2016 NBA Board of Directors NOMINEES

We are pleased to announce the 2016 Board of Directors Nominees (names listed by random draw):

Elizabeth Sitgreaves

Elizabeth Sitgreaves is an associate at Dodson Parker Behm & Capparella, PC. She previously served as Senior Law Clerk to the Honorable Frank G. Clement, Jr., of the Tennessee Court of Appeals. Her areas of practice include litigation with a focus on appeals, providing general business advice to clients, and counseling governmental agencies on a wide variety of matters. She graduated the University Of Tennessee College Of Law magna cum laude and received her B.A. in political science magna cum laude from the University of Georgia.

Sitgreaves is co-chair of the NBA’s Appellate Practice Committee and was selected for the inaugural class of the Nashville Bar Foundation’s Leadership Forum. She received the Lawyers’ Association for Women, Marion Griffin Chapter’s first Rising Star Award in part due her leadership of LAW’s Coalition for Fair Courts, which provided voter education and outreach during the retention elections of Tennessee’s appellate court judges. Sitgreaves currently serves as LAW’s Treasurer. She is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association and is a Barrister in the Harry Phillips Inns of Court. Sitgreaves is a supporter of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee and is currently a Big Sister to a sixth grader at Cameron College Prep. Sitgreaves co-chaired the 2015 Lawyers for Littles bowling fundraiser, which raised over $20,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee.


Mark S. Beveridge

Mark S. Beveridge is with Kinnard, Clayton & Beveridge. He graduated from the University of Virginia in 1977 and received his law degree from the University of Richmond in 1980. He began his legal career as an Assistant District Attorney in Nashville.

Beveridge has served on NBA Criminal Law and Criminal Justice (former Chairman) and Ethics and Professionalism committees and is a previous NBA Board member. He is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association and is on the Board of Governors of the Tennessee Association for Justice. He is a Fellow of the Nashville Bar Foundation and the Tennessee Bar Foundation. He was appointed by Mayor Dean to the Metro Nashville Domestic Violence Safety Assessment Task Force. He is a past President of the Exchange Club of Nashville and of Exchange Club Charities, Inc., and a former Chairman of the Antiques and Garden Show of Nashville. He is Vice Chairman of the Belle Meade Municipal Planning Commission. He and his wife, Nancy, have four children. They attend Westminster Presbyterian Church where he has been an elder, youth mentor, and participant in Room in the Inn and Habitat for Humanity builds. Mark’s particular areas of interest include community outreach and fostering collegiality among members of the Bar. He regularly speaks on the topic of civility and professionalism at TBA programs for new lawyers.


Laura Smith Tidwell

Laura Smith Tidwell is Vice President & General Counsel for Nashville Electric Service, the tenth-largest municipally-owned electric utility in the United States.  She received her B.A. in Political Science from the
University of Florida in 1989 and her J.D. from the University Of Florida Levin College Of Law in 1992. 

Tidwell is a past officer of the Nashville Bar Association, having served as Secretary (2009), Treasurer (2005), and Assistant Treasurer (2004).  In 2010, she was inducted as a Nashville Bar Foundation Fellow. 

She has been active in community endeavors as well, having served as board chair for The Women’s Fund of the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, FiftyForward, CABLE, Big Brothers of Nashville, Women in Numbers, and the Nashville Women’s Political Caucus.  She currently serves on the boards of Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee and the Center for Nonprofit Management and is the government chair for the 2015 Legal Aid Society campaign.  She is a 2008 graduate of Leadership Nashville.  Laura’s particular areas of interest as a prospective board member include increasing opportunities for lawyers of different ages and practice areas to interact, enhancing mentorship and collegiality; and increasing non-dues revenue. 


Keta J. Barnes

Keta J. Barnes currently practices as an attorney in the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (Southeast District Office). She provides advice and representation for VA facilities located throughout Tennessee. Prior to her current position, Barnes served the State of Tennessee as an Assistant Attorney General in the Office of the Attorney General and Reporter, and as Judge of the Smyrna Municipal-General Sessions Court. Earlier in her legal career, she practiced law with Nashville firms Bass, Berry & Sims and Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis.

Barnes has served on the Nashville Metro Board of Ethical Conduct and is a 2008 graduate and past Steering Committee Member of the TBA’s Leadership Law Program. She is an active member of the Napier Looby Bar Association and Lawyers’ Association for Women. She serves on the board of Stonecrest Medical Center. Barnes is a past Chair of the NBA’s Minority Opportunities Sub-Committee. She is married to J. Steven Barnes. They are the proud parents of two daughters.


