Notable Alumni: Joel Katz

Mr. Katz opened up a one-man law firm in 1971, and got a big break by helping negotiate a recording contract for the “Godfather of Soul” James Brown. His publicity skyrocketed, and Katz represented countless other music stars. In 1998, the law firm of Katz, Smith & Cohen merged with Greenberg Traurig in Georgia, which expanded his firm to the corporate, real estate and tax practices of Greenberg Traurig. He funded a Hunter scholarship at the University of Tennessee. He was the first and only attorney to be inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in October 1995. He is general counsel for the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences and formerly served as the organization’s chairman. He was also recognized in 2007 as the Outstanding Georgia Citizen, awarded by the Secretary of the State of Georgia.

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