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.

November 2017

Jeff Broadwater’s (J.D. ’79) article “George Mason, James Madison and the Evolution of the Bill of Rights” appears in vol. 15, no. 2 (Summer 2017) of the Georgetown Journal of Law & Public Policy. Broadwater, who also holds a Doctor of Philosophy in American history from Vanderbilt University, is a professor of history in the School of Humanities at Barton College in Wilson, North Carolina.

Angela Dodd (J.D. ’16) and Jacob McElroy (J.D. ’17) have joined Little Rock-based Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard. Dodd and McElroy will work in the firm’s Rogers office. Dodd, who is licensed in Arkansas and Missouri, is an associate in the litigation practice group where she focuses on commercial litigation, employment law and tort litigation. McElroy is also an associate in the litigation practice group. Prior to attending law school, he worked in the juvenile justice systems of Arkansas and Georgia.

J. Dalton Person (J.D. ’16) joined Jones, Jackson & Moll PLC in Fort Smith in September where he specializes in civil and commercial litigation, business organization and commercial transactions. He most recently clerked for Chief U.S. District Judge P.K. Holmes, III, Western District of Arkansas. Person is a 2013 graduate of the University of Chicago, where he played football for four years and graduated with honors.

Maurice Rigsby (J.D. ’03) has been named vice chancellor for institutional relations at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS). The announcement was made through a press release dated Sept. 5. Prior to joining UAMS, Rigsby was the senior assistant attorney general for legislative affairs in the Arkansas Attorney General’s Office and deputy director and regulatory counsel for the Arkansas Oil and Gas Commission.

Jillian Hishaw (J.D. ’05, LL.M. ’07) has been named a Food Industry Changemaker by California-based Clif Bar & Company in recognition of her work as founder and director of Family Agriculture Resource Management Services, or FARMS. The South Carolina-based organization’s mission is to “protect the family farmer through education and retail market expansion while relieving hunger in the farmer’s community.” Its service area includes seven states in the southeastern United States.

Natasha Bowman (J.D. ’08) published You Can’t Do That At Work: 100 Legal Mistakes That Managers Make In The Workplace in May. Bowman lives in New York City and is president of Performance ReNew, a talent management and leadership development consulting firm that helps organizations with human resource matters.

Lauren Eldridge (J.D. ’14), Preston Eldridge (J.D. ’14) and big brother Thomas welcomed John Murphy into their family in September. John Murphy weighed 7 pounds, 11 ounces at birth and was 19 inches long. The Eldridges wrote, “We are blessed and in awe of our latest addition and growing family, but not even a Gallini or Killenbeck [Mark] class could prepare us for the challenge of having two boys under the age of two!”

Brent A. Johnson (J.D. ’15) and wife, Lizzie, welcomed daughter Juniper Lee in October. Juniper weighed 7 pounds, 1 ounce and was 21 inches long at birth. She is the granddaughter of David Matthews (J.D. ’76) and Mary Beth Matthews (J.D. ’78), Sidney Parker Davis Jr. Professor of Business and Commercial Law. “Lizzie and I are beyond excited about our Little Pumpkin,” Johnson said of his new daughter.

In Memoriam

Edwin B. Alderson Jr. (LL.B. ’66) died Oct. 5 in El Dorado. Alderson’s diverse career spanned more than 50 years. He was known as a consummate lawyer, judge, entrepreneur, community leader and musician. Alderson, along with law partner William C. Nolan, founded El Dorado-based Noalmark Broadcasting Corp. in 1970, a company that grew to own 20 radio stations in three states. In 1972, Alderson was elected as Union County Municipal Judge, a position he held for 20 years and in 1991, he was appointed as special chief justice to the Arkansas Supreme Court. He served two terms on the Arkansas State Board of Law Examiners and served as chairman of the Arkansas Judicial Ethics Advisory Committee from 1992 until his death.

Alderson’s love of music led him to be a driving force behind El Dorado’s Murphy Arts District, an effort to revitalize the town through the creation of a venue for festivals and theatrical performances. Alderson is survived by his wife, Diane Gunn Nolan Alderson; son, Ed Alderson; daughter, Mary Tracy Alderson; step children Diny Nolan Laden, Trey Nolan and Jeff Nolan; and 12 grandchildren. Read the obituary from Young’s Funeral Directors.

James Wesley “Wes” Cherry Jr. (J.D.’83) died Oct. 14. Cherry began his legal career in Fort Smith before returning to his hometown of Little Rock to work with John Haley Sr. (LL.B. ’55) and then the Eichenbaum Law Firm. Cherry completed his career working 25 years for Dillard’s Inc., first as assistant general counsel and then as vice president of real estate. He retired in 2012. Cherry is survived by his wife of 37 years, Kim Knight Cherry, and sons David W. Cherry (J.D. ’09) and Daniel P. Cherry. Read the obituary from Roller Funeral Homes.

Frances Jean Wood Fleming (LL.B. ’47) died June 22. After graduating from law school (the only woman in her class), and after a short stint at a title company, Fleming found her calling teaching American history at North Little Rock from 1957-72, and then providing vocational guidance at North Little Rock Vocational Technology Institute. Fleming was predeceased by her husband of more than 50 years, William George Fleming (LL.B. ’49). She is survived by sons Matthew W. Fleming (J.D. ’78) and Fred Fleming; daughter, Anne Lee; six grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren. Matt Fleming said of his mother, “She was something of a quiet pioneer for women’s equality. She always was a strong independent lady.” Read the obituary from Smith Sherwood Funeral Home.

