Bryan E. Pieper
Whether it’s an employment law case or a complex business dispute, Bryan Pieper has litigated across the country, from New York to Oregon to Tennessee. As much as he loves being in the courtroom, Bryan is equally comfortable in the boardroom, counseling clients through internal labor and employment disputes or conducting in-house training or policy review in order to prevent disputes.
In the commercial litigation arena, Bryan’s experience is broad, covering matters as diverse as trademark infringement, corporate fiduciary duties, breach of contract and fraud. In the employment law arena, Bryan represents both employers and employees, and he firmly believes it makes him better at both. Bryan contends that you cannot be the best you can be unless you have walked in the shoes of your opponent.
Bryan has lived around the world, having spent several years in Germany and Czechoslovakia, as well as having lived in international U.S. cities such as Miami and New Orleans, yet he loves to call Nashville home. Bryan first came to Nashville to attend Vanderbilt University, and wherever his travels have taken him, he has always returned.
Bryan received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, where he studied Political Science and German, though he completed a portion of his undergraduate studies at Regensburg University in Germany. Similarly, he received his Doctorate of Jurisprudence degree from Vanderbilt School of law, though he also studied law at Charles University in Prague, Czechoslovakia (now, Czech Republic). While at Vanderbilt School of Law, Bryan was the President of the Vanderbilt Labor Law Society and repeatedly named to the Dean’s List. Bryan received the American Jurisprudence “Book” Award for the highest grade in Corporate Law.
When he is not litigating a case or helping a client navigate a sticky employment or contract matter, Bryan’s practice provides him with the best possible perspective on the law – the view from the bench. For several years Bryan served as an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), presiding over disputes between Nashville Electric Service and its employees. Thereafter, for several years Bryan served as an Outside Review Officer, presiding over disputes between the Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) and its employees. By representing plaintiffs, defendants and also presiding over employment law disputes, Bryan has a 360 degree view of what really works and what doesn’t.
When he isn’t practicing law, Bryan loves public speaking, regularly teaching Continuing Legal Education seminars to other lawyers or speaking on employment topics through the Middle Tennessee chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).
Bryan, his wife and two children live in East Nashville, where they are active members of their Lockeland Springs neighborhood.
David E. Heller
David’s practice focuses on estate planning, which includes family wealth preservation and estate tax planning. David helps clients and their families create plans to protect the family wealth from “outsiders” such as creditors, ex-spouses and divorcing in-laws. Additionally, David’s advises clients on reducing their potential estate tax liability. Many of David’s plans combine asset protection planning, estate tax savings and planning for the family’s future generation. David also advises families with business succession issues, pre-marital agreements and charitable planning.
As an extension of his estate planning practice, David also handles the probate and administration of estates and trusts after an individual’s death and represents beneficiaries when controversies arise between family members. David can also help with conservatorship and guardian issues if a person becomes incapacitated.
David has been awarded the top “AV” rating by Martindale- Hubbell. David is often a featured speaker at numerous seminars and teaches estate planning at various CLE courses.
David graduated from Carnegie-Mellon University in 1984 with a double major in Information Systems and Math. He received his doctorate of jurisprudence with cum laude distinction from Widener University School of Law in 1994 and an LL.M. Masters in Tax Law, with honors, from Georgetown University in 1995.
David serves on several boards and committees for non-profit organizations throughout the middle Tennessee area.
Sean J. Martin
In 2005, with the firm in need of a top-notch personal injury lawyer, DHPM reached out to Sean J. Martin, who had distinguished himself both as a law clerk, working for Marietta Shipley, Judge of the Second Circuit Court for Davidson County; and as a litigator, working for Cornelius & Collins, LLP. He’s been representing injured persons ever since, in cases ranging from premises liability (slip & falls) to trucking accidents and wrongful death matters. The success he has enjoyed in the area of personal injury is a tribute to the excellent mentors he has learned from along the way.
