Alumni Updates

Tell Us About It!

Help the School of Law share your stories. To keep us informed about your life or to discover ways you can connect, contact the School of Law Office of Development and External Relations or send an update via our Alumni Update form.

To submit an alumni news item for the Alumni Newsletter, submit it via our Alumni News form.

University of Arkansas School of Law alumni are located in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, two territories and 20 countries. The school’s friends broaden its reach further. Here, you can find information on what individuals, corporations and foundations are doing to support the School of Law and its strategic objectives.

September 2017

Congratulations to Robert L. Depper III (J.D. ’08), Jenae Randall (J.D. ’12) and Vicki Vasser-Jenkins (J.D. ’06) on being named as top 10 family law attorneys in Arkansas by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys (NAFLA). The academy is a professional organization dedicated to helping the public find highly qualified legal representation. A complete list of 2017 attorneys, along with the selection criteria, is available on the NAFLA website.

Teena Gunter (J.D. ’92, LL.M. ’97) and Regina Hopper (J.D. ’85) joined the National Board of Directors of the Arkansas Alumni Association for a three-year term that began July 1. Gunter has been selected as the president-elect for the board, which oversees the programs and policies that carry out the association’s mission of connecting and serving the University of Arkansas family. She is general counsel for the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry and was recently selected as a member of the 31st Leadership Oklahoma class in recognition of her proven ability to positively impact organizations. Hopper is senior vice president of global public policy for Tennessee-based Gridsmart Technologies. She is the former president and CEO of Intelligent Transportation Society of America, a former Emmy-winning CBS News correspondent and a former Miss Arkansas.

The Honorable Donald Goodner (J.D. ’68), along with the Honorable James O. Cox, the Honorable Van Taylor (retired) and the Honorable William Roy Wilson, Jr., were selected as distinguished alumni of Waldron High School. The judges were honored at the school’s annual reunion earlier this summer. Goodner is Scott County District Judge, a position he has held since 1987.

Congratulations to Morriss M. Henry, M.D. (J.D. ’71) and Ann Rainwater Henry (J.D. ’71) who celebrated their 53rd wedding anniversary on Aug. 1. The family photo (right) was taken on their graduation day: Dr. Henry holding Mark Henry (J.D. ’97, LL.M. ’05), Ann Henry shepherding Dr. Katherine Henry Baltz and Dr. Paul Henry.

Nancy Martin (J.D. ’82) was featured in “Attorney turns designing woman” the Profile story in the Aug. 13 Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Martin shares her personal story with reporter Lara Jo Hightower, talking about her journey from practicing “street” law (whatever came off the street) in Arkansas and Oklahoma to designing clothing as proprietor of Bentonville’s N.A. Martin Shop and Design Studio. Martin is married to John Alan Lewis (J.D. ’77). 

Alexa Mizer (J.D. ’16) joined Dallas-based Hawkins Parnell Thackston and Young LLP in June, where she specializes in product liability, toxic tort defense, environmental litigation involving catastrophic injury, premises liability and property damage.

Ken Patterson (J.D. ’93) was the subject of “Modest hero feeds hungry,” the Profiles article in the Sept. 3 Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Patterson is the executive director of Feed Communities, a nonprofit with the mission to help eradicate food insecurity and increase healthy food access in Northwest Arkansas. 

Former Gov. and U.S. Sen. David H. Pryor (LL.B. ’64) was inducted into the Arkansas Game and Fish Foundation’s Arkansas Outdoor Hall of Fame on Aug. 11. According to a press release issued by the foundation, Pryor was selected in recognition of his years of public service at the state and federal level “that resulted in landmark achievements in conservation, advancing the outdoors experience enjoyed today throughout Arkansas.”

Nancy E. Pryor (J.D. ’02) has been selected as the Arkansas Public Defender of the Year by the National College of DUI Defense. The organization works toward improving the education and skills of practitioners and provides a venue for communication and fraternity among lawyers working in the area of DUI defense. Pryor is a deputy public defender in the Sebastian County Public Defender’s Office.

