Skip Finkbohner, President -----
January 2020
Volume XLIV, Issue 1

 In This Issue...
Ann's Article...........................Page 2
Women Lawyers....................Page 3
Young Lawyers......................Page 3
Diversity & Inclusion..............Page 4
Significant Decision...............Page 4
SAVLP...................................Page 5
In the News...........................Page 6
Announcements....................Page 7
Mobile Bar Foundation..........Page 9
Upcoming Events..................Page 11
Birthdays...............................Page 12
    2020 OFFICERS
President Elect - CHARLES J. (CHARLIE) POTTS
Vice President - D. BRIAN MURPHY
Executive Director - ANN F. SIRMON
President's Message
------------------------------------------------------------ Showing Up

My wife Sandra and I raised three children (Baxter, Rachel and Hannah) who are now 29, 26, and 25 years old. I have been asked what I thought was most important for parents raising children. After giving the question some thought, my answer was “showing up.” Because the practice of law is demanding, showing up was not always so easy. There were hundreds of events: swim meets, basketball and volleyball games, recitals, birthday parties, etc. No working parent can attend all of the important functions for each of three children. It takes a measure of discipline and commitment. When I was extremely busy practicing law and my children were young, it was difficult to make sure I showed up. However, it was always – and I mean always – worth the effort, and in retrospect, I got more out of it than the kids did.

Showing up is an important part of being a member of the Mobile Bar Association too. I must confess that for many years I did not make the effort I should have to attend Mobile Bar functions such as luncheons, Christmas parties, Young Lawyer meetings, the Bench and Bar Seminar, etc. Over my 30-plus-year legal career, I attended many of these gatherings from time to time, but not regularly and not conscientiously. That was a big mistake. When I did attend bar functions, I enjoyed it and got a lot more out of it than I thought I would. Mobile Bar luncheons, meetings, seminars, and other gatherings provide us all with an opportunity to interact face-to-face and visit with lawyers who are old friends or new acquaintances, and catch up with folks who practice in other areas of the law.

With the proliferation of electronic communication, e-filing, email, text messaging and the like, it is easy to feel like we are connected and interacting with other lawyers when, in truth, we are practicing law in isolation. Now more than ever it is important to force ourselves out of the office and to bar luncheons, to participate on any one of the myriad committees, to seminars, and to see and visit with the other lawyers in our community. You might not think it’s important, and you might not think you will get much out of it, but commit to attending three or four bar luncheons and two other bar events during this year. I think you will be surprised how much you enjoy it and get out of it.

It’s an honor to serve as the President of the Mobile Bar Association. My father was President in 1990 – 30 years ago. Back then, the Mobile Bar Association was significantly smaller, but a higher percentage of the membership attended more events, and the lawyers all seemed to know each other better. In fact, many of those lawyers still keep up with each other on a regular basis.

Please do yourself and the Mobile Bar Association a favor. Once every month or so, get up from your desk and leave your computer, mute your cell phone and ignore your text messages, and get together with us at one of the many Mobile Bar Association luncheons, seminars, committee meetings, Young Lawyer parties, and other social gatherings. You will enjoy it a lot more than you think you will.
Friday, January 17th at 8:00 AM (NEW TIME)




Our sponsors for the meeting are:
Ann's Article
Happy New Year! As we enter the new year, I’m excited to share with you several upcoming events and features that will take place during the year 2020. 

NEW WEBSITE - The Mobile Bar Association will launch a new website in January. We are very excited that it will not only be a resource for the public, it will also offer you, as a member, many features. You will log in, your own member page, sign-up for events, keep up with your payments and search members. Later in the month, you will receive a separate email that will provide you with a username, password, and instructions on how to log-in. 

PREMIUM MEMBERSHIP – With the new website, we will offer our own version of a lawyer referral service called Find a Lawyer. If someone in the community feels they need an attorney, they can visit our website and search for an attorney. To participate in the Find a Lawyer service, it is considered a Premium Membership. The cost is $100 annually to participate. For this, you will be searchable up to 43 different areas of practice on the public side of the website. It will include your picture, contact information and description of your practice. If you are interested in participating in Find a Lawyer, please include the additional $100 when paying your membership dues.   

