Joseph A. O’Connell

Joe was born in Jackson, Mississippi and graduated from Hattiesburg High School. He then earned a bachelor’s degree from Millsap’s College and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Mississippi School of Law. While in law school, Joe received Am Jur awards in Federal Jurisdiction and Federal Procedure.

For the past 20 years, he has practiced with Bryan Nelson, P.A., and its predecessors.

In his active career as a general litigator, Joe has represented both plaintiffs and defendants and carried a wide variety of cases to final judgment, through either dispositive motion, trial, or appeal. In his practice, he has routinely handled cases with claims predicated on product defects, breaches of warranty, toxic torts, workers compensation, medical negligence, premises liability, oilfield accidents, and civil rights violations. He has also successfully handled suits arising from other diverse claims: breaches of construction contracts, a franchise agreement, and a long-term coal delivery contract; bad faith denials of insurance benefits; trademark infringement; dilution of voting rights; and life insurance claims involving potential suicides and efforts to recover accidental death and double indemnity benefits.

During Joe’s practice with Bryan Nelson, P.A., he has been authorized to handle “high exposure” cases for Mid-Continent Casualty Company, Admiral Insurance Company, Schlumberger Technology Corporation, its affiliates, and insurers, and Baker Hughes Oilfield Operations, Inc., and its insurers. Baker Hughes has also designated Joe as an ‘emergency” counsel and authorized him to lead immediate post-incident investigations involving potential toxic exposure and major motor vehicle collisions.

Joe is currently admitted to practice before all state and federal courts in Mississippi, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court. He is a member of the South Central Mississippi Bar Association, the Mississippi State Bar, and the American Bar Association.

On multiple occasions, Joe has served on the board of the United Way of Southeast Mississippi and the Vestry or governing body of Trinity Episcopal Church in Hattiesburg. He and his wife, Jane, reside in Hattiesburg and have two adult children and one grandchild.

FIRM DESCRIPTION

The offices of Bryan Nelson P.A. are located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Hattiesburg is known as the “Hub City” because of the major highways and railway lines that pass through the city (please see the Area Development Partnership). From our offices located in Hattiesburg, our attorneys are able to travel to at least fifteen (15) county seats within an hour or less. Hattiesburg’s convenient location has spawned one of the most economically active, dynamic and fastest growing areas in the Southeast.

The firm’s practice consists of representing individuals, as well as a variety of both large and small businesses, including insurers, banking institutions, construction firms, transportation concerns, nursing homes, medical providers, and other professionals.

Members of the firm have extensive experience in both civil litigation and legal transactions.  In the realm of civil litigation, members of the firm specialize in disputes arising from commercial transactions, construction defects and design, labour and employment, automobile accidents, premises liability accidents, medical malpractice, workers compensation,  admiralty and offshore accidents, environmental claims, and mass tort litigation. From a transactional perspective, the firm furnishes legal services associated with personal transactions such as estate planning and administration, trust preparation, conservatorships, and guardianships, as well as business transactions such as the formation of business entities, purchase and sale agreements, and real estate transactions.

William L. Guice III

William Lee Guice III, the third generation of his family to practice law at Rushing & Guice, P.L.L.C. and now its senior partner, has provided trusted counsel to thousands of businesses and individuals since 1972. He focuses his practice in the areas of commercial and general litigation, including financial issues, lender liability and corporate defense, white collar criminal defense, and admiralty law.

Guice also represents banking interests and handles sophisticated financial and real estate transactions. He advises his clients in the areas of asset protection and preservation, estate planning, business formation and environmental matters. These clients include financial institutions, physicians, various members of the seafood industry and leaders of business and industry.

Guice’s sterling reputation among his peers for legal acumen, professionalism, and ethics is reflected in his AV Preeminent Rating from Martindale-Hubbell for over 30 years and his consistent designation as one of the top attorneys in Mississippi by Super Lawyers magazine, an honor bestowed upon only five percent of the lawyers in each state. Guice is listed in Best Lawyers in America and is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America, which recognizes the top ½ of 1% of America’s trial attorneys.

