Judge Joe Binkley, Jr. was elected Judge of the Fifth Circuit Court for Davidson County, Tennessee in 2008. He was re-elected by popular vote in August of 2014. In September of 2010, he was elected by the other 17 State Trial Court Judges of the 20th Judicial District to serve as Presiding Judge of the Davidson County State Trial Courts. He was re-elected to serve a tenth term as Presiding Judge in September of 2019. Posted 1.15.20
William Emory Weems II (BE '62) died July 9. He was a proud graduate of Vanderbilt University Mechanical Engineering Class of ’62, and Vanderbilt School of Law Class of ’69. The friendships he made at Vandy lasted his entire life and were truly cherished. Bill is survived by his loving wife Beverly, his children Laura Deitrick (Todd) and Alyson Housley (Michael). Read more: https://obits.tennessean.com/obituaries/tennessean/obituary.aspx?n=william-emory-weems&pid=193379108&fhid=37982 Posted 7.26.19
The Honorable Brocton D. Lockwood died May 21. He was 74. Brocton grew up on a small farm between Carbondale and Murphysboro in Southern Illinois. He attended Oberlin College before earning his law degree from Vanderbilt. While in college and law school, he worked for local police forces in Ohio and Maine, and worked as an investigator for the U. S. Attorney’s Office in Nashville, Tennessee. After law school, he returned to Carbondale where he practiced as a trial lawyer in both civil and criminal trials. He served for a time as Carbondale City Attorney, and taught in the Administration of Justice Department at Southern Illinois University on a part time basis. Between 1978 and 1983 he served as a Judge in Williamson County, Illinois, from which he was assigned to serve in Chicago. He became an undercover cooperating witness for the Justice Department during Operation Greylord. In 1983, he returned to practice law in Marion, Illinois, until 2000, when he was once again appointed to a judicial position. This time he worked in Saline County and retired in 2006. In 2011, he and local historian Gary DeNeal, wrote Shades of Gray, a novel about the turbulent times in Williamson County. He always considered this as his greatest last adventure. He is survived by his wife, Gala, several children and grandchildren. Posted 6.4.2018
Arthur Jones 'Randy' Ranson, III died February 13.Randy earned his undergraduate degree from Florida Presbyterian (now Eckerd) college in 1965 before earning his law degree from Vanderbilt. After graduation, Randy moved to Orlando where he embarked upon an active civil litigation practice that continued to the time of his death. He was an elite member of the distinguished AV-Rated Board Certified Civil Trial lawyers. He is survived by his wife, Angela, five children and eight grandchildren. Posted 3.1.18
Arnold Schwartzman died May 21 after a two-year illness. He was 71. Arnie’s 45-year legal career included private practice, most recently as a consultant to Arent Fox, and service as an in-house counsel for Sargent Electric Co. and TEGG Corp., where he played a mayor role in the growth of the TEGG franchise, which now spans the global from the U.S. to the Pacific RimA devoted philanthropist, Arnie devoted much of his time outside of work to supporting St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis. In July 2011, he was elected to St. Jude's ALSAC Leadership Council, a high-level group of distinguished supporters who serve as ambassadors for St. Jude in communities throughout the U.S. He was served on the Board of Trustees of the Eric Trump Foundation, whose mission is also to raise money for terminally ill children being treated at St. Jude. Arnie was an honorary member of the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh, a former chair of Covenant Manor Inc., and a founding trustee of the Ronald McDonald House in Dayton, Ohio. At Vanderbilt, Arnie was editor of the Vanderbilt Law Review. He received his undergraduate degree at Trinity College in Connecticut. Arnie is survived by his daughter and a grandson. Posted 12.5.16
Jim Wilson of Hixon died November 4. He was 77. He received a degree in history from The Citadel and went on to serve in the United States Air Force before earning his law degree from Vanderbilt. After graduation, he went on to practice law for 47 years. He is survived by his wife Janie, his children Lisa, Shannon and Andrea, and two grandchildren. Posted 11.28.16
Joe Pitts Binkley Jr. was elected judge of the Fifth Circuit Court for Davidson County, Tennessee in 2008. He was re-elected by popular vote in August of 2014. In September of 2010, he was elected by the other 17 state trial court judges of the 20th Judicial District to serve as presiding judge of the Davidson County State Trial Courts. He was re-elected to serve a seventh term as presiding judge in September 2016. Posted 11.22.16
