James Forrest
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – J.D., 2004
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – B.A., 2000
  • North Carolina Bar Association
  • North Carolina Rising Star/Super Lawyer by the North Carolina Super Lawyers Magazine (2010, 2012, 2013, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021)
  • North Carolina’s Legal Elite by Business North Carolina Magazine (2012, 2013, 2014, 2019, 2021)
    • Elite Hall of Fame (2017)
    • Business Law Category Winner (2016)
  • North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society (2020)
  • First Tee of the Triangle – Board of Directors (2016 to 2020)
  • Duke DREAM Campaign – Board of Directors (2014 to 2015)
  • Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce – Board of Directors (2011 to 2014)
  • Kidznotes, Inc. – Board of Directors (2009 to 2012)
  • Durham Symphony Orchestra – Board of Directors (2008 to 2012)
  • Durham CrimeStoppers – Board of Directors (2008 to 2012)
  • Leadership Triangle Program (2008)
  • Leadership Durham Program (2007)
  • North Carolina State Bar

James Forrest began his career in Atlanta, Georgia working for one of the largest corporate law firms in the world. Subsequently, James practiced with Moore & Van Allen, PLLC, one of the premier law firms in the Southeast. After seven years in two traditional firms, James founded the Forrest Firm in 2011 to provide corporate legal resources in a markedly different, client-centric manner – where customer service was the central focus. Since 2011, the Forrest Firm has been engaged by thousands of clients based upon its commitment to predictable fees, responsiveness, proactive solutions, and qualitatively excellent legal services. The firm has opened offices across NC since 2015 and is a Certified B Corporation®.

With respect to James’ personal practice, he routinely works with companies, religious organizations, entrepreneurs and non-profits to proactively manage annual legal budgets, insurance solutions and develop executive-level risk-management strategies. Specifically, James has extensive experience with incorporation issues, mergers, acquisitions, company divestitures, transactional due diligence, commercial real estate, employment law, intellectual property, estate planning, regulatory compliance, dispute resolution and the drafting, review and negotiation of contracts across industry and subject matter.

James has received numerous awards, including being named North Carolina’s Legal Elite by Business North Carolina Magazine, as well as a Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers Magazine.  James has been involved with numerous non-profit organizations throughout his career, including: First Tee of the Triangle, the Duke DREAM Campaign, the Greater Durham Chamber of Commerce, Kidznotes, Inc., the Durham Symphony Orchestra, Durham CrimeStoppers, Leadership Triangle, Leadership Durham, Mission Triangle, The Summit Church, Corporate Chaplains of America, and the Raleigh Rescue Mission.


•  Become a Provider Podcast: James Forrest On Addressing Tensions To Build Authentic Relationships (November, 2020)
•  Entrepreneurship During COVID-19 Webinar with David Gardner (July 2020)
•  Hustle Unlimited Podcast: The Recipe For Success: Clients, Culture, and Community (March, 2019)
•  UNC School of Law: Forrest Firm Strives for Excellent Service, Transparent Billing and Workplace Flexibility (December 2018)
•  Speaker, Focus on Business, “Legal 101” (October, 2013)
•  Speaker, Entrepreneurs Conference, “Doing Business in the New Normal” (September, 2012)
•  “PDA is Great, NDA is Vital” (Raleigh News and Observer, May 17, 2009)