Steve Zega (J.D. ’93) has joined Cypert Crouch Clark and Harwell PLLC in Springdale. Zega is lt. col. in the Arkansas National Guard and serves as state military judge, a position he has held since 2012.

In Memoriam

David F. Butler, Jr. (J.D. ’81) died on Aug. 13. He was a long-time deputy prosecuting attorney for the 13th Judicial District of Arkansas and was elected as the chief prosecutor for the district in 2014. In addition to serving as prosecutor, Butler was a partner in the firm of Kinard, Crane, Butler and Phillips and president of the alumni association of Southern Arkansas University, his undergraduate alma mater. Butler is survived by his wife of 36 years, Vicki Bailey Butler, and daughters Stephanie Clayton, Sydney Butler (J.D. ’12) and Lesley Floyd. Read the obituary from Lewis Funeral Home.

Joseph Patrick “Pat” Gazzola (J.D. ’74) died Aug. 5 in Fayetteville. Gazzola was a successful lawyer and entrepreneur. Over the course of his long career, he practiced law, built a successful oil and gas business and became a popular restauranteur. A fixture in Alma and Fayetteville, he was known for building the Catfish Hole restaurants in the two towns into a nationally-recognized brand with a loyal following. The avid Razorback fan regularly hosted coaches, athletes and fans at the Catfish Hole and opened the Fayetteville restaurant to live radio sports broadcasts such as On the Air with Bret Bielema.

Gazzola is survived by his wife and business partner, Janie Parson Gazzola; daughter, Tiffany White Reddick, and son-in-law, Brian; son, Britain McMillen White, and daughter-in-law, Kim. Read the obituary from Nelson-Berna Funeral Home.

Charles B. Roscopf (LL.B. ’54) of Helena, died on Aug. 23. He was senior partner at Roscopf and Roscopf PA, where he practiced law until July of this year. He was dedicated to the law and the legal profession in Arkansas. He served six years in the Arkansas legislature and was a delegate to the state’s 1969 constitutional convention where he helped design the county government provisions that were enacted. He served as the 1991 president of the Arkansas Bar Association and later as president of the Arkansas Bar Foundation.

Roscopf is survived by his son, Charles D. Roscopf (J.D. ’83), and daughter-in-law, Ann, of Helena; and daughter, Ann Allen, and son-in-law, Gil, of Salsbury, Maryland. Roscopf was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Anne. Read the obituary from Roller-Citizens Funeral Home.

August 2017

Jennifer Corbin (J.D. ’12), and her work on behalf of Habitat for Humanity, is the subject of a recent Little Rock Soirée magazine article. Corbin is the daughter of the late Arkansas Supreme Court Associate Justice Donald L. Corbin (LL.B. ’66) and Dorcy Corbin. In the interview, Corbin told reporter Lydia McAllister of her father’s influence in developing her desire to help others (photo courtesy of Lyndsey Sullivan Photography).

George Gleason (J.D. ’77) rang the opening bell of the July 17 NASDAQ trading session as part of the 20th anniversary celebration of the Bank of the Ozarks becoming a publically traded company. Gleason is chairman of the board and chief executive officer of the Little Rock-based bank, a position he has held since purchasing controlling interest in the institution in 1979. The session was officially opened, and televised, at the NASDAQ MarketSite in New York’s Times Square.

Coach Kenny Jones (J.D. ’79) was featured in the July 24 Southwest Arkansas Times Record article “Getting His Basketball ‘Jones’ On.” In addition to practicing law, Jones serves as a registered volunteer coach for the Fort Smith Southside High School Mavericks basketball team. He is beginning his ninth year as a member of the program’s official coaching team.

John Jacob Lively (J.D. ’16) and Mary Grace Lively welcomed son, John Maxwell, into their family in June. Max weighed 8 pounds, 15.2 ounces and was 21 inches long at birth. Jacob is an associate attorney with Wright, Lindsey and Jennings LLP in Little Rock where he focuses on commercial litigation (photo courtesy of The North Lens).

