In The News

Bellamy Named 2018 Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Winner

Raquel L Bellamy Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonRaquel L. Bellamy AttorneyBone McAllester Norton attorney, Raquel L. Bellamy, was selected by the Tennessee Bar Association as the 2018 recipient of the Larry Dean Wilks Leadership Award. The award honors former TBA President Larry D. Wilks, by recognizing Tennessee Bar Association Leader Law (TBALL) class member with exceptional leadership qualities. 

Raquel is a dedicated advocate with a wide range of experience in civil and criminal litigation. She advises clients concerning business, entertainment, and employment disputes. Raquel also advises individuals and corporations concerning immigration and nationality law. She has defended and advanced immigrant rights for individuals from over 50 countries.

Currently Raquel serves on the boards of Conexión Americas and Equal Chance for Education, LLC. She lends her experience to future attorneys through mentorship and teaching. Raquel mentors students through the Nashville Bar Association’s diversity high school intern program and Equal Chance for Education, LLC. She is also an adjunct faculty
member at Vanderbilt University Law School.

Our firm is proud of Raquel’s many accomplishments! Congratulations on being named the seventh recipient of TBA’s Wilks Award.

Five Bone McAllester Norton Attorneys Selected Best of the Bar by the Nashville Business Journal

We are honored to announce five Bone McAllester Norton attorneys were selected to the Nashville Business Journal’s Best of the Bar class of 2018. On June 26, Anne Sumpter Arney, Trace Blankenship, Anne C. Martin, Andrea P. Perry, and Stephen Zralek were recognized as some of Nashville’s top legal minds and corporate counsel.

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Bone Law Attorney Ed Yarbrough participates in Posting the Colors ceremony

For over twenty years now, Forest Hills Baptist Church has included a Posting the Colors ceremony in the worship service on the Sunday before the 4th of July. The tradition began with the church's choir director who hired soldiers from Ft. Campbell to perform at the church. He also recruited church member Command Sergeant Major Wayne Curry, a former member of the Third Infantry Battalion (The Old Guard) at the Arlington National Cemetery, to help him.

FHBC Presentation of Colors with Ed Yarbrough - Bone Law

FHBC Presentation of Colors with Ed Yarbrough - Bone Law

During the ceremony, Bone McAllester Norton attorney, Ed Yarbrough noticed the buff strap around Curry's arm, which signified he had been stationed at Arlington National Cemetery. As a member of Forest Hills and a former member of the Old Guard himself, Yarbrough asked if he could join the ceremony the following year. First Lieutenant Ed Yarbrough and Command Sgt. Major Wayne Curry have continued the tradition ever since.

Yarbrough began his time of service for the U.S. Military in the late 1960's. He was drafted out of law school in 1968 and enrolled in the Army in 1969. During this time, he attended Officer Candidate School and was assigned to serve at the Old Guard. He was later transferred to fight in the Vietnam War.

During his time of service, First Lt. Yarbrough received several medals; the two most important were the Bronze Star and the Combat Infantry Badge. The Bronze Star is presented by direction of the President and honors a soldier who has distinguished himself by meritorious service. During Yarbrough's time in Vietnam, he "demonstrated great courage under fire" and "outstanding leadership in combat operations, which served as an excellent example and inspiration to the Vietnamese officers... Yarbrough's performance of duty was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Army and reflects great credit upon himself and the military service", according to the medal citation. When asked what he loves about the Posting the Colors ceremony, Yarbrough said, "I am very patriotic. I have always enjoyed my service in the Army and in particular the Old Guard. It was my duty to fight in Vietnam. I have stood at attention for the playing of the National Anthem many times and I still get a chill. It never gets old."

FHBC Presentation of Colors with Ed Yarbrough - Bone Law

FHBC Presentation of Colors with Ed Yarbrough - Bone Law

We are honored to have such a brave and notable veteran serve the clients of Bone McAllester Norton. Ed Yarbrough continues to lead with great faith, bravery, diligence, and integrity, inspiring all who come in contact with him.

