Firm selects Employee of the Month for August 2018

Deena Baker

Deena Baker

Deena Baker, Legal Assistant, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for August 2018.

“It is once again an honor to be recognized as employee of the month,” she said. “My co-workers and bosses are the best a person could ask for!

“It’s a great privilege to be part of such a wonderful firm and awesome team!”

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“Deena works until the job is done right, regardless of what the clock says, which is a function of her strong work ethic,” Director Juston R. Givens said. “The value Deena brings to my practice and the work she does for the Phillips Murrah team is truly immeasurable.”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Phillips Murrah’s legal team welcomes tax attorney

Jessica Cory

Jessica N. Cory

Phillips Murrah law firm is proud to welcome Jessica N. Cory to our downtown Oklahoma City office.

Phillips Murrah welcomed Jessica to the Firm’s Tax Law Practice Group as an associate attorney.

In her practice, Jessica represents businesses and individuals in a wide range of matters, including general tax planning, business succession planning, and the structuring of complex transactions.

Jessica has advised clients regarding corporate and general business matters, including choice of entity, formation, tax-free reorganizations, acquisitions and dispositions, and tax planning.  She has particular experience working with flow-through entities, including disregarded entities, limited liability companies, partnerships, and S corporations.  Jessica has also successfully represented clients in disputes with the Internal Revenue Service.

Prior to entering private practice, Jessica gained valuable experience service as a judicial clerk for United States District Court Judge Robin Cauthron in the Western District of Oklahoma.  She then received her Masters of Law in Taxation at New York University School of Law and worked for a law firm in Houston, Texas before joining Phillips Murrah.  Jessica is licensed in both Oklahoma and Texas.

Jessica has written and presented on a variety of tax topics, including choice-of-entity in light of the 2017 tax reform, the tax implications of foreign ownership of real property, changes to the partnership audit procedures enacted in 2015, and defending against the trust fund recovery penalty.

Jessica grew up in Killeen, Texas but now lives in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  In her free time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family, traveling, and training for her next race.

Phillips Murrah welcomes two new attorneys to legal roster

Travis Harrison, Jim Roth, and Martin Lopez III

OCU Law Dean and Phillips Murrah Director Jim Roth stands between OCU Alums and new attorneys Travis E. Harrison and Martin J. Lopez III as they celebrate passing the bar exam.

Phillips Murrah is proud to welcome Martin J. Lopez III and Travis E. Harrison to our Firm.

Phillips Murrah welcomed Martin to the Firm’s Litigation Practice Group as an associate attorney where he represents individuals and both privately-held and public companies in a wide range of civil litigation matters.

Martin attended the Oklahoma City University School of Law where he served as class president, also serving as the Student Bar Association President his third and final year. He was also a member of the Oklahoma City University Law Review. Additionally, Martin had the opportunity to work alongside university president Robert H. Henry, serving as his legal research assistant for two years.

While pursuing his law degree, Martin worked as a judicial intern for the Honorable Timothy D. DeGiusti of the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma as well as for Justice Noma D. Gurich of the Oklahoma Supreme Court.

Born and raised in Oklahoma City, Martin currently lives there with his wife and puppy. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with friends and family, watching Sooner sporting events, traveling, and fly fishing.

Travis has joined Phillips Murrah’s Transactional Practice Group as an associate attorney where he represents individuals and businesses in a broad range of transactional matters.

Travis graduated cum laude from Oklahoma City University School of Law where he earned the CALI Award of Excellence, which is awarded to the student with the highest grade in the courses as determined by the professor for five of his courses (Contracts II, Legal Research and Writing II, Constitutional Law I, Oil and Gas Law, and Commercial Paper). He was also a member of the Oklahoma City University Law Review. While serving as a member of the Law Review, he authored a Note titled Judicial Discretion on Outcome-Determinative Legislation After Bank Markazi v. Peterson, which was published in 2018.

Travis was born and raised in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, where he currently resides. He enjoys traveling, reading, attending sporting events, and spending time with family and friends.

Attorneys prepare educational presentations on construction law

ASA LogoPhillips Murrah Attorneys A. Michelle Campney, Samuel D. Newton, and David A. Walls explore facets of construction law as a part of an educational series for members of the American Subcontractors Association of Oklahoma.

The team has planned six presentations, three in the fall and three in the spring, with the first topic covering the “Do’s and Don’ts of Bidding” on Sept. 7. Subsequent presentations by Walls and Newton are planned for Oct. 5 and Nov. 2, respectively.

“In the past, we have spoken about different provisions in the typical construction contact,” Campney said. “The presentations are new material on different topics important to subcontractors and construction.”

For more information about ASA, visit their website here.

Cooper, Ybarra elected to OCBA Board of Directors

Monica Ybarra and Cody Cooper

Phillips Murrah attorneys Monica Y. Ybarra and Cody J. Cooper

Phillips Murrah attorneys Cody J. Cooper and Monica Y. Ybarra were elected as two of six members of Oklahoma County Bar Association’s Board of Directors for 2018 through 2021.

OCBA members were tasked with electing Cooper and Ybarra, as well as Attorneys Chris Deason, Rachel Stoddard Morris, Kelli Stump and Judge Trevor Pemberton, as Directors.

“I’ve benefited greatly from my OCBA membership, and I believe it’s largely due to the great leadership of this organization,” Ybarra said. “The leadership has fostered collegiality, mentorships, community service and professionalism among local bar members through committees and programs, and I view board service as a way to give back.

