Phillips Murrah announces 19 attorneys named to 2021 Super Lawyers list

Super Lawyers

Phillips Murrah is honored to have 19 attorneys in 2021 recognized by the Super Lawyers rating service. Super Lawyers is a division of Thomson Reuters.

2021 Oklahoma Super Lawyers

2021 Rising Stars

Phillips Murrah continues OKC Thunder Blocks for Bucks partnership benefiting Thunder Cares Foundation

Blocks for Bucks banner gfx

Back in the Arena! Back to the Blocks!

We are finally living in a post-NBA Bubble world! With the 2021-2022 season upon us, we are excited that Thunder fans can once again attend home games at the newly minted Paycom Center.

Thunder Cares check presentation

Click to enlarge.

With the beginning of this year’s regular season, we are proud to resume Phillips Murrah’s popular Blocks for Bucks campaign, starting at the Oklahoma City Thunder’s first regular-season home game on October 24.

“We are excited to continue our partnership with Phillips Murrah as we return to live Thunder Basketball and head into our fourth year of Blocks for Bucks,” said Will Syring, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships for the Oklahoma City Thunder. “Through Blocks for Bucks, Phillips Murrah has donated more than $50,000 to the Thunder Cares Foundation. We are excited to see how this total grows during the 2021-22 season.”

What is Blocks for Bucks?

Since Phillips Murrah attorneys and staff are big Thunder fans, we decided in 2017 to become an Oklahoma City Thunder Corporate Partner – and Blocks for Bucks was born!

To recognize our home team’s accomplishments in blocking shots, and to tie our promotions into supporting a great community cause, Phillips Murrah donates $100 to the Thunder Cares Foundation for each blocked shot that the Thunder forces at home games during the regular season. At the end of each regular season, Phillips Murrah presents a check for the total amount of the season’s Blocks donations.

Over four seasons of our Blocks for Bucks campaign, we have seen some monster blocks, like this classic from the 2019 season! (click video player below)

 

You can check in at the Thunder Cares Blocks For Bucks landing page on the OKC Thunder website throughout the season to see new Blocks highlight videos and a Blocks Counter that keeps a tally of blocks and a to-date donation total.

Thunder Cares, and so do we! 

This is the fourth season of our Blocks for Bucks partnership with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Since kicking off B4B in 2017, our Firm has donated a total of $56,000 to the Thunder Cares Foundation. This makes us extremely proud because they turn our donations into great programs for kids, such as the Thunder Book Bus/Read to Achieve literacy program and Thunder Fit fitness clinics for middle schoolers.

They also provide Thunder-themed basketball courts in parks, schools and community centers across the state of Oklahoma, as well as activity rooms at organizations including the Boys and Girls Club of Oklahoma CountyCity Rescue Mission and Positive Tomorrows.

Thunder Cares’ community outreach projects are focused on making a positive impact in our community, and we are proud to play a part in supporting them through our Blocks for Bucks partnership.

To view our 2020 video explaining more about Blocks for Bucks and our support of Thunder Cares, please click on the video player below:

 

Phillips Murrah sponsors Oklahoma Access to Justice second annual summit

Phillips Murrah is proud to sponsor Oklahoma Access to Justice as a “Champion of Justice” for the second annual Access to Justice Summit on Oct. 22.

Established in 2014, the Oklahoma Access to Justice Commission aims to develop and implement policies that expand access to and enhance the quality of justice in civil legal matters for low-income Oklahomans.

The Access to Justice Summit will be presented as a daylong, virtual and interactive webinar for free for both Oklahoma Bar Association members and non-OBA members.

Topics will include rural legal access, pro bono, the impact of law students on access to justice, and limited scope representation, among others, and will provide six hours of CLE credit (1 hour ethics).

For more information on Oklahoma Access to Justice and next Friday’s summit, visit the commission’s website here.

Phillips Murrah recognized by Law360’s Glass Ceiling Report for second year

Phillips Murrah is proud to announce that for the second year in a row, our Firm is recognized in Law360’s Glass Ceiling Report for setting the pace in the legal industry for representation of women.

2021 GCR GridTo produce the 2021 Glass Ceiling Report, Law360 collected data during 2020 from more than 270 law firms on the demographic makeup of their lawyer workforce. The report ranks U.S. law firms, broken out into law firm size categories, on their overall representation of women at all levels of the firm.

Reflecting demographics as of Dec 31, 2020, Law360 reported that the national average of all women attorneys at law firms in the U.S. is just under 40 percent. Women represent less than 25 percent of equity partners and just over 48 percent of associates.

To achieve the rank of number five on the Glass Ceiling Report, Phillips Murrah demonstrated numbers far above the national average. Our survey results showed that 42.9 percent of equity partners and 73.7 percent of associate attorneys are women. Additionally, our overall Firm gender makeup is 53 percent women, and our Firm’s Executive Leadership is composed of 75 percent women.

Phillips Murrah is also ranked for the second year on Law360’s “Ceiling Smashers” list, which includes the top ten firms in each law firm size category that have the highest representation of women in equity partnerships.

2021 ceiling smashers gfxFirms on the Ceiling Smashers list are characterized by Law360 as those forging a path to progress and which “demonstrate the potential and possibilities of law firm efforts to work towards parity.”

“Phillips Murrah is proud to be recognized again this year as a ‘ceiling smasher’ and trailblazer in gender equity and inclusion,” said Candace Williams Lisle, Phillips Murrah Director and Chair of our Firm’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. “This repeat performance demonstrates consistency of purpose and continued growth as we move toward gender parity in the practice of law. At Phillips Murrah, it isn’t just about numbers on a graph – but real opportunities for women to lead and flourish in their legal careers and in their lives. We celebrate all of the outstanding women who are valued members of our team.”

Phillips Murrah shares personal stories about tribal memberships

PIF KGOU OILS graphicPhillips Murrah celebrates Indigenous Peoples’ Day in recognition of the contributions of the Indigenous communities that have lived in the United States for thousands of years. To commemorate the occasion, Phillips Murrah is supporting Oklahoma Indian Legal Services as its Pay It Forward beneficiary for the month of October.

In addition, the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee invited members of the Phillips Murrah team who have Native American tribal affiliations to participate in a video interview to discuss what their ancestry and heritage mean to them.

Interviewees are Phillips Murrah Directors G. Calvin Sharpe and Kathy Terry; Associate Attorneys Phoebe Mitchell, Eric Davis and Molly Tipton; and Paralegal Donna Anderson.

Special thanks to Chickasaw classical composer Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate for allowing us to feature his music in the video.

Please enjoy the video by clicking the player below.

 

Phillips Murrah Paying it Forward campaign benefits Oklahoma Indian Legal Services in October

Phillips Murrah Paying It Forward Header Graphic

Phillips Murrah Presents: Paying It Forward

Amplifying the message of one non-profit each month for a year

[Paying It Forward] In Dec. 2020, Phillips Murrah partnered with Oklahoma NPR radio station KGOU to sponsor broadcast announcements each month that shine a light on a selected non-profit organization. Our aim is to amplify each beneficiary organizations’ needs and goals, and to help increase awareness, drive volunteer quality and quantity, assist in fundraising support, and improve capacity to deliver service to the community.

Our Paying it Forward beneficiary in October is Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Inc. #PIFOKC


October Beneficiary

Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Inc.

OILS logo

Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Inc. (OILS) offers free legal representation to low-income Native Americans living in the state of Oklahoma in cases involving housing, child welfare, land issues, individual civil rights, and tribal sovereignty issues.

OILS works to represent Indian people in cases in which children have been removed from their parents or guardians by the state or tribe. OILS also represents Indian people in adoptions or guardianships who are trying to adopt Indian children. You can apply for services by calling their office Monday through Thursday from 9 am – 4 pm at 405-943-6457.