Bone Law Sponsors 44th Annual Tennessee Prayer Breakfast

Bone McAllester Norton was a proud sponsor of the 44th Annual Tennessee Prayer Breakfast on March 13, 2018. Each year during the spring session of the Tennessee General Assembly, citizens are invited to gather to pray for our government officials and state leaders. Bonelaw attorneys Trace Blankenship and Andrea Perry served on the 2018 Citizens’ Committee and Charles R. Bone served on the 2018 Advisory Committee. Blankenship served as the Citizens’ Committee Chair in 2012.

Trace Blankenship Member General Counsel at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexTrace Blankenship

Andrea P Perry Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonAndrea P. PerryCharles Robert Bone President CEO Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonCharles Robert Bone
This year’s breakfast featured, the Honorable Bill Haslam, Governor of the State of Tennessee, Mary Beth Chapman, President of Show hope, and New York Times Bestselling Author, Steven Curtis Chapman, Multi-Platinum Selling, GRAMMY and Dove Award-Winning Artist, and Mike Fisher, Nashville Predators’ Forward. Bonelaw President and CEO, Charles R. Bone says, “The Governor’s Prayer Breakfast is always an inspiring event – allowing those serving in public office to put aside partisan differences and pray for our city, state and country. This year was equally inspiring and uplifting.” We are honored to participate in this notable occasion with so many community members and leaders around the state.

Bone McAllester Norton was a proud sponsor of the 2018 Conexión Américas’ Cafecito

Bone McAllester Norton was a proud sponsor of the 2018 Conexión Américas’ Cafecito on April 13. Community members and leaders gathered together at the Music City Center to share a meal and hear about Conexión Américas’ victories, challenges, and dreams for our local Latino community. At Cafecito this year, Renata Soto, co-founder, highlighted one of the many questions they receive: where is the playground? On May 18, Casa Azafrán will be hosting the opening celebration of the new park, located off Nolensville Road in Nashville.

Raquel L Bellamy Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonRaquel L. Bellamy

Stephen J Zralek Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonStephen J. Zralek 

 

Charles W Bone Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonCharles W. Bone

Bonelaw attorney Raquel L. Bellamy serves on Conexión’s board of directors. Stephen Zralek serves on the Board of Ambassadors and Charles W. Bone is a former Cafecito chair from 2010.

Conexión’s mission is, “to build a welcoming community and create opportunities where Latino families can belong, contribute and succeed.” Through Conexión over 8,000 individuals and families every year learn English, succeed in school, go to college, pay taxes, buy a home, start a business, protect our families, advocate, and so much more. We are honored to support the work of our neighbors at Casa Azafrán.

Staff Appreciation Day 2018: Oh, The Places We’ll Go!

Bone McAllester Norton celebrated Staff Appreciation Day 2018 this week with an exceptionalBone McAllester Norton celebrated Staff Appreciation Day 2018 this week with an exceptionalprogram. This year’s theme for the day was inspired by Dr. Seuss’ book, “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!”

Charles Robert Bone Sean C Kirk at Staff Appreciation Day - Bone LawCharles Robert Bone Sean C Kirk at Staff Appreciation Day

As our staff members arrived for work, they were greeted with a poster in the lobby of the Nashville City Center, personally thanking each individual by name. The day unfolded gradually when each team member arrived at their desk to find their travel itinerary, which outlined their schedule for the day. At noon, the staff and attorneys from all of our offices came together for a cross-cultural lunch, hinting at the afternoon’s activities. Following the lunch, Charles R. Bone thanked the staff and invited everyone to join their respective Bone Law attorneys who would serve as their tour guides on the afternoon’s adventure.

The tour guides led the staff on a journey through the Bone Law offices to six different “countries”: Italy, France, the Philippines, Jamaica, Nepal, Argentina and South Africa. At each country, an attorney in costume awaited each tour group, welcoming the staff members with a traditional greeting and fun facts about the country. As each tour group left a country, gifts and treats were passed out as a sign of the firm’s appreciation. For example, in Italy the staff received cannolis and a sample bottle of Prosecco. Each group finished at “baggage claim”, where our pilots, Charles W. Bone, Sam McAllester and Marty Cook, personally thanked each team member for their hard work and dedication, and handed over their “luggage” containing a cash bonus, the final token of appreciation for the day.

