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Class of 2005

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Class Notes are posted in the order they are received, with the newest posts on top.

Do you have news you would like to share or just want to let everyone know what you are up to these days? Submit your class note online, email Class Notes, or call 615-322-2606.

  Aaron S. Kamlay was featured recently during two webinars on November 12 and 17, focusing on the use of technology for developing an efficient, client-focused IP practice. Hosted by IP Watchdog and Anaqua, the webinars presented panel discussions on how leaders in the IP field use technology to increase the strategic value of their legal advice and their clients’ IP portfolios. Read more here. Posted 2.9.21


Aaron Kamlay 2

  Aaron Kamlay  has joined Butzel Long law firm as a shareholder. Mr. Kamlay is based in the firms Washington, D.C. office.  Posted 10.14.20




Ajay Koduri died February 6 in San Francisco. He was 42.  Ajay is survived by his beloved wife, Sowmya Reddy.  Posted 2.25.19

Amber N. Hall  has joined Wells Fargo as Senior Corporate Governance Counsel and Assistant Secretary in their Charlotte, NC office.  Posted 9.26.18

Geoffrey Michael Drake was interviewed in  Drake is a partner at King & Spalding in Atlanta, where he focuses on product liability litigation. Read more:  h ttps://  Posted 7.02.18

Justin G. Tanner has joined the board of trustees for the Jack and Jill of America Foundation. Justin is the director of Government Affairs for Verizon’s Southeast, South Central, and Great Lakes, State Government Affairs team. Posted 6.28.18

Joni Alexis Poitier is an associate at Moseley Prichard Parrish Knight & Jones in Jacksonville, Florida. Joni was previously a prosecutor in Jacksonville. She currently serves on the board of directors for Family Foundations of Northeast Florida. Posted 5.30.2018

Russell Taber was selected as a winner of the Nashville Business Journal’s 2018 “40 Under 40” Awards. He is a partner at Riley, Warnock & Jacobson, PLC, focusing his practice on business litigation. Posted 2.16.18 

Geoffrey M. Drake has published a treatise entitled, Drug and Device Product Liability Litigation Strategy. This is the product of a team at King & Spalding, where Geoffrey is partner in the firm’s Atlanta office. Posted 1.29.18

Jasmin Yanghas been promoted to counsel of Snell & Wilmer. She practices bankruptcy, insolvency and business reorganization in the firm’s Los Angeles office. Posted 1.15.18

Julie Samuels was selected for the Class of 2017 “40 Under 40” in Crain’s New York Business . Julie is the executive director at Tech:NYC , a nonprofit major trade organization in New York City. Posted 4.21.17

Jeffrey A. Kershaw has joined Freeman Mathis & Gary as partner in the professional liability and insurance coverage practice in their Atlanta office. Posted 2.21.17

Sudkhet Boriboonsri (LL.M.) has undertaken a position as a counsellor of the Permanent Mission of Thailand to the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. He is responsible for Thailand’s works on intellectual property at the World Trade Organization (WTO)  and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva, Switzerland. Posted 2.7.17

Kellie Combs was appointed to life sciences partner at Ropes & Gray in Washington, D.C. Kellie has expertise in FDA regulatory issues, regulation of clinical research, and post-approval compliance. Posted 11.28.16

Jenny Howard is general counsel for the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation. She was the department’s deputy general counsel since 2012. Posted 7.25.16

Geoffrey Michael Drake , partner in King & Spalding’s tort litigation & environmental group, was added to the list of the nation’s top talent under 40 by newsletter Law360 in its “Law360 Rising Stars” series. Additionally, Emory University’s Institute for Complex Litigation and Mass Claims recently selected Geoff as a member of its Next Generation Advisory Board, comprised of rising stars, recognized by both plaintiffs’ and defense counsel as leaders who will help define complex litigation in the future. Posted 5.23.16

Joni Alexis Poitier  was appointed by Florida Gov. Rick Scott to the state’s elections commission. The appointment, which runs through Dec. 31, 2019, must be confirmed by the Florida Senate. Joni is an associate with Moseley Prichard Parrish Knight & Jones in the firm’s Jacksonville office where she focuses on civil litigation. Posted 1.27.16