JANUARY MEMBERSHIP MEETING – Please join us for the January Membership Meeting – State of the Bar. This breakfast meeting will be held on Friday, January 17 th  at 8 a.m. at the Federal Courthouse. Security at the Federal Courthouse will open at 7:30 a.m. To reduce security measures, we are asking everyone that plans to attend to register in advance. Those attending will receive one hour of MCLE credit. 

MOVING MOBILE BAR HEADQUARTERS – It was time to renew our lease with Mobile County on the current Mobile Bar Headquarters with the upkeep on the building the Executive Committee voted to not renew the lease and look for other office space. After careful consideration, the Executive Committee decided on leasing office space at the LeClede Hotel, right across the street from our current location. Mobile Bar Headquarters will be moving to the new location in February. We will provide more details in the February Bar Bulletin. 

MARDI GRAS PARADE WATCHING PARTY – Mark your calendars for Thursday, February 13 th . We will host a Mardi Gras Parade Watching Party at The Athelstan Club. The event will begin at 6:00 PM. The parading society for the night is the Order of Polka Dots. More details to follow. 

ALABAMA SUPREME COURT ORAL ARGUMENTS – We are working with the Alabama Supreme Court on holding Oral Arguments in Mobile in Spring of 2020. We will provide more details soon. 

As you can see, we have been working very hard to improve the services and benefits offered to the members of the Mobile Bar Association. I want to thank you for your support of the Mobile Bar Association. Our success depends on our members’ time, talent, and resources. Without you, we cannot achieve the MBA mission of elevating the legal profession to the highest possible standard, providing professional development and cultivating networking opportunities to encourage a spirit of goodwill among its members.  

I want to thank you for your support of the Mobile Bar Association. Our funding is solely reliant on our membership dues, continuing education, and sponsorships. In the coming days, you will receive an invoice for membership dues. Payment is due no later than Tuesday, March 31 st . Whether you are a new or renewing member, we appreciate you and your commitment to elevating the legal profession to the highest possible standard.  

We are always interested in hearing your thoughts and ideas about how to improve the Mobile Bar Association and our activities. Please feel free to contact me any time by phone at 251.433.9790 or by email at
By Laura M. Coker, Immediate Past President
The Mobile Bar Association Women Lawyers (MBAWL) wrapped up 2019 by hosting the morning session at Bench and Bar. A panel of a diverse group of speakers on the topic of Women and Work-Life Balance had a thought-provoking discussion on the challenges and rewards of finding a lasting work-life balance despite demanding professional careers. Thank you to all the members of our bench and bar who attended.  
MBAWL is excited to announce its 2020 slate of officers: President: Tiffany Smith; Vice President: Emily Killion; Secretary: Christine Burns; Treasurer: Lauren Collinsworth; and Historian: Ruth Lichtenfeld. 
If you have any questions or would like to join the MBAWL, please email Tiffany Smith at  or Christine Burns at
By Catherine Simon Spann, President
Happy New Year from the Young Lawyers section of the Mobile Bar Association! The January meeting will be hosted by  PRO LEGAL  on Thursday, January 16, 2020, at the new event space The Crown Room at Crown Hall, which is located in the old Red Cross Building on Broad St. All are welcome.
We are seeking members for the 2020 Executive Committee of the section. Please let us know if you are interested in serving. Also, to join the e-mail list, please e-mail me, Catherine Spann ( ) or Vice President Blake Richardson ( , or Treasurer Johana Gerheim ( ). For updates and additional information, please follow us on Facebook (Mobile Bar Association Young Lawyers ) and Instagram ( @ Mobile_Young_Lawyers). We will also continue to send e-mails. 
By Suntrease Williams-Maynard, President
The MBA’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee will continue to work with the Law Academy students from John LeFlore High School. The Law Academy is a Signature Academy for MCPSS students interested in the legal profession or public safety. Since we do not have a law school in Mobile, the D & I Committee has focused our efforts in supporting this program. We have a series of events planned starting in January that will run through May! 
In January, we will begin featuring guest speakers to continue our efforts of training and mentoring our young students. If anyone is interested in serving as a guest speaker, please email Committee Chair Suntrease Williams-Maynard at . Let's support this effort and get signed up! 
Since Groundhog Day is early February, we will host a “shadow” day for our students on February 4, 2020. If anyone is able to sponsor a student to host on that date, please email Chair Suntrease Williams-Maynard. We need your support to make this day a success! 
Thank you all for your support of our Diversity & Inclusion Committee! 
In  Ex parte Kelley,  No. 1170988 (Ala., November 15, 2019), the Alabama Supreme Court concluded that wrongful death claims against a foster parent and a DHR caseworker were barred by the parental immunity doctrine to the extent the claims were based on negligence theories, but that such claims were not barred by parental immunity to the extent that they were based on theories of wantonness. 
In a case of first impression, the Supreme Court in  LMN1, LLC v. TP Properties, LLC , No. 1170708 (Ala., November 1, 2019), held that the requirement in a commercial lease for the tenant to acquire and maintain certain insurance coverage, which was described in part as additional “rent” under the lease, was a “material” provision of the lease, the breach of which permitted the landlord to terminate the lease. 
In another case of first impression, the Supreme Court in  Moore v. Estate of Moore , No. 1180482 (Ala., November 22, 2019), held that a prenuptial agreement in which the surviving spouse had agreed to waive all ERISA benefits, was sufficient to waive the benefits left by the deceased spouse, even though no formal “waiver” of the benefits had been executed by the surviving spouse. The Court held that while this meant that the ERISA administrator had to deliver the funds to the surviving spouse, the named beneficiary of the plan was nonetheless entitled under state law to receive the proceeds from the spouse. 
By Dru Lauren Bishop, Pro Bono Manager
Thank you!  
This has been an amazing year for us thanks to the support of our local attorneys. You have helped us in so many ways, and we wanted to take a moment to say thank you!

