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Securities Law360: Q&A with Baker Donelson's Tonya Mitchem Grindon

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Securities Law360 (http://www.law360.com/)

Tonya Mitchem Grindon is the chair of Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz PC's securities/corporate governance practice group and a shareholder in the firm's Nashville office. She concentrates her practice in investment management, securities, mergers and acquisitions, general corporate and international business transactions.

Grindon has significant experience in the representation of private funds, companies in public offerings and private placements, and foreign companies in asset purchases in the U.S. and U.S. companies involved in international joint ventures and asset purchases abroad.

Q: What is the most challenging case you've worked on, and why?

A: One of my most challenging cases had to do with my representation of several private equity funds, one of which is the largest investor of, and has a board seat on, a public company. We were making a presentation to the board of directors for the removal of the CEO.

The situation was incredibly contentious to begin with, but then counsel to the public company got in my client’s face (nose-to-nose) and was screaming and pushing his finger into my client’s chest. I actually thought my client was about to get his head knocked off, so I physically stepped between the two to push them apart. I told my client to walk away and take a few deep breaths and told the attorney to leave the room until he could control himself.

The attorney for the public company kept haranguing my client and refused to talk or speak with me. We were ultimately successful in having the CEO removed.

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