“Additionally, I want to be a part of growing the OCBA and ensuring that it remains a relevant, valuable part of the legal profession in Oklahoma County, and I believe stepping into a leadership role will allow me to make that kind of impact.”

Ybarra’s goals in this role include collaborating with OCBA members and Directors to find new ways of engaging membership. These goals align with Cooper’s own desires to take a bigger leadership role after previously serving the Young Lawyers Division.

“My motivation to become a board member primarily came about from my involvement with the board as the YLD chair,” he said. “It’s an opportunity to take part in county bar leadership and be engaged in the legal community where I live and work.

“The OCBA is an active bar community with an emphasis on helping its member attorneys and providing community service and support, and I wanted to have a more hands-on role doing that.”

Cooper will serve as Past Chair of YLD through 2019 to offer guidance and support as OCBA’s new YLD chair assumes their role. He has also been chosen as an OCBA delegate to the Oklahoma Bar Association.

To learn more about OCBA, visit their website here.

Phillips Murrah announces 44 attorneys named to 2019 Best Lawyers list

Phillips Murrah is proud to announce that 44 of our attorneys have been named to The Best Lawyers in America© 2019 list in Oklahoma City.

2019 Best Lawyers – Lawyers of the Year

Douglas A. Branch – Venture Capital Law

Susan E. Bryant – Securities Regulation

Terry L. Hawkins – Public Finance Law

Michael R. Perri – Natural Resources Law

Thomas G. Wolfe – Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

 

The Best Lawyers in America 2019

Jennifer Ivester Berry – Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; Real Estate Law

Douglas A. Branch – Securities / Capital Markets Law; Venture Capital Law

Elizabeth K. Brown – Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships); Litigation – Trusts and Estates; Litigation and Controversy – Tax; Tax Law; Trusts and Estates

Susan E. Bryant – Securities Regulation

John M. Bunting – Insurance Law

Catherine L. Campbell – Commercial Litigation

Michael D. Carter – Labor Law – Management; Workers’ Compensation Law – Employers

Rodney L. Cook – Commercial Litigation; Insurance Law

Bobby Dolatabadi – Corporate Law; Mergers and Acquisitions Law

Jason A. Dunn – Commercial Litigation

Joshua L. Edwards – Real Estate Law

Marc Edwards – Administrative / Regulatory Law; Commercial Litigation; Government Relations Practice

Nicholle Jones Edwards – Family Law

Juston R. Givens – Commercial Litigation

Mark E. Golman – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law

Sally A. Hasenfratz – Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; Construction Law; Land Use and Zoning Law; Real Estate Law

Terry L. Hawkins – Public Finance Law

Heather L. Hintz – Commercial Litigation

Patrick L. Hullum – Commercial Litigation

Clayton D. Ketter – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Commercial Litigation

Timothy D. Kline – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Commercial Litigation; Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; Litigation – Bankruptcy

Fred A. Leibrock – Commercial Litigation; Insurance Law; Litigation – Antitrust; Litigation – ERISA; Litigation – Real Estate

Candace Williams Lisle – Commercial Litigation

Mark Lovelace – Banking and Finance Law; Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships); Commercial Transactions / UCC Law

Melvin R. McVay, Jr. – Banking and Finance Law; Commercial Litigation; Litigation – Banking and Finance; Litigation – Bankruptcy; Litigation – Real Estate

Andrew S. Mildren – Administrative / Regulatory Law; Government Relations Practice; Real Estate Law

Jennifer L. Miller – Commercial Litigation

Cindy H. Murray – Real Estate Law

Robert O. O’Bannon – Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships); Tax Law

Martin G. Ozinga – Commercial Litigation; Technology Law

Donald A. Pape – Banking and Finance Law

Michael R. Perri – Commercial Litigation; Energy Law; Natural Resources Law; Oil and Gas Law

William S. Price – Government Relations Practice

Dawn M. Rahme – Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; Litigation and Controversy – Tax; Tax Law; Trusts and Estates

Mary Holloway Richard – Health Care Law

Jim A. Roth – Energy Law; Energy Regulatory Law; Environmental Law; Government Relations Practice; Natural Resources Law

G. Calvin Sharpe – Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants; Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Robert N. Sheets – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Commercial Litigation; Litigation – Bankruptcy; Litigation – Land Use and Zoning; Litigation – Real Estate

Ellen K. Spiropoulos – Corporate Law; Mergers and Acquisitions Law

D. Craig Story – Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships)

Amy D. White – Commercial Litigation; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Lyndon W. Whitmire – Commercial Litigation; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Thomas G. Wolfe – Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation; Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants; Oil and Gas Law; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Raymond E. Zschiesche – Commercial Litigation; Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Firm selects Employee of the Month for July 2018

Nanette Morris

Nanette Morris

Nanette Morris, Paralegal, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for July 2018.

“I’ve worked for Phillips Murrah for almost 19 years, and I can’t think of anywhere else I’d want to work,” Morris said. “The work is challenging and fun, and – even better – I get to work with so many smart and talented people.

“I really do love my job!”

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“Nanette has been with the firm for over eighteen years and is a highly skilled legal assistant,” Director Elizabeth K. Brown said. “She plays an integral role in our transactional and estate planning department.

“With her positive and professional demeanor, she works well even under the most stressful situations in  the practice of law. She is smart, hard-working and dependable and always a pleasure to work with. She definitely deserves this honor.”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Phillips Murrah partners with Cristo Rey OKC

Cristo Rey Students

Phillips Murrah Marketing Director Dave Rhea and Attorney Bill Price welcome the four Cristo Rey students who will be working with the Firm during the 2018-2019 school year.