We honored two very special attorneys this year with awards: Meegan Colclough and Thomas Rockwell. Meegan received the 2019 Margaret Demeranville Award for commitment to meeting the needs to low income clients in Baldwin and Mobile counties. This year alone, she assisted clients at Project Homeless Connect (a one day event that provides wrap-around services to those experiencing homelessness), served at SAVLP’s District Court Self-Help Desk, assisted with Wills for Heroes clinics, and accepted several difficult guardianship cases. (Meegan Colclough pictured with SAVLP Board President Luke Coley)
Thomas Rockwell received the 2019 Ben Kilborn Volunteer of the Year Award. Thomas has volunteered with SAVLP for the last 25 years and has helped numerous clients through the adoption process. In 2019 Thomas obtained a successful adoption for a local family that ended up being much more complex than initially thought. His perseverance in the face of complications resulted in a great experience for all involved. (Thomas Rockwell pictured with Executive Director Ariana Moore)

Thank you to our board members give so generously of their time and resources each year: Ron Andress, Hart Benton, Wesley Blacksher, Ann Brown, Christine Burns, Annette Carwie, Meegan Colclough, Luke Coley, Lisa Cooper, Judson Crump, Rebecca Ding-Lee, Jonathan Friedlander, Tom Gaillard, Christine Harding Hart, Scott Hetrick, Barney March, Matt McDonald, Jessica Milling, Cliff Nelson, Cleveland Patterson, Mary Pilcher, Jean Powers, James Rebarchak, Gaby Reeves, Ian Rosenthal, Jason Smith, Renee Thiry, Aaron Wiley, and Michael Wing. We would like to say a special thank you to our outgoing Board President Luke Coley. Luke has served as president for two years and has overseen the addition of a new full time staff position, changes in fundraising and our move to a new building. Thank you to Luke for all of his hard work! We are excited to announce that Gaby Reeves will serve as our 2020 Board President. 
Thank you to our funders! Many thanks to the MBA Foundation and to the Alabama Law Foundation for announcing 2020 grant awards in December. We could not accomplish this work without you. (ALF Board Member Jim Rebarchak, Dru Lauren Bishop, ALF Board President Mary Margaret Bailey and ALF Director Tracy Daniel at the Bench & Bar Conference)

Thank you to all of the attorneys who have taken a case this year! We have opened over 650 cases in 2019 to assist low income members of our community with issues like housing, adoptions, guardianships, and more.