Matt McCoy (J.D. ’01) has been named top assistant general counsel by First Chair, a national organization dedicated to bringing attorneys in private practice together with in-house peers. McCoy will be honored at the First Chair Awards Conference and Gala in Chicago on Aug. 30. McCoy is associate general counsel for the University of Arkansas and has more than 16 years of experience representing public institutions.

James A. McLarty (LL.B. ’68) and Sally Norman McLarty celebrated their 50th wedding on July 29. The couple resides in Newport, Arkansas, where James is in private practice.

Congratulations to David Bradley Olsen (J.D. '87) on being named to the 2017 Minnesota Super Lawyers list for an eighth time. Olsen is a shareholder at Henson Efron in Minneapolis, where he specializes in litigation.

Caitlin Savage (J.D. ’13) joined the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney, Sixth Judicial District, as deputy prosecuting attorney in June.

In Memoriam

Harold Simpson Bemis (LL.B. ’68) died May 10 in Fayetteville. He practiced law in Ohio and Arkansas over the course of his professional career. He is survived by daughter, Laura Bemis Killgore of Jupiter, Florida, and son, Harold Simpson "Chip" Bemis Jr., of Fayetteville. Read the complete obituary from Moore’s Chapel.

W. Q. Hall (LL.B.’58) died July 24 in Fayetteville. Hall was a long-time resident of Huntsville, where he practiced law and served as a municipal judge. He was preceded in death by his wife, Virginia Smith Hall, in 2014. Survivors include two sons,Tim Hall of Huntsville and Todd Hall of Fayetteville. Read the complete obituary from Brashears Funeral Home.

Albert Rowell Hanna (J.D. ’69) died July 22. He was a resident of El Dorado and a former deputy prosecuting attorney for Union County. Hanna was preceded in death by his wife, Marnette. Survivors include daughter and son-in-law, Janet Metcalf and Magistrate Judge James Metcalf of Yuma, Arizona, and son, Hayden E. Hanna of El Dorado. Read the obituary from Young’s Funeral Directors.

July 2017

Congratulations to Adrienne Baker (J.D.’07), Brian Blackman (J.D. ’02) and Sarah Slocum Collins (J.D. ’12) on their selection to the 2017 Arkansas Business 40 Under 40. The annual list honors 40 business and political leaders, who are under 40 years old and considered leaders in their profession and community. Baker is a partner at Wright Lindsay Jennings in Little Rock and specializes in commercial litigation. Blackman is the chief operating officer at Waco Title Company and is credited with the company’s recent growth. Collins is vice president of governmental affairs for the Rogers-Lowell Area Chamber of Commerce.

Congratulations to Judge John Fogleman (J.D. ’81), Gary Speed (J.D. ’83), Caitlin Savage (J.D. ’13) and Charles Owen (J.D. ’69). Fogelman was installed as the 2017-18 president of the Arkansas Bar Foundation at the annual Fellows' Dinner held Wednesday, June 14, in Hot Springs. Speed, Savage and Owen were honored with Arkansas Bar Foundation awards at the annual dinner.

Speed received the Outstanding Lawyer-Citizen Award in recognition of outstanding participation in and for excellent performance of civic responsibilities and for demonstrating high standards of professional competence and conduct. Savage received the Equal Justice Distinguished Service Award in recognition of her commitment to and participation in equal justice programs, including pro bono efforts through legal services programs. Owen received the James H. McKenzie Professionalism Award in recognition of sustained excellence thorough integrity, character and leadership to the profession and the community.

Sallie B. Armstrong (J.D. ’79) has joined Nevada-based McDonald Carano law firm as partner. Armstrong specializes in bankruptcy law. In 2012, she was chosen as Best Lawyers’ Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Lawyer of the Year. Armstrong also holds a Taxation LL.M. from New York University School of Law.

Michael Cathey (J.D. ’16) has been accepted into the attorney general law clerk program at the Office of Arkansas Attorney General. Cathey is clerking in the State Agencies Department and will enter the United States Marine Corps to serve as a judge advocate in the fall.

