Attorney Bios

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John K. Morris, General Counsel                  Email

John Morris graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall) in 1969 where he served as Research Editor of the California Law Review. During 1969-70 he served a clerkship with the Honorable James Browning of the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. From 1972-79 John was a partner and then managing partner at Morris, Polich & Purdy in Los Angeles, California where he handled complex civil litigation. John returned to the University of Utah, College of Law in 1979. In 1990 John was appointed Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. He has been General Counsel to the University since 1991.

The General Counsel manages the University's legal affairs; provides advice to the President, other senior administrators, University Hospitals and Clinics, the University of Utah Medical Group; and supervises the staff in the Office of General Counsel.

Michele Ballantyne, Associate General Counsel               Email

Michele Ballantyne graduated from the University of Utah College of Law in 1991 where she served on the Executive Board of the Utah Law Review and graduated Order of the Coif. Following law school, Michele clerked for Justice Christine M. Durham on the Utah Supreme Court and for Judge Michael R. Murphy on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. She was an associate at Van Cott, Bagley, Cornwall & McCarthy where her practice focused on commercial litigation and employment law matters. Michele joined the Office of General Counsel in 1998.

As Associate General Counsel, Michele provides advice on a wide variety of matters including immigration  issues such lawful permanent residency, visas, and work authorization.  She also advises on intellectual property including copyright and trademark issues.

Hailey Bandy, Associate General Counsel               Email

Hailey received her B.S. in political science from Weber State University in 2007, and her J.D. from the University of Utah College of Law in 2012.  While in law school, Hailey served as an Articles Editor of the Utah Environmental Law Review.  She was also a William H. Leary Scholar and was nominated by the Honorable Frederic Oddone for the David T. Lewis Clinical Award for Outstanding Clinical Achievement in the Clinical Program.  Following law school, Hailey joined the Office of General Counsel as a research attorney, researching novel legal issues arising at the University.

Since 2013, Hailey has served in a dual role as Associate General Counsel and as a Health Policy Analyst for the Senior Vice President for Health Sciences.  Hailey provides advice on a variety of health law matters and assesses the impact of current and emerging health care reform issues on University of Utah Health Care.

Katie Carreau, Associate General Counsel               Email

Katie Carreau graduated with distinction from the University of Virginia in 2000 and received her J.D. from the S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah in 2006.  While in law school, Katie served as the Managing Editor of the Utah Law Review, received the Dean’s Award and graduated as a member of the Order of the Coif.  Following law school, Katie served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Christine M. Durham, Chief Justice of the Utah Supreme Court.  After her clerkship, Katie worked as a commercial litigation associate in the Salt Lake City office of Snell & Wilmer.  Her practice focused on business and financial services litigation as well as appellate litigation of both civil and criminal matters.  Katie joined the Office of General Counsel in 2010.

As Associate General Counsel, Katie advises the University on a wide variety of immigration matters, including assisting departments with recruitment and retention of foreign nationals and advising the University on workplace enforcement issues.

James R. Haisley, Associate General Counsel                     Email

Jim Haisley graduated from the Tulane Law School in 1987. Following law school, Jim worked as an associate with the Salt Lake City office of Davis, Graham and Stubbs where he practiced commercial litigation and natural resources law. Jim also worked as an associate with the Salt Lake City office of Stoel Rives where he practiced complex commercial transactions, natural resources and real estate law. Jim began working for the Office of General Counsel in 1994.

As Associate General Counsel, Jim provides advice on a variety of healthcare issues including managed care contracting, hospital and physician services agreements, and regulatory compliance. Jim also provides advice on general business transactions.

Kelley M. Marsden, Associate General Counsel                     Email

Kelley M. Marsden graduated from the J. Reuben Clark Law School in 2006, where she served as a Lead Articles Editor the BYU Law Review and graduated Order of the Coif.  Following law school, Kelley worked in the Washington D.C. office of Latham & Watkins, where her practice focused on corporate and finance matters, including mergers & acquisitions, corporate finance, and secured lending transactions.  From 2008-2009, Kelley served as a law clerk for the Honorable J. Clifford Wallace, Chief Judge Emeritus of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.  She then worked at the Salt Lake City law firm of Van Cott, Bagley, Cornwall & McCarthy, where she became a shareholder.  At Van Cott, Kelley’s practice focused on civil litigation, including appeals, contract and real estate disputes, and construction, employment, and energy-related litigation.  Kelley began working for the Office of General Counsel in 2013.  

