By C. Bailey King Jr.

It is my pleasure to welcome you to the new Bar year with the first post in our new blog format.  It is an exciting year for the Antitrust and Complex Business Disputes Section, beginning with the transition from a newsletter to this new blog format under the leadership of our editor, Nathan Standley.  Going forward, Nathan will be working with Gavin Parsons and Tim Lendino to bring you blog content, which will include encouraging each of you to write blog posts.

The reason for this change is simple: we believe it will better serve you. Our newsletter has always provided great content for Section members. Now, we will be able to push that same content out in a more timely fashion and in a way that is easier to access. We hope that by making this change we will be able to provide you with greater resources in your practice. More importantly, in my opinion, unlike the newsletter, blog posts will be freely distributed across the internet, making the publication opportunities our Section provides much more valuable. Nathan and I invite all Section members to submit proposed posts for consideration. Our hope is that this change will help all of us in building diverse practices focusing on antitrust and complex business disputes.

Successful Hot Topics CLE

Another first for our Section this year was our half-day CLE last month on Hot Topics for North Carolina Antitrust Lawyers and In-House Counsel at Robinson Bradshaw & Hinson’s offices in Charlotte. The idea for the CLE came from Section council member Stephen Feldman, who saw a need for a more in-depth examination of antitrust issues than was possible at our annual meeting.  He was right, and the CLE was a great success. It started with a networking reception at Fahrenheit the night before, followed by a packed morning full of panel discussions on cutting-edge issues in antitrust practice, and finally an exciting luncheon with a keynote speech from Attorney General Josh Stein. Many thanks to Stephen, along with his co-planners Kenzie Rakes and Greg Skidmore, for their initiative and hard work. Also, thanks to the speakers, who of course included several of our Section members (Melanie Dubis, Greg, Nathan Chase, Jonathan Heyl, David Wilkerson, and Matt Sawchak).

Our hope is that we will be able to continue to offer these half-day CLEs on topics of interest.  If anyone has an area that they believe deserves more in-depth treatment and would like to help us continue this initiative, please let me know.

Annual Meeting On Jan. 18

Finally, speaking of the annual meeting, we are excited about another great CLE program that our vice-chair, Brian Hayles, has put together for our annual meeting on January 18, 2018 – Hot Topics in Complex Litigation:  Litigating Business Disputes in an Increasingly Sophisticated World.  The program includes topics on trade secret litigation, Chapter 75 claims, data breaches, and handling civil litigation when there are parallel criminal proceedings.  In addition, back again are the always popular View from the Federal Court Bench and View from the Business Court Bench panel discussions. Please make plans to attend on January 18, and also to hang around afterwards for a networking reception sponsored by Bell Davis & Pitt.

I am excited about all we have going on as a Section this year, and I hope you are as well. From the new blog format to the first ever half-day CLE to our always popular annual meeting, there is a lot of energy among our members. If you have ideas on ways the Section can better serve its members or would like to get more involved, please let us know.