Anne Hazlett (LL.M. ’01) has been named assistant to the secretary for rural development by United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.The appointment, announced June 12, is part of Perdue’s plan to reprioritize the agency’s duties and includes elevating rural development on the agency’s agenda. In her new role, Hazlett oversees the Rural Utilities Service, Rural Business Service and Rural Housing Service within USDA and reports directly to Perdue. Read the LL.M. Program in Agricultural & Food Law blog post on Hazlett’s appointment.

Jessica Kaitlin Pruitt (J.D. ’15) and David Frederick Koehler were married June 10 in Geyer Springs. Pruitt is clerking for the Hon. Kristine Baker (J.D. ’96) of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas and will join Wright Lindsey Jennings in September. Koehler is a lawyer with Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard PLLC. Read the article from the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette (Subscription required: Photograph courtesy of Carper Creative Photography).

Hugh Kincaid (J.D. ’59) retired from the Bank of Fayetteville on June 30 where he was senior vice president for trust since 2002. Kincaid has retired at least two other times. He retired from practicing and teaching business law after 35 years in order to become director of planned giving for the University of Arkansas. During his ten-year tenure, the university’s planned gift portfolio grew from $30 million to $220 million. In 2002, Kincaid retired from the University of Arkansas to join the Bank of Fayetteville.

Brenden Sherrer (J.D. ’16) has joined the mergers and acquisitions division of Fayetteville-based Zweig Group. The advancing engineering group consults with architectural, engineering and environmental consulting firms in order to enhance business performance.

Congratulations to Michael A. Thompson (J.D. ’10), winner of this year’s Arkansas Bar Foundation Best Legal Writing Award. His winning article, “The Emerging Field of Drone Law” was published in the Fall 2016 edition of The Arkansas Lawyer.

Congratulations to Ashley Driver Younger (J.D. ’10), who was recognized as one of Little Rock Soirée magazine's 2017 “Women to Watch.” Driver is the executive director of Central Arkansas Effort for Animals, Inc., CARE, in Little Rock. The list, published annually, recognizes women who are making a big impact in business, philanthropy and community. Younger is a licensed lawyer in Arkansas and often relies on her legal skills to help in making decisions at CARE.

June 2017

Congratulations to the lawyers recognized with Legal Aid of Arkansas Pro Bono Service Awards. The awards celebrate those who provide outstanding volunteer service to help Arkansas residents who cannot afford a lawyer obtain equal justice. John M. Blair (J.D. ’82) received the 2017 Equal Access to Justice Panel-Outstanding Attorney award. Steven Davis (J.D. ’82) and Ray Nickle (J.D. ’86) received the 2017 Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly-Outstanding Attorney award. Forty University of Arkansas School of Law alumni are among the 2017 honorees.

David Biscoe Bingham (J.D. ’12) has joined the Lessel Law Firm in Little Rock. Bingham, who also holds a Taxation LL.M. from the University of Washington, specializes in estate planning, taxation, business organization, transactions and securities law.

Christine Daugherty (J.D. ’00) has joined the Sustainability Office of PepsiCo, Inc. as VP, Global Agronomy Solutions. She is working in the company’s global headquarters in Purchase, New York, but will relocate to Plano, Texas, later in the year. Daugherty will work in the company at large to deliver crop sciences and agronomy solutions in support of PepsiCo’s Performance with Purpose 2025 goals, a sustainability agenda designed to foster continued business growth in a way that responds to changing consumer and societal needs.

Congratulations to Kent Andrew “Drew” Devenport (J.D. ’12) on receiving the 2017 Northwest Arkansas Worker Justice Center Community Leader award. Devenport, who specializes in immigration law, practices in the Davis Law Firm in Fayetteville. In 2016, Devenport shared his practical experience with University of Arkansas School of Law students by teaching the Immigration Legal Clinic and Advanced Immigration Skills.

Quincy Jordan (J.D. ’16) and Phil Jones were married on April 22 in Rogers, and honeymooned in Maui. Jordan is an associate with Hawkins Parnell Thackston & Young LLP in Dallas.

