The Power of Vision

FMG was founded by three practice group leaders of one of the South’s largest litigation firms. Since its beginning with eight attorneys, FMG has become one of the nation’s premier litigation firms.

Who We Are

We are proud of FMG’s history and enjoy sharing our story. Our history is at the core of who we are and how we have become the law firm we are today.

On April 1, 1997, Ted Freeman, Ben Mathis, Bart Gary, Phil Savrin, Mary Anne Ackourey, and Dana Maine embarked on the adventure of starting a new law firm. Our founders believed that focused subject matter experience and a client-centered approach would produce efficient and superior outcomes for their clients.

In the beginning, our law practice centered largely on labor and employment law, construction law, and civil rights defense. As FMG grew, we continued to stay deeply rooted in our core practice areas but also expanded into commercial litigation, data privacy and cyber, financial services, professional liability, insurance coverage, appellate cases, and catastrophic torts.

In addition to significant organic growth through the years, FMG celebrates and recognizes the legacy firms and lawyers who have joined us along the way. With each addition, we have been strengthened by the depth and quality of our new colleagues, and together, each time we became better than we were before.

Indeed, a fundamental tenet of our partners, staff, and administration is that we are “one office, one firm.” You will never hear us talk about a “main” office or “branch” office. Every FMG location is fully interrelated and connected with the rest by common professional commitments, intense professional values, superior work ethic, and a client-centered purpose based on the belief in a culture of service.

In 2008, we embarked on our expansion when Jack Hancock merged his firm with FMG and also brought us the unforgettable Bob Oliver whose story we hope you will take a moment to learn about. In 2013, we joined with our first group of lawyers outside of Georgia with the addition of Julie Marquis and her team in San Francisco. Our next group of new colleagues came to us in 2014 from the Spector Gadon firm in Philadelphia and Tampa.

In 2017, we completed two mergers that doubled the size of our firm. First, Chad Weaver and his financial services firm in Los Angeles joined us. Closely following was our merger in April of that year with the Gilbert, Kelly, Crowley & Jennett law firm, a venerable and highly respected firm that was over 75 years old and had offices throughout California. Led by Paul Bigley, this group of talented professionals added lawyers and staff in San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Sacramento.

Our explosive growth continued in 2019 when the majority of the Boston office of LeClair Ryan joined our firm. Thereafter, that same year, we moved into Pittsburgh and then into Lexington, Kentucky with a group of attorneys from Mazanec, Raskin & Ryder led by Barry Miller. We also further grew our Philadelphia office with the additions of Bill Catto and Josh Ferguson and their litigation teams.

During the pandemic of 2020, our growth did not stop. We opened our office in Providence, Rhode Island and also opened in March in Cherry Hill, New Jersey with a team of lawyers and staff from Litchfield Cavo led by Jack Shea and Bill Mead. Next, a group headed by Paul Piantino came from White and Williams and joined us in Newark.

In early 2021, we moved into Hartford, Connecticut with a team led by Steve Malitz from Ryan Ryan DeLuca. In December, 2021, we opened our Columbus, Ohio office with a group including Lisa Gentile, Doug Holthus, and Paul La Fayette, followed by the opening of our Cleveland, Ohio office with Kevin Norchi and the lawyers from Norchi Forbes.

In January 2022, we made our long-awaited entry into Texas, opening offices in Dallas and Houston with Tim Soefje and Bob Chadwick and the attorneys from the firm of Seltzer, Chadwick & Soefje. In March, FMG went to the Windy City opening an office in downtown Chicago headed by Jonathan Schwartz and Patrick Eckler from Goldberg Segalla. King Roy and Brad Purcell from Purcell & Wardrope soon brought us ten more lawyers to our growing Chicago office. In April of that year, we opened our third office in the Bay area with Walnut Creek led by Sharon Collier and Nandor Krause from the Severson & Werson firm. In August 2022, we opened in Nashville with the addition of Jason Pannu and lawyers from Lewis Thomason.

In January 2023, we began a significant expansion in the Southwest and Mountain regions by opening our office in Las Vegas with a group led by Michael Edwards from Messner Reeves, followed soon after in April 2023 by groups led by Lisa Lampkin and Jay Graif opening offices in Phoenix, Denver, and Albuquerque. Our growth in Texas continued in 2023 with a significant expansion of our Houston office with Marty Schexnayder and attorneys from the firm of Winget Spadafora & Schwartzberg. Likewise, in 2023, we expanded our Pittsburgh office with a team of employment lawyers led by Sunshine Fellows from Daugherty Lordan LLP.

At the start of 2024, we added a highly regarded trial team from Ward Greenberg Heller & Reidy led by Ed Greenberg, Gerhard Dietrich, and Dennis Callahan, which expanded our offices in Philadelphia and Cherry Hill, and we also opened a new office in Wilmington, Delaware led by Dan Young. We also opened our second office in Florida with the addition of Ft. Lauderdale.

Today, we are a national law firm of over 370 lawyers and another 250 administrative colleagues in 36 offices in 21 states. We remain practice-focused with elite lawyers throughout the country comprising our thirteen national practice sections. We are committed to having unparalleled capabilities in the areas of law in which we concentrate our practice.

Our law firm has a well-deserved reputation as one composed of seasoned trial lawyers capable of successfully representing clients in any courtroom in this country. We also have a reputation as practical, reasonable, and creative attorneys who align our strategy with the business needs of our clients. We understand that the right outcome depends upon what is truly best for our clients and that they define the result we seek.

This is the story of our law firm. We believe there is power in this story, and we appreciate you taking the time to learn it.

    • Rated by

      Super Lawyers Business Law

    • Recognized by

      Best Lawyers

    • Benchmark Litigation

      Star Litigator