Phillips Murrah law firm is proud to sponsor the inaugural freshman class of Cristo Rey Oklahoma City Catholic High School.

Students in the school’s Corporate Work Study Program will begin working with the Firm in a variety of capacities on Aug. 13.

Four students will alternate working with the Firm each day in general clerical and administrative matters. The team of students “job share” the position for the school year with each student working one full day per week plus one Friday per month. Academic schedules are staggered so students won’t miss class due to work. As part of the school’s Corporate Work Study Program, students get valuable work experience in addition to a salary that is used to support their tuition and minimize costs for families.

“We at Phillips Murrah are excited for the opportunity to work with these bright, young minds and share with them insight into the legal field,” said Thomas G. Wolfe, Phillips Murrah President and Managing Partner. “Given that the work may be fast-paced and ever-changing, I have full confidence these students will gain unique and practical experience that will stick with them throughout their education and professional careers.”

Phillips Murrah joins a long list of Corporate Work Study Partners including: American Fidelity, Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, BancFirst, Catholic Charities, the Chickasaw Nation, Clements Foods, Express Employment Professionals, First National Bank of Oklahoma, Grace Living Centers and Humphreys Capital, Latino Community Development Agency, Lopez Foods, Loves Travel Stops & Country Stores, McBride Orthopedic Hospital, Mercy Health, Oklahoma City National Memorial, Oklahoma City Thunder, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, The Oklahoman, Slawson Exploration, Stella Nova Cafes, Synergy Datacom Supply, United Way, Variety Care and Weokie Federal Credit Union.

Cristo Rey’s Oklahoma City chapter is part of Cristo Rey Network, the only network of high schools in the country that integrate four years of rigorous college preparatory academics with four years of professional work experience.

To learn more about Cristo Rey, visit the network’s website here.

 

Phillips Murrah’s legal team welcomes title attorney

Lauren Campbell web

Lauren A. Campbell

Phillips Murrah law firm is proud to welcome Lauren A. Campbell to our downtown Oklahoma City office.

Phillips Murrah welcomed Lauren to the Firm’s Oil and Gas Title Examination Practice Group as an associate attorney.

Lauren represents both privately-owned and public companies in a wide variety of oil and gas matters, with a strong emphasis on oil and gas title examination.

In her practice, Lauren has prepared numerous drilling and division order title opinions. Her growing transactional practice is focused around the preparation of drilling title opinions and the drafting of curative documentation to clarify record title for her clients.

Prior to joining Phillips Murrah, Lauren worked for another Oklahoma law firm, where she prepared drilling title opinions. Lauren also previously worked as an in-house attorney for a large independent exploration and production company, where she prepared title opinions and advised Land and Legal on complex title issues.

Born and raised in Oklahoma, Lauren currently lives in Oklahoma City with her husband, Carter, and her two daughters, Savannah and Avery. In her free time, Lauren enjoys spending time with her family and traveling.

Firm selects Employee of the Month for June 2018

Tess Bromme

Tess Bromme

Tess Bromme, Billing Coordinator, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for June 2018.

“I am beyond thankful to call Phillips Murrah my place of work and to be recognized in this way is a fantastic honor,” Bromme said.

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“Tess is a valued member of the Accounting Department and her contributions help to make the Firm run efficiently,” Controller Stephanie Oseland said. “She is a hardworking and positive person, and it is a pleasure to work with her. She deserves this honor.”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Phillips Murrah rowing team competes in 2018 Stars and Stripes River Festival

Law & Oarder, Phillips Murrah's rowing team, gets ready to practice before racing in the 2018 Stars and Stripes River Festival.

Law & Oarder, Phillips Murrah’s rowing team, gets ready to practice before racing in the 2018 Stars and Stripes River Festival.

Phillips Murrah’s rowing team Law & Oarder completed the Summer 2018 season and improved on the team’s competitive time from Fall’s rowing season.

The team competed on June 23 at the 2018 Stars and Stripes River Festival held at the OKC Boathouse District.

“I am super proud of Law & Oarder,” said Deena Baker, Legal Assistant and Law & Oarder team leader. “At the regatta we had a time of 1:58 in our heat race, which advanced us to the finals.

“Even though we didn’t medal in the finals, we made a great run for it and finished with a time of 2:03.  We aren’t disappointed with our efforts at all, and it just gives the team more determination than ever for the Fall season which starts in just a few weeks.”

In all eight seasons the Firm’s rowing team has competed, team members consisted of both attorneys and staff members.

“The rowing team has been a great way to spend time with my coworkers,” Attorney Mark E. Hornbeek said. “It is also exciting to see the amazing changes that have been made to the city’s riverfront in recent years.”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Firm selects Employee of the Month for May 2018

Tyler Sullivan

Tyler Sullivan

Tyler Sullivan, Administrative Assistant, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for May 2018.

“I have the privilege of working with an incredible group of people, and I feel so honored that they chose to recognize me as Employee of the Month,” Sullivan said.

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“Tyler started with our Firm in an entry level position, and has proven that she is capable of much more,” Executive Director Michelle Munda said. “She was recently promoted, and she continues to grow at our Firm.

