Legal Elite – Business Law
Gerald F. Roach Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan LLP, Raleigh
This Joseph Cave painting of a motorboat traveling down Shem Creek in Charleston, S.C., captures family memories of boat rides along the Intracoastal Waterway.
Vita: Born April 24, 1958, in Las Vegas; bachelor’s and law degrees from Wake Forest University; wife and two children. Why he chose this field: In college I read with great interest stories of corporate offerings, mergers and hostile tender offers. Then at Smith Anderson, three of my first projects involved a leveraged buyout, a public offering and the defense of a public company from a takeover attempt by Victor Posner. What he’d be if not a lawyer: I would use my problem-solving and people skills in an organization that is trying to meet basic human needs. Hero: Robert Dyer, one of my professors at Wake Forest, almost starved to death as a missionary in a Japanese prison camp during World War II. As part of one particular lesson each year, he would sing Blueberry Hill (Though we’re apart/You’re part of me still/For you were my thrill/On Blueberry Hill). He sang the song each day in prison camp while separated from his wife, who was also in camp. He made the point of the importance of hope. Passions: Wake Forest and its challenging but nurturing environment of academics and service. Recent reading: Quiet Strength by Tony Dungy. Don’t ask him to: Sing the correct words of any song.
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