Joseph N. Baker’s Gulch Crossing Office Building project was awarded the distinction of being selected by NAIOP as the "Development of the Year" for 2015 in Nashville. This project combined all of the most difficult elements of a major office building from environmental remediation to cutting edge technology, including being LEED certified. Posted 3.14.16
William H. Crawford Jr. died Jan. 7. He was 74. He graduated from Montgomery Bell Academy and then went onto earn both his bachelor’s and law degrees from Vanderbilt. He served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army in Korea. Bill was a founding partner of Ortale, Kelly, Herbert & Crawford Law Office. He is survived by his wife, Angela; two children; and five grandchildren. Posted 1.27.16
Herman K. Golnik Jr. died October 12. He was 77. Born in Bristol, Connecticut, he went on to earn his J.D. from Vanderbilt Law. He worked for a series of financial institutions in New York City, Detroit and Orlando that included American Express, National Bank of Detroit and Sun Banks, NA of Florida. He also spent time working for Chrysler at their 8 Mile Assembly facility as a tool and die maker and teaching in the Detroit Public School System. He is survived by his brother; four sons and one daughter; and nine grandchildren. Posted 11.3.15
Harlan Dodson III was included on the 2015 “Best of the Bar” awards list by the Nashville Business Journal. Harlan practices with Dodson Parker Behm & Capparella in Nashville, Tennessee where he serves clients seeking general business advice, estate planning services, or representation in litigation. Posted 5.15.15
Matthias B. (Matt) Murfree (BA '66) died November 5. He was 70. Murfree was a partner with his son, Matthias B. (Bricke) Murfree IV ’03, in Murfree & Murfree in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where they are descendants of the city’s namesake. Over the course of his career, Murfree served as county executive and chairman of the Rutherford County Commission and as county commissioner, president of the Rutherford County Bar Association, president of the Chamber of Commerce and vice chairman of the Main Street Board. He was also a board member and former chairman of St. Thomas Rutherford Hospital and a board member of St. Thomas Health Systems and of MidSouth Bank. Murfree represented Rutherford County in negotiations that brought Nissan Motor Manufacturing to Smyrna, Tennessee. He chaired the county’s Health, Education and Welfare Committee and led the establishment if the Rutherford County Ambulance Service. He was named Business Legend of the year by the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce in 2002. In addition to his son and law partner, Bricke Murfree ’03, he is survived by his wife, Kitty Murfree, and another son, Davis Murfree. Posted 11.19.14
Judge Joe Pitts Binkley Jr. (BA'66) was reelected presiding judge of the Davidson County State Trial Courts in September 2013. Judge Binkley previously served as judge of the 5th Circuit Court for Davidson County, before being elected to his current position in 2010. Posted 3.25.14
Hon. Thomas W. Phillips celebrated his 70th birthday on July 6, utilizing the day by officially retiring to take inactive senior judge status. His retirement ceremony was held July 11 in the courtyard of the Howard H. Baker Jr. U.S. Courthouse. He became a U.S. magistrate judge in 1991, and 11 years later was appointed to a full judgeship by President George W. Bush to replace Judge James Jarvis. It has been said that Phillips has spent more than 3,000 hours in the courtroom. Click here to read more about Phillips' retirement celebration . Posted 7.16.13
Harlan Dodson III received the Nashville Bar Association's John C. Tune Community Service Award, recognizing the highest degree of dedication as a lawyer and for the betterment of the community. The award was presented to Harlan by the Honorable Bill Purcell (JD'79) at the NBA's Annual Meeting and Banquet held in December 2012. Posted 2.4.13
Stephen E. Gilhuley has been elected executive vice president of administration, as well as secretary, at Park Electrochemical Corporation. He has been with the company since 1994, and has served as executive vice president since October 2006, senior vice president from March 2001 to October 2006 and secretary since July 1996. Posted 4.17.12
William N. Ozier (BA'66), a member of the Nashville office of Bass Berry & Sims, has been elected chairman of the board of directors of the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry for 2012. William has served as a member of the board of directors of the Tennessee Chamber since 2006 and has served as its general counsel for the past three years. Posted 2.16.12