“We are happy that she works here with us and look forward to more advancement for her!”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Director Nikki Jones Edwards helps break ground on new Positive Tomorrows facility

Adults from left: Campaign Co-chair Todd Lechtenberger; Positive Tomorrows President Susan Agel; lead campaign donor Nissa Richison, campaign Co-Chair Judy Love; current Vice-chair/Chair-elect Nikki Jones Edwards; David Barry, program alum/current volunteer. Two kids are current students.

Adults from left: Campaign Co-chair Todd Lechtenberger; Positive Tomorrows President Susan Agel; lead campaign donor Nissa Richison, campaign Co-Chair Judy Love; current Chair-elect Nikki Jones Edwards; David Barry, program alum/current volunteer, along with two current students.

Director Nikki Jones Edwards and Phillips Murrah law firm are proud supporters of Positive Tomorrows and happily announce work is underway for the school’s newest facility.

Positive Tomorrows is Oklahoma’s only elementary school and social service agency specifically serving homeless children and their families.

The school broke ground on a new facility on June 12 and announced it met its Building Success Campaign goal of $10.2 million raised from the community. They raised an additional $5 million in new market tax credits, bringing the final project total to $15 million.

The new facility will be over 30,000 sq. ft., more than double the school’s capacity, and will have space to serve students ages birth through 8th grade.

It will be located at 901. N. Villa and include a gymnasium, open commons area, library, spaces for art and music, a special education classroom and a storm shelter.

“In a city reporting over 9,000 homeless children, we feel a responsibility to serve more students,” said Susan Agel, Positive Tomorrows President and Principal. “We are thrilled to take this step forward, and to move toward serving more of our community’s most vulnerable children.”

Positive Tomorrows plans to move into the facility and begin school in Fall of 2019.

Edwards currently serves as Chair-elect and will assume her role as Chairman of the Board on July 1. She, with her husband Director Marc Edwardshas been an avid supporter and involved in different capacities with Positive Tomorrows for more than 20 years.

For more information about Positive Tomorrows, visit www.positivetomorrows.org.

Phillips Murrah awarded for continued construction law service

A. Michelle Campney, Phillips Murrah Construction Law Attorney, accepts ASA-OK's Service Provider of the Year award on behalf of the Firm.

A. Michelle Campney, Phillips Murrah Construction Law Attorney, accepts ASA-OK’s Service Provider of the Year award on behalf of the Firm.

Phillips Murrah law firm has been recognized once again for its commitment to construction law in Oklahoma.

The American Subcontractors Association of Oklahoma awarded the Firm with the 2018 Service Provider of the Year award at their annual Awards Gala on June 8 at Grand Casino Resort in Shawnee.

“This is the second time that the Firm has won this award,” said David A. Walls, Phillips Murrah Construction Law Attorney. “The award recognizes the Firm’s efforts and time spent conducting education seminars for the members of ASA-OK on various topics important to the construction industry, such as good business practices, legal developments in construction law and business structure.”

ASA-OK is the primary industry trade group representing subcontractors in the construction industry in Oklahoma and is the state chapter of the national ASA organization.

“ASA-OK members choose the top Service Provider from a group of 19 member companies, and Phillips Murrah received the most votes,” said Tami Hasselwander, ASA-OK Executive Director. “ASA-OK’s membership voted for the company they believe demonstrates knowledge and expertise of our industry and who has supported our organization by providing consulting advice and educational training to our members.”

A. Michelle Campney, Phillips Murrah Construction Law Attorney, accepted the award on behalf of the Firm and gave a presentation to the association’s members.

“Michelle and I have led several seminars and group discussions during the last year for this group, which is the largest subcontractor and supplier construction organization in Oklahoma,” Walls said. “This is a part of our broad construction practice, which also includes representing general contractors, developers and insurance companies who underwrite construction companies.”

Attorneys in Phillips Murrah’s Construction Law Practice Group have more than 20 years experience in the industry and represent and advise clients in every stage of the construction process. Learn more about our Construction Law representation here.

Phillips Murrah announces passing of Director Shannon K. Emmons

It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our dear friend and Partner at Phillips Murrah, Shannon K. Emmons.

Shannon was a Director, a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee and Co-Chair of the Firm’s Labor & Employment Practice Group. Please see her obituary listed below:

Obituary

Shannon K. Emmons

Shannon K. Emmons

Shannon Kathleen Emmons, 57, of Oklahoma City, passed away at 2:24 pm, June 7, 2018, due to heart complications. Shannon was born November 10, 1961 in Blackwell, Oklahoma, to Roger and Kathy (Briggs) Hawkins. Shannon graduated Blackwell High in 1978, and married William “Brock” Massey on October 13, 1979. The couple had two children: Zachary Brock Massey, born April 27, 1981, and Michael Sean Massey, born the same day three years later, on April 27, 1984. Brock and Shannon divorced in 1988 and on November 17, 1991, Shannon married Stuart William Emmons. In 1997, Stuart and Shannon welcomed a third son to the family, William Ware Emmons, who was also born on April 27th, the same day as his two older brothers.

Shannon graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 1987 with a B.A. in Letters and from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1990, where she was a member of the Oklahoma Law Review. For her accomplishments in the practice of law, she received the Martindale-Hubbell “AV” rating in 1997, was named to Oklahoma Super Lawyers in the area of Civil Litigation Defense, and was recognized by Best Lawyers in America in Commercial Litigation. She was a shareholder, director and, at the time of her death, a member of the Executive Committee of the law firm Phillips Murrah.