Julie J. McAdams, Associate General Counsel           Email            
Julie McAdams graduated from Columbia Law School in 2002 and is a member of the Utah and New York State Bar Associations.  She was an associate at Baker & McKenzie in New York City where her practice focused on corporate governance matters and representation of publicly held companies in connection with reporting and compliance issues under federal securities laws.  During 2007-08 she worked as a law clerk for the Honorable Chief Justice Christine M. Durham of the Utah Supreme Court. Julie also has significant experience as a community mediator and is on the mediator roster for the State of Utah.  Julie joined the Office of General Counsel in 2008.

As Associate General Counsel, Julie advises the University as well as business entities in which the University has an interest regarding business transactions, commercialization of University-owned intellectual property, and corporate governance matters.

Dennis Owens, Associate General Counsel                     Email                         

Dennis Owens graduated from the University of Utah College of Law in 1998, where he served as Articles Editor of the Utah Law Review and graduated Order of the Coif.  Following law school, Dennis clerked for Justice I. Daniel Stewart on the Utah Supreme Court.  Before joining the Office of General Counsel, Dennis was an associate at Snell & Wilmer, LLP, where his practice focused on business and finance, with an emphasis in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, securities regulation, private equity offerings, corporate governance issues, and other general corporate matters.  Dennis’ experience includes representation of start-up and emerging growth companies, as well as large, publicly held corporations in connection with reporting and compliance issues under federal and state securities laws, including Sarbanes-Oxley Act compliance.  Dennis joined the Office of General Counsel in September 2006.

As Associate General Counsel, Dennis advises the University as well as business entities in which the University has an interest, regarding business transactions, commercialization of University-owned intellectual property, securities issues and corporate governance matters.

Gigi Chang Parke, Associate General Counsel                     Email
Gigi graduated from Cornell University in 2000 and Harvard Law School in 2003.  Following law school, Gigi was an associate at Dewey Ballantine LLP in New York City.  She was a member of the corporate department where her practice focused on corporate finance transactions and other general corporate matters.  Gigi also worked at Sidley Austin LLP as a member of the insurance group and advised on capital markets offerings.  Gigi began working for the Office of General Counsel in 2010.

As Associate General Counsel, Gigi provides advice to the University on health care contracting including service agreements, software licenses and purchasing contracts, as well as general business transactions.

Robert W. Payne, Associate General Counsel                    Email

Robert Payne graduated from the University of Utah College of Law in 1989, where he participated as a member of the Utah Law Review. Robert served a judicial clerkship from 1989-90 for the Honorable Gregory K. Orme on the Utah Court of Appeals. Robert worked for the law firm of Van Cott, Bagley, Cornwall & McCarthy as an associate from 1990-1995 and as a shareholder from 1996-1998. In 1998, Robert moved to the regional law firm of Snell & Wilmer where he worked as a partner until 2001. During Robert's law firm practice, he focused on general civil litigation matters including all aspects of negotiations, mediations, arbitrations, trials and appeals. Robert joined the Office of General Counsel in 2001.

As Associate General Counsel for the University, Robert regularly advises the Office of Student Affairs and the Athletics Department. He provides advice and assistance with NCAA compliance, student academic and behavioral issues, and compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). In addition, Robert oversees litigation matters and advises on conflict of interest issues, research misconduct issues, and development of University policies. Robert also advises hearing committees on faculty and staff grievances and appeals.

Brian R. Price II, Associate General Counsel                    Email

Brian Price graduated from Boston College Law School in 2004, where he served as the Managing Editor for the Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review.  Following law school, and after interning with Judge Mark Wolf of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, he was an associate in the Boston office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, where his practice focused on securities litigation.  In 2009, Brian joined the Staff Attorneys’ Office at the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.  Brian joined the Office of General Counsel in 2012.

As an Associate General Counsel, Brian serves as the office’s research attorney.  He provides advice, research assistance, and recommendations on a wide variety of legal issues.

Scott Smith, Associate General Counsel                      Email

Scott received his B.A., summa cum laude, from the University of Utah in 1995 where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi, and upon graduation received the Outstanding Scholar Accounting award. He received his J.D. from the University of Utah College of Law in 2001 and is a member of the Order of the Coif. During law school, Scott served as a Note & Comment Editor for the Utah Law Review, and his Note regarding criminal sentencing enhancements in Utah was published in the Utah Law Review. Scott also served as a chief contributor to the Utah Law Forum and as the Editor-in-Chief for the Muted Trumpet, and upon graduation he received the 2001 West Group Outstanding Scholastic Achievement Award for best overall scholastic performance. Scott then worked as an associate for the Salt Lake City office of Snell & Wilmer, where he practiced commercial litigation, before joining the Office of General Counsel in 2003.

