Barnett, the managing partner of the firm’s Nashville office, feels this particular honor carries with it a more personal meaning since attorneys’ nominations come from both the community in Nashville and their peers within the legal profession. According to Barnett, there aren’t too many honors that can trump those you’ve received from your opponents in the courtroom.
“I am honored to be recognized in this way by other lawyers and my community,” Barnett said. “I work hard to represent my clients fiercely, tirelessly and honorably. The fact that my peers, many of whom I have litigated against, count me among the best is a treasured confirmation that I am achieving my goals.”
Each year, the Nashville Business Journal selects the top attorneys in the city by asking members of the community to nominate individuals in the legal field who should be recognized for their work. Nominated attorneys are then grouped together by the size of their firms: small, medium, large and corporate counsel.
After the community selects its candidates, attorneys are then asked to vote by rating the top ten lawyers within each section.
Despite the public perception many people may have of plaintiffs’ attorneys as being hardnosed advocates in court, Barnett says there is much more to what makes a good attorney than the ability to argue on behalf of clients.
“Being a good lawyer takes hard work and determination, of course, but it isn’t just about fighting,” Barnett said. “The best lawyers know that being aggressive is important but it’s just one tool attorneys can use to achieve their clients’ goals.”
At the end of the day, Barnett said, the validation of one’s peers serves as the ultimate compass for any attorney looking to be the best he or she can be for any client.
“To be the best, lawyers have to be multi-faceted, creative and strategic, and they must maintain credibility with the courts and opposing counsel. The respect of my peers is a meaningful validation for me that I am on the right track.”