Contact button graphic Donate button graphic


OILS on social media:

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Previous Beneficiaries

September 2021: OKC Beautiful
August 2021: Bethesda, Inc.
July 2021: Oklahoma Humane Society
June 2021: Arts Council Oklahoma City
May 2021: Partners in Public Health
April 2021: CASA of Oklahoma County
March 2021: The Homeless Alliance
February 2021: Mental Health Association Oklahoma
January 2021: Positive Tomorrows
December 2020: Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

Gardner to discuss McGirt for OCAPL monthly meeting

Director Melissa R. Gardner will discuss issues related to Oklahoma oil and gas exploration to members of Oklahoma City Association of Professional Landmen on October 4.

Gardner’s presentation will focus on the McGirt v. Oklahoma ruling and how it could impact oil and gas operations in Oklahoma.

OCAPL meets the first Monday of each month, providing members with credits for continuing education programs. October’s meeting will be held at Social Capital starting at 5:30 PM.

Read more about the upcoming OCAPL meetings here.

Phillips Murrah commemorates National Hispanic Heritage Month

Phillips Murrah is honored to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month and its Hispanic and Latinx attorneys and staff. To commemorate this occasion, the Firm is continuing its support of the Oklahoma City Latino Community Development Agency by making a donation to the college scholarship fund in memory of late Director Shannon K. Emmons, who served on the agency’s Board of Directors.

National Hispanic Heritage Month recognizes the history, culture, and achievements of Hispanic Americans. For more information on events and exhibits held in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month, visit the official website here.

Phillips Murrah participates in 2021 Midsize Mansfield Rule certification

Mansfield Rule graphic logoPhillips Murrah P.C. is pleased to announce our participation in Diversity Lab’s Midsize Mansfield Rule certification process. During the 18-month certification period, more than 70 participating firms across the nation will track activities that demonstrate their commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Phillips Murrah is the only Oklahoma-based firm participating in the 2021 Midsize Mansfield Rule.

Phillips Murrah Diversity Equity InclusionDiversity Lab created the Mansfield Rule to increase the representation of historically underrepresented lawyers by broadening the pool of candidates considered for advancement. This includes consideration for entry-level and lateral attorney job openings, leadership opportunities, equity partner promotions, and client presentations and interactions. After successful completion of the Midsize Mansfield Rule criteria, participating firms will be designated as Mansfield Certified.

“Phillips Murrah looks forward to strengthening its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, internally and in the legal community, by participating in the Mansfield certification process,” said Candace Williams Lisle, Chair of Phillips Murrah’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. “By engaging in this challenging initiative, we are committed to make meaningful progress in hiring, promoting, and including historically underrepresented attorneys.

We are proud of our success at smashing the glass ceiling with our percentage of female firm leaders, equity partners, and attorneys, which nearly double the national averages. Now, we look ahead to creating more opportunities for attorneys who are racially and ethnically diverse, associate as LGBTQ+, and who are disabled. We are proud to partner with Diversity Lab to create a more diverse and inclusive profession.”

In 2021, Phillips Murrah is ranked #5 nationwide – up from #12 in 2020 – in Law360’s “Glass Ceiling Report” for U.S. law firms of 100 or fewer attorneys, based on our percentages of female attorneys, female equity partners, and female executive leadership. Additionally, Phillips Murrah is listed for the second year in a row as Top 10 “Ceiling Smashers” for “outpacing peers as the legal industry works towards closing the gender gap in its top ranks.”

Phillips Murrah sponsors Lynn Institute fundraising efforts

Phillips Murrah was a proud sponsor of the Lynn Institute’s recent fundraising luncheon, which raised money for the organization and awarded local leaders and organizations for their community involvement.

The Legacy Luncheon, hosted August 19 at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, recognized Councilwoman Nikki Nice, Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt, Oklahoma City Police Lt. Wayland Cubit, and Dr. Patrick McGough each with a 2021 Community Championship Award.

The Lynn Institute’s mission aims to provide clinical trials research and health services to benefit patients, sponsors, physicians, staff and associated communities. Learn more at the organization’s website here.

Director Marc Edwards currently serves as a member of Lynn Institutes’ Board of Directors.

Phillips Murrah Paying it Forward campaign benefits OKC Beautiful in September

Phillips Murrah Paying It Forward Header Graphic

Phillips Murrah Presents: Paying It Forward

Amplifying the message of one non-profit each month for a year

[Paying It Forward] In Dec. 2020, Phillips Murrah partnered with Oklahoma NPR radio station KGOU to sponsor broadcast announcements each month that shine a light on a selected non-profit organization. Our aim is to amplify each beneficiary organizations’ needs and goals, and to help increase awareness, drive volunteer quality and quantity, assist in fundraising support, and improve capacity to deliver service to the community.

Our Paying it Forward beneficiary in September is OKC Beautiful. #PIFOKC


September Beneficiary

OKC Beautiful

OKC Beautiful logo

 

OKC Beautiful’s mission is to enhance the image and appearance of Oklahoma City through education, programs, and community engagement. OKC Beautiful believes the appearance of our city directly impacts its economic viability as well as affecting the quality of life and self-image of its residents. Oklahoma City is a vibrant community where citizens practice environmentally sustainable lifestyles and nurture economic growth through our programs.

DONATE to OKC Beautiful: https://www.okcbeautiful.com/donors/make-a-donation

Contact OKC Beautiful: www.OKC Beautiful.com

OKC Beautiful on Social Media:

Facebook logo icon Instagram logo icon Twitter logo icon


Previous Beneficiaries

August 2021: Bethesda, Inc.
July 2021: Oklahoma Humane Society
June 2021: Arts Council Oklahoma City
May 2021: Partners in Public Health
April 2021: CASA of Oklahoma County
March 2021: The Homeless Alliance
February 2021: Mental Health Association Oklahoma
January 2021: Positive Tomorrows
December 2020: Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

Kayla Kuri, Phoebe Mitchell win NextGen Under 30 in Law

NextGen Under 30, which names top-performing Oklahomans under 30 years of age across various employment industries, has named Phillips Murrah attorneys Kayla M. Kuri and Phoebe B. Mitchell to its 2021 honorary list in the Law category. Phillips Murrah is one of two firms to have multiple winners in the category.

Kayla M. Kuri and Phoebe B. Mitchell

“It feels great to be recognized so early in my career and to know that other people in the community see value in my contributions,” Kuri said. “I didn’t grow up in Oklahoma, so when I moved here in 2014, I was unsure if I would ever truly feel like part of the community. But Oklahoma quickly became ‘home,’ and working for a firm as great as Phillips Murrah provides so many opportunities to get involved in the community and connect with others.

“I’m glad to know that other people in the community have taken notice of my work and felt like I was deserving of receiving this recognition.”

NextGen accepts nominations annually and seeks to highlight the accomplishments of individuals who are making a difference within their respective industries and who demonstrate talent, drive, and service to their communities.

“It’s an honor to be recognized for NextGen Under 30 going into my third year of practice at Phillips Murrah,” Mitchell said. “I feel fortunate to be at a law firm where I have so many mentors who truly want me to succeed both personally and professionally.

“Beginning with my clerkship at Phillips Murrah during the summer of 2018 and throughout my first two years of practice, I have felt supported and encouraged to by PM attorneys to do top notch legal work and become involved in our community.”

The Firm is proud to recognize Kuri and Mitchell are two of three women from Phillips Murrah to win this award in the last two years.

“I think the Firm’s culture plays a big part in the women here being successful and being recognized,” Kuri said. “One of the aspects that drew me to Phillips Murrah was the percentage of female attorneys, particularly in my practice group. You don’t often find big firms where over 50% of the attorneys are female, so I knew that Phillips Murrah would be a firm where diversity, equity and inclusion are valued.

“This is all evident in Phillips Murrah’s culture, which is what makes the firm so great. The support and mentorship of the Directors is unrivaled, and they help foster an environment where young attorneys like myself can succeed.”

In addition to striving to maintain a diverse workplace, the Firm is committed to creating a collaborative environment.

“The best part about working for a firm like Phillips Murrah is that we have attorneys in so many different practice areas,” Kuri said. “It really allows us to be a thorough resource for our clients.

“If a client I’m working with has an employment law issue, I know that I can go down the hall and get expert advice from one of our attorneys who practices in that area. Similarly, I get calls all the time from attorneys in other practice areas whose client needs assistance with a transaction or drafting a contract. The attorneys here are very collaborative and work together to provide the best counsel to our clients by utilizing our strengths in our respective practice areas.”