Shannon was passionate about community service, and was especially proud of her service as a director and the Vice Chairman of the Board of the Latino Community Development Agency. Outside her professional career and community involvement, Shannon enjoyed spending time with family and friends, especially over an expensive restaurant-bought meal. She loved animals, and if you knew her at all, you probably knew about the goings-on of her cats, Truman and Major Tom, and dogs, Puppy and Weezer (whom she considered to be intellectually gifted). Shannon was beautiful, gracious, witty, fearless, generous and above all, in charge. She lived life to the fullest, traveling, reading, and making dinner reservations whenever possible. She loved her children and was family to all she met. She delighted in seeing happiness in other people and worked tirelessly toward that end. Shannon disliked everything about Donald Trump, including, among many other things, what he stands for, how he governs, and how he treats people. In her own words, “I detest everything about that man.” Recently, Shannon became active in local Democratic Party politics. She will be dearly missed.

Shannon was preceded in death by her grandparents, Ray and Bernice (Rogers) Briggs and Mart and Roberta (Farnsworth) Hawkins, as well as her brother-in-law Michael Allen Morrow. She is survived by her husband, Stuart W. Emmons, her sons, Zachary B. Massey, M. Sean Massey, and William W. Emmons, her sisters, Shelly (Hawkins) Paynter and Sinden (Hawkins) Clarke, her parents Roger and Kathy Hawkins, and her uncles and aunts, Mike and Marsha Briggs, Max and Becky Hawkins, and Carolee Briggs. Shannon is also survived by over 30 cousins, nieces and nephews, all of whom she loved and delighted in following their accomplishments, as well as her many friends and colleagues who she considered family.

Services will be held at 2:00 pm on Thursday, June 14, 2018 at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 4400 N Shartel Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73118. In lieu of flowers, donations in Shannon’s name can be made to the Latino Community Development Agency (lcdaok.com) 420 S W 10th Oklahoma City, OK 73109, or Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma, Inc. (http://www.legalaidok.org/).

Directors present at CLE seminar on title law

National Business Institute logoDirectors Robert N. Sheets and Melissa R. Gardner will give presentations June 12 and 13, respectively, at the National Business Institute’s seminar “Title Law: A to Z” for Continuing Legal Education professionals on issues relating to title law.

Sheets will present on endorsements and policy exclusions at 3:30 p.m. and 4 p.m., and Gardner will present on ethical considerations and quiet title actions at 2 p.m. and 3:15 p.m.

Those interested in registering can get more information at www.nbi-sems.com. Attendees receive CLE credit for participating.

Jim Roth chosen to lead Oklahoma City University School of Law as Dean

Jim A. Roth

Jim A. Roth

Jim Roth, Phillips Murrah Director and Chair of the Firm’s Clean Energy Practice Group, was recently selected to become the Dean of the Oklahoma City University School of Law. He will assume his role on July 1.

“It is a huge honor to be able to serve my alma mater as its next Dean,” Jim said. “OCU Law School has given me so much, and being able to give back – especially at this level of commitment – is surreal and exciting.”

His role will include bringing his expertise and influence to the school in a variety of ways, including his natural ability to transcend typecasts associated with both the legal and academic professions. He noted that a goal is to help inspire future lawyers to place additional attention on the importance of preparedness and leadership in their profession, in their community and on the planet, all of which are quickly and constantly changing.

“The Dean today is not just the chief academic advisor and partner with the faculty,” Roth explained. “This role also requires excellence in admissions, success for student life and subsequently Bar passage, expanded opportunities for career placement, and work that connects Alumni and the broader community to improve the Law School’s impact.”

Jim Roth OCU Law commencement photo

Courtesy of OCU Law

Jim joined Phillips Murrah almost a decade ago and will continue to be an important part of our PM family. Having served as Chair of Phillips Murrah’s Clean Energy Practice Group, and through his thought leadership and advocacy, he has been a key component in helping the renewable energy industry flourish in Oklahoma. “I love the work, and the way we work, at Phillips Murrah and remain committed to our clients’ best interests forever.”

Prior to joining the Firm, Jim served as an Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner from 2007-2009 and was elected District 1 Oklahoma County Commissioner from 2003-2007. This experience, along with his presence and influence in Oklahoma in numerous areas of community leadership and advocacy, was a recipe for success as a finalist candidate brought forward initially by the OCU Search Committee, then voted on by the law school faculty, and finally appointed by retiring OCU President Robert Henry and his replacement, President-Designate Martha Burger.

The Law Dean selection process was rigorous, according to press statement released by Oklahoma City University on Friday, May 11.

“Jim’s appointment follows a thorough national search process, and his selection from the robust pool of applicants is a testament to his strong leadership skills and his vision to grow OCU Law,” President Henry stated in the release.

For further details about Jim’s background and legal practice, visit phillipsmurrah.com/jim-roth

Firm supports Big Brothers Big Sisters 2018 Bowl for Kid’s Sake campaign

Phillips Murrah expands into Dallas

Phillips Murrah opens Dallas officeOklahoma City-based law firm Phillips Murrah announces it has opened an office in Dallas with the addition of new Director Mark Golman to the Firm. Golman, who is leading the expansion efforts south of the Red River, focuses his practice on the purchase and sale of businesses and assets, the negotiation of long-term supply agreements and financing arrangements, corporate counseling, and bankruptcy and insolvency-related matters.

“The opportunity to practice with an entrepreneurial firm in a structure that allows me to provide clients with top-notch services at lower rates was very attractive,” he said. “The fact that I have long-term relationships with many of my new colleagues only added to my interest in opening a Dallas office for Phillips Murrah.”

