Since our founding in 1963, McBrayer has provided successful representation to businesses and professionals throughout Kentucky, surrounding states and nationwide. Our clients continue to come back to us year after year, not only because of the swift response and personal attention from our experienced attorneys, but because we deliver quality counsel and results for reasonable fees across a wide range of legal matters.
We take a team approach to the challenging cases we handle. Our attorneys bring focused experience in diverse legal disciplines, enabling us to take on complex transactions and legal matters that straddle multiple areas of the law. With offices in Lexington and Louisville and a government relations office in Frankfort, Kentucky with a presence in Washington, D.C., we can also address cases that are far-reaching geographically.
Although we are skilled negotiators and arbitrators when appropriate, that is not where our advocacy stops. In the more intricate and high-stakes contested matters we handle, we prepare for the likelihood of trial where we are known for our preparedness and experience.
For over half a century, our firm has consistently delivered value to clients. As we have expanded into new areas of law, we have not wavered from that mission. We invite you to speak with one of our experienced Kentucky lawyers.
Banking, Lending & Finance
Business & Corporate Law
Commercial & Business Litigation
Employment Law for Employers
Estate Planning & Administration
Hospitality & Tourism Law
Internet & Media Law
Malpractice and Professional Liability Defense
Nonprofit Institutions & Associations
Politics, Elections, and Campaign Finance
Real Estate Law
Shopping Center & Retail Development
Trucking & Commercial Transportation
July 2020: McBrayer continues to attract outstanding legal talent, adding three attorneys to its Lexington office: Keeana Sajadi Boarman joins as Member from the firm of Frost Brown Todd, where she focused her practice on corporate transactional work and employee benefits. She’s a graduate of Duke University and the University of Kentucky College of Law. She is a member of the Junior League of Lexington and the Bluegrass Runners Club, Inc. and is an alumnus of Leadership Lexington (Class of 2011-2012). David T. Cecil has joined from Kopka Pinkus Dolin. His practice focuses on medical malpractice, professional liability defense and healthcare law. He’s a graduate of the University of Pikeville and the Northern Kentucky University Salmon P. Chase College of Law. David has coached youth basketball and mentors kids through the Upward Sports program, and he and his family attend Immanuel Baptist Church, where he plays guitar in the worship choir. Cassidy L. Sorrells came to McBrayer from Ward, Hocker & Thornton, PLLC, with a practice focusing primarily on insurance defense and civil litigation. She is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and the University of Kentucky College of Law, and has participated in such community events as the Tri for Sight Marathon, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s annual Light the Night Walk, and the Special Olympics of Kentucky’s Polar Plunge events. “We are excited to continue to add to a roster of top-quality talent with some of the best and brightest minds our community has to offer,” said James H. Frazier, III, Managing Member of McBrayer PLLC. “In addition to their commitment to client service, Keeana, David and Cassidy have given of themselves in service to the community at large. We welcome these three exceptional individuals to help us continue to serve both our clientele and the community.”
In a showing of the depth and breadth of outreach of the McBrayer Government Solutions team, lobbyists Sara Osborne and James Higdon have been tapped to represent Kentucky at the national party nominating conventions. Osborne has been named as a delegate for Kentucky to the Democratic National Convention, while Higdon has been named an alternate delegate to the Republican National Convention. “The fact that each of these rising stars within our firm has been chosen to join their respective delegations demonstrates the level of political acumen displayed by MML&K Government Solutions as a whole,” said Sean Cutter, Executive Director of MML&K Government Solutions. “We’re very proud of the selection of both Sara and James to represent Kentucky, and we’re proud of the fact that MML&K Government Solutions will have a presence at both party nominating conventions this year.”
March 2020: Chris Nolan of Kentucky member firm McBrayer’s MML&K Government Solutions has been named by Leadership Louisville to the Bingham Fellows Class of 2020. The Bingham Fellows program brings together leaders from the Louisville community to address critical issues in the region. Mr. Nolan has more than two decades of lobbying and policy experience as a member of MML&K Government Solutions. Also at McBrayer, Bruce Paul joins as a litigator in the firm’s intellectual property group. He is a graduate of the University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law.