Sam Funk

Sam Funk graduated with honors from Wake Forest University and cum laude from the University Of
Maryland School Of Law. His practice focuses on a wide variety of business litigation matters. After spending almost 15 years with Sherrard & Roe, PLC, Sam left to form Sims|Funk, PLC, where he currently practices.

Funk is the former chair of the NBA Ethics & Professionalism Committee, a fellow of the Nashville Bar Foundation and an inaugural member of the TBA Leadership Law program. He is currently a member of the Tennessee Board of Law Examiners Investigating Committee for Davidson County. Sam has travelled internationally to represent victims of injustice and to train human rights lawyers. Locally, Sam is a graduate of Leadership Nashville. He has held leadership positions with several organizations, including Second Harvest Food Bank (Board chair), Oak Hill School (Board chair) and First Presbyterian Church (Session member). Particular areas of interest include the Tennessee Business Court, encouraging community involvement by lawyers; evaluating the scope and effectiveness of pro bono efforts and ensuring that NBA members get the most out of their
investment in the organization.


Kelly L. Frey, Sr.

Kelly L. Frey, Sr. is a member of Frost Brown Todd.  He received his BA and MS from Vanderbilt University, and his J.D. from the University of Tennessee. 

Frey was honored as the Nashville Bar Journal’s “Contributor of the Year” in 2007-2009 and continues to serve on the Editorial Board of, and regularly contributes to, our award-winning NBJ.  He is a Fellow of the Nashville Bar Foundation and serves as co-chair of the NBA’s Business Law Committee.   He is immediate past president of the Nashville Film Festival and serves on the Board of Governors of the historic Franklin Theatre.  In his spare time Kelly produces feature films and works with VLPA to assist local filmmakers.  Kelly is one of fewer than 10 practicing attorneys in the world to have been selected as a Fellow of the World Technology Network (for work deemed to be “of the greatest long-term significance”).  Kelly has also completed the TN Supreme Court “Lawyer-to-Lawyer” mentoring program, assisted numerous young attorneys in professional development, and is committed to helping new members of the bar acclimate to the practice of law and succeed in their professional lives.


James Bristol

James Bristol is a partner with Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis where he practices in ERISA, executive compensation, corporate transactions and related litigation. He is recognized annually in Best Lawyers and has testified as an ERISA expert witness. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Columbia Christian College in 1980 and graduated from Pepperdine University School of Law in 1987.

Bristol currently serves on the boards of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Nashville, Friends of Woodmont Park, and is chair of the board of Knowledge Academies, a Nashville public charter school. He is a former board member of the American Lung Association of Tennessee where he was awarded for volunteer service. Areas of interest include serving the needs of children in the court system, providing legal services to the non-profit community and improving education. He volunteers in activities that promote understanding between the legal community and the citizens we serve. He has three adult children and a grandchild all living in Nashville.


Stephen G. Young

Stephen G. Young practices law at Robinson, Reagan & Young, PLLC. He received his undergraduate degree from UTK and his J.D. from the University of Memphis. Stephen’s emphasis is on state-level criminal defense along with a general civil practice.

Young has been a member of the Nashville Bar Association since 1994. He is a member of the Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Committee and served as the co-chair in 2013. He is a participant in the Pro Bono Program. He has coached a high school mock trial team. He is a Nashville Bar Foundation Fellow and served as a Leadership Forum mentor in 2014. He is a past president of both the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and Mental Health America of Middle Tennessee. He is currently a board member and executive committee member at The Family Center and Joe C. Davis YMCA. Stephen is a retired youth baseball, basketball and soccer coach. Stephen and his wife, Mandy Haynes Young, have three children. Particular areas of interest are security passes for attorneys entering court buildings, strengthening the image of attorneys in the community, growing the mentoring program and providing legal representation to those who are less fortunate.


Jacqueline B. Dixon

Jacqueline B. Dixon is with Weatherly McNally & Dixon PLC. She graduated from Carson-Newman
University and earned her law degree from the University of Tennessee. She was honored as the NBA’s Pro Bono Volunteer of the Year in 2009 and represented the NBA in the ABA House of Delegates for six years. She is a past-President of the Young Lawyers Division and served a term on the NBA board. She has served on many NBA committees and as chair of the NBA Pro Bono Board, CLE, Membership, and Community Relations Committees. She is a fellow of the Nashville Bar Foundation.

