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The precedent-setting law established in some of my larger cases over the years is satisfying. To know you've helped forge some of the state's common law which will govern commerce in the South for years to come is an achievement perhaps only a lawyer can appreciate – or a client on the winning side.

Mark Norris is Majority Leader of the Tennessee Senate and has a diverse civil litigation and business practice. Mark advises clients in crisis management and preventative measures to minimize risk and avoid the expense of litigation. He also appears before administrative, regulatory and municipal boards on behalf of a variety of clients in land use, permitting and zoning matters related to economic development. Having served as a County Commissioner in West Tennessee and as a member of the National Association of Counties and Tennessee County Commissioners' Association Board, Mark is also experienced in matters involving local government.

Mark believes that community and public service is integral to the practice of law. After six years as a County Commissioner, he was first elected to the Tennessee Senate in 2000 and was re-elected to a fifth term in 2016. He served for many years on the Senate Judiciary Committee before his election as Majority Leader in 2007. He is currently a member of the following Senate Committees: Finance, Ways and Means, State and Local Government, Ethics, Veterans’ Affairs, and Pensions and Insurance. He is Chairman of the Senate Rules Committee.

Mark served as Chairman of the 15-state Southern Legislative Conference of the Council of State Governments. He served as Chairman of the national Council of State Governments in 2014.

Education

  • University of Denver, J.D., 1980
  • Colorado College, B.A., 1977

Bar Admissions

  • Tennessee

Court Admissions

  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Tennessee

Community Involvement

Mark’s charitable endeavors have included The Med Foundation and National Ornamental Metal Museum. He is past President of the Buckman Boys and Girls Club and The Phoenix, Inc. He also served as Director of the Memphis & Shelby County Sports Authority, Boys and Girls Club of Memphis and the Memphis Cook Convention Center.

Acknowledgements

In 2014, Mark received the Tennessee Chamber’s “Champion of Commerce Award” for his economic development initiatives and accomplishments.

Professional Affiliations & Memberships

  • Tennessee Senate, 2000-Present
  • Memphis Bar Association
  • Tennessee Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Transportation Lawyers Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Southern States Energy Board, Executive Committee
  • Southern Legislative Conference, Past Chairman
  • Health Lawyers Association
  • Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association
  • Intermodal Freight Transportation Institute at University of Memphis
  • Council of State Governments, Chairman
  • Tennessee Workforce Development Board
  • Memphis Research Consortium, Board Member
  • University of Tennessee Center for Health Sciences Advisory Board, Member
  • University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Medicine, Board Member
  • Tennessee Technology Development Corporation (LaunchTN), Board, Director
  • National Ornamental Metal Museum, Advisory Board
  • Board of the Med Foundation, Past Chairman and Member
  • Isaac Shelby Sons of the American Revolution, Chancellor