Guice is licensed to practice in Mississippi, Texas, New York and the District of Columbia and has been admitted to practice before the United States Court of International Trade. He is a member of the American Bar Association, the Harrison County Bar Association, the Commercial Law League of America (Chairman, Southern Region, 1987-1988), the International Association of Commercial Collectors, the Dixie Land Title Association and the Maritime Law Association.

He is the author of several publications, including “Maintenance and Cure, The Jones Act, Land-Based Seamen,” page 877, Volume 46, Tulane Law Review, 1972 (author), “Office Surgery and the Law,” Advances in Dermatology Yearbook, Medical Publishers, 1986 (author), “Mississippi Collection Law,” P.E.S.I., 1985 (co-author), and “Mississippi Collection Law,” P.E.S.I., 1984, 1986, 1989 (co-author).

Guice received his undergraduate degree from Tulane University in 1969 and his law degree from Tulane University in 1972. While at Tulane, he was a member of the Board of Student Editors of the Tulane Law Review from 1970 to 1972.

He has also served as a presenter and lecturer at numerous courses on contract and commercial law, Mississippi collections law, law office management, ethics and other legal topics. Guice is president of Renaissance Title, L.L.C., the firm’s subsidiary title company that provides loan closings, escrow services and title commitments and policies.

ABOUT WILLIAM L. GUICE III

Admitted: 1972, Mississippi

Honors and Awards:

  • Listed in Best Lawyers since 2010
  • Named one of 2017 Lawyers of Year for Mississippi by Best Lawyers in America
  • Earned AV preeminent Rating for over 33 years
  • Selected for Fellowship in the Litigation Counsel of America
  • Member of Tulane Law Review
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers 2012
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers 2011
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers 2010
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers 2009
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers 2008
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers 2007
  • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • American Bar Association, the Mississippi Bar Association, the Harrison County Bar Association, the Biloxi Bar Association, the Commercial Law League of America (Chairman, Southern Region, 1987-1988), the Southeast Land Title Association and the Maritime Law Association.
  • Admitted to Practice in United States Claims Court, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and for the Federal Circuit; United States Supreme Court

Scholarly Lectures and Writings:

  • Guice has authored several publications, including “Maintenance and Cure, The Jones Act, Land-Based Seamen,” page 877, Volume 46, Tulane Law Review, 1972 (author), “Office Surgery and the Law,” Advances in Dermatology Yearbook, Medical Publishers, 1986 (author), “Mississippi Collection Law,” P.E.S.I., 1985 (co-author), and “Mississippi Collection Law,” P.E.S.I., 1984, 1986, 1989 (co-author).

Verdicts and Settlements:

  • Copa Casino: Litigation of Casino’s ownership
  • Barq v. Coca-Cola: Intellectual Property Suit Theft of Goodwill

Transactions:

  • Promenade acquisition for the Target development on Sangani Boulevard in D’Iberville, Miss.
  • Local Counsel for Harrah’s Entertainment in Biloxi acquisitions
  • General Counsel for Barq’s sale to Coca-Cola
  • Barq’s Inc. and trademark Barq’s to Coca-Cola
  • Counsel for Jackson County Mississippi to investigate County Hospital (2nd largest employer in County), prevent financial failure and save Pension Plan, settlement of class action.

Educational Background

  • 1972: Tulane University School of Law Juris Doctorate.  While at Tulane, he was a member of the Board of Student Editors of the Tulane Law Review from 1970 to 1972
  • 1969: Tulane University, Bachelor’s Degree.
  • 1967-1968: Study abroad La Sorbonne, Paris

FIRM DESCRIPTION

Constant Innovation. Timeless Values.