Sean is cut from the same cloth as author Ernest Hemingway or journalist Hunter S. Thompson: he is an aficionado of adventure, big game fishing in particular. He gets away several times a year to chase snook or tarpon or redfish—or anything that will give him a good fight. He travels with like-minded individuals, and always returns with thrilling stories. His exploits have taken him around the world, but if you asked him where he would rather be over any other place, he would tell you Key West, in a little stretch of water he calls Tarpon Alley.
Sean began his collegiate career at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut; and completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Sean completed his law school education at the University of Tennessee as well, earning his Juris Doctorate degree in 1999.
Every year since 2009, Sean has annually been named a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers Magazine. He expects his star will be on the rise for years to come.
You can learn more about Sean at his personal website, www.seanjmartin.com.
Paul Soper provides legal counsel and representation to a broad range of clients in the areas of business and real estate transactions, commercial lending, corporate governance and healthcare law. He has substantial experience in negotiating and structuring mergers and acquisitions among business entities, assisting clients with capital restructuring and securities offerings, and assisting and advising management teams and boards of directors with the strategic and day-to-day governance of their businesses. In the area of real estate, Paul represents clients in both commercial and residential purchases and sales, all facets of commercial and residential real estate development, negotiation of commercial and residential leases and land use and zoning issues.
Paul started his legal career in 1993 in the corporate and securities department of Boult, Cummings, Conners & Berry (now Bradley Arant Boult Cummings) specializing in healthcare transactions, after which he spent five years as in-house counsel with two public healthcare companies (OrNda Healthcorp and PhyCor, Inc.). During his time at Boult Cummings and as in-house counsel, Paul gained experience in dealing with the day-to-day governance and operational issues that arise with large companies and was responsible for negotiating and managing healthcare deals ranging from large hospital purchases to development of new outpatient surgery centers to acquisition of small physician practices. After leaving PhyCor in 2001, Paul went back into private practice, starting Soper & Oakley, PLLC with Greg Oakley, through which he and Greg practiced law until they merged their practices with DHPM, P.C. in April of 2010. ”
Born in Charleston, South Carolina, Paul moved to Nashville when he was 2 years old and has lived in Tennessee ever since. He attended high school at Montgomery Bell Academy and then spent seven years in Knoxville at the University of Tennessee and the UT College of Law. Paul, his wife Stephanie and their two children, Grayson and Maggie, live in Forest Hills.
Greg has fifteen years of experience as a litigator and advisor to clients of all types, focusing primarily in the area of commercial litigation and business disputes. He has successfully tried more than 50 cases to verdict, representing both plaintiffs and defendants. Greg has tried cases in state and federal courts across Tennessee, and has successfully argued a number of cases in the Tennessee Court of Appeals and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Although he often represents defendants, in the past four years alone Greg has collected more than $3 million on behalf of his litigation clients. Greg and his co-counsel recently received a $21 million dollar jury verdict in a complex class action involving commercial fraud and civil conspiracy against a large, publicly traded corporation.
Most of Greg’s business clients are small to medium sized businesses or individual entrepreneurs. Greg is acutely aware of the costs of litigation and its effect on his clients’ bottom-line. As comfortable as he is in the courtroom, Greg has also developed a practice that helps his business clients stay out of litigation by assisting them with their business structure, contracts, and employee relations. This is part of Greg’s practice philosophy, which is striving to use his knowledge and experience to effectively and economically help his clients reach their goals.
Greg is a native of Memphis and a graduate of the University of Tennessee School of Law. He spent several years practicing with large firms, and with his partner, Paul Soper, led a successful small firm for almost ten years before he and Paul joined DHPM in May 2010. In addition to his normal practice, Greg is dedicated to providing legal services to those who cannot afford them, and regularly represents clients on behalf of the Nashville Bar Association’s Pro Bono Program. Greg was named the 1998 Pro Bono Volunteer of the Year by the NBA.
