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Brinkley Receives Renaissance Lawyer Award

Brinkley Receives Renaissance Lawyer Award

Martin Brinkley, center, accepts award from Lisa Sheppard, Professionalism Committee chair, and President Kearns Davis.

Martin H. Brinkley of Raleigh is the 2017 recipient of the North Carolina Bar Association’s H. Brent McKnight Renaissance Lawyer Award. The award was presented on Friday, June 23, at the NCBA Annual Meeting in Asheville.

Brinkley has served as dean of the University of North Carolina School of Law since July 1, 2015. Prior to his appointment, he was a partner with Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan, where he now serves of counsel.

He is a 1987 graduate of Harvard University, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and graduated summa cum laude, and a 1992 graduate of the UNC School of Law. Brinkley clerked for Chief Judge Sam J. Ervin III of the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals before entering private practice.

Brinkley served as president of the NCBA in 2011-12.

The H. Brent McKnight Renaissance Lawyer Award, established in 2006 by the NCBA Foundation’s Professionalism Committee, recognizes attorneys who demonstrate the “Renaissance Lawyer” qualities embodied by Judge McKnight, former chair of the Professionalism Committee who died in 2004 while serving on the U.S. District Court for the Western District of N.C.

The award seeks to recognize those North Carolina attorneys whose trustworthiness, respectful and courteous treatment of all people, enthusiasm for intellectual achievement and commitment to excellence in work, and service to the profession and community, inspire others.

Previous recipients are Peter Gilchrist (2006), E. Osborne Ayscue Jr. (2007), Wade Smith (2008), Mark Bernstein (2009), Woody Connette (2010), Catharine Arrowood (2011), Mark Merritt (2012), Jon Harkavy (2013), Harrison L. Marshall Jr. (2014), Suzanne Reynolds (2015) and Willis P. Whichard (2016).