- Where were you born and raised?
I was born in Virginia but have lived in Georgia for the last thirty years.
- What activities do you enjoy outside of practicing law?
I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, being in nature, reading, listening to podcasts, practicing Brazilian jiu jitsu, cycling, visiting Maine, and playing guitar.
- What drew you into the law?
I’ve always enjoyed reading and studying history, and particularly political and military history. As such, I majored in political science and minored in history.
I chose practicing law over academia, my second choice, because I believed practicing law would provide a greater opportunity for me to make a practical, real-world impact on other people’s lives and the world at large, and because I enjoy the similarities between litigation and military history. Both involve conflict, strategy, mastering and adapting to new tactics, high stakes, and a never-ending duty and obligation to learn, improve, and maintain the highest professional standards possible.
Practicing law is also a family tradition dating back to at least 1856, when my great-great-grandfather, Charles Francis Stone, established the law firm Stone & Auerbach in New York City.
- What drew you into the securities law field?
Although I published my undergraduate thesis at the University of Georgia on antitrust law, an important check on corporate power, in law school I initially wanted to become a civil rights lawyer because I believe lawyers have a duty to stand up for the weak and oppressed and to provide a counterweight to the awesome power of the legislative and executive branches. Towards that end, I externed at the ACLU and joined a law firm focusing on First Amendment litigation. After helping that firm expand into consumer class action and derivative litigation, however, I quickly realized the nearly unlimited potential class actions and derivative litigation have to fight abuses of power and injustice.
Then, after seeing the securities fraud and corporate abuses revealed when the Great Recession hit in 2008, I was determined to dedicate my practice to fighting securities fraud. I joined up with Michael Fistel in 2009, and have tremendously enjoyed practicing in this area ever since. Frank Johnson and Michael Fistel have built an elite organization of which I am proud to be a part of.
- What is something you share in common with most people?
At nearly 6’7”, there’s a good chance I used to be as tall as anyone who is reading this.