Friday, May 24, 2024

Justin Outling


Justin Outling credits Brooks Pierce’s success to the palpable energy that propels the law firm, which has about 110 lawyers in Greensboro, Raleigh and Wilmington. The Buffalo, New York native joined the firm in 2012 and takes pride in the clarity of the firm’s mission.

“The culture is such that while we may not all agree on every topic or every practical decision, we understand the outsized impact we have, and we work together for the good of the entire firm and the communities we serve,” says Outling, who grew up in Charlotte. “I see this in our diversity and inclusion efforts especially. We began actively pursuing a more diverse firm early in the 2010s, well before the murder of George Floyd in the spring of 2020.” 

For Outling, 39, and his colleagues, diversity, equity and inclusion is weaved into the firm’s culture and specifically his work as Brooks Pierce’s first director of diversity and inclusion. He’s had the role for more than two years, but the work began years prior while serving on a committee.

“I help lead the firm in proactively leveraging our resources, connections and talent to create not only a more inclusive workplace but also opportunities that increase diversity and promote equity in the communities where we work and live.” 

Brooks Pierce was among the first N.C. firms to create a diversity fellowship in its summer associate program, says Outling. The annual Justice Henry E. Frye Diversity Fellowship is awarded to a first-year law student who is a member of a historically underrepresented community. The award honors the former chief justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court, Brooks Pierce attorney and Outling’s mentor.

The married father of two is working with the Joseph M. Bryan Foundation of Greater Greensboro to install a statue in downtown Greensboro to honor Frye.

A UNC Greensboro and Duke University School of Law graduate, Outling’s practice focuses on business litigation and white-collar criminal defense. He has represented a variety of businesses and individuals in complex matters including fraud, shareholder disputes and commercial financing. 

Outling served on the Greensboro City Council between 2015-21. He made an unsuccessful bid for mayor last year, losing to Nancy Vaughan, who has held the post since 2013.

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