J. Cliff McKinney II (J.D. ’02) and Kristin Pawlik (J.D. ’99) have been appointed to the board of the Arkansas Access to Justice Foundation. The Arkansas Supreme Court appointed McKinney, an attorney with Quattlebaum, Grooms & Tull PLLC in Little Rock. Pawlik, a Rogers attorney practicing with Keith, Miller, Butler, Schneider & Pawlik PLLC, was appointed by the Arkansas Bar Association. The Foundation helps fund two civil legal aid organizations in Arkansas: The Center for Arkansas Legal Services and Legal Aid of Arkansas.

Gary M. Samms (J.D. ’89) is among the recently released 2017 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers®. Samms is partner at Obermayer Rebman Maxwell & Hippel LLP in Philadelphia and serves as chair of the firm’s professional liability practice group.

John D. Smart (J.D. ’87) has joined Dallas-based Bell Nunnally and Martin LLP as partner. Smart devotes his practice to representing management in traditional labor, employment and immigration law matters. He is board-certified in labor and employment law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

Christopher Thyer (J.D. ’95) has joined the trust department of Centennial Bank as a senior vice president. According to the bank’s press release, Thyer will eventually serve as trust department manager. Most recently, Thyer served as U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas. He was appointed by President Obama in 2010 and served until March 10, 2017.

Governor Jim Guy Tucker (LL.B. ’68) will be a featured speaker, along with Garret Keremer-Wright, at the Washington County Historical Society’s Statehood Day event on Sunday, June 11. Kyle Kellams of KUAF 91.3 Public Radio, Northwest Arkansas’ NPR affiliate, will lead a fireside chat-type interview with the former governor, focusing on his father’s experiences as an infantryman during World War I. Keremer-Wright, a research archivist at the Center for Arkansas History and Culture at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, will present “Answering the Call: James Guy Tucker, Sr. and his World War I Experiences,” a paper based on a journal and letters written by Tucker Sr. during the war. The program, to be held at First Christian Church in Fayetteville at 2 p.m., is free and open to the public. Contact the WCHS at 479-521-2970 for additional information.

John Adam Wells (J.D. ’05) and Nealy Kathryn Morton were married May 20 in Little Rock. Wells is the president of Lumber One Home Center, a company with locations in central Arkansas. Read the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette High Profile article (photograph courtesy of Kayla Barker).

May 2017

Tiffany Brown (J.D. ’09) has joined Continuity as regulatory attorney. The company provides compliance management solutions to financial institutions. In this role, Brown delivers training sessions and seminars for internal and external audiences regarding financial regulations. Brown’s previous experience includes compliance positions with Navy Federal Credit Union and EagleBank and assistant attorney general for the District of Columbia Office of the Attorney General. Brown lives in Atlanta.

Haley Heath Burks (J.D. ’11) and Christopher Burks (J.D. ’10) welcomed Deborah Elise in April. Elise weighed 9 pounds, 10 ounces and was 20.25 inches long. Haley Burks serves as vice president of the Law Alumni Society Board and supports the School of Law through projects such as Alumni Reunion Weekend.

Jonathan J. Macke (J.D. ’04) has been selected by the Dallas Business Journal as one of its 2017 “40 Under 40” honorees. Macke is partner in the tax practice of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP in Dallas. According to the Dallas Business Journal, the 40 Under 40 Awards celebrate the “up-and-comers and people the North Texas community should know.” Honorees are thought to be the future leaders, executives and influencers in the Dallas-Fort Worth business community.

Carla Martin (J.D. ’04) has been elected to the board of directors of Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Founded in 1948, Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield is the largest health insurer in Arkansas. The company and its affiliates provide healthcare financing or health plan administrative services for more than 25 percent of Arkansans.

Martin is vice chancellor for finance and administration at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. She served as dean of the School of Business at the university from 2009-14. Prior to joining the university, Martin worked for Walmart Stores, Inc. in Bentonville as a real estate transaction manager and later as senior manager of supply delivery.

Emily Money (honorary alumna), Shannon Money and big sister Elise, welcomed Evan David in April. Evan weighed 10 pounds, 2 ounces and was 21.75 inches long. Emily Money served at the assistant director of development for the University of Arkansas School of Law before becoming the university’s director of development for Central Arkansas.

