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Chambliss, Bahner and Stophel Attorneys Receive Special Honor
Three attorneys with Chambliss, Bahner & Stophel, P.C., have been honored as Client Service All-Stars by BTI Consulting Group in its 13th annual review of outstanding lawyers recommended by the nation’s leading corporations. William P. Aiken, Richard W. Bethea and William H. Pickering are among an exclusive group of 330 attorneys recognized for providing exceptional service and value to their clients. Only one other Tennessee attorney was named as an All-Star by BTI.
Aiken, Bethea and Pickering were also part of a select group named by BTI as Client Service MVPs—lawyers who have received All-Star recognition for two or more consecutive years. Pickering was honored as a 4-Year MVP and was one of only three attorneys in the nation to be named as an All-Star for four consecutive years. Aiken was one of only 12 attorneys honored as a 3-Year MVP, and Bethea was recognized as a 2-Year MVP.
“A recognition like this, based exclusively on client nominations, is truly an honor,” said Dana Perry, president and managing shareholder of Chambliss. “We strive every day to act as partners with our clients and to provide the best value and service possible. This distinguishing acknowledgement is a pat on the back for the entire Chambliss team and an exceptional honor for these three attorneys.”
Aiken was recognized by BTI for his work in commercial contracts and business transactions. His practice also includes corporate and securities law and mergers and acquisitions for clients in several business and manufacturing sectors. Aiken is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Corporate and Mergers and Acquisitions and has been honored by that publication as the Chattanooga Corporate Law Lawyer of the Year.
Bethea was recognized for his work in product liability defense. He focuses his practice on the trial of complex business cases, with particular emphasis on product liability defense, manufacturers' risk prevention, patent infringement, misappropriation of trade secrets, and commercial and consumer finance claims. He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Product Liability Litigation and other complex litigation.
Pickering was recognized for his work in labor and employment law. He serves as labor counsel for some of the Chattanooga area's largest manufacturers and has been lead counsel in complex business and employment litigation in several states. Pickering is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Labor and Employment Law and Labor and Employment Litigation.
The BTI Client Service All-Stars List is the only continuous, independently researched benchmark study of client expectations and needs in the legal industry. Attorneys are selected for their exceptional commitment to client service, including the lawyer’s focus on the client’s needs, innovation, understanding of the client’s business, exceptional legal skills, outsized value and outstanding results. With self-nominations forbidden, the only way to be honored as an All-Star is to be nominated by a client in an unprompted manner. BTI conducted nearly 300 individual interviews with corporate counsel at Fortune 1000 companies and other major corporations in more than 15 industries to develop this year’s All-Star list.
This announcement comes only weeks after Chambliss’ recognition for stellar customer service on BTI’s Client Service A-Team for the fourth consecutive year.
To learn more about The BTI Client Service All-Stars, visit www.bticlientserviceallstars.com.
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Last Update on September 17, 2014 07:32 GMT
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Federal Reserve concludes its latest policymaking meeting this afternoon, and analysts will be examining their statement for any changes in tone.
The Fed has held a key short-term interest rate close to zero for more than five years, making it cheaper for companies and consumers to borrow and boosting corporate profits. But investors widely expect the Fed to start raising rates in the middle of next year.
There are three economic reports of note this morning. The Labor Department releases its Consumer Price Index for August, while the Commerce Department releases the current account trade deficit for the second quarter.
A little later this morning, the National Association of Home Builders releases its housing market index for September.
And from the corporate world, FedEx reports its quarterly financial results before the market opens.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Americans, Japanese and many Europeans aren't sold on the benefits of trade. But people in China and other developing countries are far more convinced that it delivers jobs and higher wages.
That's according to a Pew Research Center international survey released Tuesday.
The center found that 50 percent of Americans say trade destroys jobs, while just 20 percent say it creates them. People in Italy, France and Japan are also far more likely to view trade as a job destroyer than as a job creator.
In China, Pew found 67 percent say trade creates jobs, and 61 percent say it raises wages. People in most emerging-market countries, from Vietnam to Tunisia, share that view of trade.
Pew surveyed over 48,000 people in 44 countries from March 17 to June 5.
UNDATED (AP) -- A number of the NFL's biggest sponsors say they are not happy with the recent controversy that has engulfed the league.