Golman, a partner at Strasburger & Price for the prior 20 years, joined Phillips Murrah at the time of his prior firm’s recent merger with a national firm. His background includes serving as lateral hiring partner for 18 years and intermittently as CMO at his previous firm, skills that he brings to the new Dallas office as Phillips Murrah seeks to grow through lateral additions in litigation, employment and real estate. His joining Phillips Murrah was preceded by a decade-long working relationship through a common membership in ALFA International.

Mark Golman

Mark Golman

“Expanding into Dallas fits perfectly with our overall growth strategy,” said Thomas G. Wolfe, Phillips Murrah’s President and Managing Partner.  “Dallas is a true growth market whose economic base is large and diversified.  The opportunities in Dallas have been recognized across the nation.”

Determining factors in Phillips Murrah’s decision to enter the Dallas legal market include Golman’s joining the firm as well as proximity of the two markets and existing client relationships.

Dawn M. Rahme, a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee, said, “We have significant clients in the Dallas area, including some that overlap with those Mark brings to the firm.  Additionally, a number of our Oklahoma City-based lawyers are licensed to practice in Texas and maintain strong relationships there.”

Shannon K. Emmons, also a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee and Co-Chair of the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice, added “With an office in Dallas, we will be able to enhance relationships with existing clients while also growing our footprint and client base in Texas.”

Phillips Murrah sponsors OU Law’s Best Brief Award

Eight 1L students were awarded the Best Brief Award, sponsored by Phillips Murrah, on April 19 at the University of Oklahoma's Competitions and Clinic Awards Luncheon.

Eight 1L students were awarded the Best Brief Award, sponsored by Phillips Murrah, on April 19 at the University of Oklahoma’s Competitions and Clinic Awards Luncheon.

First-year law students in the University of Oklahoma’s College of Law put their studies to the test to compete for the Best Brief Award, sponsored by Phillips Murrah law firm.

“All 1L students at OU Law are required to write an appellate brief in their Legal Writing and Research class, and this brief is later used to argue their case in the 1L Moot Court Competition,” Attorney Kendra M. Norman said.

Following the the 1L Moot Court Competition, top appellate briefs were judged and recognized at The Competitions and Clinic Awards Luncheon on April 19 at Robert S. Kerr Student Lounge on campus.

Norman and Hilary H. Clifton, Phillips Murrah Attorneys and OU Alumnae, represented the Firm in awarding the $5,000 Best Brief Award to the top eight students.

“Writing my first brief took an immense amount of research on the topic as well as meticulous editing and structuring of the brief to maximize the effectiveness and persuasiveness of the legal arguments involved,” Norman said. “It was a new style of writing for me, so I devoted a substantial amount of time to making my brief the very best that I could and learning the intricacies of how to effectively convey legal arguments.”

The $5,000 prize is divided among the winners and is the only OU College of Law writing award with a monetary gift.

“The moot court competition is a very exciting and frequently terrifying right of passage for all first year law students,” Clifton said. “At first, writing the brief seems like an insurmountable task, but it’s such a satisfying feeling to complete your first major piece of legal writing.

“The topics usually involve really interesting topics in Constitutional or criminal law, which is a nice change of pace from the fundamentals you spend most of your time learning as a 1L. My year, the brief was due at noon on St. Patrick’s day, and I remember frantically trying to finish so that I could go celebrate, but I’m pretty sure I spent the rest of the day catching up on sleep instead.”

Norman represents clients in a broad range of transactional matters, and Clifton represents individuals and companies in the Firm’s Litigation Practice Group.

Click here to learn more about the OU College of Law.

Firm selects Employee of the Month for April 2018

Penny Stansberry

Penny Stansberry

Penny Stansberry, Paralegal, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for April 2018.

“I’m humbled by the recognition by my co-workers, and since we help each other a lot working here, I’d prefer to call them my friends,” Stansberry said. “I’ve been with Phillips Murrah and its predecessors a long time and that it feels like a family to me is the biggest reason I’ve been here so long.”

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“I’ve had the pleasure of working with Penny for more than 30 years between different firms and am glad we’ve made Phillips Murrah ‘home,’ ” Thomas G. Wolfe, Firm President and Managing Partner, said. “She is cheerful, reliable, and a vital part of the Firm.”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Sheets, Ybarra earn Journal Record’s Leadership in Law awards

law day robert n sheets monica y ybarra leadership in law

Robert N. Sheets and Monica Y. Ybarra hold their Leadership in Law awards from the Journal Record.

Director Robert N. Sheets and Attorney Monica Y. Ybarra were presented with the Journal Record’s Leadership in Law award on May 1 at the Oklahoma County Bar Association’s annual Law Day Luncheon.

Oklahoma County District Judge Trevor Pemberton and Attorneys Judy Hamilton Morse (Oklahoma City) and M. David Riggs (Tulsa) were also recipients of this year’s Leadership in Law Award.

“I am truly honored to receive this recognition,” Ybarra said. “The list of honorees is really impressive, and I am humbled to be recognized along with these amazing attorneys that I look up to.”

Ybarra joined the Firm in 2014 and represents clients in the Firm’s Family Law Practice Group.

“As a young associate, it can be difficult to juggle work and family obligations and find time for community work, but community work and civic engagement is a vital part of connecting to the city and the people who live here and opens my eyes to the issues facing our community,” she said. “Finding ways to serve and engage not only enriches my life and experiences, but I hope it blesses others.