Caitlin Savage (J.D. ’13) is the recipient of the 2017 Arkansas Bar Foundation’s Equal Justice Distinguished Service Award. She will be recognized at the Annual Fellows Dinner in Hot Springs on June 14. Savage, one of the youngest recipients of the award, volunteers with Legal Aid of Arkansas, Arkansas Access to Justice and the Center for Arkansas Legal Services to assist the state’s marginalized residents obtain legal services. She served as the 2016 chair of the Pro Bono Committee for the Arkansas Bar Association Young Lawyers Section and has helped organize Wills for Heroes events in the state.

In Memoriam

Michael Ralph Clifton (J.D.’78) died April 20 in Little Rock. Clifton was a prominent lawyer in Brinkley, practicing in that community from 1978 until his death. In addition to private practice, Clifton served as city attorney for Brinkley for 31 years and received the Arkansas Municipal League’s Jack R. Roe award for his service. He was an active member of the Brinkley Rotary Club and a past president of the Brinkley Chamber of Commerce. Read the obituary from Bob Neal & Sons Funeral Home.

Jay W. Dickey Jr. (LL.B. ’63), former representative of Arkansas’ 4th Congressional District, died April 20 in Pine Bluff. Elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1992, he was the first Republican elected to the southwest Arkansas seat since its creation during Reconstruction. His four-term tenure, 1993-2001, included serving on the Committee on Appropriations and five of its sub-committees. The Washington Post and the New York Times remember Dickey as a staunch conservative and the lawmaker who blocked research into gun violence as a public health issue for two decades. Dickey later became a proponent of the research, eventually co-authoring, with former Center for Disease Control and Prevention director Mark Rosenberg, an op-ed for the Washington Post arguing for funding for scientific research into the causes of gun violence.

After graduating from the University of Arkansas School of Law, he practiced law with his father, Jay W. Dickey Sr. (LL.B. ’34) in Pine Bluff and later served as that city’s attorney. He also launched Taco Bell and Baskin-Robbins franchises in south Arkansas. He is survived by his children: John Rowell Dickey, Laura Dickey Campbell, Ted Dickey, Rachel Dickey Haithcoat and Cindy Pefferkorn McCormick. Read the obituary from Ralph Robinson and Son Funeral Directors.

April 2017

Christy Tosh Crider (J.D. ’96) has been named chair of Baker Donelson’s Health Care Advocacy Practice. Crider, a shareholder in the firm’s Nashville office, will continue managing her practice concentrated in the long-term care and health industries in addition to her new duties as chair. She also serves as chair of the firm’s Long Term Care Group and Women’s Initiative.

Marne Coit (LL.M. ’07) joined the faculty at North Carolina State University, Raleigh, where she teaches in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.

Richard Flournoy (LL.M. ’11) is the new Chief of Staff at United States Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency. Flournoy is responsible for the oversight of the development of crop insurance policies, the rate structure and other critical aspects of the federal crop insurance system. Flournoy and his wife, Michelle, live in Kansas City.

In Memoriam

Stephen A. Matthews (LL.B. ’51), age 91, died March 1 in Pine Bluff after collapsing at the defense table in a Jefferson County courtroom. He was a dedicated lawyer, practicing with the Pine Bluff firm of Bridges, Young, Matthews and Drake for his entire legal career. He received the Arkansas Bar Association’s Outstanding Lawyer Award for 1967-68, was a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and served as president of the Arkansas Association of Defense Counsel 1984-85.

He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Elizabeth Ruth “Betty” Alexander; son David Matthews; daughters Susan Matthews Arnold (John) and Barbara III-Schenkel. Read the obituary from Ralph Robinson & Sons Funeral Directors.

Angela Caitlin Peace (J.D. ’80) died Feb. 18 in Fayetteville. Peace was a professor of computer information at Northwest Arkansas Community College and specialized in web page design and Photoshop. She is survived by her mother, Ruth Vacin. Read the obituary from Moore’s Chapel.