Rebecca Smitherman has been elected as a Fellow to The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (“ACTEC”). ACTEC peer-elects a class of Fellows from across the United States as well as internationally, and its selection process is rigorous. ACTEC’s press release describes the organization and its membership as follows:
ACTEC is an organization of peer-elected trust and estate lawyers and law professors who are skilled and experienced in: the preparation of wills and revocable and irrevocable trusts; probate; trust, guardianship and conservatorship administration; transfer taxation planning and administration; integration of asset protection planning with the aforementioned practice areas; fiduciary income taxation; incapacity planning; elder law; employee benefit planning; donative planning; charitable planning; advising exempt organizations; and probate, trust, and protective proceedings litigation to improve and reform probate, trust, and tax laws, procedures, and professional responsibility.
To qualify for membership, a lawyer must have no fewer than 10 years’ experience in the active practice of trust and estate law. Lawyers and law professors are elected to be Fellows based on their outstanding reputation, exceptional skill, and substantial contributions to the field by lecturing, writing, teaching, and participating in bar leadership or legislative activities. It is their aim to improve and reform probate, trust and tax laws, procedures, and professional responsibility.
Rebecca is a Board-Certified Specialist in Estate Planning and Probate Law. She also maintains a high level of involvement with the North Carolina Bar Association, where she has served as a speaker and author for a number of programs, as well as Vice-Chair of the Legislative Committee of the Estate Planning and Fiduciary Law Section.
Rebecca is also an Adjunct Professor of Law at Wake Forest University School of Law, where she teaches Planning and Drafting Wills and Trusts. She is an integral member of our community and of our law firm.
Craige Jenkins Liipfert & Walker is pleased to announce that Crissy Dixon has joined the firm as an Associate. Crissy concentrates her practice in the areas of Estate Planning, Trust and Estate Administration, and Tax. She received her J.D. from Wake Forest in 2016 where she served as Editor-in-Chief of the Wake Forest Journal of Law & Policy and received The National Association of Women Lawyers Outstanding Student Award upon graduation. Crissy received her B.A. from Rutgers University in 2013 where she graduated magna cum laude from the School of Arts and Sciences Honors Program. While attending Wake Forest School of Law here in Winston-Salem, she served as a teaching assistant for several courses as well as a student attorney in the Elder Law Clinic.
The Attorneys and staff at Craige Jenkins understand the importance of giving back to our Community. Although we all have our own favorite nonprofit organizations near and dear to our heart, we thought it would be a good idea to put together a team for a joint project.
The firm decided to bring our individual efforts into a collective one with a Habitat House build.
On September 20, 2016, a group of 16 members from our office consisting of both attorneys and staff worked for a full day on a Habitat House build. It so happened that the house that we were working on needed the roof to be completed to be ready for a group coming a few days later to put shingles on the house.
If you have ever worked on a Habitat House, you know that there is a core group of volunteers along with Habitat Staff that supervises the work. With the help of these very skilled people, a group that may have little or no experience in construction can become a dynamic and efficient work force.
After positioning the scaffolding, we all went to work. Fortunately, it was a one story house so getting on the roof was not too intimidating. By the end of the day, this lawyerly group was an impressive construction crew. The roof was completed!
We enjoyed it so much that we agreed to do it again.
The staff and attorneys at CJLW held its second annual school supply drive, collecting pens, paper, scissors, notebooks, glue, highlighters and other necessities for area elementary, middle and high schools. The teachers and administrators were so appreciative to receive these much needed supplies, and we felt very lucky to be able to help our Triad students.
Gordon Jenkins was selected to the 2016 North Carolina Super Lawyers list, marking his selection on this list for the 11th consecutive year! Rebecca Smitherman and Brent Stephens were also selected this year as “Rising Stars” by North Carolina Super Lawyers, which is the 4th year for Rebecca and the 2nd for Brent. Both Gordon and Rebecca were also selected by their peers as part of the 2016 Best Lawyers in America list in the areas of Elder Law and Trusts and Estates. Gordon was also selected in the area of Litigation. Congratulations to our attorneys!
Congratulations to our own Bo Drew and Ann Sugg for a unanimous N.C. Supreme Court decision in favor of our clients. In High Point Bank and Trust Company v. Highmark Properties LLC, decided September 25, 2015, the Court addressed issues of first impression regarding guaranty payments, bank powers, foreclosures and deficiency judgments. We are proud of our trial attorneys for their months of hard work and their success on behalf of our clients.
In July, 2015, our newly merged law firm was featured on the cover of Forsyth Woman magazine, along with a feature article on the merger and our mission to be the best comprehensive full-service firm in the Triad. The new Craige Jenkins Liipfert & Walker LLP provides exceptional legal services to individuals, families and businesses in a caring, responsive, and dedicated manner. CJLW is excited for its future!
Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey. Over 52,000 leading attorneys cast more than 5.5 million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas. Lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed; therefore inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a singular honor.
Susan J. Ryan and Rebecca L. Smitherman have both been named among North Carolina’s Rising Stars for 2014. The Rising Star selection process is a comprehensive, good-faith and detailed attempt to produce a list of lawyers that have attained high peer recognition, meet ethical standards, and have demonstrated some degree of achievement in their field but includes criteria that a candidate must be either 40 years old or younger or in practice for ten years for less. No more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the State are selected for inclusion in Rising Stars.