Professional Experience

His practice has included work in a variety of other non-tax regulatory areas as well on behalf of businesses large and small. These opportunities have helped promote a “big picture” understanding of business issues that serve to expedite client communications, and foster creative strategies to achieve client objectives.

Mike has served as tax counsel and legislative resource on tax issues for the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and Associated Industries of Arkansas for over 30 years. Through these organizations he has had many opportunities to advance the interests of individual taxpayers, small businesses, and the largest businesses and industries in Arkansas. These activities have included writing and advocating for passage of multiple bills to improve the Arkansas business tax climate and make the state more competitive, as well as opposing proposals that would damage Arkansas business and industry.

Among many examples of positive outcomes that might be mentioned for individual clients, Mike is particularly pleased to have been part of the WLJ tax team’s latest success challenging a $30m proposed excise tax assessment and obtaining a $100k refund for a leading Arkansas industry (Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration 2021-2022).

Recognition

Mike’s abilities, leadership and service have been recognized repeatedly throughout his career. His many awards include recognition among The Best Lawyers in America© in Tax Law, Tax Litigation and Controversy, and Trusts and Estates; Best Lawyers’ Lawyer of the Year in Tax Litigation and Controversy for the region; repeat listings among Mid-South Super Lawyers; and the President’s Award for Excellence in recognition and appreciation for dedicated service to the Arkansas Bar Association.

Other awards and recognition include the Outstanding Service Award in recognition of outstanding commitment, leadership, service and counsel on tax legislation from the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and Associated Industries of Arkansas; the Golden Gavel Award For Exemplary Service to the Legal Profession from the Arkansas Bar Association for public service initiatives during his term as Chair of the Taxation Section of the organization; the highest ratings available from various legal resource and rating organizations; and an opportunity to serve as a Special Associate Justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court in 2013.

About

Mike and his wife, Ruth, have been married over 50 years and are long time Episcopalians. They have two sons, three grandchildren, wonderful daughters-in-law who have added special additional family members, and an aristocratic cat named Pawley. Mike’s interests beyond the law and family include campanology (traditional English tower bell ringing), foreign travel when conditions permit and, until then, gardening.

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