February 2020: Scott Schuette has joined Kentucky member firm McBrayer in its Lexington office. Mr. Schuette previously was a staff attorney in the Fayette Circuit Court for the Honorable John Reynolds and the Honorable Julie Muth Goodman. He will join the firm’s litigation department, where he will focus his work on construction law, eminent domain, dispute resolution and general litigation issues. Mr. Schuette is a graduate of Barry University Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law.
December 2019: The recently released Kentucky Super Lawyers® 2020 list includes Kentucky member firm McBrayer attorneys Stephen Amato, Jaron Blandford, Emily Cowles, Cynthia Effinger, James Frazier, III, Calvin Fulkerson, David Guarnieri, Douglas Logsdon, Robert Maclin, Robert Watson and Jack Wheat. Both Jack Wheat and Emily Cowles were also included in the top 50 list for 2020 Kentucky Super Lawyers® and Ms. Cowles was named to its 2020 list of top 25 women lawyers.
November 2019: Stephen Amato of Kentucky member firm McBrayer has been inducted into the Order of the Writ’s inaugural class. The Order of the Writ is a fraternal and charitable organization that embraces the spirit of Kentucky bourbon education, responsibility, environmental stewardship, history, scholarship and an unwavering commitment to the furtherance of America’s only native spirit. A member of the Alliance of Alcohol Industry Attorneys and Consultants, Mr. Amato focuses his practice on representing alcoholic beverage producers, wine and spirits wholesalers, malt beverage distributors, and on- and off-premise retailers. Also at McBrayer, the firm has once again earned a spot on the U.S. News – Best Lawyers® in America list of “Best Law Firms.” The firm’s Lexington office was given “first-tier” recognition in administrative and regulatory Law, commercial litigation, criminal defense (white-collar), healthcare law, land use and zoning law, litigation (real estate), litigation (trusts and estates) and real estate law. The firm’s Louisville office was also given “first-tier” recognition in the area of litigation (intellectual property and trademark law).
October 2019: Litigator and labor lawyer Claire Vujanovic has joined Kentucky member firm McBrayer in its Louisville office. Ms. Vujanovic began her career at the National Labor Relations Board in Chicago before practicing with firms in Asheville, North Carolina, and Louisville, Kentucky. She will provide employer-focused labor and employment legal representation and consulting services. Ms. Vujanovic received her J.D. from George Washington University Law School.
September 2019: An unprecedented 22 attorneys from Kentucky member firm McBrayer were selected for inclusion on the 2020 Best Lawyers® list, including Stephen Amato, Jaron Blandford, Emily Cowles, Cynthia Effinger, James Frazier, III, Calvin Fulkerson, David Guarnieri, Mary Estes Haggin, Lisa English Hinkle, Douglas Logsdon, Robert Maclin, III, W. Terry McBrayer, Luke Morgan, Alan Pauw, W. Brent Rice, Ivan Schell, Christopher Shaughnessy, Terri Stallard, Robert Watson, Jack Wheat, Luke Wingfield, and Jon Woodall. In addition, W. Terry McBrayer was named a 2020 Lawyer of the Year in the field of administrative and regulatory law. Also at McBrayer, Emily Cowles was elected to the board of directors of Women Leading Kentucky, a statewide networking organization dedicated to advancing opportunities for women to lead and grow professionally. In addition, Drake Staples has joined the firm in its Lexington office as a litigator. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law.
August 2019: Anne-Tyler Morgan of Kentucky member firm McBrayer has been appointed by Governor Matt Bevin to the Advisory Council for Medical Assistance. The Council develops Medicaid policy and program administration recommendations and advises the Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services regarding Medicaid health and medical care. She will serve a four-year term as one of nineteen Council members, joining the Secretary of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, representatives of healthcare industry organizations, and healthcare consumer advocates. Ms. Morgan previously served as deputy commissioner for the Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services and as senior advisor to the Secretary of the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services.