Amber Nash Hall was promoted to assistant general counsel of governance and compliance for Cox Enterprises, headquartered in Atlanta. Before joining Cox in 2011 she worked with Bryan Cave. Posted 1.27.16

Justin Gregory Tanner was quoted in a Washington Post article, “Black millenials consider a post-Obama world”. Justin is a member of the board for IMPACT, a nonprofit devoted to helping young professionals of color working in politics and policy, who works in the Obama administration. Posted 1.27.16

Laura F. Ketcham (BA’02) joined the Chattanooga, Tennessee office of Miller & Martin. Laura is a member of the firm's commercial department, focusing her practice in the areas of bankruptcy and creditors' rights, commercial finance and providing general business counsel. Posted 12.4.15

Matthew Adam Kraus has been promoted to partner in the New York office of Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman. He focuses his practice on complex commercial and financial products litigation. Posted 9.17.15

Luther Wright Jr. was included on the “Best of the Bar” awards list by the Nashville Business Journal. Luther is of counsel with Littler Mendelson where he practices with the labor & employment team. Posted 5.15.15

Sasha A. Klein has joined Sabadell Bank & Trust in Palm Beach, Florida. Sasha will be responsible for providing wealth and advisory services for high net worth individuals and families at Sabadell Bank & Trust in Palm Beach as senior vice president, director of trust and wealth services. Posted 3.24.15

Linda Du (LL.M.) was elected partner at Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton in New York City in 2014. She will spend much of 2015 working out of the firm's California offices, primarily in San Francisco, to develop its West Coast practice. Posted 2.2.15

Justin Matthew Croniser has been elected partner at Hahn Loeser & Parks in Cleveland, Ohio, where he focuses on complex commercial litigation. Posted 1.26.15

Gerald John Schirato has been made a partner at Duane Morris in Pittsburgh. Jerry represents clients in complex litigation with a focus on property tax relief, non-compete, trade secrets, and banking. Posted 1.26.15

Ryan Robert BakerRyan Robert Baker  has been elected to membership Bass Berry & Sims, where he is based in Memphis. He primarily represents FINRA registered brokerage firms and associated persons in disputes with customers, firms and regulators through litigation and ADR proceedings. Posted 1.26.15



Shubham Vinay Arora (BA '00) has been named partner at Akin Gump. Shubhi is a member of the firm’s oil and gas and India practices, working primarily with clients in the energy industry on mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, private equity investments, and joint ventures. Posted 1.26.15

Kenny Bryan Ernstberger Kenny Bryan Ernstberger married Jennifer Jones, now Jennifer Ernstberger, in October 2010. They live in Murray, Kentucky, with their daughter EmmaRae, born March 2012, and son Don Barton, born April 2014.  Bryan is a partner at Gregory Easley & Ernstberger, which he joined in November 2007.  In November 2014, Bryan was elected to serve as the county attorney for Calloway County, Kentucky, heading an office that provides legal advice and services to the local government and countywide criminal prosecution. Posted 12.10.14



Kia Wright Roberts, counsel at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, was recently promoted by Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson to the office’s prestigious 12-member Homicide Bureau. Earlier this year, Kia and her husband, Otwane Roberts, welcomed a daughter, Chandler Roberts, on February 15. Posted 12.9.14

Elizabeth Moore Fox and J. Christopher Fox II welcomed a daughter, Frances Flannery, June 17.  Chris is a partner with Thompson Hine in Atlanta, where Elizabeth is an associate at King & Spalding.  Big sister Annabel (3) is especially thrilled to welcome Franny into the family. Posted 10.22.14

Robert W. Wilson has joined the University of Central Florida as an Associate General Counsel focused on corporate transactions and technology transfer issues. Posted 8.12.2014

Robert B. Harwell has joined Butler Snow in Ridgeland, Mississippi. Harwell will focus his practice on business and commercial transactions, mergers and acquisitions, business planning and operations, and real estate law. Posted 6.12.14

Deanna Rene Swits and Jason Kunze will be married on July 26. Both Deanna and Jason are associates with Nixon Peabody in Chicago. Posted 6.12.14

Linda Du, an associate with Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, was recently honored by the New York State Bar Association as 2013 Empire State Counsel. The Empire State Counsel program recognizes lawyers who donate 50 or more hours of pro bono services in a calendar year.Posted 5.27.14

