Franklin Synergy Bank hires senior VP
Franklin Synergy Bank has hired business banker David Forshee  as senior vice president of commercial banking.
Forshee comes to Franklin Synergy from Fifth Third Bank in Nashville, where he had been a commercial relationship manager. He also has worked at First Citizens Bank and SunTrust Bank. He is based in the bank’s Cool Springs branch.
"We are intently focused on new and renewed credit needs of our business customers,” said bank President Richard Herrington. “Our commitment to meeting these needs remains strong. David’s commercial and industrial lending experience makes him a great fit with our bank to respond to the surge in local lending opportunities.”
Franklin Synergy opened its doors in late 2007 and has since grown to five offices and more than $500 million in assets.
BB&S hires Stanley as of council
Bass Berry & Sims has named one of its attorneys of counsel and brought on board four new associates, two of them from other prominent Nashville firms.
Amanda Elliott Stanley  has been promoted to of counsel. She has been with Bass’ commercial transactions and real estate group since April 2005. Formerly with Paul Hastings Janofsky & Walker, she focuses her practice on asset-based financing, syndicated credit facilities, and construction loans and workouts, among other legal matters.
Bass, which is home to more than 200 attorneys, also has hired the following associates:
• Sarah B. Krause has joined the firm’s employee benefits and executive compensation practice. Previously, she was in-house employee benefits counsel at Amgen. Krause earned her law degree from Vanderbilt University and received a B.A. in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
• Stephanie A. Roth has joined Bass’ labor and employment practice. Prior to joining the firm, Roth practiced at Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis. She received her law degree from Vanderbilt University as well as a master’s degree in divinity from Candler School of Theology at Emory University and a bachelor’s in religion from Duke University.
• Brittain W. Sexton has joined the litigation practice at Bass. Previously, he practiced in the New York office of megafirm Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom. Sexton earned his law degree from the University of Tennessee and a bachelor’s degree in English from Murray State University. During and after law school, Sexton served as law clerk for the Hon. J. Daniel Breen in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee and the Hon. Gary R. Wade in the Tennessee Supreme Court.
• Marcia N. Topiwala has joined the firm’s corporate and securities practice from the Nashville office of Wyatt Tarrant & Combs. She received her law degree from Fordham University and a B.A. in English from Wellesley College.
McKenzie Laird adds two as of counsel
McKenzie Laird has added attorneys Todd McKee and Talbott Ottinger as of counsel.
Previously, McKee (on the left in our photo ) was general counsel at Soles4Souls, the nonprofit that collects shoes for the needy, for more than two years and deputy general counsel at Meharry Medical College for five years. His practice at McKenzie Laird will focus on general business law, nonprofits, employment law and education law.
Ottinger works with individuals and companies with a focus on business and commercial transactions and real estate transactions, including affordable housing and community development work. Prior to joining McKenzie Laird, Talbott launched Otter’s Chicken Tenders, which has locations on Demonbreun Street and in Atlanta, and practiced law in Louisiana.
“We are excited about the addition of Todd and Talbott as they add new practice areas to our existing focus on corporate, securities, venture capital and mergers and acquisitions transactions,” said Donald McKenzie, who launched McKenzie Laird with Rob Laird in 2010.
Working Title Agency adds Landis
Barry Landis , the former president of Word Records and an associate publisher at Simon & Schuster/Howard Books, has teamed up with Bill Reeves at Working Title Agency.
Landis, who has joined Working Title as its third partner, will help Reeves develop books, movies and music projects focused on faith-friendly entertainment. He joined Simon & Schuster in early 2012 and helped launch a 10-book deal with New York Times best-selling author Karen Kingsbury, as well as a series of books from the A&E hit TV show Duck Dynasty and other products by Dave Ramsey, among others.
“Barry’s stellar experience with some of the world’s largest entertainment and publishing companies will continue to help WTA grow and serve our clients with distinctive service,” said Reeves, Working Title’s owner and principal partner. “Barry’s experience and integrity are second to none.”
Landis, pictured here, ran Word from 2002 and 2005 and helped restart Randy Travis’ career in addition to working with Mute Math and POD. He also has marketed a number of feature-length films and provided music supervision services to the film community. In 2011, Landis was a finalist for the post of Tennessee Film, Music and Entertainment Commissioner.
“The opportunity to join Bill at Working Title Agency as a partner is the perfect blend of all the things I have done throughout my career,” said Landis. “I look forward to building the company with Bill, and growing the existing projects as well as pursuing new entertainment opportunities in books, film and music.”