On the Move

Gwinnett Judge to Retire After 21 Years on Bench

, Daily Report

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On the Move

Gwinnett County Superior Court Judge Michael Clark will retire from the bench, effective Feb. 28, to join Suwanee trial lawyers Oxendine & Sauls, at which point the firm will become Clark, Oxendine & Sauls.

Clark spent 21 years on the Gwinnett Superior bench, making him one of Gwinnett's longest-serving judges. He has presided over more than 100 jury trials, including the high-profile case against Barton Corbin, the dentist who in 2006 pleaded guilty to the murders of his wife and girlfriend a decade apart. Before becoming a judge in 1993, Clark spent almost a decade in private practice at Clark & McLaughlin.

As Clark's term has not expired, he asked Gov. Nathan Deal to appoint a successor in his resignation letter.


Gil Burstiner has become the managing partner of commercial real estate firm Hartman Simons & Wood. Burstiner replaces A. Summey Orr III, who'd been the firm's managing partner since October 2011 and will continue practicing commercial real estate law as a partner.

Burstiner has been a commercial real estate lawyer for 20 years, representing clients in acquisitions, dispositions, leasing and refinancing of industrial, office and retail projects. He joined Hartman Simons' predecessor firm Altman, Kritzer & Levick in 1997 and is a graduate of Emory University and the University of Chicago Law School.


Scott Grubman has joined Rogers & Hardin as an associate from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Georgia in Savannah. As an assistant US attorney, Grubman was recognized by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services for his work prosecuting health care fraud cases. He has also worked as a trial attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington and clerked for two federal judges: Chief Judge Joel Dubina of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and Chief Judge Lisa Godbey Wood of the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of Georgia. The UGA Law School graduate is focusing his business litigation practice on government and internal investigations, False Claims Act litigation and health care fraud matters.


Josh Hess has joined Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton's Atlanta office as an associate in the litigation department from Sidley Austin's Washington office. Hess clerked for Judge Raymond Kethledge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and Judge Amul Thapar of the Eastern District of Kentucky. He also interned for Georgia Supreme Court Justice David Nahmias.


Hunton & Williams has added five first-year associates to its Atlanta office. Audrey Biggerstaff, part of the firm's pro bono practice, and Benjamin Han, who joined the labor and employment practice, are 2013 graduates of Emory University School of Law. M. Clare Ellis, part of the environmental practice, is a 2013 graduate of the University of Georgia School of Law. Carney Simpson, a 2013 graduate of Washington & Lee University School of Law, joined the real estate capital markets practice. Laura Thayer joined the financial services litigation practice after clerking for the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida and earning a J.D. in 2012 from the University of Florida.


Sarah Phaff has joined the Macon office of Atlanta-based labor and employment firm Constangy, Brooks & Smith as an associate after earning a law degree from Mercer University in 2013.


Labor and employment firm Ogletree Deakins has named five new shareholders in its Atlanta headquarters. Justin Coffey practices business immigration. Michael Eckard and Thornell Williams Jr. are employment lawyers. John Morrison handles executive compensation and employee benefits. Lauren Zeldin represents management in employment discrimination and wage and hour litigation.

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