Adam Calhoun Simpson has joined FedEx Corporation as a senior attorney focusing on intellectual property licensing and technology transactions. Adam has been selected as a Super Lawyers' Rising Star since 2009. Prior to joining FedEx, Adam was a director at Martin Tate Morrow & Marston. Posted 1.28.14

Lucas Ross Smith (MTS'05) has been named a partner with Bass Berry & Sims in Nashville, Tennessee. Luke focuses his practice on antitrust compliance and complex litigation. Posted 1.28.14

James Christopher Fox II was elected partner at Thompson Hine. Chris focuses his practice on business litigation, intellectual property, and product liability litigation, and is a member of the firm's Atlanta, Georgia, office. Posted 1.14.14

Laura F. Ketcham (BA'02), has been named a partner at Husch Blackwell. Laura practices in the firm's Chattanooga, Tennessee, office where she is a member of the financial services industry team. Posted 1.14.13

Julie P. Samuels married Joshua Marc Mendelson on December 20, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois. Julie is a senior staff lawyer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Marc is a founder of Engine Foundation, a technology lobbying organization. They will make their home in San Francisco, California. Posted 1.14.14

Jennifer Understahl has been named partner at Perkins Coie, where she is a member of the firm's real estate group. Posted 1.14.14

Geoffrey Michael Drake has been elected partner at King & Spalding effective January 1. Geoff is a member of the firm's tort litigation & environmental group, and was named a 2013 Georgia "Rising Star" in products liability defense by Super Lawyers. Posted 11.14.13

James Brant McOmber has been promoted to senior manager in the advance pricing and mutual agreement program in the large business and international division of the Internal Revenue Service. In this role, he will lead a team of negotiators on transfer pricing issues arising between the IRS and the tax authorities of Canada and Italy. Previously, he served as coordinator of IRS negotiations with the Canada Revenue Agency. Posted 10.21.13

Johnson W. Custer has been named general counsel for Hogan Assessment Systems. After spending eight years in the commercial litigation group at the firm Hall Estill, J.W. joined Hogan as general counsel in 2013. A member of the leadership team, he focuses on contract negotiations, partner agreements, employment and intellectual property law, and process improvements within Hogan's legal operations. Posted 10.10.13

Benjamin Young has been promoted to the executive team of PEER 1 Hosting, where he serves as vice president, general counsel. Ben relocated to Vancouver, British Columbia in 2010 to join the company after working for Troutman Sanders in Atlanta, Georgia. Ben also recently married Jana Minor of Vancouver at a ceremony held in Banff, Alberta, in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Posted 10.10.13

Danny Hart and his wife, Haley, welcomed their fifth child, daughter Eleanor Jane, on June 10. The family lives in the Reno/Tahoe Region, where Danny serves as the deputy general counsel of PDL BioPharma, a NASDAQ company focused on intellectual property asset management and investing in healthcare-related assets. Posted 9.6.13

Amy Olive Wheeler has joined Hilliard Lyons Trust Company as a vice president and estate settlement officer in Louisville, Kentucky.  She will focus on the settlement of estates, while supporting trust and estate planning efforts. Posted 8.22.13

Robert WilsonRobert W. Wilson, a senior associate in the Orlando and Lakeland offices of GrayRobinson, was recently appointed to the J. Douglas Williams YMCA advisory board of directors in Lake Mary, Florida The board aids the organization in fulfilling its mission to improve lives in Central Florida by connecting individuals, families and communities with Christian values that strengthen spirit, mind and body. Robert is a member of GrayRobinson's wealth transfer and taxation groups. Posted 3.1.13



Monica Messick Monica Pace Messick has been elected partner at Jackson Walker. Monica focuses her practice primarily on mergers and acquisitions, business entity formation and governance, contract negotiations, general corporate work, and energy lending transactions. She is based in the firm's Dallas office. Posted 2.20.13



Damien Andrew Grierson recently joined K&L Gates as a senior associate in the firm's Boston office. Damien recently was most employed at Cooley as a senior associate. Posted 2.20.13

Julie P. Samuels, of The Electronic Frontier Foundation, is the recipient of a newly created chair endowed by Mark Cuban dubbed "The Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents.  Posted 2.13.13

