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5 Questions with Kilpatrick Townsend Winston-Salem Office Managing Partner, Steve Berlin

1. How long has the firm been serving clients from the Winston-Salem office?

A. Since 1918 – and we are on the cusp of celebrating our centennial of service to our clients and the Triad community. Numerous legal industry giants have been an integral part of the Kilpatrick Townsend Winston-Salem office. Ralph Stockton, Bill Petree, Bob Elster, Dudley Humphrey, George Little, and Jim Kelly to name just a few, created a rich legacy of achievement. Our office has been a key anchor in the West End with a legal campus setting unlike any other in the country. From this vantage point, we have seen the city grow into a modern commercial hub with some of the world’s most recognizable corporate icons. The firm’s alumni are helping shape some of these leading corporate citizens – Corena Norris-McCluney at Krispy Kreme, Chris Fox at Hanesbrands, and Leslie Grab at Verily (a subsidiary of Google).

2. What expertise does the Winston-Salem office offer clients and has there been recent growth?

A. With over 60 attorneys, the Winston-Salem office provides clients with a wide breadth of experience and offers services in corporate, intellectual property, employment, environmental, and litigation. We recently added Michael Myers as Counsel on the Real Estate Investment & Development Team. His extensive experience and knowledge of complex commercial real estate matters brings a great foundation of work and client service that makes him an ideal fit for our clients. Zaneta Robinson joined us in 2016 as a member of the firm’s internationally recognized Trademark Team and bolsters our trademark expertise offerings in the Triad. Our firm also loves a good “come-back” story as in
attorneys returning to the firm. Not only has Ambassador Keith Harper recently re-joined the firm in Washington, DC but partner Chad Hansen – who had been with the firm in Winston-Salem for nearly 11 years before joining a client in 2016 – has returned. Chad brings experience representing clients in complex commercial litigation matters in state and federal courts in North Carolina and across the United States. We are attracting (and in some cases re-attracting) these stars because the firm’s platform is not only international in scale but because of our deep roots and outstanding client base in the Triad.

3. The firm’s nationally recognized E-Discovery Team has a large presence in the Winston-Salem office. How many attorneys and staff work on this team in the Triad?

A. The firm’s E-Discovery Team, led by Winston-Salem-based Craig Cannon, is currently comprised of 26 members, made up of attorneys, project managers and data analysts, in firm offices throughout the country (San Francisco, Denver, Atlanta, and Winston-Salem). Eight of our team members work in Kilpatrick Townsend’s Winston-Salem office, which has
essentially become the e-discovery hub for the firm.

4. What are some of the key initiatives that the Winston-Salem office spearheads in the community?

A. A hallmark of our firm has been and always will be giving back. And in Winston-Salem, we take that commitment to a new level. Attorneys and staff provide leadership on boards and often partner with clients to make a hands-on difference, for example, through making sandwiches for the homeless. In numerous ways Kilpatrick Townsend is synonymous with the arts – many would say the face of the arts in the Triad. It would be hard to find a museum or arts organization that the firm hasn’t provided significant leadership at some point over the years. I am currently Chair of the Arts Council Board of Trustees and a Founding Board Member of Winston-Salem Children’s Museum. In education we have fostered a decade-long commitment to Cook Elementary with the goal of reinforcing the importance of staying in school, working and studying hard and making good grades and good decisions through a variety of projects, including our inspirational, monthly “Corena Norris-McCluney Stories of Excellence” luncheon series for Cook’s fifth grade students. And we are creating new opportunities with other education-based organizations.

5. Any final thoughts?

A. As we complete our first 100 years of service to the Triad, we look forward to creating a new, dynamic chapter. From collaborating with our clients to make a difference in the realm of technology and the sciences to reaching out to the community in innovative ways, we will keep growing with the Triad. Also, we will continue to renew our commitment and responsibility to make the Triad a better place to live.

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