Read the full list of winners on NextGen’s website here.

Michael D. Carter to receive 2021 DRI Kevin Driskill Outstanding State Representative Award

Michael Carter attorney portrait

Michael D. Carter is an experienced litigator and represents a wide variety of parties in environmental and toxic tort cases in state and federal courts.

Michael D. Carter of Phillips Murrah P.C. has been selected as the 2021 recipient of the Defense Research Institute (DRI) Kevin Driskill Outstanding State Representative Award. DRI is the leading organization of civil defense attorneys and in-house counsel.

Each year, the award is presented to a current or immediate past DRI state representative who has made significant contributions toward promoting DRI membership within his or her state; has been instrumental in implementing a significant, unique program to foster the relationship between DRI and the State and Local Defense Organization (SLDO) to enhance DRI’s stature; and/or has enhanced the public’s view of the role of the defense lawyer in the broader society.

Carter has been a DRI State Representative since 2018 and was DRI’s State Membership Chair in 2017-2018. He will be honored with the Kevin Driskill Outstanding State Representative Award during DRI’s annual meeting in October in Chicago.

“I am thrilled and humbled to receive this award, made more special by being named for our late colleague from Oklahoma, Kevin Driskill, who I first met when we were freshmen at the University of Oklahoma,” Carter said. Driskill’s legal career spanned over 35 years before he passed away in 2014.

Carter is an experienced litigator and represents a wide variety of parties in environmental and toxic tort cases in state and federal courts. In addition, he is a long-time policy advisor on workers’ compensation issues in the state of Oklahoma.

Contact Michael D. Carter at 405.606.4715 or mdcarter@phillipsmurrah.com.

Firm sponsors Goodwill’s “Work the Runway” fundraiser

Phillips Murrah is proud to be a sponsor for the inaugural “Work the Runway” fashion show, an event benefitting Goodwill Industries of Central Oklahoma’s Career Pathway Institute and the Mobile Job Connection Center and celebrating the organization’s 85 years of service.

The show is at 6 PM on August 20 at Oklahoma Contemporary and is to be an “interactive fashion experience.”

Goodwill provides job placement and training, and the introduction of the Mobile Job Connection Center gives Goodwill the capacity to travel to those who may be unable to participate in the Career Pathway Institute due to transportation limitations.

Known as a “second-chance” employer, a majority of Goodwill’s workforce has a non-violent criminal background. Goodwill’s partnership with the Department of Corrections provides a transitional pathway out of incarceration for these individuals.

The Job Connection Center provided services to 4,054 individuals in 2020. Read more about Goodwill’s mission on the organization’s website here.

Click here for more information about the Work the Runway fundraiser.

Phillips Murrah announces 64 attorneys named to 2022 Best Lawyers lists

Phillips Murrah is proud to announce that 47 of our attorneys have been named to The Best Lawyers in America© 2022 lists in Oklahoma City and Dallas and 17 attorneys have been named to debut Ones to Watch 2022 list.

2022 Best Lawyers – Lawyers of the Year

Elizabeth K. Brown – Litigation – Trusts and Estates

Sally A. Hasenfratz – Real Estate Law

J. Mark Lovelace – Banking and Finance Law

Melvin R. McVay, Jr. – Litigation – Banking and Finance

Andrew S. Mildren – Government Relations Practice

Dawn M. Rahme – Litigation and Controversy – Tax

Jim A. Roth – Environmental Law

G. Calvin Sharpe – Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

Lyndon W. Whitmire – Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Raymond E. Zschiesche – Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants

The Best Lawyers in America 2022

Jennifer Ivester Berry – Commercial Finance Law; Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; Construction Law; Environmental Law; Real Estate Law; Energy Law

Elizabeth K. Brown – Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships); Energy Law; Litigation – Trusts and Estates; Litigation and Controversy – Tax; Mergers and Acquisitions; Oil and Gas Law; Real Estate Law; Tax Law; Trusts and Estates

John M. Bunting – Commercial Litigation; Insurance Law; Oil and Gas Law

Catherine L. Campbell – Commercial Litigation; Litigation – Labor and Employment

Michael D. Carter – Insurance Law; Labor Law – Management; Litigation – Labor and Employment; Workers’ Compensation Law – Employers; Litigation – Insurance

Jennifer K. Christian – Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships); Trusts and Estates

Rodney L. Cook – Commercial Litigation; Insurance Law; Litigation – Insurance; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants

Cody J. Cooper – Commercial Litigation

Alison J. Cross – Health Care Law

C. Eric Davis – Energy Regulatory Law; Administrative/Regulatory Law

Bobby Dolatabadi – Corporate Law; Mergers and Acquisitions Law

Joshua L. Edwards – Financial Services Regulation Law; Real Estate Law

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

Nicholle Jones Edwards – Family Law; Family Law Arbitration; Collaborative Law: Family Law

Kayce L. Gisinger – Product Liability Litigation – Defendants; Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants; Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants

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

Lauren Barghols Hanna – Employment Law – Management; Labor Law – Management; Litigation – Labor and Employment; Water Law

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

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; Financial Services Regulation Law; Litigation – Bankruptcy

Jason M. Kreth – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law

Gretchen M. Latham– Commercial Litigation

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

Candace Williams Lisle – Banking and Finance Law; Commercial Litigation; Financial Services Regulation Law

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

Byrona J. Maule – Litigation – Labor and Employment

Melvin R. McVay, Jr. – Banking and Finance Law; Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law; Commercial Litigation; Financial Services Regulation Law; Insurance Law; Litigation – Banking and Finance; Litigation – Bankruptcy; Litigation – Real Estate

Andrew S. Mildren – Administrative / Regulatory Law; Banking and Finance 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); Oil and Gas Law; Private Funds / Hedge Funds Law; Tax Law

Martin G. Ozinga – Commercial Litigation; Entertainment Law – Motion Pictures and Television; Information Technology Law; Litigation – Intellectual Property; Technology Law

Donald A. Pape – Banking and Finance Law; Financial Services Regulation Law

Dawn M. Rahme – Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships; Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; Litigation and Controversy – Tax; Mergers and Acquisitions; Tax Law; Trusts and Estates

Mary Holloway Richard – Health Care Law

Jim A. Roth – Energy Law; Energy Regulatory Law; Environmental Law; Government Relations Practice; Litigation – Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy); Natural Resources Law

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

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; Real Estate Law

Kathryn D. Terry – Insurance Law; Labor Law – Management; Litigation – Labor and Employment

Beverly I. Vilardofsky – Mergers and Acquisitions Law

Amy D. White – Commercial Litigation; Product Liability Litigation – Defendants; Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants

Lyndon W. Whitmire – Commercial Litigation; Commercial Transactions / UCC Law; 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

 

The Best Lawyers in America: Ones to Watch 2022

Oklahoma City:

Justin G. Bates – Commercial Litigation

Erica Halley Blackstock – Mergers and Acquisitions Law, Real Estate Law

Hilary Hudson Clifton – Appellate Practice; Commercial Litigation

Jessica N. Cory – Tax Law; Litigation and Controversy – Tax

Cassity B. Gies – Family Law

Mark E. Hornbeek – Commercial Litigation

Kayla M. Kuri – Real Estate Law

Martin J. Lopez III – Health Care Law; Labor and Employment Law – Management; Litigation – Labor and Employment

Natalie M. McMahan – Commercial Litigation

Phoebe B. Mitchell – Commercial Litigation; Labor and Employment Law – Management

Kendra M. Norman – Mergers and Acquisitions Law; Real Estate Law; Tax Law; Trusts and Estates

Ashley M. Schovanec – Commercial Litigation

Laurie L. Schweinle – Commercial Litigation

Molly E. Tipton – Family Law; Oil and Gas Law

 

Dallas:

Laurel L. Baker – Commercial Litigation

Angela M. Buchanan – Commercial Litigation

Kim Beight Kelly – Product Liability Litigation – Defendants; Commercial Litigation

Angela Buchanan joins Phillips Murrah law firm’s Dallas legal team

Angela M. Buchanan

DALLAS (August 11, 2021) – Phillips Murrah P.C. is pleased to announce Angela M. Buchanan has joined the Firm in its Dallas office as an Of Counsel attorney. Her addition brings the number of Phillips Murrah attorneys serving the Texas market to 16.