Charles W Bone Staff Appreciation Day at Bone Law

 Staff Appreciation Day at Bone Law

Staff Appreciation Day at Bone Law 2 Staff Appreciation Day at Bone Law 

Our firm is grateful for the hard work of our staff and their dedication to helping fulfill our firm’s passion to provide quality legal services to our clients. We couldn’t do it without them and we look forward to future “places we will go” with the help of our team.

Staff Appreciation Day at Bone LawStaff Appreciation Day at Bone Law

Staff Appreciation Day at Bone Law

Background Check with Raquel & Chris Bellamy

Raquel L Bellamy - Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonRaquel L Bellamy - Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonBone McAllester Norton attorney, Raquel Bellamy, and her husband, Chris Bellamy, were featured in the Nashville Bar Journal’s “Background Check” column. They were recognized as a “powerhouse attorney couple” and a “positive force in the legal community for years to come.” The column provided an overview of their individual stories, how the two met, and the work they do today. 

The Bellamys are dedicated to providing excellent legal representation for all. We are proud of their hard work and the many ways they continue to serve the Nashville community. 

Read article Nashville Bar Journal's "Background Check" here.

1968 to 2018: 50 Years Later—Who Are We Today?

Martin Luther KingToday we continue to see how political, generational and cultural differences cause neighbors, citizens, friends, and family members to tune each other out and reject the opportunity to engage in meaningful conversations that lead to acts of justice. We must ask ourselves, will we choose to be a people inspired by dreams of peace and equality? Amidst the violence, bitterness, and divisions, can we admit the ills of injustice even if we differ on the proper cure?

The year of 1968 was riddled with division, violence, and hatred. The loss of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. will be felt deeply tomorrow because the parallels between 1968 and 2018 are hard to ignore. The fight for economic and social justice continues, hinging upon our ability to intentionally embrace peace and civil discourse.

Tomorrow, April 4, 2018 will mark the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s assassination. Even while beset from all sides with doubt, Dr. King persisted in the pursuit of his Dream, and expanded his mission to find common ground for America’s brothers and sisters to live, work, and thrive. Together. He dedicated his life to challenge our Nation to achieve the goal of liberty and justice for all. Dr. King lost his life to a violent act of injustice that he fearlessly fought to eliminate in our Nation.

Bone McAllester Norton PLLC will commemorate this somber anniversary tomorrow with reflection on Dr. King’s life and with gratitude for his rich legacy, through prayer and charity. We will encourage the BMN family to devote some measure of time, talent or treasure to the community on April 4, 2018, in honor of Dr. King’s ministry and his Dream. We hope that you, our clients, colleagues, friends and fellow Americans, will do the same.

Peace and goodwill to you and yours,

BONE McALLESTER NORTON PLLC

Avoiding Legal Hazards in the Construction Industry

Bone McAllester Norton attorneys, Marty Cook and Emily Mack, spoke at the AMC Safety Consultants’ seminar on “Avoiding Legal Hazards in the Construction Industry” on March 8, 2018.

Marshall T Cook Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional IndexMarshall T. “Marty” Cook

Emily Harper Mack Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexEmily Harper Mack

Cook and Mack highlighted key contract provisions that contractors need to be aware of and include in their agreements and discussed best practices for compliance with Tennessee’sretainage laws. They also focused on labor and employment issues facing employers in the construction industry. In particular, Cook and Mack discussed the risk of joint-employment relationships with contingent workers and ways to minimize joint-employer liability. They also discussed the interaction between employee drug testing policies and the Americans with Disabilities Act, particularly as it pertains to the use of prescription medication that may cause impairment by employees. The attorneys finished by addressing best practices for adopting clear policies, implementing consistent training, and maintaining appropriate documentation regrading workplace violence and harassment.

Cook is an attorney in the firm’s Sumner county office and focuses his practice in the areas of litigation and dispute resolution and real estate. Mack is an attorney in the firm’s Nashville office and focuses her practice in the areas of labor and employment, education and general civil litigation.

