Holt Elected NCBA President-Elect
ASHEVILLE – C. Mark Holt of Raleigh is the new president-elect of the North Carolina Bar Association. His election took place today at the 121st NCBA Annual Meeting at Biltmore in Asheville.
Holt will serve as president-elect during 2019-20. He will succeed newly installed President LeAnn Nease Brown of Chapel Hill as the 126th president of the NCBA on Saturday, June 27, 2020, at the next NCBA Annual Meeting in Charlotte.
He will also serve in 2020-21 as president of the North Carolina Bar Foundation.
Holt is a partner in Holt Sherlin LLP, which he co-founded in 2013 with David Sherlin, who currently serves as president of the Wake County Bar Association.
Holt has practiced in Raleigh his entire career, previously serving as a partner in Kirby & Holt (1999-2013), as an associate in Edwards & Kirby (1993-99) and as an associate in Tharrington, Smith & Hargrove (1987-92).
His name was placed in nomination by Immediate Past-President Caryn McNeill, chair of the NCBA Past Presidents’ Council which annually oversees the nomination process. Seconding speeches were provided by Gray Wilson, a former NCBA president who now serves as president of the N.C. State Bar, and Holt’s mentor, Wade Smith, of the firm now known as Tharrington Smith.
Upon his election by acclamation, Holt was escorted to the stage for acceptance remarks by all of the past presidents who were in attendance.
“As members of the legal profession, we are called to serve others and to maintain the highest levels of integrity and civility,” Holt stated. “The North Carolina Bar Association unites our profession in pursuit of these and other vitally important goals.
“I am deeply honored to help lead these efforts.”
A native of Oxford, Holt grew up in Fayetteville, the son of a Baptist minister and kindergarten teacher. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in politics from Wake Forest University in 1983, Holt accepted a Rotary Foundation Scholarship to study abroad at the University of Essex, where he earned a master’s degree in government.
Holt graduated with honors from the University of North Carolina School of Law in 1987.
Throughout his career, Holt has been a devoted member of the NCBA, as evidenced by his selection as the Young Lawyers Division’s Outstanding Young Lawyer in 1991. He also served as chair of the YLD Child Advocacy Committee in 1989-91.
Holt served on the NCBA Board of Governors and NCBF Board of Directors in 2014-17, during which he also chaired the Nominations Committee in 2015-16. He has served on the NCBF Oversight Committee since 2017 and the NCBF Development Committee since 2018.
Beyond his commitment of volunteer service to the Foundation, Holt is a member of the Platt D. Walker Society, signifying his designation of a planned gift to the NCBF Endowment. He is also responsible for the establishment of NCBF Justice Funds in memory of Fayetteville attorneys Jim Nance and D.P. Russ who inspired his pathway into the legal profession.
Holt is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers and served from 2017-19 as state chair. He is also a former member (2000-04) of the N.C. Advocates for Justice Board of Governors and former advisory member of the N.C. State Bar Ethics Committee (2011-13).
He is married to Joanna Winecoff Holt and they have four children: Charles Holt, Grace Wells, Sarah Holt and Caroline Wells.