Kathy Pohlid advises clients in the areas of employment law litigation & compliance (including workplace discrimination, occupational safety and health, Fair Labor Standards Act compliance, drafting employment policies and contracts), federal and state governmental compliance, Americans with Disabilities Act compliance (accommodation & discrimination) and health law issues including Medicare audits. Her goal is to enable clients to comply with the myriad of state and federal laws to succeed in their business. She has over 20 years experience in litigation and employment law, in both federal government and the private sector, and is mindful of the challenges facing businesses and the importance of cost effectiveness.
Kathy received an AV rating from Martindale (highest for professional competency and ethics). She has a B.S. degree from the U.S. Naval Academy and her J.D. from Samford University’s Cumberland School of Law. Immediately following law school, she served a federal clerkship to the Honorable T. Michael Putnam, U.S. Magistrate, Northern District of Alabama. She formerly represented the Secretary of Labor as a trial attorney for twelve years with the Office of the Solicitor, U.S. Department of Labor before going into private practice representing business clients in various industries, including health care, retail, transportation, restaurant, hospitality, construction, banking, and manufacturing. Prior to joining DHPM, she was a partner with a Nashville firm where she practiced employment law and litigation for eight years.
Kathy is licensed to practice in Alabama and Tennessee and has been admitted to practice before all of the Federal District Courts in Tennessee and Alabama, as well as the Northern District of Texas and the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Fifth and Eleventh Circuits. She is also a court-approved mediator in both Tennessee and Alabama. She is a member of the American Bar Association, the Tennessee Bar Association, the Nashville Bar Association, the American Society of Safety Engineers, and the Associated General Contractors of America. She serves on the ASSE Middle Tennessee Board of Directors and the AGC of Middle Tennessee Legal Advisory Panel and HR Forum.
Kathy both writes and speaks professionally on employment law and regulatory compliance matters. She is a contributing author on ADA and employment issues, currently serves on the Nashville Bar Journal’s Editorial Board, and is a contributing editor on ADA and employment law matters to Hotel Executive online journal.
In 2010, she retired from the U.S. Marine Corps as a Colonel, having served two combat deployments. Her judge advocate assignments include duty in Djibouti, Africa and Iraq, for which she received the Defense Meritorious Service Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal, respectively.
Kathy is a member of the Brentwood and Rutherford County Chambers of Commerce and was selected for both Brentwood Leadership 2013 and Rutherford County Leadership 2013. She serves as Regent with the Daughters of the American Revolution, Francis Nash Chapter, and as Vice-President for the Nashville Catholic Business Women’s League. She is a watercolor enthusiast, and along with her husband Roman, enjoys art at the Frist & Cheekwood, live theater and music in the Nashville area, hiking, travel, golf, volunteering with church ministries, and supporting their parish, the Cathedral of the Incarnation.
The Alabama Rules of Professional Conduct require the following statement: No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.
Chip Rieger joined DHPM P.C. in October of 2012 after spending the majority of his career as a partner in a large state-wide litigation defense firm. Chip has a broad range of experience in litigation, having defended cases involving employment discrimination, FLSA, FMLA, ADA, retaliation, harassment, products liability, premises liability, transportation, personal injury, workers’ compensation, insurance law, and general civil defense. A large part of his practice is also spent in the representation of management in employment law and related matters, pre-litigation corporate counseling, preventive strategies to avoid discrimination, management training, and the creation of human resource tools. One of the services Chip offers is a one-time HR physical to evaluate the health of a company’s managerial and human resource practices.
When Chip is not defending lawsuits or counseling clients, he is a frequent seminar speaker on a variety of topics, including general labor and employment law, discharge and documentation, immigration law, drug testing, Family and Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, sexual harassment, wage and hour laws, and workers’ compensation. Chip has conducted an annual employment seminar on behalf of his clients. He is also a regular presenter for The Society of Human Resource Managers, Lorman Education Services, and Sterling Education Services. Chip also offers more personal in-house training and counseling for his business clients.
Chip was admitted to the Tennessee Bar in 1993 after graduating law school from the Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law at the University of Memphis. Chip is also admitted to practice in all Federal Courts in the State of Tennessee and the U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit.
