As Practice Group Leader of the firm’s Regulatory and Government Group, Mr. Malone focuses on telecommunications, public utilities, governmental relations, commercial litigation and administrative law.

Biography – View PDF Bio

Narrative Bio

Melvin Malone serves as the Firm’s Regulatory and Government Practice Group Leader, and focuses his work on telecommunications, public utilities, governmental relations, commercial litigation and administrative law. He led the Firm’s efforts on diversity and inclusivity from 2016 through 2020.

Melvin serves clients in regulatory matters primarily in Tennessee, but also in Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky and Mississippi. He has successfully litigated on behalf of Tennessee’s only privately-owned water provider, a regional financial institution, a global wireless communications company, the nation’s largest three-service public utility, a national automotive finance company, and a coalition of Tennessee telephone cooperatives. Melvin has also successfully litigated on behalf of a coalition of over 200 retail fuel providers in an alternative fuel anti-competition case.

Melvin’s work on governmental relations spans many industries, including healthcare, insurance, higher education, procurement, telecommunications, utilities, automotive, infrastructure and taxes, economic development, and technology.

Due to his prior public service as Deputy Counsel to the Governor and Chairman of the Tennessee Public Utility Commission, along with his previous engagements on a host of public policy matters, Melvin is often sought out by state leaders to provide insight, observations and counsel on various legislative and regulatory initiatives. Melvin is AV-rated by Martindale-Hubbell, and his work has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America® and Mid-South Super Lawyers®.

Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam appointed Melvin to serve as a Special Justice on the Tennessee Supreme Court in 2014 to hear a case from which four Supreme Court justices recused themselves. In 2013, Governor Haslam appointed Melvin to the Board of Directors for the TPAC Management Corporation, and he was subsequently re-appointed by Governor Lee. The Nashville Post named Melvin in “Nashville’s Top 101 Lawyers” and “In Charge” for the legal industry. Additionally, he is Chair Emeritus for 100 Black Men of Middle Tennessee, Inc. and Tennessee State University’s Foundation Board of Trustees. He also currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Memorial Foundation.

Melvin obtained his J.D. from the University of Tennessee and is admitted to the Tennessee State Bar, the U.S. District Courts for all districts of Tennessee and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

Associations

Bar Admissions

  • Tennessee, 1989
  • U.S. District Courts
    • Tennessee: Eastern, Middle, Western
  • U.S. Court of Appeals
    • 6th Circuit

Civic Involvement

  • The Memorial Foundation, Inc., Board of Trustees
  • 100 Black Men of Middle Tennessee, Chair Emeritus
  • Tennessee State University Foundation Board, Chair Emeritus
  • NASBA Center for Public Trust, Board of Directors
  • University of Tennessee College of Law, Dean’s Advisory Circle
  • Joe C. Davis YMCA Outdoor Center/YMCA Camp Widjiwagan, Board of Directors

Distinctions

  • AV-Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Fellow, Tennessee Bar Foundation
  • Napier-Looby Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • Fellow, Nashville Bar Foundation
  • Appointment by Gov. Lee to the Board of Directors, TPAC Management Corporation, 2019-Present
  • Appointment by Gov. Haslam to the Board of Directors, TPAC Management Corporation, 2013-2019
  • R.B.J. Campbelle Award, University of Tennessee College of Law, 2012
  • Nashville’s Top 101 Lawyers, Nashville Post Magazine, 2011
  • More...

Education & Honors

  • University of Tennessee, J.D., 1989
    • Member, Tennessee Law Review
    • Awarded Patricia Roberts Harris Fellowship
    • Advocate’s Prize Moot Court Competition
    • Member, American Inns of Court Foundation
  • University of Tennessee, B.S., Finance, with honors, 1985
  • Clerkship, The Honorable Nathaniel R. Jones, U.S. Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, ​Aug. 1990 – Aug. 1991
  • Clerkship, The Honorable Julia S. Gibbons, U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Tennessee, ​Aug. 1989 – Aug. 1990

Experience

  • Melvin was one of the first practitioners before the Tennessee Public Utility Commission to obtain approval of capital recovery riders under Tennessee’s newly passed legislative initiative authorizing alternative regulatory mechanisms for public utilities.
  • Served a special appointment by Governor Bill Haslam to the Tennessee Supreme Court to hear a case from which four Supreme Court Justices recused themselves (Hooker et al v. Lt. Governor Ramsey et al.).
  • ​Successfully litigated on behalf of Tennessee’s only publicly held water provider, a regional financial institution, a global wireless communications company, the nation’s largest three-service utility, a national automotive finance company, and a coalition of Tennessee telephone cooperatives.
  • Successfully litigated on behalf of a coalition of over 200 retail fuel providers in an alternative fuel anti-competition case.
  • Commissioner, Tennessee Public Utility Commission (Formerly Tennessee Regulatory Authority), 1996-2002.
  • Deputy Legal Counsel to Tennessee Governor Don Sundquist, 1995-1996.

Papers, Presentations, & Publications

  • "At the Crossroads of Pessimism and Opportunity – Lessons Learned from the Legal Recession," DRI Annual Meeting.
  • "Alternative Fee Arrangements – Fad or Future," Tennessee Bar Association’s Law Firm Management Conference.
  • "Executive Leadership Symposium," Urban League of Greater Chattanooga Young Professionals Association.
  • Testifying before State Utility/Regulatory Commissions.
  • "Career Paths and Partnership Structures," Tennessee Bar Association’s Law Firm Management Conference.
  • "Beyond the Next Step: A Career Road Map for Lawyers," National Asian Pacific American Bar Association’s Southeast Regional Conference.
  • "Current Regulatory & FCC Issues," The Telecommunications Education Committee Organization.
  • "Regulatory Concerns for the VoIP Provider," Tennessee Telecommunications Association, Annual Convention.
  • "VoIP: Assessing the Opportunities and Threats," Associated Network Partners, Inc., Symposium.
  • More...