Over the more than 100 years Rushing & Guice has been providing exceptional legal services and sound counsel along the Gulf Coast, we’ve seen our share of change. We’ve stood alongside businesses and neighbors through boom times and times of hardship; weathered hurricanes and enjoyed blue skies; comforted those facing tragedy and guided those planning for a bright future.

We’ve trimmed our sails and navigated a steady course through sea changes in the laws and regulations that impact our clients’ businesses, and rode the waves of technological innovation that have altered the economy and the practice of law. We keep ahead of the latest developments in the law and business and use leading-edge technology to maximize efficiency and effectiveness.

Throughout our history, our agility and adaptability to change has served our clients well. However, there are five things that we have steadfastly refused to change since they were established as the core principles of the firm over a century ago by attorneys Charles Rushing and Lee Guice:

  • Legal Excellence. The legal acumen, skill, and sophistication of our attorneys is unmatched along the Gulf Coast. The firm holds the highest professional ratings as to our legal abilities, and we have earned a reputation among colleagues, adversaries, and judges as attorneys to be reckoned with, whether in the courtroom or at the negotiating table.
  • Professionalism and Integrity. We firmly believe in a principle that is too often forgotten in the legal community: that being formidable, zealous and successful advocates for our clients does not mean abandoning professionalism, civility, or integrity. We adhere to the highest ethical standards and are as uncompromising in our commitment to maintain those standards as we are to achieving the best possible results for our clients. In fact, we believe they go hand-in-hand.
  • Service and Respect. When you meet with us at our Ocean Springs offices, you’ll have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that the attorney you meet with will be the attorney handling your case. We work closely with you to ensure that you are always informed, that all your questions are answered, and that the strategy we use in your case will get the best results in the most cost-effective manner possible. With free, limited initial consultations and a pledge to always be accessible and responsive, we provide our clients with convenience and the personal attention that is sometimes lacking at larger and more impersonal firms.
  • Value and Results. At Rushing & Guice, we have a track record of successful results that extends back more than a century. We are focused on achieving optimal outcomes for each of our clients based on our knowledge of the law, tireless work ethic, and full understanding of our clients’ concerns and goals.   But we realize that a successful result can be illusory if it is accompanied by exorbitant bills for legal fees. That is why we always keep an eye on our clients’ bottom lines as we formulate the best strategies and approaches in each case. Our smaller size keeps our costs lower without impacting the strength of our representation or ability to bring every resource to bear on behalf of our clients.
  • Commitment to Community. Beyond the courthouse and conference room, Rushing & Guice regularly participates in community events and service projects. For our 100thanniversary in 2008, the firm conducted a special “100 Acts of Charity” community outreach program, donating at least 100 items to organizations on the Mississippi Gulf Coast each month. We continue to actively support local charities and other organizations serving our community. Rushing & Guice has been honored as one of the “Best Places to Work” in Mississippi, and our attorneys and staff are active members of area business, civic, and legal associations.

At Rushing & Guice, these timeless principles inform everything we do. We’re proud of our record of success and the reputation for integrity and approachability we’ve built throughout our history. We invite you to learn more about what we do by exploring our practice areas, and welcome the opportunity to meet with you.

At Rushing & Guice, experienced, aggressive, and innovative legal services for businesses and professionals on the Gulf Coast are a phone call away. Call us at (228) 374-2313 or fill out our online form to arrange for a free consultation. We look forward to assisting you.

Joseph Lee Adams

JoJo Adams is a partner in the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice Group in the Jackson office and primarily focuses his practice in the areas of employment discrimination and harassment. He has extensive experience in employee and supervisor training related to workplace conduct issues and litigating wage and hour collective actions. Mr. Adams also has experience in unfair labor practice litigation against unions and in collective bargaining negotiations. He provides daily employment advice to clients in both public and private sectors and has drafted numerous employment agreements and covenants not to compete.