Prior to receiving his J.D., Chip was a Manager of a National Bank, responsible for operations and personnel at the retail level. After Law School, Chip cut his teeth with a boutique employment law firm in Memphis before moving to Nashville and joining Leitner, Williams, Dooley &Napolitan, PLLC where he practiced from 1997 to 2012. Chip became a partner with his previous firm in January of 2001, where he served for a time as a Managing Member of the Nashville office, overseeing operations and personnel for that office. In 2012, Chip decided to take his entrepreneurial spirit to DHPM P.C. with a goal toward developing closer, more personal relationships with his clients by learning their business operations and goals, and partnering with them to achieve those goals.
Chip has served as an active member of ALFA International. He is a Member of The Society of Human Resource Managers. He has served on the Employment Law and Civil Rights Committee of the Nashville Bar Association and as the Legal Counsel and Director of the Nashville Area Junior Chamber of Commerce. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Young Lawyers Division of the Nashville Bar Association and was a Professor of Employment Law and Tort Law at the Southeastern Career Institute. He is a member of the Memphis, Nashville, and Tennessee Bar Associations.
Chip was born in Indianapolis, but spent his formative years in Connecticut before moving to Tennessee in 1983. He earned a Bachelor of Science from the University of Tennessee in 1989 prior to receiving his J.D. from the University of Memphis. While a law student, Chip was a member of Phi Alpha Delta (Chief Justice, 1992-93) in addition to serving as a Bankruptcy Court Extern (1992) and as Vice President of the Student Bar Association (1992-93).
Chris Allen’ practice stems from his extensive experience as a IRS Estate and Gift Tax attorney, practice as a Certified Public Accountant and as a Tax attorney. He helps with planning and renders opinions, in the areas of including, but not limited to federal income, estate, gift, and generation skipping tax. In addition to these substantive areas, he advises clients with regard to IRS audits, appears before IRS Appeals and comprises an important part of the team in the event litigation is necessary.
As a former IRS Estate and Gift Tax attorney Chris is able to advise clients regarding estate planning not only form a tax minimization standpoint but from the point of view of formality and executing a realistic plan meeting the particular needs and desires of families. Sometimes this necessitates protecting family members from divorce, judgment creditors and the likes. In response, Chris has developed a practice of creditor protection techniques.
- B.S. Cum Laude Accounting University of South Carolina 1985
- J.D. University of Tennessee 1989
- Certified Public Accountant 1987
Peter Robison joined DHPM in 2010, after clerking for the Honorable Thomas W. Brothers in Nashville. Peter received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science in 2005 from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, where he also studied Spanish and Latin American Literature. He received his Juris Doctorate from Vanderbilt University Law School in 2008. While at Vanderbilt, Peter was an officer of the Phi Delta Phi Legal Fraternity and the J. Reuben Clark Law Society. He also participated in Mock Trial, Moot Court, and represented his first clients through the Vanderbilt Law School Domestic Violence Legal Clinic.
Peter’s areas of practice include employment litigation, commercial litigation, and probate/estate administration. He is a member of the Tennessee and Nashville Bar Associations, and is admitted to practice before the U.S. Courts for the Eastern, Middle, and Western Districts of Tennessee.
Peter is an Eagle Scout and continues to work with the Boy Scouts of America. In 2007, he helped start the Vanderbilt Law Explorers, a career exploration program sponsored by the Boy Scouts and the Phi Delta Phi Legal Fraternity at Vanderbilt, and has taught the class ever since. Peter currently serves on the Nashville Bar Association Young Lawyers Division Board as Co-Chair of the Davidson County Mock Trial Competition. He is fluent in Spanish, having lived in Venezuela for two years, and has often represented Spanish-speaking clients.
Peter is an avid reader and enjoys running and hiking. He lives in Nashville with his wife and children.
Jamie Machamer joined DHPM in 2012 after running her own practice focusing on criminal defense and family law for two years. An experienced trial attorney, she has successfully tried both civil and criminal matters in middle Tennessee. Jamie’s practice focuses on family law, probate, and criminal defense.
