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ADH Firm History and Overview

The firm was founded on February 14, 1954, by Foster D. Arnett, when he decided to leave a well-established Knoxville firm to open his own office on the 12th floor of the Hamilton National Bank Building in the heart of downtown Knoxville. Jack B. Draper joined Mr. Arnett in 1958, and together they focused their practice on civil litigation, primarily in the area of insurance defense. Seven years later, Lewis R. Hagood joined the firm, bringing with him considerable skill and expertise in the field of labor and employment law.

From that point forward, the firm has steadily grown to its current size of seventeen attorneys by providing quality, client-oriented, legal services in an efficient, expeditious and cost-effective manner. In 1980, the firm relocated to the 23rd floor of the First Tennessee Plaza, which is within walking distance of all local state and federal courts.

During the firm's history, its civil litigation practice has steadily grown to encompass areas including, but not limited to, aviation, asbestos, commercial, construction, corporate, health care, insurance defense, personal injury, products liability, professional malpractice, torts, trucking and workers' compensation law.

Additionally, the firm also offers a wide range of legal services in such fields as labor and employment law, ERISA, wills, trusts, estate planning and corporate and commercial transactions.

Management of the firm is overseen by a management committee composed of the four most senior partners: William A. Simms, F. Michael Fitzpatrick, Rick L. Powers and Dan Rhea.

The firm is privileged to represent a wide variety of personal and corporate clients, many of which are prominent local, regional, and national corporations. It also has close ties with the University of Tennessee College of Law, where many of the firm's members received their legal education and where several have been members of the faculty.

Arnett, Draper & Hagood, LLP also maintains a strong commitment to the legal profession and the organized bar. Its founder, Foster Arnett, served as president of the Tennessee State Bar Association and five of the firm's members have served as president of the Knoxville Bar Association. Two members are currently Fellows of the Tennessee Bar Foundation and several of the firm's members currently hold various offices in the local Bar Association.

A strong work ethic, a commitment to preparation, dedication to the highest ethical standards and principles, as well as a strong commitment to the community and the legal profession, have been guiding principles by which the firm has practiced since its inception. The firm continues to grow and expand its range of legal services by adhering to these tried and true values while constantly adapting to and growing with the ever changing demands placed upon the firm and its clients.

In conclusion, the philosophy of Arnett, Draper & Hagood, LLP in serving our clients is both simple and effective. We strive to become partners with our clients. Our lawyers place a premium on listening to the client and learning the client's philosophy and goals. We understand and meet our clients' needs for prompt responsiveness in all communications. We provide clients with our best objective professional analysis and assist clients to achieve their stated goals within the bounds of applicable law.

The firm has also earned the distinction of being listed in Martindale-Hubbell's Bar Registry of Pre-Eminent Lawyers. This publication is limited to only the most distinguished law practices, those who have achieved an "AV" rating in the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory. The "A" signifies the highest level of legal ability, while the "V" denotes "very high" adherence to the professional standards of conduct, ethics, reliability and diligence.