Representative Matters:
  • Counsel to public and private employers in wage and hour matters and wage and hour issues as they relate to salaried/hourly employees
  • Counsel to corporate entities in regard to alleged unfair labor practices
  • Counsel to public and private employers regarding discrimination and harassment

The Employment Law Practice:

Jones Walker’s Labor & Employment attorneys offer clients one of the largest, most diverse, and experienced labor and employment law practices in the region. We counsel an array of companies in a wide range of industries, both locally and throughout the United States, in all aspects of labor and employment law. We strive to help clients find solutions to labor and employment law matters using practical, common-sense approaches. We believe our ability to combine our depth in labor and employment law with Jones Walker’s broad base of experience in other practice areas to address unique workplace and industry situations gives our clients a distinct advantage not available from small boutique law firms.

In recognition of the group’s overall excellence, Jones Walker is the exclusive Louisiana member of the Employers Counsel Network (ECN), a national coalition of 52 leading labor and employment law firms in each state of the United States, the District of Columbia, and Canada.

Jones Walker’s Labor & Employment Practice also has been recognized for excellence in Chambers USA – America’s Leading Lawyers for Business since 2003. In its inaugural edition, Chambers USA identified Jones Walker as “one of the most prestigious firms in the field.” Its 2009 publication ranked Jones Walker as one of the top Labor & Employment Practices in Louisiana, and listed more Jones Walker attorneys than attorneys from any other Louisiana firm. American Lawyer Media recently named the firm a “Go-To Law Firm for the Top 500 Companies” in the area of Labor & Employment Law.

Jones Walker LLP:

Since our inception in 1937, Jones Walker LLP has grown over the past several decades in size and scope to become one of the largest law firms in the United States. We serve local, regional, national, and international business interests in a wide range of markets and industries. Today, we have approximately 355 attorneys in Alabama, Arizona, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New York, and Texas.

Jones Walker is committed to providing proactive legal services to major multinational, public, and private corporations; Fortune 500® companies; money center banks and worldwide insurers; and family and emerging businesses located in the United States and abroad.

We have close ties to many types of businesses and industries, and our attorneys are heralded for their experience in several practice areas. We focus on building lasting relationships with clients and gaining a thorough understanding of our clients’ businesses and industries. Regardless of the size of a client, we work with each client’s specific needs in mind, focusing on achieving the best results in the most efficient manner.

Jones Walker attorneys are licensed to practice in multiple states and the District of Columbia, and have international experience in several countries. A number of our attorneys are regularly published in an array of legal, commercial, and industry journals. Several of our legal professionals serve as featured speakers for professional, trade, and business seminars, and as instructors for law school courses. Each of our attorneys maintains a steadfast commitment to community leadership and charitable work, and all are actively involved in our communities. Firmwide, we support numerous local and national civic and charitable organizations by dedicating time, talent, and financial resources to improve our communities and help those in need.

Stephen W. Dummer

Stephen W. Dummer is the Managing Member at Dummer, Lowery & Savarese, PLLC. His practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, business law, forming business entities, drafting corporate formation agreements, corporate sale contracts, international law, insurance defense, construction law and estate planning. Stephen has also worked with performing compliance analysis for entities seeking Community Development Block Grants. Stephen is a veteran of the United States Marine Corps and an accredited attorney for the preparation, presentation and prosecution of claims for veteran’s benefits before the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Stephen served as a Judicial Intern for the Honorable Chief Justice James Smith of the Mississippi Supreme Court in the summer of 2005 and received his J.D. from the University of Mississippi School of Law in Oxford, Mississippi. He studied international law at the University of Cambridge in England. Stephen completed his B.A. in criminal justice with honors at the University of Wyoming and his A.A. with honors at Northwest College in Wyoming. In 2010, the Gulfport Sun-Herald named Stephen on their list of Top 10 Business Leaders Under 40, and he is a graduate of the “Leadership Gulf Coast” Class of 2011-2012.