Angela is a litigation attorney whose primary focus is on complex commercial litigation and disputes, bringing extensive experience in and out of the courtroom, as well as in handling complex multi-million dollar contracts, fraud, and premises liability matters for multi-national, national, regional, and local companies.

Angela also has specific experience in transportation law, contract disputes, products liability matters, toxic tort matters, and insurance litigation. Angela has had success at all stages of litigation, including discovery, summary judgment, mediation, and trial.

Prior to joining Phillips Murrah, Angela served as a senior litigation associate at one of the 50 largest law firms in the world.

Angela received her J.D. from the Baylor University School of Law. She is a member of the State Bar of Texas and is admitted to practice before all Texas courts.


CONTACT:

Phillips Murrah – Dallas Office:
3710 Rawlins Street, Suite 900
Dallas, Texas 75219

Main: (214) 434-1919
Fax: (214) 434-1370

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Phillips Murrah Paying it Forward campaign benefits Bethesda Inc. in August

Phillips Murrah Paying It Forward Header Graphic

Phillips Murrah Presents: Paying It Forward

Amplifying the message of one non-profit each month for a year

[Paying It Forward] In Dec. 2020, Phillips Murrah partnered with Oklahoma NPR radio station KGOU to sponsor broadcast announcements each month that shine a light on a selected non-profit organization. Our aim is to amplify each beneficiary organizations’ needs and goals, and to help increase awareness, drive volunteer quality and quantity, assist in fundraising support, and improve capacity to deliver service to the community.

Our beneficiary in August is Bethesda, Inc., which provides expert care for children in Oklahoma who have suffered the trauma of childhood sexual abuse. #PIFOKC


August Beneficiary

Bethesda, Inc.

Bethesda Inc Logo

For over 30 years, Bethesda has been a place of healing for children and families, ensuring the highest quality of individual and group counseling for children 3-18 years old and their caregivers. The therapists of Bethesda use a variety of therapeutic interventions to help children heal from the trauma of sexual abuse.

Bethesda is the only organization in Oklahoma devoted exclusively to helping children and families heal from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse. Because Bethesda offers these services with no charge to our clients, they rely on individual donations, in-kind donations and volunteers.

Bethesda invites you to make a $25 donation to support their mission: To heal the trauma of childhood sexual abuse through treatment, education and prevention. 

DONATE to Bethesda, Inc.: www.bethesdaok.org/donations

Contact Bethesda, Inc.: www.bethesdaok.org/

Bethesda, Inc. on Social Media:

Facebook logo icon Instagram logo icon Twitter logo icon


Previous Beneficiaries

July 2021: Oklahoma Humane Society
June 2021: Arts Council Oklahoma City
May 2021: Partners in Public Health
April 2021: CASA of Oklahoma County
March 2021: The Homeless Alliance
February 2021: Mental Health Association Oklahoma
January 2021: Positive Tomorrows
December 2020: Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

Attorneys to bowl for charity in support of Regional Food Bank

Phillips Murrah attorneys will put their bowling skills to the test at the annual Striking Out Hunger Bowling Tournament, hosted by Oklahoma County Bar Association’s Young Lawyers Division (YLD) next month.

regional food bank of oklahoma logo“The event is open to all young lawyers, and judges will also be attending,” said Natalie M. McMahan, Phillips Murrah litigation attorney and OCBA YLD board member. “The goal is to raise funds for the Regional Food Bank, which distributed 56.5 million pounds of food to Oklahomans last year alone.”

McMahan, who was recently elected to serve as a member of the YLD Board of Directors, is leading the Firm’s involvement in the tournament.

“This event is a great opportunity to have a fun night with the other young lawyers and get to know the Oklahoma County judges in a fun setting, all while raising funds for a great cause,” she said.

The tournament will be hosted from 6-8:30 PM on Aug. 25 at Heritage Lanes Bowling Center, and the Firm will be competing in two teams.

“OCBA YLD’s normal programming has been disrupted over the past year, so we have a lot of catching up to do – both socially and in giving,” McMahan said. “We hope to have a great turnout at bowling for both reasons.”

Those interested in registering a team may do so by Aug. 24, and sponsorship arrangements may be made through Aug. 16. For more information, visit www.okcbar.org or call the OCBA office at (405) 236-8421.

Phillips Murrah’s participation in the bowling tournament continues a tradition of supporting the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma through OCBA’s and the YLD’s philanthropic efforts.

Phillips Murrah Dallas Office Gets New Location

Dallas New Office Web leader imageDALLAS – To accommodate growth, the law firm of Phillips Murrah P.C. is proud to announce we have relocated our Dallas office. We remain in the Regency building, at 3710 Rawlins Street, and the firm’s Dallas-based attorneys now occupy Suite 900.

“We are excited about this move because it’s a direct result of our growth in the North Texas market,” said Phillips Murrah’s Managing Partner, Thomas G. Wolfe. “This Dallas office expansion indicates that we are on track with our overall plan.”

Dallas Lobby photo

Phillips Murrah Dallas reception area

Phillips Murrah opened its Dallas office in Spring 2018 intending to enhance value for clients in Texas and beyond by delivering substantial cost saving opportunities due to a lower comparative overhead structure. This goal is achieved, in part, through the firm’s collaborative culture, which includes using experienced Oklahoma lawyers with lower billing rates on client teams, and maintaining back-office operations in the Oklahoma City office.

“Support for the firm’s middle-market value proposition, as evidenced by an increased number of assignments from clients, ranging from local entrepreneurs to Fortune 500 companies, has allowed us to add new lawyers and new practice areas to our Dallas team since the beginning of 2020,” said Mark E. Golman, a Dallas-based Phillips Murrah Shareholder. “Our new space in Gaedeke Group’s Regency building will allow us to continue that growth.”

The new office contact information is as follows:

Phillips Murrah P.C.
3710 Rawlins St., Suite 900
Dallas TX, 75219
Main: 214.434.1919
Fax: 214.434.1370

PLEASE NOTE: All Dallas-based attorneys have new phone numbers, listed below.
Click to visit their attorney profile pages.

Laurel L. Baker portrait
Laurel L. Baker
Associate
469.485.7338
llbaker@phillipsmurrah.com
Angela Buchanan portrait
Angela M. Buchanan
Of Counsel
469.485.7341
ambuchanan@phillipsmurrah.com
Mark Golman Web
Mark E. Golman
Director
469.485.7333
megolman@phillipsmurrah.com
Janet Hendrick portrait
Janet A. Hendrick
Director
469.485.7334
jahendrick@phillipsmurrah.com
Kim Kelly portrait
Kim Beight Kelly
Associate
469.485.7337
kbkelly@phillipsmurrah.com
Beau M. Patterson portrait
Beau M. Patterson
Of Counsel
469.485.7340
bmpatterson@phillipsmurrah.com
Angela Buchanan portraitMichele B. Spillman
Of Counsel
469.485.7342
mcspillman@phillipsmurrah.com

About us:

Phillips Murrah P.C. empowers clients with the insight and strategic legal counsel necessary to maintain a competitive edge. Through a multi-disciplinary team of skilled attorneys, clients are supported by across-the-board transactional legal representation and in all areas of civil litigation. The Firm provides world-class representation at competitive rates while maintaining personalized relationships that a client would expect from a boutique firm. Whether an individual, a local company, or a Fortune 500 corporation, our clients can depend on us to deliver valuable, practical solutions that fit specific needs.