“Additionally, I have greatly benefited from the community service of others throughout my life and my education, so finding ways to serve feels like I’m giving back what has so generously been given to me. The OCBA provides so many opportunities to serve, both in the legal profession and the greater OKC community. I am grateful to be a part of such a service-oriented organization and I look forward to finding more opportunities to be useful and to serve.”

Sheets, one of the Firm’s founders, represents both privately-held and public companies in the Firm’s Commercial Litigation Practice Group. This is the second time the Journal Record has recognized him with the Leadership in Law award.

“I was moved when I received the Leadership in Law award from the Journal Record in 2008, and I am honored even more so to be recognized with this award for a second time 10 years later,” Sheets said. “It’s a real testament to the work I’m permitted to do in the legal field and within the community, and I appreciate those who see me fit to hold such an honor.

“My position has afforded me the opportunity to become active in the community, specifically with the Oklahoma County Bar Association and the Voices for Children committee. Thank you to the OCBA for allowing me to give back in a meaningful way, and thank you again to the Journal Record for the acknowledgment.”

Phillips Murrah Director Nicholle Jones Edwards was honored with the award in 2017.

Phillips Murrah presents Blocks For Bucks donation to OKC Thunder Cares Foundation at final regular season game

Oklahoma Law Firm Phillips Murrah presents Blocks for Bucks donation to OKC Thunder Cares Foundation

Oklahoma Law Firm Phillips Murrah presents Blocks for Bucks donation to OKC Thunder Cares Foundation.

During the final game of the 2017-2018 regular season, before a sold-out crowd, the law firm of Phillips Murrah presented a check to the Oklahoma City Thunder‘s charitable organization, the Thunder Cares Foundation.

The pre-game, mid-court check ceremony and donation of $16,700, on Wednesday, April 11, was the capstone for the season’s promotional campaign called “Blocks for Bucks,” where our Firm recognized our home team’s prowess at blocking shots by donating $100 to Thunder Cares for each blocked shot that the Thunder forced at home games during the regular season. By the end of the game, the donation had climbed to an official 2017-2018 amount of $17,000.

“The Thunder Cares Foundation is deeply appreciative of Phillips Murrah and the Blocks for Bucks campaign for this very generous donation,” said Thunder Vice President of Community Relations Christine Berney. “The impact will be felt in the community for years to come.”

Blocks for Bucks began in November of 2017, when Phillips Murrah initiated our partnership with the Thunder organization. Helping to improve the community is at the heart of of our Firm’s mission, and the prospect of achieving that through the Thunder Cares Foundation with such an exciting and entertaining campaign was irresistible.

“Phillips Murrah is proud to partner with the Thunder Cares Foundation,” said Phillips Murrah President and Managing Partner, Thomas G. Wolfe. “The Thunder has done so much in Oklahoma. We’re glad to join in their efforts.”

As the Thunder team racked up blocks throughout the season, video highlights were posted at the Blocks for Bucks page on the Thunder’s website, along with a blocks counter and a running donation amount tally.

“Working with the Thunder is an absolute pleasure,” said Phillips Murrah Marketing Director, Dave Rhea. “Being able to support Thunder Cares with this blocks campaign allows us to give back to the community while also driving home the point that, at the end of the day, we’re also huge Thunder fans!”

The Thunder Cares Foundation helps support the team’s community outreach projects, including Thunder-themed basketball courts in parks, schools and community centers across Oklahoma, as well as learning labs and activity rooms at organizations like the Boys and Girls Club of Oklahoma County, City Rescue Mission, and Positive Tomorrows, a school that serves homeless children in Oklahoma City. In celebration of the Thunder’s 10th season, the Thunder Cares Foundation is funding a matching grant through DonorsChoose.org in support of Health & Sports projects in public schools across Oklahoma.

In tandem with Blocks for Bucks, Phillips Murrah partnered with the Thunder to display our Firm’s brand imagery in Chesapeake Energy Arena’s lower bowl on 10 huge digital signs – which made for some very exciting photographs, along with television mentions and appearances. (see slideshow below)

 

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Phillips Murrah would like to thank the Oklahoma City Thunder for a great season and the wonderful experience of supporting the Thunder Cares Foundation!


Below: At the game that kicked off our Blocks for Bucks partnership campaign, KD gets blocked during the Nov. 22 Thunder victory over the Warriors.

 

Firm selects Employee of the Month for March 2018

Maribeth Mills, Paralegal, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for March 2018.

“It is such a compliment to be recognized by an amazing team of co-workers,” Mills said.

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“I’m very proud to work with Maribeth on a daily basis,” Director Clayton D. Ketter said. “Her work ethic and dedication are of the highest caliber, as is her expertise in many areas of the law. The award is very much deserved.”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Phillips Murrah healthcare attorneys to address nation’s opioid epidemic

Oklahoma healthcare attorneys Mary Holloway Richard and Samuel D. Newton

Phillips Murrah attorneys Mary Holloway Richard and Samuel D. Newton

Phillips Murrah Healthcare attorneys Mary Holloway Richard and Samuel D. Newton will be featured presenters for a program exploring the opioid epidemic in Oklahoma and across the country.

“Our purpose is to provide information to the attendees about different policies and programs across the country, which is extraordinarily helpful in tailoring responses that will be effective in our state and in explaining policies and programs to everyone they impact,” Richard said.

The program will be presented for Continuing Legal Education (CLE) credit by the Oklahoma Bar Association Health Law Section at noon on April 11 via live webcast.