 

 

Three BoneLaw Attorneys Featured in the Nashville’s Post’s annual In Charge List

Bone McAllester Norton attorneys, Charles W. Bone, Stacey Garrett Koju, and Ed Yarbrough, were featured in the Nashville Post’s annual In Charge list for 2018. The Post highlights Middle Tennessee’s top business, political, and civic leaders. They say, “The women and men found on our list…represent the best of the best—and always are ‘in charge.’”

Charles W. Bone, Founder and Chairman, represents clients on matters ranging from M&A to financial institutions and government relations. The Post also highlighted Bone’s pro bono efforts on behalf of TN Inmate Cyntoia Brown.

Stacey Garrett Koju, Founding member and chair of the firm’s Board of Directors, concentrates her practice in the areas of corporate transactions, labor and employment law, and higher education. Koju says she is driven by her law partners and the firm’s staff who truly embody the firm’s motto, Law. Life. Passion.

Ed Yarbrough, Member, was noted for his criminal defense and government investigations practice at Bonelaw. Yarbrough is well known for his service as U.S. attorney and assistant district attorney.

You can find the complete list of lawyers, judges, and managers for In Charge - legal 2018 here

Baker Senior Lawyer Joins Bone McAllester Norton

Bob McDowell Of Counsel at Bone McAllester Norton Bob McDowell Of Counsel at Bone McAllester Norton For over 45 years, Mr. McDowell has provided quality legal representation and counsel to the Middle TN area. He routinely advises clients on matters related to finance and banking law, business dissolutions and acquisitions, business torts, construction law, and sales secured transactions at the federal, state, and local levels. Mr. McDowell regularly works with the State Executive Branch, and the Departments of Economic & Community Development, Finance & Administration, Transportation, Commerce & Insurance, Department of Health, Department of Financial Institutions, Comptroller of the Treasury, and several others.

Mr. McDowell is widely respected for his legal expertise. Since 2005, Bob has been recognized by The Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Arbitration and Mediation, and Administrative/Regulatory Law. Additionally, Bob has served as Tennessee’s Loss Prevention Coordinator on behalf of the Attorney’s Liability Assurance Society, Inc. (ALAS). From 1988-2017, he was former chair of the Fee Disputes Committee of the Nashville Bar Association. Bob also serves as Executive Council of the Litigation Section of the Tennessee Bar Association from 2016 to present. With his leadership and litigation background, Bob brings a wealth of experience and expertise to Bone McAllester Norton. Mr. McDowell will serve as Of Counsel at the firm. Before joining Bone McAllester Norton, Mr. McDowell practiced law at Baker Donelson in Nashville.

Bone McAllester Norton, an entrepreneurial law firm of 40 attorneys with offices in Nashville, and Sumner and Williamson Counties, provides a wide range of legal services to its clients. Bone law focuses on 18 distinct practice areas, including litigation, banking and commercial lending, corporate and securities transactions, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, labor and employmentand environmental, along with a full breadth of legal services typically required by businesses and individuals.

Charles W. Bone Speaks at Nashville Bar Association’s Diversity Summit

Bone McAllester Norton attorney and chairman, Charles W. Bone, spoke at the Nashville Bar Association’s Diversity Summit on “Elevating Diverse Attorneys for Success” on March 1st, 2018. Bone has always believed in the necessity of creating a diverse team of attorneys and staff. He began his legal career during the heart of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. Bone felt personally responsible to advocate for equal rights for diverse professionals.

Charles W. Bone speaking at the Nashville Bar Association's Diversity SummitCharles W. Bone speaking at the Nashville Bar Association's Diversity Summit

In 2002, Charles W. Bone and Stacey Garrett Koju began Bone McAllester Norton PLLC with a commitment to each other that the firm would be intentional about its diversity.  Koju, Bone McAllester Norton’s Board Chair, and Bone sought to create a firm that would reflect the belief that quality legal representation begins by first reflecting their clients and the communities they are from.

Bone shared how the firm intentionally closes on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. day.  Our Annual MLK Fellowship Breakfast is one way we provide our attorneys, staff, and communities with an opportunity to reflect upon where we were 50 years ago and where we need to be today. As a leading law firm in Nashville, we want to honor the leaders who came before us who fought for equality and the basic human rights of all individuals.

