Hendrix Lectures to Spotlight Atlanta as an Arbitration Center

The Atlanta International Arbitration Society (“AtlAS”) has established an annual lecture named in honor of Glenn P. Hendrix, chairman of the locally-based law firm Arnall Golden Gregory LLP., who has served as the society’s founding president.

The Hendrix lecture is to feature preeminent speakers involved in the field of international arbitration with the inaugural lecture to be given by Professor Christopher Drahozal, an associate reporter for the American Law Institute’s Restatement of the U.S. Law of International Commercial Arbitration and a renowned international scholar.

The lecture is to be held on Thursday, March 24, at 4:30 p.m. in the Tull Auditorium at the Emory University School of Law.

Mr. Hendrix is credited with conceiving the idea for an international arbitration society in Atlanta, which has brought together the city’s leading law firms and law schools to support the project. (See video of its inauguration below.)

During a luncheon presentation of the Metro Atlanta Chamber in March 2011, Mr. Hendrix outlined the arguments in favor of Atlanta’s developing an arbitration center in the face of entrenched competitors around the world.

Arbitration has become “big business,” he said, adding that litigation is best off being conducted at home and not subject to the vagaries of other countries’ “home cooking.”

A number of other practical reasons were important for taking on the challenge, he said including a pro-arbitration tradition of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, the support for the involvement of foreign attorneys under state law and that the U.S. has no treaties with foreign countries ensuring the enforcement of court judgments.

No less important, he said, was the ease of access to Atlanta from around the world due to the presence of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. “We all know that within two hours of Atlanta you can get to 80 percent of the U.S. population,” he added.

He also cited cases, which in his mind, revealed the underlying opportunity for establishing the center. At that time, he was working on a case in Miami dealing with the Dominican Republic. “That case had nothing to do with Miami,” he added and could more easily have been resolved in Atlanta.

Ben Greer, formerly head of the international practice at the Atlanta-based firm Alston & Bird LLP, said in the announcement of the Hendrix lecture series that “it would be impossible to overstate the role of Glenn Hendrix in forming AtlAS and promoting Atlanta as a venue of international commercial dispute resolution.”

These sentiments were echoed by Brian White, a partner in the international arbitration practice of King & Spalding LLP and president-elect of AtlAS.

“The creation of AtLAS is only one of the ways Glenn Hendrix has acted as a thought leader on issues relating to international commerce,” Mr. White said in the announcement.

“In the past, he served on U.S. State Department delegations to The Hague and Moscow, and is currently the American Bar Association’s representative to the U.S. State Deparmtent’s Advisory Committee on International Law.”

Mr. Hendrix was commended for shepherding through the Georgia Assembly revisions of the Georgia International Arbitration Code so that it would aligned with international standards;

proposing and security an amendment to the jurisdiction of the Fulton County (Atlanta) Business Court;

organizing conferences hosted by AtLAS each year;

securing recognition by the American Bar Association and other organizations for Georgia’s progressive bar rules on transnational legal practice;

and establishing the North American Roundtable on International Arbitration regarding international dispute resolution among societies and centers in six cities in the U.S. and Canada.

Mr. Hendrix graduated with distinction from Emory Law in 1985. Upon graduation, he was elected to the Order of the Coif, a scholastic honor society.

According to the announcement, it is anticipated that other Atlanta-area law schools will host the Hendix Lecture in the future.

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