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Two Smith Moore Leatherwood Attorneys Among First In State To Become Certified In New Specialty

Two Smith Moore Leatherwood Attorneys Among First In State To Become Certified In New Specialty

December 7, 2011

Attorneys certified as appellate practice specialists by North Carolina State Bar

RALEIGH, N.C. — Smith Moore Leatherwood attorneys Jim Exum, Jr. and Beth Brooks Scherer, were recently certified by the North Carolina State Bar's Board of Legal Specialization as appellate practice specialists. Scherer and Exum were among the state's first group of 15 board certified appellate specialists. Smith Moore Leatherwood is the only law firm in the state to have two board certified appellate practice specialists.

"We are extremely proud of Jim and Beth's accomplishments," said David Otterson, partner in charge of the firm's Raleigh office. "They've always been among the finest appellate attorneys in the state, and their official recognition as specialists simply confirms that."

The State Bar certifies lawyers as specialists to provide relevant, truthful, and reliable information to consumers of legal services. Certification helps consumers identify lawyers who have experience and skill in a certain practice area. Certification also encourages lawyers to improve their expertise in particular areas of practice and provides them with a legitimate way of informing the public and other lawyers of this expertise. A lawyer may not claim to be an appellate practice specialist unless they meet minimum standards set by the State Bar and are certified by the Board of Legal Specialization.

In addition, both Exum and Scherer were appointed to serve on North Carolina's first appellate practice specialization committee. The committee creates standards and administers exams to determine future board certified specialists in appellate practice. The committee is comprised of North Carolina appellate judges, as well as private practice attorneys with extensive experience in appellate practice. North Carolina Supreme Court Justice Robert Edmunds is chair of the appellate practice specialization committee and Scherer serves as vice-chair.

Exum practices out of the firm's Greensboro office and leads the appellate practice group. He assists clients with all facets of state and federal court appeals. Prior to joining Smith Moore Leatherwood, Exum served as Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court for eight years. He received the Judge John J. Parker award from the North Carolina Bar Association and was included in Law & Politics Magazine as one of North Carolina's Super Lawyers in the appellate division for the past six years.

Scherer, an attorney in the Raleigh office, is a member of the appellate and litigation practice groups, with a key focus on appellate litigation in North Carolina state and federal courts. She is a member of the North Carolina Bar Association's appellate rules committee and has written at length on various appellate topics. Scherer was selected for inclusion in North Carolina Super Lawyers' Rising Stars Edition for 2010 and 2011. Prior to joining the firm, Scherer served as a judicial law clerk for the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Emily Browder
(336) 553-1803

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