Dixon has chaired the annual campaign for the Legal Aid Society. She served on the Supreme Court Commission to Administer the Tennessee Lawyer’s Assistance Program for nine years. She is on the Carson-Newman Alumni Association Board, and the advisory boards of First Steps Inc., and A Step Ahead Foundation of Middle Tennessee Inc. She is an active member of Calvary United Methodist Church. Jackie’s areas of interest include growing and providing services to the NBA’s membership, mentoring new lawyers, assisting low-income individuals to obtain legal services, and helping lawyers cope with the stresses of life, aging and the practice of law.


Wendy Longmire

Wendy Longmire is a partner in the law firm of Ortale, Kelley, Herbert & Crawford. She joined the firm in 1987, after a one-year judicial clerkship with Judge Walter C. Kurtz of the Fifth Circuit Court. She received her undergraduate degree from University of Mississippi and attended University of Kentucky Law School and Vanderbilt Law School, receiving her J.D. from the University of Kentucky in 1986.

As a litigator, Longmire is AV rated and became Board Certified in Civil Trial Advocacy for the National Board of Trial Advocacy in the year 2000. She serves on the NBA CLE Committee and participates in the Legal Aid Society Volunteer Lawyers Program. She is currently Vice-Chancellor of the Episcopal Diocese of Tennessee and Belmont Inn of Courts, Chair of Membership. She is a Past-President for Tennessee Lawyers Association for Women. Longmire is interested in the mentorship program, working with new lawyers in the community, public service and the NBA Mock Trial Competition.


Ryan D. Levy

Ryan D. Levy is a shareholder with Patterson Intellectual Property Law, P.C. He received his undergraduate degrees from North Carolina State University and his J.D. from Duke University School of Law. His practice covers both intellectual property procurement and litigation, with a focus on patent litigation.

Levy is currently president of the NBA’s Young Lawyers Division, having served on the Board of Directors of the YLD since 2006. He received the NBA YLD’s Enterprise Award in 2008 and President’s Award in 2011. As YLD president, Levy has had the opportunity to contribute to and learn from the 2015 NBA Board. Additionally, he is an active member of the NBA’s Social and Membership Committees. Ryan previously served as president of the Tennessee Intellectual Property Law Association; Program Committee chair and Executive Committee member of the Belmont University College of Law American Inn of Court; and was a member of the Young Professional Board of the American Heart Association and co-chair of the Heart Gala Late Party. Particular interests in serving the NBA include finding ways to increase the value of the NBA to its members and helping lawyers transitioning out of the YLD find meaningful ways to contribute to the NBA.


Judge Rachel L. Bell

Judge Rachel L. Bell was elected to General Sessions Court Division VIII in 2012 and re-elected in 2014. Judge Bell was elected by her peers to serve as the Presiding Judge for General Sessions Court in 2014 and re-elected to a second one year term in 2015 expiring September 2016. Before becoming Judge she was in private practice as the Managing Attorney for Bell & Kinslow, PLLC. A native Nashvillian, Judge Bell graduated from Hillsboro High School earning a basketball scholarship to Auburn University completing her collegiate career at the University of Memphis were she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Education. She received her Juris Doctorate from Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law.

Judge Bell is a member of the Lawyers’ Association for Women, Women in Numbers, Women’s Political Collaborative, NAACP, Nashville Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., New Covenant Christian Church Disciples of Christ (DOC), Davidson Co. Democratic Women, Nashville, Napier Looby and Stonewall Bar Associations and a Fellow of both the Nashville and Napier Looby Bar Foundations. She is dedicated to serving the community both “ON” and “OFF” the bench. She is the Legal Aid Society Judges Division Co-Chair serving a second term. In addition, Judge Bell is the Founder of the Ring the BELL Foundation, Inc. and the Bordeaux North Chamber of Commerce. In 2013, she adopted a portion of highway 41A in North Nashville to establish the Judge Rachel L. Bell Beautification project. She currently and previously served on several boards both locally and nationally; Hands on Nashville, Davidson Co. Industrial Board, WIN and JDRF, to name a few.


Ken Bryant

Ken Bryant is a partner with the Nashville office of Burr & Forman, LLP. He received his undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University in 1982 and his J.D. from the University of Tennessee in 1987. He currently serves as co-chair of the NBA's Federal Courts Committee and has served in this capacity for three years.

Bryant received the NBA's President's Award for his leadership on the Federal Courts Committee in 2013 and is a Fellow of the Nashville Bar Foundation. Particular areas of interest include continuing and improving the communication between the bench and the Bar; continuing and increasing educational programs for the Bar through increased emphasis on Bar committees and participation of the membership in Bar committees; continuing to emphasize fostering the concept of service to the greater Nashville community outside of the Bar; and renewing and bolstering efforts to celebrating the diversity of the Nashville Bar and keeping open its doors to all members through "education, service and fellowship."