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Butler Snow Attorney Tray Hairston Listed in The Bond Buyer’s National Rising Stars

October 2, 2018 | by Butler Snow


Butler Snow is pleased to announce Tray Hairston has been selected for inclusion in The Bond Buyer’s 2018 Rising Stars.

“This is an exciting and well-deserved honor for Tray,” said Donald Clark, Jr., chairman of Butler Snow. “Tray’s work on behalf of our clients has earned him great respect in the legal field and this national recognition in the municipal finance industry illustrates that.”

The Bond Buyer’s Rising Stars program honors 28 municipal finance professionals throughout the country under the age of 40 whose leadership, collaborative spirit and innovative work with issuers has positively impacted their communities. Rising Stars are nominated by their peers and submissions are judged by a panel of municipal finance leaders throughout the country and The Bond Buyer’s editorial leadership team. The Bond Buyer is a century-old daily national trade newspaper based in New York focused on covering the national and international municipal bond industry.

Hairston is a member of Butler Snow’s public finance, tax incentives and credit markets group and focuses his practice on bond transactions, economic development projects and government relations. He has served as bond counsel, developer’s counsel and underwriter’s counsel to numerous cities, counties, universities, banks and underwriters throughout Mississippi and Louisiana and bond counsel to the State of Mississippi. Prior to joining the firm, he served as counsel and economic development policy advisor to Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant. Prior to beginning his legal career, Tray was also a member of the Global Business Division at the Mississippi Development Authority where he provided project management assistance to both national and international companies and consultants looking to locate new businesses in Mississippi.

Most recently, Hairston served as bond counsel and incentive counsel in connection with financing the construction and equipping of a historic art deco 16-story hotel built in 1929 in Meridian, Mississippi known as the Threefoot Building. The new 137 room hotel is being converted into a Courtyard Marriott. Hairston also served as bond counsel and disclosure counsel in connection with the issuance of $20,000,000 Mississippi Development Bank Special Obligation Bonds, Series 2017 (Meridian, Mississippi Arts & Entertainment Center General Obligation Bond Project). The bonds financed the new Mississippi Arts & Entertainment Experience Museum (The MAX). The MAX is a museum that highlights Mississippi artists and celebrates the contributions of arts and entertainment enterprisers in every artistic discipline and will include a Mississippi hall of fame, museum store, recording studio, a 2D art studio (painting and drawing) and a 3D art studio (ceramics), multi-purpose gallery, outdoor amphitheater, and a courtyard.

Hairston has also served as developer’s counsel to a Learning/Medical City located on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The development is home to the National Diabetes and Obesity Research Institute (NDORI) in affiliation with Cleveland Clinic’s Endocrinology and Metabolism Institute, William Carey University’s Tradition campus and Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College’s Nursing and Simulation Center. Hairston recently provided advice on an economic impact study prepared by Arduin, Laffer & Moore Econometrics, LLC, Southern Mississippi Planning and Development District and The University of Southern Mississippi Trent Lott Economic Development Institute. The study estimates that the development will see an economic impact of $2B+ over the next ten years and will create 9,400 jobs as a result of the location of a new medical school, pharmacy school and life science cluster. Hairston has also dedicated his time to publishing scholarly legal works in the area of economic development and was the author of a powerful TED Talk titled “How to Make Health Care an Economic Driver.”

Hairston has been recognized by Super Lawyers® as a Mid-South Super Lawyer for his work in government finance. He has also been named a Top 40 Under 40 by the Mississippi Business Journal, a Top Forty Under Forty in Tougaloo College’s inaugural leadership class and Young Lawyer of the Year by Mississippi College School of Law.

Hairston is also a 2018 graduate of the Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy, a premier year-long leadership training program that brings together public, private and nonprofit-sector leaders from the eight states served by the Delta Regional Authority.

Hairston is a member of the National Association of Bond Lawyers, the Mississippi Economic Development Council, the Mississippi Bar Association and the American Bar Association, and currently serves on the board of directors for Mississippi Today, Tougaloo College Research and Development Foundation and Mississippi Main Street Association. He also serves as an adjunct professor at Mississippi College School of Law. Hairston received his undergraduate degree from Tougaloo College, his MBA from Belhaven College and his Juris Doctor from Mississippi College School of Law.

The Bond Buyer’s 2018 Rising Stars were honored at the California Public Finance conference Oct. 1-3 in Los Angeles, CA.