Anheuser-Busch issued a statement on Tuesday saying it was "disappointed and increasingly concerned" by recent incidents and was not yet satisfied with the league's response. It says it has shared its concerns and expectations with the NFL.
The league has come under fire for its handling of former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice's assault of his then-fiancee. The Minnesota Vikings have also been criticized for allowing Adrian Peterson to play while he faces a charge of abuse for spanking his 4-year-old son with a wooden switch.
McDonald's, Visa and Campbell Soup Co. say they have also voiced similar concerns to the league.
Sponsorship consultancy IEG says Anheuser-Busch's sponsorship fees alone are worth an estimated $50 million a year to the NFL.
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) -- NASA is a giant step closer to launching Americans again from U.S. soil.
On Tuesday, the space agency announced it has picked Boeing and SpaceX to transport astronauts to the International Space Station in the next few years.
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden named the winners at a late-afternoon news conference at Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The news had been eagerly anticipated for weeks.
The deal will end NASA's expensive reliance on Russia. U.S. astronauts have been riding Russian rockets ever since NASA's shuttles retired in 2011. The latest price tag is $71 million per seat.
NASA has set a goal of 2017 for the first launch under the commercial crew program. Both companies will use crew capsules. Launches will originate from Cape Canaveral.
TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- A new federal report finds hospitals in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut were not prepared to meet the challenges of Superstorm Sandy.
The study from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service's Inspector General Office was released Wednesday. It's based on surveys of 172 hospitals hit hard by the storm in October 2012.
It finds that hospitals had surges in patients that were unexpected as well as power outages and problems with backup generators and transportation to get employees into work.
It says nearly 90 percent of the hospitals faced "critical challenges."
In many cases, the issues had been identified in citations for deficiencies issued in the years before the storm.
NEW YORK (AP) -- Endo International PLC says it is making an unsolicited offer for Auxilium Pharmaceuticals that values Auxilium at $28.10 per share.
The deal is worth $1.41 billion in cash and stock, based on Auxilium's shares outstanding. Endo values the offer at $2.2 billion. It comes at a premium of 31 percent based on the Tuesday closing price of Auxilium shares.
Dublin-based Endo says the two companies have complementary products and added that there are significant opportunities for savings.
Auxilium, based in Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania, is struggling with reduced sales of its testosterone gel Testim and said this month that it would cut 30 percent of its workforce as part of a plan to save $75 million per year.
Auxilium Pharmaceuticals Inc. shares are up about 4 percent for the year to date.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- California will no longer be the only western state with a pump-as-you-please approach to groundwater.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Tuesday requiring local agencies with depleted supplies to begin managing their wells. The state can intervene if necessary.
The worst drought in a generation gave momentum to three bills by Assemblyman Roger Dickinson of Sacramento and Sen. Fran Pavley of Agoura Hills, both Democrats.
Groundwater makes up nearly 60 percent of the state's water use during dry years but is not monitored and managed the same way as water from reservoirs and rivers.
Over-pumping of groundwater has led vast swaths of land to sink.
Republicans and Central Valley Democrats criticized the legislation, saying it punishes well-managed agencies and infringes on water rights.
DALLAS (AP) -- Customer-service agents at American Airlines are voting overwhelmingly to join a union and reverse a "no" vote in 2013.
Federal labor officials announced the results Tuesday in voting that covered about 14,000 employees at airports and reservations centers and home-based agents.
About 86 percent of those voting are favoring representation by the Communications Workers of America and the Teamsters. The CWA lost a previous election in January 2013 by about 150 votes.
CWA President Larry Cohen says the difference in the outcome is that unlike previous management, American's current executives did not campaign against the union.
Negotiations on a contract covering wages and other items are expected to begin this fall.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Corinthian Colleges is being sued by the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for what it calls a "predatory lending scheme."
The CFPB is seeking more than $500 million for borrowers who used the for-profit education company's private student loans. The CFPB says that Corinthian misled students about their job prospects, in some cases paying employers to offer temporary jobs to graduates.
The agency also says Corinthian charged as much as $75,000 for a bachelor's degree and pushed students into private loans with interest rates of roughly 15 percent, more than double the rate for a federal loan.
The agency says that more than 60 percent of Corinthian students with those loans defaulted within three years.
Shares of Corinthian Colleges Inc., based in Santa Ana, California, plunged almost 30 percent Tuesday.
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