Bone, along with Junaid Odubeko, Audrey J. Anderson, and Saul Solomon, identified the importance of equipping diverse attorneys with mentors of the same race, providing current attorneys with the resources they need to be successful, and breaking down the social constraints of hiring young attorneys based solely upon grades.

When asked how young diverse professionals keep moving forward within a system that does not embrace diversity, Bone said, “With the direction the world is going, 5, 10, 15, 25 years from now things have to change. There is no choice. They will not be able to hold you back.”

Charles W. Bone Reads to First Grade Class at Robert Churchwell Magnet Elementary

Charles W Bone reads Dr. Seuss to Robert Churchwel Museum Magnet ElementaryCharles W. Bone reads Dr. Seuss to Robert Churchwel Museum Magnet Elementary

First grade teacher, Crystal Hicks, invited Bone McAllester Norton attorney, Charles W. Bone, to read to her class at Robert Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary in honor of Dr. Seuss’ birthday. Bone read to the class of 18 students Oh the Places You Will Go. The children were eager to meet their special guest today.

We applaud Ms. Hicks for coordinating over 100 community members and leaders to read to the children this week alone. Bone was grateful for the opportunity to join Ms. Hicks in her efforts to remember and celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Seuss.

 

Charles W. Bone Robert Certificate from Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary

 

Alex Little Named to Nashville Business Journal “40 Under 40”

Alex Little Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexWe are proud of Bone McAllester Norton attorney Alex Little named one of Nashville Business Journal’s 2018 40 under 40 winners. This list distinguishes Nashville’s thriving men and women that strive to keep Music City business community successful and flourishing, and they’re under the age of 40. This is the 10th year the Nashville Business Journal has hosted this program and we are honored to be a part of it.

You can review the full class of 2018 40 under 40 list here.

Bone McAllester Norton Adds Two High Profile Litigators

Two highly accomplished local attorneys with clients across Tennessee have joined the Nashville law firm of Bone McAllester Norton PLLC.

Samuel L. Jackson and Emily Harper Mack have renowned reputations and extensive experience providing quality legal representation to public and private school boards, universities, and other employers.

Samuel L Jackson Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexSamuel L. JacksonThey routinely advise education clients on a wide variety of legal matters, including Title IX compliance, internal and agency investigations, administrative proceedings, special education and disability accommodations, personnel concerns, student rights and discipline, along with other legal matters that are unique to educational institutions.

Sam and Emily also regularly represent public and private employers in federal and state courts and in administrative proceedings before federal and state agencies on a variety of claims. Their experience includes wrongful discharge, retaliation, discrimination and harassment. With this litigation background, Sam and Emily are seasoned at counseling employers on matters involving employee discipline, workplace investigations, leaves of absence, and other labor and employment issues.

Emily Harper Mack Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexEmily Harper Mack“We are thrilled to have Sam and Emily join our firm. Given their high quality work, client satisfaction, and community involvement, they are an ideal fit for what we are doing in Middle Tennessee and across Tennessee,” said Charles Robert Bone, President and CEO of Bone McAllester Norton PLLC. Randy Frazier, the Director of Schools for the Weakley County Board of Education, a longtime client of Sam and Emily, said, “Our Board is excited that Sam Jackson and Emily Mack will continue to serve as our legal counsel with their new firm, Bone McAllester Norton PLLC.

During my 9-year tenure as Director of Schools, Sam and Emily have represented our board in legal matters. They have displayed an expertise in all areas of school law. Their performance and service to our Board has been outstanding.”

Jackson and Mack practiced law together at Lewis Thomason in Nashville before joining Bone McAllester Norton.

Bone McAllester Norton, an entrepreneurial law firm of 40 attorneys with offices in Nashville and Sumner and Williamson Counties, provides a wide range of legal services to its clients. Bone McAllester has a long history of representing clients in the education arena, creating an exceptional synergy with Sam Jackson and Emily Mack’s law practice. Over the years, attorneys at the Bone firm have accumulated significant experience in representing school systems, private universities and colleges throughout Tennessee. Bone McAllester Norton focuses on 18 distinct practice areas, including litigation, banking and commercial lending, corporate and securities transactions, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, labor and employment and environmental, along with a full breadth of legal services typically required by businesses and individuals.

