Ernest Brown & Company Joins Smith, Currie & Hancock LLP

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Established California Construction Law Practice Gives Atlanta Firm A West Coast Presence

Smith, Currie & Hancock LLP, founded in 1965, is a 55-lawyer, national construction law, government contracts, and environmental firm.

"This presents great opportunities for everyone involved, and we are looking forward to having Ernie and his firm join us."

The law firm of Smith, Currie & Hancock LLP, Atlanta, announced today that Ernest Brown & Company, an established construction and government contracts law firm with offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles, will join Smith, Currie & Hancock LLP. Smith Currie, founded in 1965, is a 55-lawyer, national construction law, government contracts, and environmental firm with offices in Atlanta, Charlotte, Las Vegas, Ft. Lauderdale, Tallahassee, and Washington, DC. (http://www.smithcurrie.com).

Bob Chambers, Smith Currie's managing partner, made the announcement: "This presents great opportunities for everyone involved, and we are looking forward to having Ernie and his firm join us. He has a terrific reputation throughout the construction industry, and we look forward to better serving that industry together."

Ernest C. Brown, Esq., PE, accepted this week, expressing, "I am extremely excited about joining forces with the Smith Currie firm, which has a well-established national construction practice. It will be a pleasure expanding that excellent practice in the Western United States."

Mr. Brown earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Civil & Environmental Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He continued his education with a Master of Science degree in Construction Management (M.S.C.E.) and Law Degree (J.D.) from the University of California, Berkeley. He has more than 30 years of legal experience in construction, government contracts, and environmental law.

Mr. Brown is currently Construction Counsel for Flatiron on the Presidio Parkway Project in San Francisco ($1.3 Billion) and the Oakland Connector Project in Oakland ($450 Million). Mr. Brown previously served as Legal Counsel for the joint venture building the Carquinez Suspension Bridge Project ($300 Million). He also was Project Counsel for John Wayne Airport, overseeing the legal aspects of the design and construction of the $340 million airport expansion.

In Nevada, he was the Lead Counsel for a major defendant in a $250 million claim arising from the Southern California Edison - Laughlin, Nevada power plant explosion, which resulted in six worker deaths and numerous injuries, business interruption, and loss of generating capacity. He was lead trial counsel for litigation involving six pipeline failures - the largest construction defect case in Arizona history, a $147 million public agency lawsuit.

Mr. Brown has served as Chairman of the Associated General Contractors of California's Legal Advisory Committee and Co-Chairman of the Construction Law Section of the California State Bar. He is a member of the State Bar of California and a member of the National Panel of Construction Arbitrators for the American Arbitration Association. Mr. Brown is the author of the treatises, "California Public Works Projects: Managing Contracts and Resolving Disputes" (1999) and "California Infrastructure Projects: A Guide to Successful Contracting and Dispute Resolution" (American Legal Media, 2010).

Mr. Brown will be joined by Jay Houghton, Esq., who is a graduate of Boalt Hall Law School, University of California, Berkeley, with eleven years of construction law experience, and Alan Bishop, a registered Civil Engineer who is a graduate of Hastings Law School, University of California, San Francisco.

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Eric L. Nelson
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