“This program has been designed for policy makers, attorneys, healthcare professionals, regulators, law enforcement, patients and their families and community advocates,” Richard said.

Participants can expect the program to cover the statutes, regulations and policies being implemented to combat this epidemic by making services more available, detecting abuse and misuse within the healthcare system, and supporting enforcement and remedial processes, according to the Oklahoma Bar Association.

“The opioid epidemic touches every quadrant of our society with high costs to addicted individual and their families and presenting an unsustainable financial drain on our local communities, state and nation,” Richard said. “The presenters offer information about the depth and breadth of this problem in Oklahoma, responses from across the nation, and the programs that are in place in Oklahoma.”

Those interested may click here for more information and to register for this program.

Mary Holloway Richard is a healthcare lawyer who has written extensively in this area and has published a review of state programs across the nation.

Samuel D. Newton is an attorney who represents healthcare providers and practitioners with a special focus on long term care and licensure.

Click here for more information about Phillips Murrah’s Healthcare Law practice. 

Phillips Murrah attorneys “burn-up” competition in chili cook-off

Firm selects Employee of the Month for February 2018

Jack Thach

Jack Thach, Office Clerk, is Phillips Murrah’s Employee of the Month for February 2018.

“I’m blessed to be able to work with such a great group of people, and it is a real honor to win this award,” Thach said.

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“Jack is dependable and always willing to pitch in or help with things outside his primary duty assignments,” David Carter, Lead Office Clerk, said.


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Firm selects two Employees of the Month for January 2018

Nathan Hatcher and Lisa McAlister

Nathan Hatcher and Lisa McAlister

Nathan Hatcher, Assistant Marketing Director, and Lisa McAlister, Paralegal, are Phillips Murrah’s Employees of the Month for January 2018.

“I know it’s hard every month for each of us to decide who should get this honor, because the Firm’s staff is full of hard-working, deserving individuals,” Hatcher said. “I am so thankful that they’ve decided I am worthy of being ranked up there with them.”

The Employee of the Month is selected anonymously by Phillips Murrah staff on merits of teamwork and overall contributions to the Firm.

“More than being proud of working for an extraordinary law firm, I am proud of working with extraordinary peers that have presented me with this honor and recognition,” McAlister said.

In rare cases, the votes tallied end in a tie, and both winners receive the Employee of the Month honor.

“Nathan has worked with me for a few years, and I am continually impressed by how smart and diligent he is,” Executive Director Michelle Munda said. “His demeanor and personality are a complete delight every day.

“Lisa is a wonderful asset and Legal Assistant, and she takes the initiative to step in when she’s needed in other areas in a way that is very impactful and shows what a true team player she is.  We are lucky to have her here!”


Journal Record and Oklahoman Best Places to Work of 2017

Phillips Murrah has been recognized as one of the Best Places to Work in Oklahoma in 2017 by The Journal Record and an Oklahoma Top Work Place by The Oklahoman/Energage three years in a row. Our Firm strives to recognize and reward our employees for excellence.

Phillips Murrah welcomes established securities attorney

Susan E. Bryant

Phillips Murrah is proud to welcome Susan E. Bryant to the Firm’s Securities and Private Equity Practice Group as an of counsel attorney.

Bryant provides advice to firms in the financial services businesses on securities, regulatory, compliance, transactional, corporate and related matters, based on over 40 years of experience as an attorney in private practice, in-house counsel to large financial services complexes; and as a regulator.

She regularly advises clients on complex securities issues, regulatory issues and general business matters. Her clients include entities regulated by securities laws: small niche broker-dealers and investment advisers, firms providing both brokerage and advisory services and issuers of private offerings.

From 1986 to 1991, Bryant was the head of the Oklahoma Department of Securities where she oversaw a staff of 39 whose duties included broker-dealer and investment adviser registration, examination and licensing; enforcing the state securities laws through administrative, civil and criminal actions; review and evaluation of securities registration filings; and issuing responses to interpretive opinion requests.

Bryant started her career with the then largest firm in Oklahoma City, working on sophisticated, multi-level, private and public limited partnership securities offerings, primarily involving oil and gas and other tax sheltered investment programs.

She has spent her life living in a number of places, but considers Norman, Oklahoma her home. Bryant returned to Oklahoma in late 2017 from Maine, where, in addition to her legal practice, she managed a vacation rental business and served on the board of directors of the Camden Chamber of Commerce. She enjoys music and has rejoined the Norman Community Choral Society, where she sang many years ago.

Director Jim Roth to speak on 2018 Legislative Session forum panel

Jim A. Roth, Phillips Murrah

Jim Roth is a Director and Chair of the firm’s Clean Energy Practice.

Director Jim Roth will participate in a panel during the First Week Forum, an event hosted by The Journal Record designed to inform attendees about hot topics and major issues facing the state and nation during the 2018 Legislative Session.

The First Week Forum will host sessions from 3 to 7 PM this Thursday at the Oklahoma City University School of Law.

Roth will be speaking during the Energy Panel alongside Mark Yates, Director of the Oklahoma Wind Coalition; Chad Warmington, President of Oklahoma Oil and Gas Association; and John Harper of American Electric Power who will be moderating.

“The Journal Record is bringing sunshine to the state capitol political sausage factory at an unprecedented time of budget woes and two concurrent legislative Sessions,” Roth said. “We will discuss the issues of the day and hope Oklahomans can gain information for their benefit going forward.”

Other panel topics include criminal justice reform, education and health care, and registration for the event is free.

Those interested can view a full list of speakers and panels here.