McKenna Long & Aldridge is politics, too, as his practice includes advising those who want to do business with the government, as well as representing elected officials as they navigate campaign finance and ethics issues.”

Melissa Carter, 36, led the Barton Child Law and Policy Center in its long-term effort that persuaded Georgia’s legislators to pass an overhaul of Georgia’s juvenile code this year. Before coming to Barton, Carter was deputy to then Georgia Child Advocate Tom Rawlings, and later was appointed Advocate after Rawlings left.

“Rawlings, now in private practice in Sandersville, says Carter is at her best doing what she's doing now—educating the players. "She is not loud," he says. "She is not trying to get attention." But, he says, "this is a person who knows what she's doing," the Report profile reads. One of the Barton Clinic's postgraduate fellows, Amy Howell, was also named among this year's 40 up-and-comers. She is general counsel at the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities.

Jeffrey W. Davis 02L, 37, is assistant U.S. attorney for Georgia’s Northern District. He joined the U.S. attorney's office in Atlanta in 2008 after four-and-a-half years at New York’s Manhattan District Attorney's office.

"Jeff's judgment, insight and intellect allow us to assign him our most difficult and sensitive cases and have absolute confidence that the outcomes will reflect the highest standards of justice and professionalism," U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates told the Report.

Thad Kodish 00L, 39, is managing principal at Fish & Richardson. According to the Report, he’s known as a patent troll slayer, with a client list that includes Samsung, Shaw Industries and McKesson Corp. He has also served as an expert witness for Kimberly-Clark.

“Appointments such as these generally are reserved for people with 25 or more years of experience, says Fish & Richardson principal Ruffin Cordell, "but Kodish's stellar reputation and track record of accomplishments had him ahead of the curve," the Report says.

Bharath Parthasarathy 05L, 32, is associate general counsel for Georgia State University. The job ranges from working out agreements with the City of Atlanta and the Georgia Dome to oversight of the contract details for Georgia State’s new football coach. The university setting suits him, he tells the Report.

“The son and brother of academics, Parthasarathy, who is studying for his MBA at Georgia State, says his position allows him to mesh "my interest in public policy [with] being involved in problem solving and in solving business challenges. I'm hooked."

Laura Wilson Speed-Dalton 96C 99L, 39, is a solo practitioner plaintiff’s attorney who specializes in carefully vetted medical malpractice lawsuits at The Speed Firm. Unlike many lawyers who left the field after Georgia’s tort reform legislation passed in 2005, the challenge inspired her to fight harder for patients’ rights. Unlike larger firms who can spread the substantial risk of loss among partners, she has “to be very choosy … I make sure they’re really good cases because I’m investing thousands of dollars myself,” she told the Report.

"Laurie is really unique in her practice field," Christian Torgrimson of Pursley Freise Torgrimson told the Report. "Plaintiffs' lawyers have a reputation for being sharks and ambulance chasers; she's not like that at all, It really speaks to an ethical level that lawyers often don't have."

Related Link

Read “2013 on the Rise,” in the Daily Report (subscription required)


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