Christopher Thomas Murray has joined Thompson Coburn's Washington, D.C. office as part of the firm's new lobbying & policy group that will connect Thompson Coburn's clients to a variety of opportunities at the federal level, particularly in the areas of higher education, intellectual property, and technology. Chris's practice focuses on the political and regulatory issues affecting the education sector. He has extensive experience representing institutions, associations, and companies related to eLearning, Title IV program compliance, medical education, federal workforce and military education programs, education technology, foreign sanctions, and accreditation. Chris is a frequent speaker and author on various education policy topics, most often on the intersection of technology and education. Before joining Thompson Coburn, he served as a member of Dow Lohnes Government Strategies. Posted 2.13.13

Rachana Desai Martin has been promoted to Deputy Chief Counsel of the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Financial Stability, where she manages litigation and oversight matters related to the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). Posted 2.11.13

Courtney Lynn Bru has been named partner in the firm Doerner Saunders Daniel & Anderson. Courtney's areas of practice include labor and employment law, as well as commercial and civil litigation. Posted 2.5.13

Jenny L. Howard has joined the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation as senior counsel for legislative affairs. Posted 10.9.12

Robert Warren Wilson has been promoted to a senior associate in the Lakeland office of GrayRobinson. Robert is a member of GrayRobinson's wealth transfer and taxation groups, focusing his practice on estate, gift, generation-skipping and income tax planning, including the implementation of sophisticated estate plans for high net worth individuals, trust and probate administration and asset protection. Posted 9.25.12

Katherine Lamb Cronin has joined the faculty of the University of Kansas School Of Law after spending six years of practice at Legal Aid of Western Missouri. Katie will join the faculty as a Clinical Associate Professor and the Director of the Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic. Posted 8.6.12

Andrew Kulpa and his wife, Carolyn, welcomed their second child, daughter Samanatha Anne, who was born April 12, 2012. The family lives in Bloomfield, Michigan, where Andrew serves as an in-house counsel for ETC Capital, a private venture fund. Posted 7.9.12

Kathryn V. Whitfield and her husband, Adam L. Fotiades, welcomed their first child, son Wyatt Whitfield Fotiades, on March 18, 2012. Kathryn and Adam reside in Washington, DC. Posted 5.15.12

Julie Schreiner-Oldham has joined Arrowood Peters as a senior associate. Julie practices in the areas of employment disputes, business litigation, personal injury and medical malpractice. Posted 5.8.12

Patty Daniel Stranch and her husband James Gerard Stranch IV (JD '03) welcomed their second child, Gerard Theodore Stranch (Teddy) in November, 2011. Posted 4.3.12

Justin Gregory Tanner has recently been named a legislative analyst in the Intergovernmental Affairs and External Relations department of the City of Atlanta, Office of Mayor Kasim Reed. A recent inductee into Outstanding Atlanta, he served as the Reed Administration's senior communications specialist. Justin currently serves as the national co-chair for President Barack Obama's Generation Forty Four program. Posted 1.10.12

Christine “Christy” Allen Pauley Bratten, age 36 of Bell Buckle, Tennessee died on Oct. 20, 2011 at Middle Tennessee Medical Center in Murfreesboro from injuries she sustained in an automobile accident. Christy was an attorney at Finklestein Kern Steinbergof and Cunningham in Knoxville. She loved cooking, traveling, family and friends. She is survived by her husband, Phil Bratten; her parents, Jim and Freida Pauley; two sisters; and several nieces and nephews.

Matthew Adam Kraus was married to Emily Rebecca Sweet on June 18, 2011 at the Inn at Bay Harbor in Bay Harbor, Michigan. The couple lives in New York where Matthew is an attorney at Kasowitz Benson Torres and Friedman.His practice focuses on antitrust, commercial, and complex financial products litigation. Posted 7.15.11

Elizabeth Moore Fox and James Christopher Fox are pleased to announce the birth of their daughter Annabel Jane Fox. Annabel was born January 19, 2011. Chris is an associate in the Atlanta office of Thompson Hine, practicing in the business and product liability litigation and bankruptcy groups. Elizabeth is an intellectual property associate at King & Spalding. Posted 7.15.11

Michael Mellen has joined the Washington, D.C. office of Bryan Cave as an associate in the International Trade group. Michael previously practiced international trade compliance as an Associate with Patton Boggs. Posted 2.14.11