N.C. Court of Appeals Chief Judge Sidney S. Eagles, Jr. will join the Raleigh office of Smith Moore LLP in February. A 21-year veteran of the Court, he recently announced that he would retire in January. He has served as Chief Judge since 1998.
"We regret the Court is losing a distinguished judge and leader, but we are delighted that he has chosen to join us at Smith Moore," said Sam Southern, managing partner for the Raleigh office. "Judge Eagles brings unique qualifications and experience to our firm, especially for our appellate practice group and our government relations practice group. Given his years of judicial experience and his reputation for even-handed judgment, we also expect that he will be in demand both as an arbitrator and mediator." While on the bench, Judge Eagles was instrumental in starting a pilot appellate mediation program at the Court of Appeals.
In citing the reasons he chose Smith Moore, Judge Eagles said, "The time had come for me to re-enter private practice. I considered several options, but I saw the greatest opportunity and best fit with Smith Moore. Their trial and appellate practice is unsurpassed, and the firm's commitment to the Triangle has impressed me." Judge Eagles' addition continues the dynamic growth of Smith Moore's Raleigh office, which has added eight new attorneys in recent months. The firm also has offices in Greensboro and Atlanta.
Prior to his election to the bench, Judge Eagles was in private practice in Raleigh. He was Counsel to the Speaker of the House and earlier had been a Special Deputy Attorney General. He argued cases regularly before the N.C. Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court, and he also has argued in the Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of the United States. For more than 25 years, he has been an adjunct professor at Campbell University's School of Law, and he has lectured at numerous legal seminars.
While serving on the Attorney General's staff, he was Reviser of Statutes and Secretary to the N.C. General Statutes Commission. Later he served as head of the Attorney General's Legislative Drafting Service. From August 1994 to January 1997 Judge Eagles served as Chair of the N.C. Judicial Standards Commission. He is a life member of the American Law Institute and the Uniform Laws Conference.
A graduate of Wake Forest University and the Wake Forest University School of Law, Judge Eagles serves as a member of the Board of Visitors for the Wake Forest University School of Law and as Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Barton College in Wilson, N.C. In l982 he was honored by the Wake Forest University Law School as its Outstanding Alumnus. He is a retired Colonel in the U.S. Air Force Reserve, where he was awarded the Legion of Merit upon his retirement.
Judge Eagles has served as a member of the N.C. State Bar's Legislative Committee, the N.C. Bar Association's Committee on Advanced Trial Techniques, the Committee on Appellate Rules and the Task Force on Administrative Law and Procedure. He has served on the N.C. Bar Association and N.C. Association of Women Attorneys' jointly sponsored Commission on the Status of Women in the Profession. In l989 and 1990 he served as Vice President of the North Carolina Bar Association.
He has been co chair of the American Bar Association Appellate Judges Conference Committee on Appellate Advocacy, and in 1993 and 1994 served as chair of the ABA Appellate Judges Conference. Since 1992 he has served on the ABA House of Delegates, representing the Wake County 10th Judicial District Bar from 1992 to 1995 and representing the Appellate Judges Conference since 1996. From 1991 to 1993 he served on the Board of Editors for The Judges' Journal, the publication of the Judicial Administration Division of the American Bar Association. From 1994 to 2000 he served on the ABA Appellate Judges Conference Appellate Seminars Committee.
Judge Eagles lives with his wife, Rachel Phillips Eagles, in Raleigh. They have two adult daughters, Virginia and Margaret.
Contact: Kathryn Viets (919) 277-1162