Our goal is to assist even more clients in 2020! Please consider volunteering at one of our help desks, clinics, taking a case, or making a donation. Without the support of the local bar, many members of our community would be without representation in civil legal cases.

We share information monthly with our volunteers through email - call 433-6693 or email to sign up. 
Recently Parker Towing named one of its towboats after Mobile’s longtime admiralty lawyer Hamp Uzzelle, who practiced in the Hand Arendall firm from 1969 to his death. Here is his family on the boat during the ceremony. I think it would be nice to put this in the bar bulletin. I don’t recall hearing of any other Mobile lawyer who was honored in this way. 
BORN:  MBA Member  Morgan Sanders Hofferber  and her husband John welcomed daughter Sadie Anne Hofferber on December 2, 2019. She joins her big brother, John William.  

DIED:  Father of MBA Member  Ashton Hill , MBA Member  J. “Jep” Jeptha Hill  died on November 17, 2019. Jep was a Mobile lawyer in practice from the early 1950s until 1999, focusing on tax, estate planning, and commercial transactions. He spent most of his career with the McCorvey-Turner law firm (later known as Johnstone, Adams, May, Howard & Hill). He ended his career in practice with his son Ashton at Hill & Hill, P.C. After his retirement from law practice, he and his wife joined with others to establish Downtown Fellowship Ministry in Mobile. There, he ministered and taught into his ninetieth year, when his health began to curtail his activities. Jep is survived by his wife of 70 years, four children, ten grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren.  

DIED:  On December 9, 2019, Appie Sharp, mother of MBA Member  Tom Sharp  and sister of MBA Member  Manson Murray , passed away. A native and lifelong resident of Mobile, Appie spent each summer at her family’s Point Clear home and enjoyed sailing, swimming, and crabbing on Mobile Bay. She was a member of St. Ignatius Parish where she faithfully attended Mass for over 60 years.  Appie was preceded in death by her husband of 64 years and is survived by her son, three grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. 
DAUPHIN ISLAND MUNICIPAL JUDGE: Town of Dauphin Island seeks resumes from all highly qualified candidates for a 2-year appointment as Municipal Judge. Each candidate must be licensed to practice law in Alabama and must be a qualified elector of the state. The municipal court judge is the chief judicial officer of the court and has primary responsibility of the administration of court. Currently Dauphin Island Municipal Court is held on the 2nd Wednesday of every month at 4:00 p.m. for arraignments followed at 5:00 p.m. for trials. This is a contract position with a monthly compensation of $700. A letter of interest, resume outlining education, background, employment, and other relevant information should be submitted in a sealed envelope to Town of Dauphin Island Re: Municipal Judge 1011 Bienville Blvd, Dauphin Island, AL 36528 no later than January 15, 2020 (3pm CST). The Town of Dauphin Island is an Equal Opportunity Employer. 

The Mobile City Council has announced it is seeking a new City Council Attorney . Applicants must have knowledge of municipal law and should send a resume (along with a cover letter expressing why you want to be Council Attorney) to: Lisa C. Lambert, City Clerk, City of Mobile, P. O. Box 1827, Mobile, AL 36633. All resumes must be received by 5:00 p.m. on January 31, 2020. 

