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Samuel T. Bowman

Pro Bono Shareholder

Samuel T. Bowman is Baker Donelson's full-time Pro Bono Shareholder, managing pro bono legal projects across the Firm's 23 offices located in 11 states and Washington, D.C.

Featured Experience


Represented a national nonprofit in the review and updating of a 50-state index to address youth homelessness.

Served on a legal team that created a homeless court in Davidson County (Nashville), Tennessee, to address criminal violations and subsequent fines disproportionately affecting the homeless population.

Represented a local theatrical nonprofit in several matters including acquisitions and trademark matters.

Professional Biography


As Pro Bono Shareholder for Baker Donelson, Mr. Bowman is responsible for overseeing the continued development, growth, and administration of pro bono programs across the Firm's 23 offices located in 11 states and Washington, D.C. He has served for more than ten years as Chair of the Nashville office's Pro Bono Committee, where he coordinated local pro bono matters for attorneys in the office, assisted local legal aid organizations, and handled individual pro bono cases. Mr. Bowman maintains a significant practice providing legal services pro bono, which includes assisting entities with obtaining nonprofit status and providing pro bono services to several local churches.

Prior to his appointment as Pro Bono Shareholder, Mr. Bowman served as lead counsel for numerous jury and bench trials, all taken to conclusion in a wide variety of cases involving commercial business issues, personal injury, domestic actions, construction matters, quarry owners and aggregate producers as well as white collar criminal defense, health care defense, environmental/blasting defense, and others. Mr. Bowman was asked regularly to step in as trial counsel for cases heading to trial.

Before joining Baker Donelson, Mr. Bowman was a Special Agent for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. Given his law enforcement background, Mr. Bowman handled internal investigation matters for a variety of industries. Mr. Bowman also provides in-house seminars as well as outside speaking engagements on pro bono, litigation, investigations and law enforcement.

  • Pro Bono, Commercial, Domestic, Construction, Aggregate, and Civil Litigation

  • Represented a national nonprofit in the review and updating of a 50-state index to address youth homelessness.

  • Served on a legal team that created a homeless court in Davidson County (Nashville), Tennessee, to address criminal violations and subsequent fines disproportionately affecting the homeless population.

  • Represented a local theatrical nonprofit in several matters including acquisitions and trademark matters.

  • Represented persons of limited means and managed cases in numerous matters, including those referred by local legal aid organizations, to facilitate better access to justice.

  • Maintained numerous clients in their divorce actions and regularly negotiates resolutions in these cases without a trial.

  • Represented aggregate producers and sub-specialty vendors in a vast array of matters, including lease negotiations and disputes, contract drafting and defending, employment issues, tax analyses, personal injury and property damage claims, regulatory, public policy and relations and others.

  • Represented aggregate producers and contractors in federal and state government construction projects, negotiations and litigation.

  • Represented commercial landowners in a multimillion-dollar accounting and dissolution action.

  • Successfully defended a quarry operator against a $75 million action involving state blasting guidelines in which personal injury and property damage were alleged.
  • Obtained full victory for property owner in a dispute involving tortious interference and trespass to land where the adjacent owner had erected an encroaching structure. Verdict included the destruction of the encroaching structure.
  • Secured the dismissal of $50 million tort and punitive damages claims for malicious prosecution brought by a former network provider against a health insurer, resolving an issue of first impression under a Tennessee statute. Following remand, represented the insurer in a 12-day jury trial on the remaining breach of contract claim, resulting in a jury verdict of zero.

  • Successfully defended a multimillion dollar claim of personal injury arising from an on the job accident from which the plaintiff claimed to be 100 percent disabled and unemployable.
  • Won a full defense judgment in a multimillion-dollar trial in federal court involving personal injury arising from the construction, installation, and maintenance of a hotel's facilities.

  • Obtained full judgment for a contractor in a breach of contract action involving construction at regional locations of a grocery store chain.
  • Awarded damages for an engineering firm for the non-payment of fees under an environmental implementation contract.
  • White Collar Defense and Internal Investigations

  • Defended a university researcher in a federal grant fraud prosecution alleging the filing of false federal claims.

  • Represented defendants in state and federal criminal trials and sentencing.

  • Obtained a complete judgment for an architectural and engineering firm involving the breach of fiduciary duty and misappropriation of trade secrets.
  • Conducted numerous internal investigations for clients nationwide facing government review.
  • Board Member – Tennessee Alliance for Legal Services
  • Member – Tennessee Bar Association Access to Justice Committee
  • Chair – Tennessee Bar Association Access to Justice Committee, Pro Bono Subcommittee
  • Member – Appleseed Network Pro Bono Advisory Council
  • Member – Nashville Bar Foundation 
  • Member –  Association of Pro Bono Counsel
  • Former Chair – Baker Donelson Nashville Pro Bono Committee
  • Former Chair – Nashville Bar Association, Construction Committee
  • Member – Nashville, Tennessee, and American Bar Associations
  • Member – Phi Delta Phi
  • Recipient – William M. Leech Scholarship
  • Recipient – American Jurisprudence Award
  • Former Chair – Angel Heart Farms Board of Directors
  • Listed in Mid-South Rising Stars, 2008
  • Co-author – "White Collar E-Discovery in the Criminal Context," Law360 (June 2011)
  • Facilitator – Pro Bono Institute's 2022 Annual Conference, Southern Regional Networking Session (April 2022)
  • "Legal Pro Bono in a Time of Crisis," Thomson Reuters Foundation (April 2021)
  • "Defending the 'Blasting Case'," Middle Tennessee Branch of the International Society of Explosives Engineers (January 2011)

Education

  • University of Memphis School of Law, J.D., 2000, magna cum laude 
  • Belmont University, B.S., 1991, cum laude

Admissions

  • Tennessee, 2000
  • United States District Court, Middle District of Tennessee, 2001
  • United States Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, 2003

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