Formerly based in Los Angeles, Deborah relocated to Nashville in mid-1994, and in May, 1995 became the lead attorney for the Nashville office and a partner in the nationally renowned entertainment firm John Mason Partners Ltd. In January of 2000, Deborah joined the international 800-lawyer firm of Greenberg Traurig as a partner in the entertainment practice, based in Atlanta, Georgia. Deborah has worked with an international roster of many of the leading entertainment industry recording artists, producers, screenwriters, authors, filmmakers, and songwriter/composers. Included among them are artists such as Gloria Estefan, Jon Secada, Olivia Newton-John, Reba McEntire, Travis Tritt, Lorrie Morgan, Randy Travis, John Berry, Deanna Carter, and Robert Earl Keen, as well as a number of new artists, including Crescent Moon/Sony artist Shalim (Executive-produced by Emilio Estefan), Russian country group Bering Strait (Universal), Miami-based pop artist Dani Mendez (Elektra), Australian pop artist Cosima DeVito as well as multi-platinum songwriter Susan Gibson (Dixie Chicks) and award-winning Canadian acts Michelle Wright (BMG), Colin Linden (Sony/Canada), Sue Foley (Shenachie) and Colin James (Warner/Canada) . Deborah also represents film and television projects, including the 2001 release "The Journey" with a musical soundtrack by major recording artists including Atlantic Records artist Edwin McCain, Indigo Girls, Hootie & The Blowfish and many others; Emmy-winning producer & director Nina Seavey's 2002 documentary "Ballad of Bering Strait" shot in Russia and the U.S., and London-based Principal Films currently producing a television documentary for initial broadcast in the U.S. Deborah further represents the fast-growing NWFL as league counsel for all entertainment matters, including television and corporate sponsorships. Deborah also handles the book publishing and related literary rights on behalf of several entertainment clients. Deborah has served as a consultant to Virgin Asia Ltd. for its U.S. entertainment activities, and was a member of the 2001 negotiation team which successfully concluded the major distribution deal between Universal and Univision, the largest U.S. Spanish language cable network.
Deborah earned her Juris Doctorate of Law from Stanford Law School in Palo Alto, California, where she studied in a joint degree program for the Law and Communications Schools. Deborah was a summa cum laude graduate of Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Georgia, earning her Bachelor of Science degree in the Management School. Prior to joining John Mason Partners in Nashville, she was General Counsel of Landmark Entertainment Group in Hollywood, California -- a 400-employee company with worldwide projects in music, theater, themeparks, film, and television. Deborah was initially in charge of music business affairs for Landmark, and subsequently took over all legal and business affairs for the company, including international projects completed in Japan, Spain and Korea.
She served two terms in Los Angeles as liaison for the Tennessee Film, Music and Entertainment Commission Advisory Committee, as well as over seven years as a full-time and adjunct Professor at both Middle Tennessee State University's College of Mass Communications/Department of Recording Industry, and Georgia State University's School of Music. Her specialization in international issues has taken her on a regular basis to the United Kingdom, including London professional externships with Virgin Records UK and EMI Records UK, as well as with Russell's Solicitors -- a leading entertainment law firm in England. Deborah forged the way for the American Airlines International Recording Industry Fellowship, which provided a summer college student internship in London or Dublin, with entertainment entities including Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) - U.K. and CMT-Europe. The Grammy organization (NARAS) appointed Deborah to assemble and moderate its semi-annual conference entitled "International Record Markets" with leading worldwide record label executives which was held on July 11, 1996. Deborah has been appointed to several prominent entertainment industry Boards of Directors, including the Tennessee Repertory Theater, Nashville Entertainment Association and the Nashville Screenwriters Conference. A seasoned speaker, Deborah was invited to speak on royalty issues at both the Legal Strategies Institutes in Los Angeles in 1999, and in New York City in 2000. Deborah attended the London Millennium meeting of the American Bar Association in July 2000,and was subsequently invited to address the joint Intellectual Property and Science & Technology Committees event at the ABA's Annual Meeting in Chicago, August 5, 2001, serving on the panel with counsel for each of Napster and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Deborah is a member of Paris-based International Association of Entertainment Lawyers (IAEL), and a published author for the IAEL Quarterly. She most recently spoke for the documentary panel of the Hollywood Film Festival on August 3, 2001 in Los Angeles.