Michael C. (Mike) Pescatello of Tiburon, California, died January 22, 2012, of complications related to esophageal cancer. Mike was 67. He was born in New York on March 29, 1944. He earned a B.A. degree from Gettysburg College before earning his law degree at Vanderbilt. He was a senior vice president at Northern Trust, and served as managing director and chief fiduciary officer of the Northern's Bay Area Region. He joined Northern Trust in 1988 when they opened their first offices in California. Prior to joining Northern Trust, he was an associate with the New York firm of Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom, and a vice president in the Trust & Investment Division of Crocker National Bank. Mike was also active in the investment syndication business, serving in an executive capacity with several national syndication firms. Active in the community, he was a director of the Marin Theater Company in Mill Valley, California, and a trustee of both the Hanna Boys Center in Sonoma County and the Agawam Council in Raymond, Maine. He was also a member of the National Advisory Board of Vanderbilt Law School. He was a life member of the University Club of New York. Mike and his wife Kiki loved to travel, and each year found them in a new location, such as Burma, cooking school in Tuscany, riding elephants in India, or on the beach at Kona, Hawaii. Mike was well known for his wicked sense of humor and his sometimes inappropriate neckties. He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Carolie (Kiki) Pescatello, his mother, Edith Pescatello of Scarsdale, New York, and a large extended family. Posted 1.27.12
A. David Baumhart III has been appointed Citizen Commissioner by the Oakland County Parks and Recreation Commission. David's appointment to the commission was July 6, replacing retired Commissioner Charles Palmer of Clawson. David is an attorney with his private practice ADR Advantages Posted 1.10.12
William Caveney,of Evanston, Illinois, died March 15, 2011. He was 66.
Lloyd Ator, Legislative Counsel to the United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, has retired after almost 30 years service with the United States Senate and more than a dozen years in private practice. Upon graduating from Vanderbilt Law School, Lloyd joined the Senate Legislative Counsel's Office as a legislative draftsman, where he served until 1980. He served as Tax Counsel to the American Bankers Association from 1981 until 1983, when he joined Price Waterhouse's Washington National Tax Service, becoming a partner in 1987. Lloyd was Of Counsel to the firm of Alston & Bird during 1990, but left to establish his own practice providing counsel, independent legislative drafting, and related services for the International Monetary Fund, the United States Agency for International Development, and private sector clients, until mid-1994. At that time he responded to a request from the Commerce Committee to take on, what he believed at the time, to be a temporary assignment as the Committee's nonpartisan Legislative Counsel; he served in that capacity until his retirement. Posted 4.19. 11
John Fitzgerald (BA'66) has retired from his practice at Tune Entrekin & White, where he was of counsel, effective January 2011. Before entering private practice, John served as general counsel and special counsel for the Tennessee Department of Health from 1975 to 2001. During his 26 years with the state Department of health, he co-authored the rules promulgated by the state's Licensing Board for Health Care Facilities regarding trauma care centers and perinatal care facilities and the hazardous waste management rules promulgated by the Tennessee Solid Waste Disposal Board. He also served as a prosecutor before all health-related boards in the state's Health Department. After retiring from his position with the state, John specialized in health law, practicing for the past six years with Tune Entrekin & White. Posted 1.20.11
William Lafayette Parker passed away July 28, 2010, at age 75. A native of Shelbyville, Tennessee, Billy is survived by Shara, his devoted wife of 22 years; his five children and two grandchildren. While at Vanderbilt, Billy was a walk-on football center for the Gator Bowl championship team of 1955 and a scholarship player for his last two years. Upon graduation, Billy joined the U.S. Marine Corps as a first lieutenant and served in Japan. After extensive surgeries for cancer at Bethesda Naval Hospital, he received a medical discharge from the USMC and began his career as a sports writer for the Nashville Banner. In 1967, he entered Vanderbilt Law School and, upon graduation, went on to receive a Master of Law at the University of Texas, with subsequent training at Northwestern in law enforcement. He held the position of Legal Advisor for Nashville's Metropolitan Police Department for 26 years until his retirement in 1997. He was a celebrated athlete and sports writer, including being well known in Nashville's running circles as a pace setter for his age group in competitive running, both in marathons and half marathons. He will be remembered most for being a hero to his family, a hero to his country and a hero to his university.
