[New update on bottom].
Our sources at Alabama Power gave us a tip that Balch & Bingham Attorney Katie C. Hill has left Balch & Bingham, and we also learned separately that another top attorney at Balch, Kimberly Bell, has also left the embattled firm.
Both women worked as lead attorneys on the controversial Newsome Conspiracy Case under Balch & Bingham’s dinosaur partner Schuyler Allen Baker, Jr. (pictured left), who foolishly appears to have let the case turn into a national embarrassment for the once prestigious firm.
The Newsome Conspiracy Case, which should have been settled when Balch fired partner Clark A. Cooper in March of 2017, has turned into a quagmire not only for the firm, but its top client, Alabama Power.
A police officer, the son of a now-retired Alabama Power executive, arrested Newsome in what some observers are calling a “staged arrest.”
Katie C. Hill was the face of Balch & Bingham Women’s Month last year, appearing in a promotional video that appears to have been taken down from the Balch site.
Kimberly Bell is a member of the Birmingham Bar Association’s Diversity and Inclusivity Committee, according to Balch’s 2016 Diversity Report.
- Why would Balch let go of two rising stars that led their diversity and women’s equality efforts at the firm?
- Was the widely-read Washington Post article a trigger?
So the chattering class wants to know, have other partners in Balch’s footprint had enough of these embarrassing decisions?
With the new departures, criminal investigators should interview both Bell and Hill. And both Bell and Hill should probably hire Burt Newsome as their attorney just like Dave Roberson did. At least Newsome has the intestinal fortitude to fight miscarriages of justice if indeed Bell and Hill were treated as scapegoats.
Clark A. Cooper and convicted felon Joel I. Gilbert were not the problems at Balch and Bingham. The problem is the foolish leadership at Balch.
Balch’s Managing Partner Stan Blanton should be replaced immediately, and Chief Operating Officer David Miceli, who testified in the corruption trial last summer, should promptly step down, while Schuyler Allen Baker, Jr. should be asked to kindly “retire” to his private kingdom.
Balch & Bingham is called Balch, Bingham & Bribery in some private circles. With the abrupt exit of Hill and Bell, maybe they should be called Balch, Bingham, & Boneheads.
[Update 5/20/19: Katie C. Hill went through the infamous revolving door at Balch & Bingham and has landed a job at Southern Nuclear while Kimberly Bell’s future is unknown. Read our new update by clicking here .]