The Forrest Firm, a full-service corporate law firm with offices across North Carolina, continues to expand. With a fast start to 2018, the firm has opened an office in Greensboro while adding 11 professionals statewide. As of March 1, 2018, the firm consists of 34 professionals (28 attorneys).
The following eight attorneys have joined the firm in 2018 (in alphabetical order with location and areas of practice noted):
- Rachel Blunk (Greensboro; litigation, corporate/transactional)
- Andrew Bowman (Greensboro; litigation)
- Jamie Lisa Forbes (Greensboro; corporate/transactional, estate planning, tax)
- Lyle Gravatt (Raleigh; intellectual property)
- Grey Littlewood (Raleigh; commercial real estate)
- Keith Richardson (Raleigh; litigation)
- Sean Wagner (Charlotte; corporate/transactional, litigation, regulatory compliance)
- Tom Worth (Greensboro; corporate/transactional, tax, conservation easements, estate planning)
Founded in Durham in January 2011 by James Forrest (formerly of Moore & Van Allen and Greenberg Traurig), the Forrest Firm is a certified B Corporation serving North Carolina businesses, developers, non-profits, entrepreneurs and individuals. The firm has offices in Chapel Hill, Charlotte, Durham, Greensboro, Raleigh, and Wilmington.
The firm operated as a solo practice for its first three years. In 2014 and 2015, the firm added one full-time attorney each year in response to increasing client demands. With an increased emphasis on creating a healthy, sustainable work environment for its team and impacting the surrounding community, the firm became a certified B corporation in early 2016 and has experienced rapid growth since that time. Now, more than 30 professionals call the firm home and approximately 1,600 clients have enjoyed a full spectrum of substantive practice areas, including corporate/transactional law, commercial real estate, employment law, commercial litigation, intellectual property, as well as estate planning and estate administration services.
According to the firm’s first full-time attorney (and now the firm’s Managing Attorney), Jeff Wolfe, the expansion of the firm’s focus beyond customer service to a focus on the well-being of its professionals and the community has spurred the firm to new heights. “I view our firm as a case study on how to disrupt an established industry, which in our case is discovering an alternative to the traditional law firm business model,” said Wolfe. “Our firm’s initial focus was how to serve clients better by increasing responsiveness and offering predictable pricing, which are still the core values of our firm, but 2016 saw a major shift where we formally updated our firm’s mission to focus on our culture and the community.”
“You don’t have to look far to find negative statistics related to legal professionals,” said firm founder James Forrest. “Generally speaking, it’s not a positive picture – first, there is a public perception that attorneys don’t return phone calls and e-mails in a timely manner and then send unexpected bills. And on the other side of the business relationship, attorneys have high suicide, alcohol/drug dependency and depression rates. Tackling both issues drives me as we continue to grow. We are finding that providing a positive experience for clients tends to lead to more client referrals and providing a platform where attorneys can thrive attracts more attorneys, hence the growth. We certainly haven’t arrived as a firm. As we move forward, we will continue to innovate in order to meet both goals of providing top-tier law firm services to clients while also providing an environment that is sustainable for our professionals and the surrounding community.”