July 2019: Seven attorneys from Reed Weitkamp Schell & Vice in Louisville, Kentucky, have joined Kentucky member firm McBrayer in its Louisville office. They include Ivan Schell, Alan Pauw, Maria Doyle, Michael Oyler, Trevor Earl, Ridley Sandidge, Jr., and Maxine Bizer. Mr. Schell focuses his practice on corporate law, estate planning and administration, healthcare and nonprofit institutions and associations; Mr. Pauw, on corporate law, employee benefits, healthcare and taxation; Ms. Doyle, on corporate law, mergers and acquisitions, sales and dissolutions, employment law and taxation; Mr. Oyler, on commercial litigation, employment law, healthcare and intellectual property; Mr. Earl, on administrative law, bankruptcy, commercial litigation, commercial lease disputes, creditor’s rights and foreclosures, dispute resolution and estate and trust litigation; Mr. Sandidge, on business disputes, business torts, civil rights, commercial litigation, contract and partnership disputes, insurance defense and product liability litigation; and Ms. Bizer, on estate planning and administration. With the addition of these new members, McBrayer has moved its Louisville office to 500 West Jefferson Street in suite 2400.
May 2019: Joshua Beam has joined Kentucky member firm McBrayer in its Lexington office. Mr. Beam has been in private practice for seven years and worked in the legal industry for 12 years prior to and while attending law school. He is a graduate of the University of Louisville Louis Brandeis School of Law. He also holds a master’s in philosophy of economics from the University of East London. Mr. Beam’s practice is focused primarily on estate planning, probate, and corporate law.
January 2019: Nineteen attorneys from Kentucky member firm McBrayer have been listed in the 2019 edition of U.S. News – Best Lawyers® in America, including Stephen Amato, Jaron Blandford, Emily Cowles, Cynthia Effinger, James Frazier, III, Calvin Fulkerson, David Guarnieri, Mary Estes Haggin, Lisa English Hinkle, Douglas Logsdon, Robert Maclin, III, Terry McBrayer, Luke Morgan, Brent Rice, Christopher Shaughnessy, Terri Stallard, Robert Watson, Jack Wheat, and Jon Woodall. Stephen Amato (employment law: management), James Frazier, III (litigation: real estate), David Guarnieri (criminal defense: white collar), and Cynthia Effinger (litigation: labor and employment) were also all awarded “Lawyer of the Year” recognition in their respective areas of specialization. Also at McBrayer, Kenton Ball has joined the firm in its Lexington office, where he will practice tax law. Mr. Ball has litigated tax matters before the U.S. Tax Court, the Kentucky Claims Commission, and local boards of assessment appeals. He is a former division of legal services attorney with the Kentucky Revenue Cabinet and subsequently headed the tax department of a large CPA firm in its Lexington office. He completed an LL.M. in taxation at Boston University School of Law.
December 2018: Anne-Tyler Morgan has rejoined Kentucky member firm McBrayer in its Lexington office. For the past two years, she has served as senior policy advisor and deputy general counsel for the Kentucky House of Representatives, deputy commissioner for the Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services, and senior advisor to the secretary of the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services. Having led the compliance department of a Fortune 500 managed care organization before entering private practice, Ms. Morgan will primarily consult with health care stakeholders, representing clients on issues ranging from compliance with Kentucky’s complex regulatory framework to the continued transformation of the state’s adoption and foster care systems. She will also assist clients with legal issues related to campaign finance, elections, and political action committees. Ms. Morgan is a graduate of DePaul University College of Law.