Related posts:

As Dallas businesses scramble to comply with murky mask mandate, Governor files court challenge – August. 2021

Hendrick presenting at 2021 Texas Diversity Equity & Inclusion Conference – June 2021

Limitations of the Texas Citizens Participation Act – Jan 2021

Phillips Murrah recognized as Champion of Justice Law Firm by Texas Access to Justice Commission – Oct. 2020

Laurel Baker joins Phillips Murrah law firm’s Dallas legal team – Oct. 2020

Clients seek lower costs for legal services – Sept. 2020

Texas Lawyer: Mid-Market Strategy to Achieve Cost Reductions that Clients Seek – June 2020

Beau M. Patterson joins Phillips Murrah Dallas office – June 2020

PM Director Janet Hendrick praises Supreme Court LGBTQ decision – June 2020

Michele C. Spillman joins Phillips Murrah Dallas office – Mar. 2020

Phillips Murrah Shareholder Janet A. Hendrick elected as Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation – Dec. 2019

Hendrick partners with North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce – Aug 2019

Kelly selected to join Dallas Association of Young Lawyers Leadership Class – July 2019

Kim Beight Kelly joins Phillips Murrah Dallas office – May 2019

Director to present employment law lecture for SMU School of Law – May 2019

Alison J. Cross joins Phillips Murrah Dallas office – May 2019

Texas Court Sends Non-Compete Agreement Lawsuit to Arbitration – Nov. 2018

Wolfe reflects on Law Firm growth in Dallas market for Texas Lawyer article – Oct 2019

Phillips Murrah welcomes Janet A. Hendrick to Dallas office – Oct. 2018

Dallas employment attorney Janet A. Hendrick tells Law360 why she joined Phillips Murrah – Oct 2018

Phillips Murrah Director Janet Hendrick mentioned in Power Players: Women Leading in Law – Oct. 2018

ALERT: Austin Court of Appeals: Austin Paid Sick Leave Unconstitutional – Nov. 2018

Phillips Murrah expands into Dallas – May 2018

Gardner, Davis explore Oklahoma water laws, regulation in webinar presentation

Director Melissa R. Gardner and Attorney C. Eric Davis participated in a live webinar hosted by HalfMoon Education Inc. on July 13, examining issues related to regulating Oklahoma’s water utilities.

Melissa Gardner is a Director who practices in the Energy & Natural Resources Practice Group.

“By exploring how Oklahoma regulates potable water systems, our main goal was to show that laws impacting drinking water supplies are aimed at keeping water safe and affordable for residents and businesses,” Davis said.

Pulling from their respective legal experience, Gardner explained water utility organization and requirements under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act and its enforcement by the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, and Davis discussed regulation of certain water utilities by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, current issues in utility service area regulations, and water system construction and design standards.

Webinar attendees earned continuing legal education credit through HalfMoon Education Inc.

Gardner is a Director in Phillips Murrah’s Energy & Natural Resources Practice Group and represents energy companies and mineral owners in a variety of matters in Oklahoma, Texas, and North Dakota, including oil and gas title examination, bankruptcy, probate, quiet title, surface damages issues, and lien preparation and enforcement.

To contact Melissa Gardner, please call 405.606.4782 or email her.

attorney Eric Davis

Eric Davis is an attorney in the Firm’s Clean Energy Practice Group and the Government Relations and Compliance Practice Group.

Davis is an attorney in Phillips Murrah’s Government Relations and Compliance Practice Group, Clean Energy Practice Group, and Healthcare Practice Group. He represents clients in proceedings before a range of governmental agencies and also serves as prosecutor for the Oklahoma Construction Industries Board. Davis frequently practices before the Oklahoma Corporation Commission and his utility regulation experience includes representing public utilities, including water utilities, and other stakeholders in rate cases and regulatory rulemakings.

To contact Eric Davis, please call 405.606.4757 or email him.

To learn more about this webinar and other presentations HalfMoon hosts nationally, click here.

 

Sharpe shares Native heritage, legal experience in FDCC New Member Spotlight

Republished with permission from the Summer 2021 Edition of Federation Flyer

 

Calvin Sharpe Web pic

New Member Spotlight – G. Calvin Sharpe

The high caliber of new members being nominated, vetted and admitted to the Federation continue to deepen the broad diversity of our membership and enhance our brand. In this issue, we profile one of those who define our standard of being “above and beyond” in their personal life and in their profession. Please join us in welcoming and learning a bit more about one of our newest members; G. Calvin Sharpe, a Director with Phillips Murrah in Oklahoma City, OK. Contact “G. Calvin” at gcsharpe@phillipsmurrah.com.


Q:  G. Calvin, welcome as one of the FDCC’s newest members. Can you share a little with us about your educational and professional background?

A:  I am a life-long Sooner, having graduated from The University of Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in 1982 and from The University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1985. I joined Phillips Murrah in 2009 and am now a Director of the firm. For many years, I have been very involved in the Oklahoma Association of Defense Counsel and the Oklahoma County Bar Association, among other organizations. In 2005, I was honored to be admitted to the American Board of Trial Advocates, an invitation-only organization that, at the time, required members to have tried at least 20 civil jury trials as lead counsel. Throughout my career, I have tried 30+ jury cases.

 

Q:  What got you interested to specialize in medical malpractice, environmental and products liability defense work?

A:  I was always focused on a career in litigation and gravitated to the defense side early on. With a retired doctor as my father-in-law and many doctor friends, medical malpractice defense became an easy choice. Defense work is particularly enjoyable, as each matter is unique and interesting. I like focusing on the technical manufacturing details and medical aspects of products liability and medical malpractice cases. Over the years, I have learned much about the practice of medicine, including watching an open-heart bypass surgery in person, but some other interesting things as well, including how to make my own Taco Bell chicken quesadilla ( when representing them in a products liability and negligence case brought against them) and how a paper mill works (when representing a paper products company in a negligence case brought against them).

 

Q:  When your Nomination Form came in, we noticed you are also admitted to practice in the Seminole Nation and Cherokee Nation Tribal Courts, as well as the Supreme Court of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, Chickasaw Nation Tribal Court, and Osage Nation Tribal Court. Can you give us some insight into how you developed an interest and specialty in Tribal Laws?

A:  I have always been very proud of my Native roots. My great grandfather was a famous Seminole Indian. My father is a full-blood Seminole who did not even speak English until grade school when he was sent to boarding school. He grew up very poor but after joining the military, was able to put himself through college and law school. For many years, he held various positions within the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma and often represented the tribe as its counsel.

Through my dad and my relatives, I learned much about my Native heritage. To get more involved with the Native community, I served on the board of Red Earth for many years, including as President and Past-President. Red Earth, Inc., a non-profit, is a multi-cultural organization that promotes the understanding and continuation of traditional and contemporary Native culture and art. Each year, it holds a juried-art competition and festival that is attended by many tribes from around the country.

Through Red Earth, I made many contacts with Native businesses and tribal leaders. When Oklahoma’s many tribes became more affluent in recent years and began pursuing many more economic development projects than they had in the past, I was able to secure many opportunities to represent Native businesses, tribes, and tribal members, as well as non-native businesses wanting to do business with them.

 

Q:  We also understand that you trace your own ancestral lineage to the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma through your great grandfather, “Chili Fish,” who was – and I hope we have this correct – one of the first Light Horsemen, which was the first law enforcement unit in Indian Territory, and also a Chief of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma What can you share with us about your family’s history?

chili fish gcs great grandfather

Chili Fish, Chief of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma in 1935-1936 and Director G. Calvin Sharpe’s great grandfather

A:  Yes, my great grandfather was a very famous Seminole leader. He served as Chief of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma in 1935-1936 and, as you mention, was one of the first Light Horsemen, who served as law enforcement in early Indian Territory-law enforcement which then consisted of hanging for serious offenses and public whipping for lesser offenses. The old “Whipping Tree” still stands in Wewoka, OK today.

Although he did not speak English, he was instrumental in helping his people address the serious deficiencies in federal administration of lndian affairs in the 1930s, including the exclusion of Indians in managing their own affairs and the poor quality of public services they received. In early 1932, he and a delegation of Seminole members visited Washington regarding the Mekusukey Mission school that the Department of Interior had promised to fund but had closed without warning, leasing the land on which the school sat to an oil company. As a result, Congress soon thereafter passed the Act of April 27, 1934 which made all sales and leases of tribal lands subject to the Seminole General Counsel’s approval.

