Montgomery, Alabama, June 21, 2013 – Alabama State Bar President Phillip W. McCallum announced today (June 21) the retirement of long-time General Counsel J. Anthony McLain. He was a member of the bar’s staff for 25 years and was named as general counsel in 1995.
McCallum said, “Tony has been a lawyer, advisor, counselor and friend more than 17,000 members of the Alabama State Bar. Though he was the chief disciplinary and enforcement officer over all the lawyers in the state and took those responsibilities very seriously, Tony was more of a ‘head coach’ who cared very deeply about his ‘players’, the rules of the game, and the profession. His service to the bar has been highlighted by an unwavering commitment to excellence and an adherence to ethical principles, strong leadership and an exemplary work ethic.”
As general counsel, McLain was responsible for overseeing the operations of the Center for Professional Responsibility, which investigates and prosecutes bar complaints, issues ethics opinions to lawyers, represents the bar in state and federal litigation, and provides legal advice to the bar’s governing and policy-making body, the Board of Bar Commissioners.
McLain was raised in Headland, received his undergraduate degree from Auburn University and earned his law degree from Cumberland Law School. After graduating from law school, he served as an assistant attorney general during the administrations of Attorneys General Bill Baxley and Charlie Graddick. He then practiced law in the firm of McLain & Hampton for nine years before joining the state bar in 1988 as assistant general counsel.
He was widely known as an expert in legal ethics and conducted numerous continuing legal education seminars on the subject. He served as president of Cumberland’s National Alumni Association and was the recipient of the school’s distinguished alumnus award. McLain and his wife, Leah, live in Montgomery.