November 2018: Peter Rosene has joined the intellectual property team at Kentucky member firm McBrayer. Mr. Rosene graduated from the University of Kentucky College of Law, where he served as editor in chief of the Kentucky Journal of Equine, Agriculture & Natural Resources Law. After graduation, he clerked for Judge Ernesto Scorsone of the Fayette Circuit Court. His practice will focus primarily on copyrights, trademarks and commercial litigation. Also at McBrayer, Trevor Nichols and Thomas “Neal” Morris have joined the firm in its Lexington office. Mr. Nichols will focus his practice on litigation, while Mr. Morris will concentrate on hospitality law, specifically alcoholic beverage regulation. Both are graduates of the University of Kentucky College of Law.
September 2018: Nineteen attorneys from Kentucky member firm McBrayer have been listed in the 2019 edition of Best Lawyers® in America including, in the Lexington office, Stephen Amato, Jaron Blandford, Emily Cowles, James Frazier, III, Calvin Fulkerson, David Guarnieri, Mary Estes Haggin, Lisa English Hinkle, Douglas Logsdon, Robert Maclin, III, Terry McBrayer, Luke Morgan, Brent Rice, Christopher Shaughnessy, Terri Stallard and Jon Woodall; and in the Louisville office, Cynthia Effinger, Robert Watson and Jack Wheat. Best Lawyer® also ascribed Lawyer of the Year status in their respective markets to Stephen Amato, James Frazier, III, David Guarnieri and Cynthia Effinger.
August 2018: James “Jamie” McKiernan, III has joined the litigation team in Kentucky member firm McBrayer’s Louisville office. Following the completion of a clerkship in its office, Mr. McKiernan spent four years with the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office, where he managed civil litigation cases. He has practiced in both state and federal court. Mr. McKiernan is a graduate of the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law.
June 2018: Virginia “Ginny” Lawson has rejoined Kentucky member firm McBrayer as a member of the firm’s real estate practice. Ms. Lawson began her career as a REALTOR®, later becoming a lawyer. In addition to representing real estate brokers and their companies, she practices in the areas of creditor’s rights and professional liability defense, as well as estate settlement and probate. She is a graduate of the University of Louisville School of Law. Also at McBrayer, Preston Worley has been named Outstanding Young Lawyer by the Fayette County Bar Association. The award honors a member of the FCBA who has practiced in Fayette County less than ten years and who has both admirably fulfilled his duties as an attorney and shown dedication to the improvement of the community.
April 2018: Morehead State University president Jay Morgan announced at a board of regents meeting March 29th the creation of the W. Terry McBrayer Presidential Lecture Series in Government and Leadership, honoring Kentucky member firm McBrayer McGinnis Leslie Kirkland name partner and SCG Legal past chairman Terry McBrayer. A 1959 graduate of Morehead State, Mr. McBrayer was elected to five terms in the Kentucky House of Representatives, serving as House speaker pro tempore and majority leader. He also chaired the Kentucky Democratic Party, having been elected to four consecutive terms as Democratic national committeeman from Kentucky and as a super delegate at the 2008 Democratic national convention.
March 2018: Steve Amato, Emily Cowles, Cindy Effinger, Jim Frazier, Calvin Fulkerson, Rob Maclin, and Jack Wheat of Kentucky member firm McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie & Kirkland have been named to the 2018 list of Super Lawyers®, an honor accorded only 5% of attorneys who practice in Kentucky. Not only has Emily Cowles been include on this list for more than five years, this year she is recognized as one of the top 50 attorneys in Kentucky, as well as one of the top 25 women lawyers. She has also recently been appointed by the Chief Justice of the Kentucky Supreme Court to a three-year term as an attorney member of the Kentucky Bar Association Inquiry Commission. Additionally, Brittany Roethemeier and Ross Ewing remain on the Super Lawyers® list of Rising Stars for 2018, where they are joined by Amber Knouff, who recently joined the firm and is this year making the list for the third time.
January 2018: Preston Clark Worley of Kentucky member firm McBrayer has been appointed by Lexington Mayor Jim Gray to the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council, filling the unexpired term of Councilmember Jennifer Scutchfield. A graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Law, Mr. Worley focuses his practice on real estate, transactional, administrative law and litigation matters. His primary areas of concentration are land development, property management, real estate, affordable and multifamily housing, corporate and nonprofit governance, and alcoholic beverage control law.