In 1931, Chili Fish helped bring together the Seminoles with many other tribes to celebrate their own cultures and traditions in a large festival-an event that is still held today, known as “Seminole Nation Days:’ While in high school, my daughter rode in the Seminole Nation Days parade as First Runner-Up in the Miss Seminole pageant, a contest that allows young Seminole women to display their talents and knowledge of their Seminole culture.

 

Many native people are inherently suspicious of those outside their own tribes. To bring people within the tribe together with those outside the tribe is often not an easy task. Being creative in handling delicate issues has served me well.


Q:  Has there been anything that you have learned or utilized in your practice in representing the Tribal Nations that you have brought with you to your civil practice as well?

A:  Definitely the importance of maintaining creativity of thought. Because each tribe in Oklahoma is a sovereign nation in and to itself and each has its own laws and practices, I have learned that it is critical to remain open to new ideas and being creative in handling issues, especially when tribal laws intertwine with state and federal laws. Many native people are inherently suspicious of those outside their own tribes. To bring people within the tribe together with those outside the tribe is often not an easy task. Being creative in handling delicate issues has served me well. This thought process has helped me in other practices areas of my practice as well.

 

Q:  For many years, we have taken the heritage and legacy of the Tribal Nations in this country for granted, even though they were here before any of us. If there were 3 things you could share with us from your family’s history as well as your representation of the Tribal Nations about their story, history and culture, what would they be?

gcs and father

Director G. Calvin Sharpe and his father in front of a portrait of Chili Fish

Three things that are important to my family’s history, as well as the history of many Native people, are our Native language, art, and traditions. Each tribe in Oklahoma has its own special language, many of which were waning as the younger generations were taught to speak only English. A resurgence of learning Native languages has been helped by tribal language programs, as well as classes taught as some Oklahoma universities.

Each tribe also has its own style of art, including dress and jewelry. I enjoyed learning beadwork as a young child from my relatives. As to the importance of Native art, I would love to mention that later this year, the First Americans Museum (FAM) will be opening in Oklahoma City. It will be a world-class facility celebrating the 39 tribes of Oklahoma, both as they existed in the past and as they exist today. The museum will house many native artifacts on loan from The Smithsonian Institute. I welcome all FDCC members to visit FAM, a museum and center that what will no doubt be a national treasure once it opens.

And each tribe has its own traditions, including family celebrations, special foods, and religious holidays. As I mentioned above, Oklahoma Seminoles still celebrate “Seminole Nation Days” with our traditional stick-ball games (similar to modern-day lacrosse), enjoying homemade sorghum (molasses) and sotkey (a sour drink), and stomp and gourd dance competitions.

I believe it is very important for each tribe, including my own tribe, to educate our young tribal members in each of these areas in order to best preserve the rich culture and heritage of our Native past for the future.

 

Q:  What are some of the issues and cases you have been working on relating to the Tribal Nations?

A:  I argued an interesting issue related to separation of governmental powers before the Seminole Nation Supreme Court. There, the tribe’s legislative branch—the Tribal Counsel—was challenged

by the judicial branch. The Tribal Counsel had sought to regulate the Nation’s court system by dictating who could serve as judges and court staff. Representing the judicial side, we were able to successfully assert that such powers must be kept separate in order for the government to properly function.

Just recently, I successfully represented an Osage Nation Congresswoman in proceedings before the Osage Nation in which the tribe had sought to remove her from her position as a congresswoman.

I also represent non-native businesses in negotiations with various tribes in Oklahoma, including representing a non-native medical company in negotiations with the Rosebud Sioux tribe to enter into a teaming agreement for the provision of medical billing services to governmental agencies.

 

Later this year, the First Americans Museum (FAM) will be opening in Oklahoma City.

It will be a world-class facility celebrating the 39 tribes of Oklahoma, both as they existed in the past

and as they exist today. I welcome all FDCC members to visit FAM, a museum and center that what will no doubt be a national treasure once it opens.


Q:  What else do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

A:  My wife and I enjoy spending as much time as possible with our grandson, 20-month-old Hudson. We have a house at Lake Eufaula, a two-hour drive from home, and spend about a third of our time there, enjoying boating and just relaxing with our kids. I also enjoy hunting and fishing. My wife is an excellent cook so I probably spend too much time eating and enjoying a good wine as well.

 

Q:  OK … time for the lightning round … Favorite place ever visited?

A:  I can’t name just one so here are my top three: Maui, Costa Rica, and Santa Fe. And of course, Lake Eufaula, Oklahoma.

 

Q:  What’s on the bucket list?

A:  I love Formula 1 racing, so a ride and dinner with Lewis Hamilton is a “must” on my list.

 

Q:  What’s something else unique about you?

A:  I am a French Bulldog nut. My wife and I had a Frenchie for almost 16 years who passed away last year, and our daughter and son-in-law have one as well. Soon after our beloved Rocket died, we purchased a blue Frenchie, RJ, and just recently we got a white Frenchie, Windy. I follow many French Bulldog websites, including French Bulldog Enthusiast. I just can’t get enough of them!

 

Q:  Will we be seeing you in for the 2021 Annual Meeting at The Greenbrier Resort in WV?

A:  Assuming the vaccines are rolled out and the pandemic is under control by then, I definitely plan to attend.

Phillips Murrah Paying it Forward campaign benefits Oklahoma Humane Society in July

Phillips Murrah Paying It Forward Header Graphic

Phillips Murrah Presents: Paying It Forward

Amplifying the message of one non-profit each month for a year

[Paying It Forward] In Dec. 2020, Phillips Murrah partnered with Oklahoma NPR radio station KGOU to sponsor broadcast announcements each month that shine a light on a selected non-profit organization. Our aim is to amplify each beneficiary organizations’ needs and goals, and to help increase awareness, drive volunteer quality and quantity, assist in fundraising support, and improve capacity to deliver service to the community.

Our beneficiary in July is Oklahoma Humane Society, whose primary focus is to eliminate the needless euthanasia of healthy, adoptable animals in Oklahoma City.  #PIFOKC


July Beneficiary

Oklahoma Humane Society

Oklahoma Humane Society logo

Oklahoma Humane Society exists to enrich the communities it serves by promoting the well-being of animals. Their vision is to make the compassionate and respectful treatment of animals a prevalent community value and the well-being of animals a community priority.

“Our journey begins and ends with love. We love animals and believe that central Oklahoma will see a day when every healthy and adoptable pet finds a home.”

Founded in 2007, Oklahoma Humane Society works in close partnership with Oklahoma City Animal Welfare (OKC Animal Shelter) and other local shelters.

Contact Oklahoma Humane Society: okhumane.org

DONATE to Oklahoma Humane Society: okhumane.org/donate

Oklahoma Humane Society on Social Media:

Facebook logo icon Instagram logo icon Twitter logo icon


Previous Beneficiaries

June 2021: Arts Council Oklahoma City
May 2021: Partners in Public Health
April 2021: CASA of Oklahoma County
March 2021: The Homeless Alliance
February 2021: Mental Health Association Oklahoma
January 2021: Positive Tomorrows
December 2020: Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

Director Nikki Edwards lends expertise to United Way Board Serve class

Nikki Edwards, Director in Phillips Murrah’s Family Law Practice, recently spoke to United Way of Central Oklahoma’s Board Serve 2021 Class on behalf of Positive Tomorrows, an organization she’s been active with for more than 20 years.

susan agel and nikki edwards

Director Nikki Edwards (right) addresses United Way’s 2021 Board Serve class alongside Susan Agel, President/CEO or Positive Tomorrows.

“When Susan Agel, President/CEO of Positive Tomorrows, asked me to join her as a presenter at the Board Serve Class, I didn’t hesitate,” Edwards said. “Susan and I shared an interactive discussion about board duties, fundraising, and conflicts of interest.”

The Board Serve program hosts expert-led sessions to teach leadership skills, governance, nonprofit law, and other skills to future board members of nonprofit agencies in the central Oklahoma area. Applicants for the program have the opportunity to be placed on a United Way partner agency’s board for at least one year.