Bone McAllester Norton Marquee Sponsor for Local Rivalry Hendersonville High School versus Station Camp Boys Basketball Game

BMN HHS v. StationCamp T shirt SponsorBone McAllester Norton PLLC was a marquee sponsor for the Hendersonville High School basketball game versus Station Camp on December 9 th . This local, rival game always draws a large crowd from the community including Bonelaw attorney Marty Cook whose son, Carson, is a member of the Hendersonville High School basketball team. Carson is a part-time employee at the Bone McAllester Norton Hendersonville office. Hendersonville Basketball t-shirts were printed for the game with the Bone McAllester Norton logo on the back.

The Hendersonville High School team wore the t-shirts during warm-ups. When the team roster was announced, the players tossed the t-shirts into the crowd. The cheerleaders also threw t-shirts into the crowd during timeouts. Throughout both the Varsity and Junior Varsity game, Bone McAllester Norton PLLC was featured on the scoreboard.

Bone McAllester Norton was proud to be the marquee sponsor for this local high school rivalry and we are always proud to support our local schools.

James Crumlin Recognized for Best Free Community Workout in Nashville and Second Best Ambassador to Nashville’s Health and Fitness Community

James A Crumlin Jr Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexJames A. Crumlin Jr.On January 3rd, 2018 Bone McAllester Norton’s attorney, James Crumlin was recognized for hosting the Best Free Community Workout in Nashville of 2017 by Nashville Fit Magazine. “Capitol Steps Workout” meets every Monday and Thursday at 6pm. Here you will find James leading a group through a challenging workout session that will push their limits. The participants form a community that keeps the group encouraged and ready for the challenge. All are welcome to join the fun, free of cost, no matter their skill level.

Crumlin was also recognized as the second Best Ambassador to Nashville’s Health and Fitness Community. When receiving the recognition, Crumlin said, “I am blessed beyond measure and so grateful for your continued support! There are SO many people to thank. I humbly thank and so appreciate everyone who helps/has helped with, attends/has attended the workouts over the last 5 ½ years. Without YOU, there would be no Capitol Steps Workout.”

We are proud of the many ways James serves and leads our community through Bone McAllester Norton and from the steps of the capitol building.

James Crumlin Best Free Community Workout

James Crumlin on Instagram bio instagram icon

Bone McAllester Norton Attorneys Recognized as Healthcare Leaders

In January’s Nashville Medical News magazine, “2018 In Charge Health Care,” Bone McAllester Norton attorneys Anne Sumpter Arney and Stacey Garrett Koju are recognized as leaders – “leaders who keep Music City’s $84 billion healthcare industry humming along.”

Anne Sumpter Arney Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexAnne Sumpter ArneyWith over 30 years of experience, Anne Arney continues to work with healthcare companies and medical professionals on a wide variety of legal matters. She advises her healthcare clients on business law and transactional issues, as well as assisting them in navigating ever-changing healthcare laws and regulations. Anne regularly counsels both healthcare and non-healthcare entrepreneurs who are seeking to start, grow, operate, and sell their businesses. She publishes the “Physicians’ Legal Update” newsletter to help her clients stayed informed on legal matters.

Stacey Garrett Koju Attorney at Bone McAllester Norton Professional indexStacey Garrett KojuStacey Garrett Koju is a founding member of Bone McAllester Norton PLLC and serves as the chair of the firm’s board of directors. Stacey concentrates her practice in the areas of healthcare, higher education, labor and employment, and corporate transactions. Stacey’s clients include physicians, medical practice groups, and other healthcare entities. She is currently a board member of Abe’s Garden, National Museum of African American Music, and Catholic Charities of Tennessee, Inc., and also serves as chair of Leadership Tennessee’s Advisory Council.

We are grateful for the hard work and service Anne Arney and Stacey Koju provide to Bone McAllester Norton and the Nashville community.