December 2017: The following lawyers from Kentucky member firm McBrayer have been named to the 2018 list of Super Lawyers in their respective fields of practice: Steve Amato, Emily Cowles, Cindy Effinger, Jim Frazier, Calvin Fulkerson, Rob Maclin, and Jack Wheat. In addition, Emily Cowles has not only been named to the list for more than five years running, but she has also been recognized this year as one of the top 50 attorneys in Kentucky, as well as one of the Bluegrass State’s top 25 women lawyers. Additionally, Brittany Roethemeier and Ross Ewing remain on the list of Rising Stars for 2018, where they are newly joined by associate Amber Knouff, who joined the firm earlier this year.
November 2017: Elizabeth Barrera has joined the litigation team at Kentucky member firm McBrayer in the firm’s Lexington office. Prior to joining the firm, she served as a federal judicial clerk for the Eastern District of Kentucky. A graduate of the University of Cincinnati College of Law, Ms. Barrera will focus her practice in the areas of business and corporate law, commercial and business litigation, employment litigation and estate and trust litigation.
September 2017: Twenty lawyers from Kentucky member firm McBrayer McGinnis Leslie & Kirkland have been named to the 2018 list of The Best Lawyers in America®, three of whom also had “Lawyer of the Year” status conferred upon them. Only four percent of practicing attorneys achieve “Lawyer of the Year” status, which recognizes quality of practice, scope of expertise, and high peer ratings. Among those from the firm on the Best Lawyers list are Stephen Amato, Jaron Blandford, Emily Cowles, Cecil Dunn, Cynthia Effinger, James Frazier, III, Calvin Fulkerson, David Guarnieri, Mary Estes Haggin, Lisa English Hinkle, Douglas Logsdon, Robert Maclin, III, Terry McBrayer, Luke Morgan, Brent Rice, Christopher Shaughnessy, Terri Stallard, Robert Watson, Jack Wheat and Jon Woodall. In addition, “Lawyer of the Year” recognition was awarded to Stephen Amato, for litigation (trusts and estates); David Guarnieri, for criminal defense (general practice); and Mary Estes Haggin, for real estate law.
July 2017: Bill George has joined Kentucky member firm McBrayer McGinnis Leslie & Kirkland in the firm’s healthcare practice group. Mr. George began his legal career as a prosecutor at the Fayette County Attorney’s Office. After working in medical malpractice, he joined Frost Brown Todd, where he not only helped defend long-term care providers, but also provided critical assistance to national and international insurance carriers. In this role, Mr. George supported clients’ insurance regulatory and compliance operations, market conduct examinations, insurance product development and insolvency proceedings while coordinating and conducting regulatory and administrative hearings across the United States. He is a graduate of Valparaiso University Law School.
January 2017: Jason Morgan has been promoted to partner at Kentucky member firm McBrayer, McGinnis, Leslie & Kirkland. Mr. Morgan joined the firm in 2012, after working as a trial attorney with Freund, Freeze & Arnold in Cincinnati. A key part of the firm’s litigation team, his practice focuses on general liability, construction, guardianship, estate, trust, and commercial litigation. Also at McBrayer, Jason Hollon has joined the firm’s litigation team, having previously served as a law clerk to the Honorable Hanly A. Ingram, U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Eastern District of Kentucky. Joining the firm’s corporate law tram is Lindsey Anderson, whose practice will focus on banking, lending and finance and commercial lending. Both Mr. Hollon and Ms. Anderson are graduates of the University of Kentucky College of Law.
Finally, Bethany Atkins Rice joins the firm in its estate planning group. She previously worked as assistant general counsel for the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet, handling complex tax issues for the Cabinet’s department of revenue, both at the administrative level and in litigation before the Kentucky Board of Tax Appeals (now the Kentucky Claims Commission), the circuit courts, the Kentucky Court of Appeals, and the Kentucky Supreme Court.