Atlanta bankruptcy lawyer
Neal Batson, a partner with the national law firm Alston & Bird LLP, has been proposed as examiner in the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Enron Corporation, United States Trustee Carolyn Schwartz announced today.
The examiner will be responsible for investigating and reporting to the court on transactions involving Enron and its related entities, including so-called “off-balance sheet” transactions not reflected in the company’s financial statements.
Commenting on the rigorous review process that led to Batson’s selection, Trustee Schwartz said that he was chosen from among some two dozen candidates for his “stature, independence and expertise.” Schwartz went on to note that “Mr. Batson is recognized as one of the top bankruptcy practitioners in the country and is widely respected for his integrity as well as his intellect.”
“No one could possibly bring greater skill, dedication and experience to this complex and critical job than Neal Batson,” said Alston & Bird Managing Partner Ben F. Johnson III. "Neal's leadership in our firm and profession and his countless contributions to bankruptcy law and practice over more than three decades have earned him the ungrudging respect and admiration of clients, colleagues and bankruptcy judges alike across the United States.”
After graduating from Vanderbilt University School of Law in 1966, Batson served as clerk to Judge Griffin B. Bell of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. The Nashville native joined Alston & Bird in 1967 and was elected a partner of the firm in 1971. He brings to the examiner’s role more than 30 years of experience serving as lead counsel to debtors, creditors’ committees, secured lenders and franchisees, as well as a trustee and examiner in numerous high profile Chapter 11 cases. In 1989, he was the court-appointed examiner in the widely publicized Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Southmark Corporation, a real estate, insurance and financial services conglomerate with approximately 900 affiliated entities.
Batson is chairman of the American College of Bankruptcy and is a fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. He is a member of the National Bankruptcy Conference and a former vice chairman of the Business Bankruptcy Committee of the American Bar Association’s Section on Business Law. From 1993 to 1999, Batson served by appointment of Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist as a member of the Advisory Committee on the Rules of Bankruptcy Procedure of the Judicial Conference of the United States. Batson also serves as a panel member of the American Arbitration Association and a panel member of the Register of Mediators of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. He is a former president of the Atlanta Bar Association and the Southeastern Bankruptcy Law Institute.
Alston & Bird is a full-service national law firm with more than 600 lawyers in Atlanta, New York, Washington, D.C., Charlotte and Research Triangle. The firm’s Bankruptcy, Workouts and Reorganization Group, which Batson built, enjoys a national reputation for its representation of debtors, creditors’ committees, fiduciaries and other parties in bankruptcy courts in more than 40 states.
NOTE TO EDITORS: Photos of Mr. Batson are available electronically or by contacting Becky Blackwell of Alston & Bird at 404-881-7908.