DOWNTOWN OFFICE SPACE FOR LEASE: Beautiful, spacious office in an historic home in the beautiful DeTonti Square neighborhood. Plentiful onsite parking, including an EV Charging space, available conference room, waiting area, kitchenette, plus optional space for staff. Receptionist onsite. Internet provided. A block from the Federal and Bankruptcy Courthouses. Perfect for a Solo, or out of town firm desiring Mobile presence. 205 N. Conception St. Contact HENRY BREWSTER at 251-338-0630 or
DOWNTOWN OFFICE SPACE AVAILABLE:   Large beautiful offices in the Church Street East Historic District are available for rent at 501 Church St,   within walking distance of state and municipal courts. Amenities: VOIP telephone, internet, WIFI, email, 3 in 1 copy, scan, fax machine both upstairs and downstairs and unlimited hours of convenient, free street parking for all, including clients, waiting area, kitchenette, plus optional space for staff. Contact Lee Hale, Sr. 251-433-3671 ext 2 or 251-509-5903 or at
Johnstone Adams, LLC is pleased to announce Elizabeth “Beth” Darby Rehm has joined the firm of counsel where she will continue her practice of labor and employment law on behalf of management. Beth is the daughter of previous MBA member Willis C. Darby, Jr., who passed away in 2011, after practicing labor and employment law for over 60 years! 
The members of the law firm Lyle Johnson LLC , John (“Johnny”) F. Lyle, III , Candace D. Johnson and Meegan B. Colclough , are pleased to announce the firm is moving to a new location at 455 Pine St, Fairhope, AL 36532.
Armbrecht Jackson LLP is pleased to announce the addition of three new attorneys to the firm — Philip H. Partridge , Bryan D. Smith , and David T. Trice .
Adams and Reese is pleased to announce   seasoned education law attorneys  Robert (Bob) C. Campbell III   and  R. Nash Campbell   have joined the firm’s Mobile office. 
The following lawyers were admitted to the Mobile Bar Association, Friday, December 13, 2019.
Active Member

Brittney Shae Bragg, graduated from Jones School of Law in 2015; admitted to the Alabama State Bar in 2015; employed with Abell and Bragg, LLC.
Associate Member

Tazwell Taylor Shepard , graduated from the University of Alabama School Law School in 1979; admitted to the Alabama State Bar in 1979; admitted to District of Columbia in 1988; employed with Sparkman, Shepard & Morris, P.C. in Huntsville, AL.

Lawyers in Recovery (“LIR”) is a fellowship of lawyers who share their experience, strength and hope with each other to hopefully solve their common problems and help others to recover from alcoholism, addiction, depression or similar conditions. LIR meetings are designed to last one hour and start promptly at 5:30 p.m. on the first and third Thursdays of every month at 205 Church Street in Mobile. LIR meetings are modeled on the steps and traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous and participants pledge and place substantial emphasis on anonymity. If anyone needs additional information on LIR Meetings, they can anonymously call the Mobile Bar Association office for referral to a LIR Member who will also keep all communications confidential.
Get your  2019 TRI THE GULF T-SHIRTS  while they last! They are FREE! Remaining sizes left: medium and large. You can pick them up at Mobile Bar Headquarters.
The Mobile Bar Foundation recently presented grants totaling $70,000 to local non-profit agencies at the Mobile Bar Association’s December luncheon on December 13. Mobile Bar Foundation President Bryan Comer, presented checks to nine deserving local non-profit agencies: Adoption Rocks, Assistance League of Mobile, Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Alabama, Child Advocacy Center, Dwell Mobile, Legal Services Alabama, Ransom Ministries, South Alabama Regional Planning Commission, and South Alabama Volunteer Lawyers Program.

In Memory of
By: Mack B. Binion

In Memory of
By: Mary Margaret Bailey
Please consider making a tax deductible donation to the Mobile Bar Foundation:

Name: ____________________________________________________________________________________
Address: __________________________________________________________________________________
Phone: _______________________________________ E-Mail: _____________________________________
YES, I want to make a donation to the Mobile Bar Foundation -
In honor/memory of: ______________________________________________________________________
Acknowledgement sent to:

Name ____________________________________________________________________________________
Address: __________________________________________________________________________________
YES, I want to become a member of the Mobile Bar Foundation -

__ Life member ($5000, can be paid in up to 5 annual installments
__ Sustaining Member ($100 or more annually)
__ Regular Member ($50 - $99 annually)
__ Member of MBA practicing 5 years or less ($25 - $99)
__ I would like more information on including the Foundation in my estate planning

I donate my gift of: $__________

Check: __________ (Please make checks payable to the Mobile Bar Foundation)
*Credit Card: Visa/Mastercard# ____________________________________________________________
Signature: ______________________________________________ Exp: ___________________________