October 2017

The Pulaski County Bar Association recently honored Col. William A. Martin (J.D. ’55), United States Air Force (Retired), with the renaming of its annual golf tournament the William A. Martin Scholarship Golf Tournament. Funds raised from the event, now in its 14th consecutive year, will benefit a scholarship bearing Martin’s name. Martin was an active duty lawyer for 28 years prior to retiring to a second career, in 1983, as executive director of the Arkansas Bar Foundation, a position he held for 13 years. Under his leadership, the Foundation’s scholarship endowment grew to more than $1 million. This year’s tournament will take place Nov. 3 at War Memorial Golf Course in Little Rock.

John Thomas Shepherd (J.D. ’13) was appointed 13th Judicial District prosecuting attorney by Gov. Asa Hutchinson (J.D. ’75) on Sept. 12. Shepherd will complete the term of David Butler (J.D. ’81) who died in August. Shepherd is a partner at Shepherd & Shepherd PA in El Dorado, where he practices law with his brother, the Hon. Matthew J. Shepherd (J.D. ’01), state representative for Arkansas’ 6th district.

Duane “Dak” Kees (J.D. ’00) has been nominated by President Donald Trump to become the next United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas. The White House announced the nomination on Sept. 22. Kees is the director of global ethics governance, anti-corruption at WalMart and has been with the company since 2014. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2001 and was a member of the JAG Corps where rose to the rank of captain. He is currently a major in the Arkansas National Guard.

Steve Clark (J.D. ’71), president and CEO of the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce, has been named to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100 , commonly known as the CCC100. The group is composed of experienced executives, who represent the perspectives and needs of their members to the U.S. Chamber and advise the board of directors, enhance lobbying efforts, recommend programming and strengthen the organization’s outreach.

Amy Cornell (LL.M. ’07) has been promoted to vice president at Indianapolis-based Bose Public Affairs Group where she is a member of the firm’s government relations team. The company announced the promotion on Sept. 20. While at Bose, Cornell has represented critical players in Indiana’s farming industry, including Indiana Pork, and she has worked with the Indiana Economic Development Association, assisting Indiana’s rural communities with land use planning, policy and infrastructure. She also teaches agricultural law at Indiana University’s Robert H. McKinney School of Law and at Purdue University. Prior to joining Bose, Cornell was a policy advisor for Indiana Farm Bureau.

Kaleigh Davis (J.D. ’12) has been promoted to associate counsel at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis where she advises the hospital on legal issues related to patient care, regulatory compliance, hospital policy and employment law.

Congratulations to Meredith Lowry (J.D. ’05) and Austin Grinder (J.D. ’15). The two were selected as members of the 2017-18 Leadership Arkansas Class. The program, administered by the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and Associated Industries of Arkansas, is dedicated to challenging, informing, inspiring and engaging current and future business and civic leaders to enhance the economies and communities within the state. Lowry is of counsel at Wright Lindsey Jennings in Rogers. Grinder is an associate attorney at Mullenix & Associates LLC in Little Rock.

Patrick Lewis (J.D. ’97) has joined Mostyn Prettyman PLLC in Bentonville where he specializes in family law and criminal defense.

Molly Magee Shepherd (J.D. ’13) was named to the 2017 Arkansas Business “20 in Their 20s” list on Sept. 25. The list identifies talented young leaders in the Arkansas business community and the nonprofit sector who are making a difference within their organizations. Shepherd is an attorney at PPGMR in El Dorado. In December, she will become the youngest member of the board of trustees of Ouachita Baptist University.

Andrew Thomas (J.D. ’06), co-founder and managing partner of Dallas-based Thomas Price PLLC, is expanding the firm with an office in Houston.

Tiffany Godwin (J.D. ’15) and Daniel Godwin are “overjoyed to announce the arrival” of baby girl Katherine Pearl, who was born in July. She weighed 8 pounds and was 20.25 inches long at birth. Goodwin is an associate at Capshaw Green PLLC in Texarkana.

Katie Roberts Eaves (J.D. ’13) and John Eaves welcomed daughter, Elle, in September. She weighed 8 pounds, 11 ounces at birth and was 21 inches long. “John and I are over the moon with the arrival of our first child,” Eaves said in a recent email. Eaves is an associate at Friday Eldredge and Clark LLP in Rogers where she specializes in trust and estate planning.

Jessica Jill Alley (J.D. ’07) and Adle Nayef Haddad were married Sept. 16 in Little Rock. Alley is an attorney at Dallas-based Austin Industries. Read the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette article (subscription may be required: photograph courtesy of Lyndsey Sullivan).

Robin Elizabeth Wright (J.D. ’13) and Richard Simon Cleary Jr. were married Sept. 2 in Little Rock. Wright is the daughter of the Honorable Susan Webber Wright Carter (J.D. ’75) and the late Robert R. Wright III (J.D. ’56). She is a lawyer at Sidley Austin in Washington, D.C., where she specializes in commercial litigation, privacy and cybersecurity. Cleary, also a lawyer, works at Williams & Connolly LLP. Read The New York Times article about the marriage. Photograph courtesy of Weddings by Christopher & Nancy.

In Memoriam

Darrell W. Johnson (LL.B. ’65) died Sept. 14 in Fort Smith. Johnson practiced law in Fort Smith and Van Buren for more than 50 years and served as state senator from 1969-73. He was a U.S. Navy veteran. Johnson is survived by his wife of 44 years, Gray Loughridge Johnson; daughter, Kelly Bartholomy, and husband, Matt, of Palo Alto, California; son, Kevin Johnson, of Baltimore, Maryland.; step daughter, Sarah Johnson, of Cocoa Beach, Florida.; and stepson, John D. Wright, of Fort Smith. Read the obituary from the Southwest Times Record.

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.