Honors

– Leadership Gulf Coast. Class of 2011-2012

– Top 10 Business Leaders Under 40

– Sergeant of Marines, Honorable Discharge

– President’s List/Dean’s List each academic period

– National Chancellor’s List

– Baker Donaldson Outstanding Law Journal Comment Award

– American Jurisprudence Awards;

– Legal Research and Writing II, International Aviation Law, Gaming Law

– Presidential Scholarship

– Albert Hopkins Scholarship Recipient

– Dan Shell Scholarship

– Top 40 Under 40 Litigation Lawyers in Mississippi for 2014, ASLA

– Peer Rated, Martindale Hubbell

– Mid-South Rising Stars – Super Lawyers Magazine

Medals and Awards

– Two-time Navy Achievement Medal recipient. July 1998 & 2000

– Two-time Meritorious Mast recipient. June 1997. December 1998

– Navy and Marine Good Conduct Medal recipient. December 1998

– Graduate – Reconnaissance Indoctrination Program. 1999

Professional Associations

– Maritime Law Association, 2011-present.

– Active TWIC Card Holder

– Gulf Coast Regional YMCA Board of Directors, President

– MDLA Quarterly Editorial Board, 2007-2011

– Center for Prevention of Child Abuse – President – Board of Directors, 2009-2010

– Mississippi Law Journal, Executive Articles Editor, 2004-2006

– Journal of Space Law, 2004-2006

– Mississippi Bar 2006 – present

– Child Advocacy Committee, 2007-2012

– MS Bar – Moot Court Committee, 2006 – 2014

– Harrison County Young Lawyers Association, President, 2009-2010

– American Inns of Court, 2007-present

– Federalist Society International Law Society

– Juvenile Advocacy Clinic

Fraternities

– Phi Beta Kappa

– Phi Kappa Phi

– Phi Theta Kappa

– Phi Delta Phi

– Phi Alpha Delta

– Golden Key National Honor Society

– 32nd Degree Master Mason

– Past Master – Orange Grove Lodge

Education

– J.D., University of Mississippi School of Law, 2006

– Summer Program in International Law, University of Cambridge, Downing College, Cambridge, England

– B.A., cum laude, with honors, University of Wyoming, 2002

– A.A., with honors, Northwest College, 2000

– Stephen is licensed to practice law in all jurisdictions in Mississippi, the United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.

Stephen’s main areas of practice are:

– Civil Litigation

– Commercial Litigation

– Commercial Transactions

– Construction

– Corporations

– Insurance Litigation

– International Law

– Maritime Law

– Personal Injury

– Real Estate

– Trusts, Probate and Successions

– Veterans’ Benefits

Articles and Publications:

– Mississippi Judicial System: Failing to Meet the Minimum Standard of Justice in Loewen Group, Inc. v. O ‘Keefe Article by Mr. Dummer; 6 GEO. J.L. & PUB. POL’Y 531 (2008)

– Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Mississippi State and Federal Courts; Article by Mr. Dummer; 31 MDLA QUARTERLY 11 (Fall 2007)

– Drops. Progressive Slots, and the Adjusted Gaming Win Value; Article by Mr. Dummer; 11 GAMING L. REV. 232 (2007)

– False Positives and Secure Flight Using Dataveillance When Viewed Through the Ever Increasing Likelihood of Identity Theft; Article by Mr. Dummer; 11 J. OF TECH. LAW & POL’Y 259 (2006)

– Secure Flight and Dataveillance. A New Type of Civil Liberties Erosion: Stripping Your Rights When You Don 7 Even Know It; Comment by Mr. Dummer; 75 MISS. L.J. 583 (2005)

Letter of Credit Counsel, in connection with the following issues:

– $5,500,000 Mississippi Business Finance Corporation Taxable Variable Rate Demand Revenue Bonds. Series 2009A (John Fayard Moving & Warehousing, LLC Project). March 12,2009

– $5,080,000 Mississippi Business Finance Corporation Taxable Rate Demand Revenue Bonds, Series 2009B (John Fayard Self Storage, LLC Project). March 12, 2009