“We were asked to elaborate on Positive Tomorrow’s highly successful capital campaign, raising over $15 million, which funded the new, state-of-the-art school building,” Edwards said. “United Way of Central Oklahoma has been a critical partnership to so many community agencies, including Positive Tomorrows, which could not survive without their financial support.”

Development for Positive Tomorrows’ new facility initiated in 2018 after meeting its fundraising goal and opened in December 2019.

Cassity B. Gies, Phillips Murrah Family Law Attorney, is a current member in the 2021 Board Serve Class.

“I practice alongside Cassity everyday, and it was meaningful for me to interact with her in a different professional capacity,” Edwards said. “Mentorship and community service are personally so satisfying, so I was grateful for the opportunity to help educate our future Oklahoma community leaders and appreciate our law firm supporting Cassity’s desire to spend some of her time in this way.”

Visit United Way of Central Oklahoma’s website for more information on the Board Serve program’s mission.

Hendrick presenting at 2021 Texas Diversity Equity & Inclusion Conference

Janet Hendrick, a Shareholder in Phillips Murrah’s Dallas office, will present at the 6th Annual Texas Diversity Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Conference on June 16, 2021. The conference will run from June 15-17 and is sponsored by Toyota, Texas Capital Bank, Southwest Airlines, Parkland Hospital, and other partners.

Janet Hendrick

Janet Hendrick is a Director and member of the Firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Group.

Hendrick will discuss “The Future of DEI Efforts: What We’ve Learned and How Companies Can Do Better,” with the goal of informing attendees on the state of DEI efforts, including what the events of 2020 have taught us and how companies can make their DEI efforts more effective.

“2020 brought many changes in the workplace, including an increase in DEI initiatives,” Hendrick said. “While many companies have ramped up their efforts, studies show DEI initiatives are still falling short of accomplishing necessary change in the business world. In this session, we will discuss the impact of 2020 events on DEI efforts, advances in DEI, and what’s ahead for DEI in the workplace.”

Conference attendees will network with other business professionals from around the state, hear remarks from national speakers about the importance of diversity in the workplace, and attend breakout sessions designed to help businesses to grow and thrive.

Janet Hendrick is an experienced employment lawyer who frequently speaks on matters relating to diversity and inclusion. She is also a member of the North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce’s Governing Committee.

For more information about the conference, visit the North Texas LGBT Chamber of Commerce’s website here.

Attorney Cassity Gies featured as family law columnist in The Journal Record

Phillips Murrah family law attorney Cassity B. Gies is featured in the June 3 edition of the Journal Record.

Phillips Murrah family law attorney Cassity Giles

Cassity practices family law including divorce and separation, custody, and child support issues.

In the Gavel to Gavel guest column, Cassity writes about the possibility of custody issues in family court as related Oklahoma medical marijuana license holders.

“Our family law practice handles medicinal marijuana issues on a weekly basis now. The impact of holding a medical marijuana card varies according to every situation, and multiple factors affect the extent that a patient card or commercial business license can complicate a custody decision,” she wrote.

Cassity expands on this topic in a longer version, which you can read here: Oklahoma medical marijuana license holders could face custody issues.


For more information on how the information in this article may impact you, please call 405.606.4744 or email Cassity B. Gies.

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Phillips Murrah Paying it Forward campaign benefits Arts Council Oklahoma City in June

Phillips Murrah Paying It Forward Header Graphic

Phillips Murrah Presents: Paying It Forward

Amplifying the message of one non-profit each month for a year

[Paying It Forward] In Dec. 2020, Phillips Murrah partnered with Oklahoma NPR radio station KGOU to sponsor broadcast announcements each month that shine a light on a selected non-profit organization. Our aim is to amplify each beneficiary organizations’ needs and goals, and to help increase awareness, drive volunteer quality and quantity, assist in fundraising support, and improve capacity to deliver service to the community.

Our beneficiary in June is Arts Council Oklahoma City, proudly exposing our community to the full spectrum of art in its many forms. By focusing on teaching, learning, and appreciating the arts, their events and programs help the residents to create, experience, and enjoy art.  #PIFOKC


June Beneficiary

Arts Council Oklahoma City

Arts Council logo

Arts Council Oklahoma City is a nonprofit 501 (C)(3) organization that is dedicated to bringing the arts and the community together through free or low-cost, large-scale downtown Oklahoma City cultural events and a variety of arts outreach activities that impact under-served populations.

Contact Arts Council Oklahoma City: https://www.artscouncilokc.com/

To VOLUNTEER at the 2021 Festival of the Arts: https://www.artscouncilokc.com/foa_volunteer/

DONATE to Arts Council Oklahoma City: https://www.classy.org/give/140086/#!/donation/checkout

Arts Council Oklahoma City on Social Media:

Facebook logo icon Instagram logo icon Twitter logo icon


Previous Beneficiaries

May 2021: Partners in Public Health
April 2021: CASA of Oklahoma County
March 2021: The Homeless Alliance
February 2021: Mental Health Association Oklahoma
January 2021: Positive Tomorrows
December 2020: Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma

ALFA International profiles Director Byrona Maule

ALFA International, a renowned, global network of independent law firms, featured Director Byrona J. Maule for the May 7 edition of its #FridayFeature attorney profile. Memberships to ALFA International are exclusive, and Phillips Murrah is the active member representing the Oklahoma City metropolitan area.

The weekly profile series shares personal stories from spotlighted attorneys and asks questions about their backgrounds:

Today’s #FridayFeature is Byrona Maule, a director and litigation attorney with ALFA International (ALFAI) member firm Phillips Murrah in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Byrona is chair of her firm’s Labor & Employment Practice Group and a steering committee member of ALFAI’s Labor & Employment Practice Group. Byrona also was a featured speaker during ALFAI’s International Client Seminar this past March and was a panelist during a recent webinar on the same topic. We hope you enjoy Byrona’s feature!
Please tell us about a favorite family vacation spot or an incredible trip you went on recently.

Director Byrona J. Maule

My husband, Marvin, and I love the outdoors, and we are animal lovers. We have two Vizsla dogs, Will and Tera, and a cat named Simon. While Simon is not a traveler, Will and Tera love to travel with us. Our favorite place to vacation is Ruidoso, New Mexico. The Lincoln National Forest surrounds the Village of Ruidoso, at the base of Sierra Blanca. We spend our days hiking the forests and mountain ranges. In the evenings, we relax in the solitude and quiet of the forests – and watch H&I TV (Heroes & Icons) – which airs old reruns of Star Trek – every iteration from the original to Enterprise! When we feel more adventuresome, we go to Ski Apache, where you can ski during the winter or, during the summer, experience one of the longest zip lines in North America. Ziplining down Sierra Blanca was one of the most thrilling things I have ever done! The zip line is 8,890 feet long, and you release from an elevation of 11,489 feet. I highly recommend it if you like great views and an adrenaline rush. My only advice is if you wear glasses make sure you have them firmly anchored to your face!

Why did you decide to become a lawyer?

Director Byrona J. Maule and husband, Marvin

When I was three or four years old, my grandmother told me I should be an attorney when I grew up because I thought and argued like my grandfather, who had been an attorney. From that point on, I wanted to be an attorney. I went to college as a pre-law/political science major, and I never changed my major. My four sisters would tell you that my grandmother was very accurate in her assessment of me. As one of my sister’s explained to a bygone boyfriend after a long debate (which I won), “It is not that Byrona was trained to argue like a lawyer – it is that Byrona was very well suited to be a lawyer – she always thought and argued in that way.” As I have matured, my grandmother’s influence has shown me the importance of our words – especially words of encouragement. At the ripe old age of three, I did not even know what an attorney did. In 1964, there were very few female attorneys as role models. But she told me stories of my grandfather’s life and practice, and because of her simple words of encouragement at an early age, I never doubted that I could become a lawyer. I am eternally thankful for that encouragement – especially from my current vantage point. At the time, I did not see the challenges, the impossibility, or as many would say, the “folly” of a little girl going to college and becoming an attorney during a time of societal upheaval and a struggle for women’s rights. I was only focused on the fact that my grandmother saw in me the traits that had made my grandfather a successful attorney. It is one of the main reasons I am involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Oklahoma. The words we speak to children can ignite their potential and open a vast and unknown world to them. Every child should have someone speaking words of encouragement to them.