Learn more - Bone Law - Healthcare Law

17th Annual MLK Fellowship Breakfast

Nashville, Tenn. (January 15, 2018) – Nashville law firm Bone McAllester Norton PLLC hosted its 17th Annual Fellowship Breakfast on Monday, honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The event was held at the historic Woolworth on 5th, one of several lunch counters desegregated in 1960 by a group of Nashville students. Nearly 600 gathered to hear from guest artists, speakers, and community leaders on the history of Woolworth, Nashville’s role in the fight for social justice in 1960, and the call for justice today. 
 
Stacey Garrett Koju and Charles W. Bone, co-founders of the law firm, welcomed the guests and laid the groundwork for the morning’s program, entitled Woolworth Speaks – Nashville: On the Frontlines for Social Justice, Then and Now. They compared today’s environment surrounding social justice to the challenges of the civil rights movement in the 1960’s.
 
Stacey Garrett Koju and Charles W BoneStacey Garrett Koju & Charles W. Bone 17th Annual MLK Fellowship Breakfast 201817th Annual MLK Fellowship Breakfast 2018 Woolworth on 5th in Nashville TennesseeWoolworth on 5th in Nashville Tennessee
The event began with the Negro spirituals, “Lean On Me” and “A Change is Gonna Come,” sung by Charles “Wigg” Walker. The songs reminded the audience of how time has passed, but hope persists in the waiting: “It’s been a long, a long time coming / But I know a change is gonna come, oh yes it will.”
 
Following Mr. Walker, Charles Robert Bone introduced Mayor Megan Barry, who has been a guest speaker at each MLK Fellowship Breakfast since her election in 2015. In her address, Mayor Barry reminded the audience that the future of Nashville and the future of our Nation rest in the hands of the children, teenagers, and young adults – just as many of the leaders of the civil rights movement were college-age students. She challenged the guests to take advantage of opportunities to mentor and invest in the young adults and children in their lives.
 
The first keynote speaker, Dr. Reavis L. Mitchell Jr., a history professor at Fisk University, addressed the history of Nashville’s place on the frontline for social justice. Dr. Mitchell drew to light the relevancy and existence of racism today. He said, “Racism has an ugly side, a continuing side that is still a part of the human tradition.” Dr. Mitchell’s comment begs the question, “What are our lunch counters today?” Dr. King’s legacy only continues through those who are willing to take a stand for justice.
 
Tom MoralesTom Morales Charles Robert Bone Roxanne Bethune Dwanna Hughes Barry ScottCharles Robert Bone - Roxanne Bethune - Dwanna Hughes - Barry Scott Charles W BoneCharles W. Bone
Tom Morales, developer of Woolworth on 5th, then introduced his childhood friend, actor, writer, and motivational speaker Barry Scott. Mr. Scott performed a modern interpretation of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech, “I Have a Dream.” Mr. Scott’s powerful interpretation drew on the heartfelt emotions of the civil rights movement. He charged the audience to remember the purpose of the movement. He repeatedly said, “All reality hinges on moral foundation,” which left the audience asking the questions, “What do I believe? And what reality are my beliefs creating?”
 
Following Barry Scott, Reverend Becca Stevens, author, speaker, and founder of Thistle Farms, reminded the audience of the call placed upon every individual life. She quoted Micah 6:8, “…what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Rev. Stevens shared that justice is unattainable without the willingness to say, “Here I am, God, use me.” In order to continue the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr., one must remember the call to love the marginalized, see beyond what the world sees, and say “yes” to the uncomfortable lifestyle justice demands.
 
Barry ScottBarry Scott Frankie Henry - Dr Mitchell - King Hollands - Stacey Garrett Koju and Rip PattonFrankie Henry - Dr Mitchell - King Hollands - Stacey Garrett Koju and Rip Patton Charles Robert BoneCharles Robert Bone
The final keynote speaker was Dr. Ernest “Rip” Patton. Dr. Patton was one of the many students who participated in the lunch counter sit-ins, Freedom Riders, and other protests of segregation. He honored sit-in participants who were present at the event - Frankie Henry, King and Mary Ellen Hollands, and others in the crowd who stood to signify their participation. Dr. Patton spoke of the bravery of the participants, who were willing to sacrifice their lives for this beloved cause. He talked about the methods and intentionality of the sit-ins, which required hard work. Everyone who participated in the movement had a different role, but of equal importance. Today when celebrating the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights movement leaders, it is often forgotten that the glory of the ‘60s was marked by blood, humility, and unwavering determination. It was only because of the unified conviction for a better life that the lunch counters became desegregated. Every day was filled with collaboration, sacrifice, and hard work. Dr. Patton urged the crowd to remember that a better tomorrow begins with a better today: “The time is always right to do what is right” (Martin Luther King Jr.).
 