John R. Blossman died March 30, 2009, of cancer. He was 65. A well-known Gulf Coast businessman and community leader, he graduated from Yale University in 1966 before earning his law degree at Vanderbilt. Upon graduation from law school, he joined Blossman Gas, a company founded by his father, E. W. Blossman. From 1970 - 1972 he took a leave of absence from the company to serve in the U. S. Army during the Vietnam era. At the time of his death, he was Chairman of the Board of Blossman Gas, now the 10th largest retail propane dealer in the country. A widely respected member of the propane industry, he served terms as President of both the Mississippi Propane Gas Association and the National Propane Gas Association. He had also been active in the banking industry, having served for over 20 years as a director of Citizens National Bank, now a part of Wachovia Bank.He was involved in numerous Gulf Coast community organizations and had recently been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the City of Ocean Springs. He is survived by his wife, Courtney, three children, and nine grandchildren.
Carl E. Lovell Jr. died Sept. 21, 2006, of cancer. He was 61. Born April 12, 1945, in Riverside, California, Carl was the son of a U.S. Air Force Colonel, Carl Lovell Sr., and spent much of his youth traveling around the world. Carl earned his undergraduate and law degrees at Vanderbilt. While at Vanderbilt, Carl played in a rock and roll band: The Chaplains. At age 28, Carl served as the youngest city attorney for both North Las Vegas and Las Vegas where he first argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. He moved to the private sector and became in-house counsel and secretary treasurer for Circus Circus Resorts for approximately eight years. He then began a successful private practice where he continued to represent the gaming industry as well as private-sector clients. Carl's exit from politics was not the end of his public service, as he served as officer/director for the following organizations: Southern Nevada Better Business Bureau, National Consumer Affairs Committee for the National City Attorneys Association, North Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce, Nevada Kidney Foundation, founding member and president of the Nevada Donor Network, Legislative Advisory Group for the Nevada State Legislature, Nevada Crime Commission Financial Allocation Committee and the American Trial Lawyers Association. In one of the highlights of his career, Carl represented the United States in international trade and law talks in Beijing, China in 1987.
Edward A. Robertson III of Southside, Tennessee, died July 7, 2006. He was 63. Reared in Nashville and Franklin, Tennnessee., he graduated cum laude from Yale University before earning his J.D. at Vanderbilt. He began his law practice in 1969 with the firm of Goodlett Peay and Hurt in Clarksville and later established his own practice there. He had served as secretary of the Montgomery County Bar Association.
Charlie Williams died April 27, 2006. A prominent Nashville attorney who served on the Metro Sports Authority board, Charlie worked as a Fraternal Order of Police lawyer in the 1970s and '80s to help transform the Metro Police Department into its modern status. He and his wife, Carol, were also pioneers in the revival of Historic Edgefield in East Nashville. He was known as a smart lawyer, a fierce advocate for his clients and a family man devoted to his neighborhood and his city. He had been a member of the Metro Sports Authority board since 1996. But it was his work as chief counsel and lead negotiator for the FOP that is credited with moving the police department away from an agency marked by political patronage into the force it is today. Charlie grew up in Nashville and earned his undergraduate degree from David Lipscomb University.