Mail to: Mobile Bar Foundation, P.O. Drawer 2005, Mobile, AL 36652

* All credit card transactions will incur a $2.00 processing fee.
Thursday, January 2
Lawyers Helping Lawyers
205 Church Street

Thursday, January 9
Executive Committee Meeting
The Athelstan Club

Wednesday, January 15
Bulletin Due

Thursday, January 16
Young Lawyers Meeting
Crown Hall
Thursday, January 16
Lawyers Helping Lawyers
205 Church Street

Friday, January 17
Membership BREAKFAST Meeting
Federal Courthouse

Monday, January 20
MBA Headquarters is closed for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Thursday, January 23
Grievance Committee Meeting
The Athelstan Club 
Mobile County Probate Court-Appointed Lawyer Seminar
Date: Friday, January 17, 2020
Time: 9:00. AM - 4:30 PM
Location: Mobile County Probate Court, Annex Building - Courtroom No. 1 - Located on the third floor
6.0 hours of MCLE available credits
For more information or to register contact, click here .

Mobile Bar Association has on file the   2019 Survey of Florida Law CDs  . If you are interested in checking them out to get MCLE credit, please contact Tammy Anderson at Mobile Bar Headquarters by phone at 251.433.9790 or by email at 
Listed below are members that are celebrating birthdays in January:
R. Bradley Adams 
Stephanie K. Alexander 
 Porcha Simone Anthony 
Charles B. Archer 
 Gordon Gray Armstrong, III 
Michael E. Ballard 
 Vivian Sheffield Beckerle 
 Keith M. Blackwood 
 Weathers Preston Bolt 
 Britten Britt 
 Toby D. Brown 
 Regina F. Cash 
 Spiro Nicholas Cheriogotis 
 Virginia G. Chouinard 
 Robert E. Clute, Jr. 
Braxton C. Counts, III 
Herman Finhold Cox 
 Tyler L. Cox 
 Joseph Randall Crane 
 Duncan Reid Crow 
 John T. Crowder, Jr. 
Charles Erwin Davis 
 Ross M. Diamond, III 
Megan Hoggard Doggett 
 James J. Duffy, III 
Kristy Waldron Dugan 
 Erin B. Fleming 
 Richard William Franklin 
 Nathan P. Friedlander 
 Richard William Fuquay 
 J. Marshall Gardner 
 Timothy David Garner 
James Willis Garrett, III 
Matthew Stafford Green 
 Carter Roberts Hale 
 Christian William Harben 
 Kaylin Lee Hart 
 Scott Ragsdale Hawk 
 Joe Carl Jordan 
Spencer Harrison Larche 
 Jonathan Michael Lieb 
 Carol Carr Little 
 Joe H. Little, Jr. 
Jonathan Brian Mabire 
 E. Russell March, III 
Craig Dennis Martin 
 William Kirkland Mattei 
 E. L. McCafferty, III 
Jonathan Charles McCardle 
 M. Vance McCrary 
 Robert Ball McGinley, Jr. 
James P. Meador, Jr. 
Brooks Pitman Milling 
 Charles Zackery Moore 
 William Austin Mulherin, III 
Clifford Thomas Nelson, Jr. 
James B. Newman 
 Thomas M. O'Hara 
 John Robert Parker 
 Wade B. Perry, Jr. 
Thomas S. Rue 
 Harry V. Satterwhite 
 Jonathan Joseph Benen Segarra 
 Franklin Louis Shuford, Jr. 
Jack Smalley, III 
E. Glenn Smith, Jr. 
Emily Page Steele 
 Norman M. Stockman 
 Aloysius Edwin Stuardi, III 
Carroll H. Sullivan 
 James W. Tarlton, III 
James Robert Turnipseed 
 Ernest Eugene Warhurst, Jr. 
Leslie G. Weeks 
 Thomas Marriott Wood 
 Ricardo Andrew Woods 
 Andrew Glenn York 
 George Michael Zoghby 
Mobile Bar Association | 251-433-9790 |