FMG is pleased to announce that David Cole has been made a Partner of the Firm. Also, Cassondra Anderson, Anthony Del Rio, James Dervin, La’Vonda McLean and Stephanie Stewart have recently joined the Firm as Associates. Carlissa Carson, Jason Mitchell, Kathleen Dod and Shawn Kalfus have also joined the Firm within the past year.
David Cole was elected a partner of the firm, effective January 1, 2012. Mr. Cole is a member of the firm's Labor and Employment Law practice group, and he focuses his practice exclusively in the representation of businesses and local governments. Mr. Cole has extensive experience representing employers in all aspects of labor and employment law, including employment discrimination claims, wage and hour claims, family and medical leave claims, and restrictive covenents. Mr. Cole also helps employers prepare employment policies and contracts, and advises employers on day-to-day issues ranging from immigration compliance to workplace technology and social media issues.
Mr. Cole was recently selected as a Georgia Super Lawyers "Rising Star," as published by Law & Politics and Atlanta Magazine. Mr. Cole is a frequent author and speaker on employment law issues, and currently is Chair of the Employment Law Committee for the Georgia Defense Lawyer's Association and Co-Chair of the YLD Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of Georgia. Mr. Cole also was recently named a Board Member of the Atlanta Chapter of the Federal Bar Association.
Mr. Cole joined the firm after graduating from the Wake Forest University School of Law, where he earned his Juris Doctor degree, was a member of the National Moot Court Team and Student Trial Bar, and was selected to the National Order of Barristers. Mr. Cole is originally from Redmond, Washington and received his undergraduate degree in Business Administration, magna cum laude, from the University of Washington with a concentration in Information Systems.
Mr. Cole is very active in the community and his church, and was a member of the 2011 class of Leadership Cobb. His wife, Meredith, is also an attorney. They currently have one child, Wesley, who is 20 months old.
Anthony Del Rio is an Associate in the Labor and Employment Law section of Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. Mr. Del Rio received his undergraduate degree in Business from Georgia State University, where he was awarded the Faculty Scholarship Award and graduated summa cum laude. He received his Juris Doctor from Duke University School of Law, where he was the Executive Editor for the Duke Journal of Constitutional Law & Public Policy and the Robert William & Robert Wheaton Walter Scholar. During law school, Mr. Del Rio spent a summer with the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention Office of General Counsel and a semester with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.
James Dervin is an Associate in the Government Liability practice group of Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. He specializes in local government representation on issues ranging from zoning, ordinance drafting, civil rights and general liability. Mr. Dervin received his B.A. in Political Science and History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and then received his J.D. from the University of Georgia School of Law, cum laude. While in law school, Mr. Dervin was on the Moot Court executive board, and he also interned with the Association County Commissioners of Georgia, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Athens-Clarke County Attorney's Office.
La’Vonda McLean is an Associate in the Labor and Employment section of Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. Ms. McLean received her B.B.A. in Risk Management and Insurance from the University of Georgia and her J.D. from Howard University School of Law. During law school, she was an executive board member of the Charles Hamilton Houston National Moot Court Team, a senior editor of the Human Rights and Globalization Law Review, and a student attorney with the Civil Rights Clinic. Ms. McLean also completed an externship with the Honorable Brian Holeman of the District of Columbia Superior Court.
Stephanie Stewart is an Associate in the Construction Law and Commercial and Complex Litigation practice groups at Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. She received her B.B.A. in International Business, with a minor in Spanish, from the University of Georgia, summa cum laude. While at the University of Georgia, Ms. Stewart was in the Honors Program and graduated with Highest Honors. She then attended Georgia Institute of Technology for graduate school, where she received a M.S. in Economics. Ms. Stewart received her J.D. from Georgia State University College of Law, magna cum laude. While in law school, she served as the President of the Moot Court Honor Society and Managing Editor of the Georgia State University Law Review.
Jason Mitchell is an Associate in the Labor and Employment Law section of Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. Mr. Mitchell received a bachelor of science degree in Business Administration from Louisiana Tech University and a J.D. from Barry University, where he graduated magna cum laude. While at Barry, he served on the Barry Law Review.
Kathleen Dod is an Associate in the Business Liability and Insurance Law and Commercial and Complex Litigation practice groups of Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. She works on insurance coverage disputes, as well as liability matters, such as premises and professional liability and other negligence claims. Ms. Dod also has experience in general commercial litigation, such as partnership/shareholder disputes, real estate litigation and contract disputes.
Shawn Kalfus is an Associate in the Transportation Law practice group of Freeman Mathis & Gary, LLP. Mr. Kalfus focuses his practice on the defense of wrongful death and catastrophic injury cases, with a particular emphasis on the defense of motor vehicle companies, their drivers and insurers. Mr. Kalfus has significant experience litigating catastrophic tractor-trailer accidents, advising motor carriers and their drivers on compliance with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, and defending claims for negligent hiring, training, retention and entrustment.