Why do you choose to participate as an active ALFA International attorney?
When Phillips Murrah joined ALFAI, I did not know what to expect. ALFAI representatives came to the firm and explained ALFAI to us. But you really cannot appreciate ALFAI until you have participated in an ALFAI event. After participating in that first ALFAI event, I knew that ALFAI was great because it offers the opportunity to meet, engage and collaborate with other attorneys worldwide, which was refreshing and something that my “soul” needed. I also regularly provide educational training to clients on employment law. ALFAI takes this to an entirely new level, allowing me to work with other attorneys in the field of employment law from other states and nations. But it is not just collaboration; it is the quality of those with whom you collaborate that makes ALFAI so unique. The attorneys and client representatives that participate in ALFAI are diverse, well-educated individuals with a myriad of experiences and backgrounds. Being able to develop relationships with attorneys and clients throughout the world is invaluable and unique to ALFAI.

Founded in 1980, ALFA International was the first and continues to be one of the largest and strongest legal networks with 150 member firms throughout the world. Its 80 U.S. firms maintain offices in 95 of the 100 largest metropolitan areas, and its 70 international firms are located throughout Europe, Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Africa, Canada, Mexico and South America.

ALFA International’s memberships are exclusive. Only one law firm represents our network in each metropolitan area, state, or country. Moreover, in the United States, member firms may not join any other national legal network.


Links to this article:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/posts/alfaintlaw_fridayfeature-activity-6796463956723564544-IJqU/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ALFAIntLaw/status/1390698886537359364

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ALFAIntLaw/posts/1191440981301809

2021 Phillips Murrah Externship Program teaches law students career lessons

Externship group photo

From L: Phillips Murrah Attorney Lauren Barghols Hanna, Phillips Murrah Director Candace Williams Lisle, OU Law 2L and PM Externs Christopher Punto and Camille Burge pose together in the courtroom of Federal Judge Jodi Dishman during their Apr. 14 educational visit and tour.

In January 2021, Phillips Murrah initiated its inaugural Externship Program in partnership with the University of Oklahoma College of Law, continuing the Firm’s efforts to recruit talented and motivated future attorneys who reflect the diversity of our local community. The Externship Program is spearheaded by the Firm’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. The Program, chaired by Director Candace Williams Lisle, is designed in alignment with Phillips Murrah’s goal to create a workplace culture that is open to all needs, perspectives, contributions, experiences, and backgrounds. The Externship Program exposes a diverse group of students to the everyday practice of law, cultivates relationships, and provides mentorship and opportunities to enhance legal skills. Participating students gain legal experience while working at Phillips Murrah’s Oklahoma City office and receive 3 hours of course credit.

This year, Phillips Murrah welcomed second-year OU Law students, Camille Burge and Christopher Punto. As externs, Burge and Punto were mentored by Phillips Murrah attorneys while learning about practice areas including litigation and appeals, labor and employment, business transactions, real estate, tax, family law, oil and gas, bankruptcy, municipal financing, energy and regulatory, administrative, estate planning, cannabis and liquor licensing, and workers compensation. The externs attended events including depositions, client meetings, a trial, and frequent lunch and learns.   They worked on a variety of research and writing projects and received feedback from their supervising attorneys. The externs also enjoyed a presentation by a Firm client about practicing law as Deputy General Counsel for a large public corporation.

A highlight of the program was a visit to the William J. Holloway Jr. United States Courthouse. Burge and Punto accompanied Lisle and Phillips Murrah Attorney Lauren Barghols Hanna to meetings with federal judges Hon. Bernard Jones, Hon. Patrick Wyrick, and Hon. Jodi Dishman. The federal judges offered advice, answered the externs’ questions, and Judge Dishman gave a tour of her courtroom.

“It was a unique opportunity for the externs to meet one-on-one with the federal judges, learn about their respective paths to the bench, and receive the benefit of their wisdom and advice,” Lisle said.

Below is a video interview with Burge and Punto discussing their courthouse visit as well as their experience participating in the 2021 Phillips Murrah Externship Program.

 

 

“We are very pleased with our inaugural externship program,” Lisle continued. “Through the interview process, we had the opportunity to meet a number of outstanding diverse students from OU Law School. Our externs, Camille and Chris, were talented, energetic, and enthusiastic. We were able to provide them with wonderful opportunities to learn about various areas of law practice from our talented practitioners, and to observe legal work in action. Our primary goal for the externship program was to develop relationships and collaborate with students with diverse backgrounds and perspectives, and we definitely achieved that goal with this program. We’re very excited to expand on our externship program in the future.”

Phillips Murrah continues to be a leader in gender equity in Oklahoma with 44% of Shareholders and 53% of all employees identifying as female. In 2020, Phillips Murrah was nationally recognized by Law360.com as “Ceiling Smashers.” Not only is Phillips Murrah a leader in the percentage of women attorneys, but more importantly, in women who have a seat at the table as equity partners and firm leaders,” Lisle said.

Through the Externship and other programs and initiatives, the Firm seeks to build on this success and further our team’s innovation, engagement, and creativity in our work.  As a six-time-consecutive recipient of the Top Work Place in Oklahoma honor, an award chosen annually by employees of Oklahoma businesses, the Firm is confident in our ability to grow and continue making Phillips Murrah a fulfilling place for all current and future employees.

Steve Sherman joins Phillips Murrah’s legal team in Oklahoma office

OKLAHOMA CITY – Phillips Murrah is proud to welcome Steve Sherman to the Firm’s legal team.

steve sherman portrait 2021

Steve Sherman is an Of Counsel attorney who concentrates his practice on business and real estate transactions, including business and real estate acquisitions, dispositions, leases, and land use.

Steve Sherman is an Of Counsel attorney who concentrates his practice on business and real estate transactions, including business and real estate acquisitions, dispositions, leases, and land use. Steve represents numerous national, regional, and local real estate owners, developers, landlords, and tenants, and he has been involved in some of the most notable transactions in Oklahoma City.

Steve’s skills and integrity have been recognized by his peers, having voted him to Super Lawyers of Oklahoma, and he has received the highest rating given by Martindale-Hubbell, having been named to the Bar Register of Pre-Eminent Lawyers, a distinction reserved for the top 1% of AV-rated lawyers, for the categories of real estate and commercial law.

He has lectured on numerous real estate-related topics including lease negotiations and enforcement, real estate purchase contracts, and the Fair Housing Act. Additionally, Steve has served on the boards or committees of various civic and corporate organizations over the years.

Steve is a graduate of the University of Michigan, with high distinction, and Santa Clara University where he earned his JD and MBA. He has been the Associate Municipal Judge for the City of Nichols Hills for over 20 years. He also served five terms as a Commissioner on the Oklahoma Real Estate Commission, for which he served as Vice-Chairman and Chairman multiple times.


CONTACT:

Phillips Murrah – Oklahoma City Office:
101 N. Robinson Ave., Thirteenth Floor
Oklahoma City, OK 73102

Main: (405) 235-4100
Fax: (405) 235-4133

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Phillips Murrah supports Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance

Phillips Murrah is proud to sponsor the Cure FA Soirée hosted by The Gehr family on May 22 to benefit Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance (FARA).

The Firm’s sponsorship for the annual event is supported by Director Heather L. Hintz who has been active with the organization and this fundraising event since its inception four years ago.

“I’ve supported the cause because of the enthusiasm, courage, and resilience of Michael Gehr, and the determination of the Gehr family to find a cure for FA,” Hintz said.

Friedreich’s ataxia is a hereditary disease causing progressive nervous system damage and impairing movement, among other afflictions, and new treatments are being studied in hopes of finding a cure.

The event will include live performances, dinner, and a silent auction and will be hosted at the Hilton Garden Inn in Edmond, OK. Registration can be found here and is open to the public.

To learn more about FARA click here.