As Associate General Counsel, Scott specializes in health care law and employment law. He provides legal advice on a wide variety of health law issues including general health law, mental health issues, advance directives, informed consent, 340B compliance, professional credentialing and privileging, Graduate Medical Education contracting and policy oversight, and HIPAA and HITECH compliance. Scott also supervises litigation related to employment law and health law issues and provides advice to the campus on faculty and staff employment issues as well as student issues. Scott has been a member of the Board of Directors for Safety Net Hospitals for Pharmaceutical Access (SNHPA) since 2007 and a member of the SNHPA Executive Committee since 2008. Scott speaks French and is learning Russian.

Christopher Stout, Associate General Counsel               Email

Christopher Stout graduated with honors from the College of Idaho in 2003 and from the University of Utah College of Law in 2009.  While in law school, Chris served as Managing Editor of the Utah Law Review and his team was the contest champion in the University’s Traynor Moot Court competition.  Chris also received the Dean’s Award and graduated as a member of the Order of the Coif. 

Following law school, Chris served as a judicial clerk to the Honorable Matthew B. Durrant, Associate Chief Justice of the Utah Supreme Court.  After his clerkship, Chris joined the law firm of Snell & Wilmer in Salt Lake City where his practice was concentrated primarily in commercial litigation and appellate advocacy.  In 2011, Chris joined the law firm of Zimmerman Jones Booher, a boutique appellate firm, where he represented clients in a variety of criminal and civil matters at all stages of appeal in the Utah appellate courts.  Chris began working for the Office of General Counsel in 2012.

Julie Thomas, Associate General Counsel                       Email

Julie graduated from the University of Utah College of Law in 1993. Julie then went to work as an associate in the Salt Lake City office of Snell & Wilmer, a regional law firm based in Phoenix, Arizona. At Snell & Wilmer, Julie practiced commercial and employment litigation, primarily advising business clients on employee matters and representing them in employment and business disputes. Julie joined the Office of General Counsel in May of 2002.

As Associate General Counsel, Julie provides advice and assistance on a variety of employment issues, including employee discipline, termination, discrimination, and compliance with state and federal employment laws. Julie also provides advice on matters involving disability law.

Phyllis J. Vetter, Associate General Counsel                      Email

Phyllis Vetter graduated from the University of Utah College of Law in 1987 where she served as Articles Editor of the Utah Law Review. Phyllis clerked for the Honorable Michael D. Zimmerman of the Utah Supreme Court. She then went to work as an associate at the Salt Lake City law firm of Van Cott, Bagley, Cornwall & McCarthy, where she later became a shareholder. At Van Cott, Phyllis practiced civil litigation, assisting clients in avoiding and resolving employment and other business disputes. Phyllis joined the Office of General Counsel in 1998.

As Associate General Counsel, Phyllis provides legal advice and represents the University's interests in a wide variety of matters, including employee benefits and other employment issues, student issues, public and private records requests, and tax matters.

Brian Watts, Associate General Counsel                     Email

Brian Watts received his B.A. from the University of Utah in 2001 and his J.D. from the S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah in 2004.  While in law school, Brian served as an Executive Editor of the Utah Law Review and graduated as a member of the Order of the Coif.  After law school, Brian served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Justice Matthew B. Durrant of the Utah Supreme Court.  Following his time at the Utah Supreme Court, Brian worked as an associate at the law firm of Anderson & Karrenberg and then served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Judge Tena Campbell of the United States District Court for the District of Utah. Brian joined the Office of General Counsel in 2007.

As Associate General Counsel, Brian provides advice on a variety of health law matters, specializing in regulatory compliance. Brian also serves as the Director of the University of Utah Health Care Compliance Office.

Alice L. Whitacre, Associate General Counsel                   Email

Alice Whitacre graduated from Princeton University in 1982, and from Boston University School of Law in 1989. Alice joined the law firm of Jones, Waldo, Holbrook and McDonough in 1989, and became a shareholder of that firm in 1996. Her practice at Jones, Waldo focused on commercial real estate and business transactions. Alice joined the Office of General Counsel in 1998.

As Associate General Counsel, Alice provides legal advice to the University concerning a wide variety of University transactions and agreements including service contracts, software licenses, facility use agreements, purchasing contracts, construction agreements, equipment leases, and real estate agreements. She also represents the University in a variety of other matters, including dispute resolution.

 

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