Dr. Patton closed the program with a moving benediction and song that was often sung in the ‘60s by participants in the civil rights movement, “I Woke Up This Morning with My Mind Stayed on Freedom.”
 
View additional coverage of this event below:
 
 
 

Your Survival Guide to DUI Roadblocks in Tennessee

Zack Lawson Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonZack Lawson Attorney at Bone McAllester NortonAfter the New Year’s Eve ball drops and the confetti falls, thousands of Tennesseans will file out of the establishment of their choice and pile into a vehicle. As you put 2017 in your rear view, don’t be surprised to see blue lights in front of you on your way home. Every year, law enforcement officers set up DUI roadblocks on New Year’s Eve. At these roadblocks, police will legally stop you without any cause or suspicion. Given the strict penalties for DUI offenses in Tennessee, the stakes are high.

Unless you like jail and hate money, keep the following in mind:

  1. Don’t be dumb—use your smartphone: As you leave your New Year’s Eve gathering, it will be 2018—act like it. Use your smartphone. If you have been drinking, catch a ride using the app of your choice. If that’s not an option, call a friend or a cab. It just simply isn’t worth the risk. The best way to avoid getting arrested at a DUI checkpoint is to not drive through a DUI checkpoint.

  2. Don’t be a hero—roll down your window: You’ve probably seen some videos online of people “owning” the police by “knowing their rights.” Often, these people have no idea what they’re talking about. Some of them refuse to roll down their window in an effort to “exercise their rights.” You have to roll down your window. If you don’t, you’ll likely have to buy a new window after your buddy bails you out of jail.

  3. Don’t try to get chummy: You have the right not to say anything at all. This doesn’t mean they can’t ask questions. If you want questioning to stop, you must unequivocally state that you are exercising your right to remain silent. If you choose to speak, don’t try to chum it up with the officer. Officers are trained professionals. They will be doing their job, and their job is to arrest people for DUI. The more you talk, the more likely they are to believe they smell alcohol on your breath and that your speech is slurred.

  4. Present requested documentation: As with any traffic stop, if you’re pulled over at a DUI roadblock, you are required to provide your license and registration. Probable cause is not a prerequisite to checking your ID. Pro tip: Before you reach for your glove box or console for these items, ask permission from the officer. This will signal to the officer that you intend to be cooperative while also keeping you safe.

  5. If requested, step out of the vehicle: A common misconception is that police must have probable cause before they can require you to step out of the vehicle. In reality, officers have wide discretion in taking safety precautions. This includes asking you step out of your vehicle. This does not mean you are under arrest.

  6. Refuse field tests: Although officers sometimes lead drivers to believe they will be free to go if they pass a field sobriety test, this is usually not the case. Typically, field sobriety tests are a no-win situation. They are designed to be confusing and to be failed. And passing a test will usually just result in more tests until you make enough mistakes to warrant an arrest. Plus, aside from breath, urine, and blood tests, there is no consequence to refusal.

  7. Refuse searches: Never consent to a search. Ever. Don’t be fooled by an officer’s friendly demeanor. There is nothing to be gained.

  8. Call a lawyer: Just because DUI roadblocks can be constitutional does not mean they are always constitutional. The roadblock must comply with certain criteria, and the officers must comply with a myriad of laws, rules, and procedures. If you are arrested, you should contact a lawyer as soon as possible to make sure your arrest was lawful and all your rights are protected.

Stay tuned for more information that digs deeper into each of these topics in addition to other subjects. If you have a question or you are arrested, call Zack Lawson directly at 615-238-6332 or reach him by twitter @Zack__Law.