Workers' Compensation Appoints Eight Judges Under New Administrative Court System

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Tennessee Department of Labor’s Division of Workers’ Compensation is announcing the appointment of their first eight workers’ compensation judges.

The Tennessee Legislature passed comprehensive Workers’ Compensation reform legislation last year. The reform created a new, administrative Workers’ Compensation Court within the Workers’ Compensation Division. The new judges will begin work prior to July 1, when the new law goes into effect.

“Workers’ Comp reform will result in a system that is fair to both employees and employers and will speed up the settlement of injury claims,” said Labor Commissioner Burns Phillips.

“This should result in more predictable outcomes.”

The appointees are as follows:

Brian Addington, Kingsport, attorney with the Division of Workers’ Compensation;
Joshua Baker, Nashville, administrative attorney and legislative liaison with the Division of Workers’ Compensation;
Lisa Knott, Knoxville, attorney with the Division of Workers’ Compensation;
Pamela Johnson, Knoxville, of counsel with the Leitner, Williams, Dooley and Napolitan law fim;
Allen Phillips, Jackson, partner with Waldrup & Hall;
Jim Umsted, Memphis, attorney with the Division of Workers’ Compensation;
Thomas Wyatt, Chattanooga, partner with Summers & Wyatt; and
Ken Switzer, an associate with the Howard Tate law firm, will be the chief judge.

The appointments were made by the Workers’ Compensation Division Administrator, Abbie Hudgens, and were selected from recommendations from the Workers’ Compensation Interview Committee, which was composed of representatives of employees, employers, and the legal community from all three grand divisions of the state. 




Attorneys Batts And Taylor Elected To Lead State Drug Court Association

The Tennessee Association of Drug Court Professionals has elected attorneys Kevin Batts and Richard Taylor to leadership positions in the statewide group. Mr. Batts will serve as president and Mr. Taylor will serve as vice president of the association in 2015. Mr. Batts is director of the Drug Court in the 23rd Judicial District, serving five counties of Middle Tennessee. He ... (click for more)

Karen Tindell And Kelly Still Join Southern Community Bank

Robert Stahl, Chattanooga city president of Southern Community Bank, announced Karen Tindell and Kelly Still have joined the Chattanooga branch. “Karen joins the staff as assistant vice president and Kelly joins the staff as a commercial lender,” said Mr. Stahl.  “Together Karen and Kelly collectively have over 50 years’ experience in the financial industry with regional ... (click for more)

2 Suspects Sought In Armed Robbery At Highway 153 Long John Silver's

Police are searching for two suspects in an armed robbery that happened Friday morning. At approximately  8:10  a.m. the Chattanooga Police Department responded to 5317 Highway 153 for a robbery at the Long John Silver's.  Officers discovered that two black men, wearing hoodies and masks, entered the Long John Silver's and forced the assistant manager ... (click for more)

Pair Charged With Beating Man With Stick, Taking His Wallet

Two men are charged with beating a man with a large stick while he slept on the steps of a downtown church, then taking his wallet. Jerry Quincy Allen, 45, and James Leo Boas, 40, both of 727 E. 11th St., are charged with aggravated robbery. In the incident on Wednesday, Bradley Casehart said he and a friend were asleep at Tompkin Chapel Church on Palmetto Street. He ... (click for more)

Please Don't Close The Piccadilly Cafeteria At Hamilton Place - And Response

Oh, no. The Piccadilly Cafeteria at Hamilton Place is closing.  Its last day is Christmas Eve.  I will miss the great food they have there but most of all I will miss their servers, cashiers and waitresses.  They are all so friendly and accommodating.  They make it like it’s a home-style restaurant. I sure wish there was some way that Hamilton Place and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘Scrooge’ Of The Year

As we move into the last weekend before Christmas, the “Scrooge of the Year” has just appeared in Aurora, Ill. Actually Connie Ley has just died. She passed away on Nov. 25, but in her wake left the worst will many around the country have ever heard – her last wishes included that her nine-year-old dog should be put to death, cremated, and buried with her. Bela, a beautiful German ... (click for more)