Jamie earned her B.A. in English from The Ohio State University in 2006, where she was in the Honors Program. She received her J.D. from Vanderbilt University Law School in 2009. While at Vanderbilt, Jamie participated in Moot Court, Mock Trial, Vanderbilt in Venice study abroad, was president of the Animal Law Society, and represented clients in the Criminal Defense Clinic. While in law school, Jamie was a summer clerk for Federal Magistrate Judge Clifton Knowles in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee and, immediately upon graduating, an attorney intern with the Davidson County District Attorney’s Office.
Jamie is a member of the Tennessee Bar Association, the Nashville Bar Association and the Young Lawyers’ Division, the Lawyers’ Association for Women, and the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. She regularly does pro bono work through both the Legal Aid Society and the Nashville Bar Association and was on the Carbolic Smoke Ball Committee in 2012.
After scoring in the 99th percentile on the Law School Admissions Test in college, Jamie taught groups of college students how to take the test, and she still lectures groups on the subject, most recently at an American Bar Association event in Texas.
Brian Walthart is a well-versed litigator who joined DHPM in January 2013 after accumulating almost a decade of litigation experience. Mr. Walthart has had success litigating virtually all types of lawsuits for companies and individuals, including cases involving commercial litigation, personal injury and wrongful death, civil rights, premises liability, trucking and transportation liability, professional malpractice, corporate liability, family law, and insurance defense.
Mr. Walthart spent the first part of his legal career working at a boutique general litigation firm in Arkansas. In 2009, he returned to his hometown of Nashville, Tennessee, where he continued his legal practice with a state-wide litigation firm. He joined DHPM because he believes in its commitment to providing its clients with individualized and results-oriented representation and service.
In 2000, Mr. Walthart received his Bachelor of Science from Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In 2005, he received his Juris Doctor degree from the Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law in Memphis, Tennessee, where he also served as Senior Editor of the Tennessee Journal of Practice and Procedure, and was the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Best Oral Advocate.
Mr. Walthart is licensed to practice in Tennessee and Arkansas. He is admitted to practice in the United States Courts for the Middle and Western Districts of Tennessee, as well as the United States Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Arkansas.
Mr. Walthart lives in Nashville. He and his wife, Erika, enjoy hiking and running with their dog, Houston. He is also an Eagle Scout.
Tim Barnes has been practicing law since 1985 in the areas of divorce, child custody, adoption, criminal and juvenile law. At DHPM, Mr. Barnes focuses his practice on family law mediation, serving as a mediator to help people resolve disputes and avoid the damaging and expensive litigation process.
Early in his legal career, Mr. Barnes developed a philosophy of practice that is very simple: Solve the client’s problem(s). He understands that sometimes this takes aggressive litigation, sometimes artful negotiation, sometimes creative approaches that require thinking outside the box. As a mediator, Mr. Barnes applies the same principle, but now his goal is to bring both sides to a solution that solves the underlying problem(s) and achieves all of the parties’ legitimate goals whenever possible, thinking outside the box when necessary to do so. Mr. Barnes knows that matters such as divorce, child custody and domestic problems can be the most devastating events in a person’s life, causing them to make bad choices, even self-destructive choices, particularly when the court system seems to offer a convenient weapon. Family law mediation provides an opportunity to cut through that kind of self-destructive, clouded judgment, and to move toward solutions that enable people to move on with their lives.
Mr. Barnes was raised on a cotton and soybean farm, where he was taught the value of hard work, personal responsibility and loyalty. He applies those values in everything he does, including his law practice and his mediation services. If Mr. Barnes mediates your case, he will treat you with respect and work hard to find real solutions to difficult problems.
Mr. Barnes earned his B.A. degree from Harding University and his law degree from University of Arkansas Law School. In addition to his affiliation with DHPM in Nashville, Mr. Barnes also maintains his law office in Clarksville, Tennessee.