Martin Brinkley, a partner at the firm for twelve years, became the 14th Dean of the University of North Carolina School of Law on July 1, 2015. He is the only lawyer in the modern history of the Law School to be appointed to the deanship from the practicing bar. Martin remains Of Counsel with the firm and practices in the areas of corporate law, mergers and acquisitions, antitrust, insurance and regulatory matters, public finance and nonprofit organizations. He has served as primary outside counsel to clients in the distribution, food and beverage, and insurance industries.
Professional & Community Affiliations
- Appointed Dean, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law, 2015-present
- Appointed Member, Public Trust and Confidence Committee, North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice
- North Carolina Bar Association: President, 2011-12
- American Bar Association
- Sections of Antitrust Law and Business Law
- Section of Business Law Committee on Legal Opinions
- American Judicature Society
- The American Law Institute
- Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference
- Board of Trustees, North Carolina Symphony
- Board of Trustees, Saint Mary's School
- Christ Church, Raleigh: Senior Warden, Junior Warden, Clerk and Vestry member
- Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina: Vice Chancellor; Standing Committee
- The North Caroliniana Society: Secretary-Treasurer; Board of Directors
- Adjunct Associate Professor of Law, University of North Carolina
Honors & Awards
- Who's Who Legal, M&A and Governance
- Chambers USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers, Corporate/M&A
- Best Lawyers®, Corporate Law, Mergers & Acquisitions Law (2013-2022), Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships) (2018-2023)
- Best Lawyers®. "Lawyer of the Year," Raleigh, Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnership) (2023)
- Business North Carolina's Legal Elite, Business, Corporate
- North Carolina Super Lawyers (2007-2019)
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent® Rated
- Executive Articles Editor and Staff Member, North Carolina Law Review
- Lead counsel in $500 million catastrophe bond issuance for the benefit of North Carolina’s residual property and casualty insurance markets (world's largest in 2013).
- Lead counsel in 2012 sale of family-owned national customized foodservice distribution company to subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
- Lead seller-side counsel in 2013 U.S. Federal Trade Commission antitrust investigation of $2.1 billion aftermarket auto parts industry merger.
- Lead counsel in $120 million merger of closely held pharmaceuticals research, development and manufacturing concern with publicly traded Australian pharmaceutical manufacturer.
- Lead counsel to monitor trustee of information firewall mandated by Federal Trade Commission consent order in international food and beverage industry leader's acquisition of U.S. bottling businesses.
- Lead counsel in U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Federal Trade Commission premerger antitrust investigations.
- General counsel to residual property and casualty insurance markets in the State of North Carolina, with $100 billion in risk exposure.
- General counsel to public industrial revenue bond authority in tax exempt bond issuances over more than 15 years.
- Lead counsel to borrowers in North Carolina industrial revenue bond issuances.
- Lead counsel in bankruptcy sale under Section 363 of U.S. Bankruptcy Code.
- North Carolina special counsel to international tobacco company in products liability litigation brought by the Province of British Columbia.
- General counsel to privately held businesses with annual revenues ranging from $20 million to more than $7 billion.
- Counsel in preparation of premerger notification filings under Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976.
News & Publications
- Best Lawyers® and Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch Recognizes 98 Smith Anderson Attorneys in Latest PublicationBest Lawyers®, 08.18.2022
- Calling Smith Anderson Attorneys and Hundreds of Other Legal Eagles: N.C. Lawyers Answer More Than 7,000 Requests for HelpNorth Carolina Lawyer Magazine, 03.10.2022
- A Dean of Distinction: University of North Carolina Bestows Martin Brinkley With Highest Professor Honor10.12.2021
- Hitting a New Milestone - 100 Members of Smith Anderson’s Legal Team Recognized by Best Lawyers® and Best Lawyers: Ones to WatchBest Lawyers, 08.19.2021
- 2021 Best Lawyers® and The Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch Recognize Largest Group of Smith Anderson Lawyers in Firm’s HistoryThe 2021 Best Lawyers®, 08.20.2020
- Smith Anderson Leads “Best Lawyers®” Rankings with 71 Recognized Lawyers and 11 “Lawyers of the Year” - Most of Any Raleigh Law FirmThe Best Lawyers in America©, 08.20.2019
- North Carolina Super Lawyers Recognizes Forty Smith Anderson Lawyers as Super Lawyers and Rising Stars in 2019Super Lawyers, 01.24.2019
- The Best Lawyers in America©, 08.15.2018
- Smith Anderson Attorney Spearheads New Entrepreneurship Clinic at UNC School of Law, Talks Benefits it Will Bring to Businesses StatewideTriangle Business Journal, 06.29.2018
- The Best Lawyers in America©, 08.15.2017
- Super Lawyers, 01.20.2017
- 2017 The Best Lawyers in America© Guide Recognizes 62 Smith Anderson Lawyers – Most in the Firm’s History08.15.2016
- Chambers USA, 06.01.2016
- Three Smith Anderson Lawyers Appointed to Newly Created N.C. Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice09.22.2015
- 2016 The Best Lawyers in America© Guide Lists 60 Smith Anderson Lawyers – Most in the Firm’s History08.17.2015
- Smith Anderson Represents General Parts International in $2.04 Billion Merger with Advance Auto Parts03.18.2014
- Smith Anderson Announces 49 of its Firm Lawyers are Named a “Best Lawyer” by The Best Lawyers in America® 201308.29.2012
- Presenter, "Primer: Hart-Scott-Rodino & Premerger Antitrust Approval," UNC's Festival of Legal Learning, Chapel Hill, N.C.02.2016
Bar & Court Admissions
- North Carolina
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
- U.S. District Courts for the Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of North Carolina
University of North Carolina, J.D., 1992
University of Cologne, Institute for Ancient Studies, 1988-89
Harvard University, A.B., summa cum laude, Classics, 1987
- Phi Beta Kappa
Phillips Exeter Academy, 1984
- Law Clerk to Chief Judge Sam J. Ervin, III, United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit