James serves as Chairman of the firm’s Venture Capital and Private Equity practice and he has extensive experience in all aspects of venture capital and private equity transactions, including fund formations, the negotiation of venture capital investments, the negotiation of acquisitions and dispositions by private equity funds, and investment adviser, investment company and broker dealer regulation. As Chairman of the firm’s Emerging Growth Companies Team and Co-Chairman of the firm’s Life Sciences Industry Team, James also focuses a significant portion of his practice on representing biotech, software, alternative energy, and other emerging growth companies throughout all stages of their growth, from start up to liquidity, in connection with their angel, venture capital, and other equity and debt financings, acquisitions and dispositions, and the negotiation of licensing and other complex agreements.
James is a frequent lecturer on financing, merger and acquisition, and emerging growth company topics, and he is listed in The Best Lawyers in America (Venture Capital Law, Reversed Buyouts and Private Equity Law, Mergers & Acquisitions Law, Securities Law, and Corporate Law) and Chambers USA – Corporate/Commercial Law. He was named the Best Venture Capital Lawyer in Birmingham in 2010 and 2011 by The Best Lawyers in America. He is actively involved in numerous activities outside of his work for the firm. At the regional level, James is a past President, and currently serves on the Board of Directors, of the Birmingham Venture Club and he is the founder of its Entrepreneur Accelerator Program (where he has taught 100 entrepreneurs to date). He is also a founder and past Chairman, and currently services on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee, of TechBirmingham (the Birmingham Area Technology Leadership Alliance), and he serves on the Boards of Directors of Innovation Depot, the Biotechnology Association of Alabama, the Alabama Information Technology Association and the Birmingham International Center. At the national level, James serves as Vice Chairman of the Private Equity and Venture Capital Subcommittee of the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association and Chairman of its Membership Subcommittee, and he serves on the Board of Directors of the Society of International Business Fellows. James also serves on the Boards of Directors of the United Way of Central Alabama and Salty Oak Ministries, Inc., a non-profit organization formed to assist underprivileged individuals in Ukraine and other countries in establishing and growing businesses.