New & Events
Ken Sagan named to lead Stites & Harbison
Stites & Harbison, PLLC
LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Stites & Harbison, PLLC, announced that Ken Sagan has been elected as its new Chair. Sagan will succeed Kennedy Helm III, who has served as the firm’s Chair for 15 years and who will become Chair-Emeritus. Sagan will assume his new position of the 250-attorney firm following the firm’s annual meeting in January.
Sagan is a business lawyer who has spent his entire legal career with Stites & Harbison beginning in 1983. He has practiced in both the Louisville and Lexington offices. “I am very excited to be taking on this new role within Stites,” commented Sagan. “The future is indeed bright for the firm and my goal is to continue the growth the firm has enjoyed under Kennedy’s leadership and vision,” he added.
Sagan has held a number of leadership positions within the firm as a member of the Management Committee, as chair of the Business & Finance Service Group and Executive Member of the Lexington Office, succeeding Steve Beshear.
Sagan serves on the Executive Committee and as General Counsel of Commerce Lexington, on the board of the Lexington Rotary Club Endowment Fund and on the board of the Lexington Strides Ahead Foundation.
Sagan was selected during an 18-month transition process established by the firm some years ago to ensure a thoughtful and seamless leadership transition. Once Sagan was selected, he assumed the role of “Chair Elect” and began working directly with Helm on firm management and governance issues. “Ken is a quick study. He is well-known within our firm, has travelled extensively to all our offices and has gained the confidence of all our attorneys. The transition could not have gone more smoothly,” Helm added.
Helm, who has spent his entire 37-year legal career at the firm and has been the Chair since 1997, oversaw the major expansion of the firm during his tenure. During those 15 years, the firm has more than doubled in size and expanded its footprint beyond the borders of Kentucky and southern Indiana into Atlanta, Nashville and Alexandria, Virginia. With 250 attorneys in eight different offices in five states, Stites & Harbison is one of the largest Southeastern-based firms in the country.
Under Helm’s leadership, the firm also became one of the Top 100 IP practices in the country and has been recognized for its total quality client service program and innovative marketing. Helm was named one of the “100 Managing Partners You Need to Know” in 2008 and in 2007 was recognized by Edge International, an international legal consulting firm, as one of the “Top 10 Most Admired Managing Partners” by his peers. He has been recognized in Best Lawyers in America since 1995, by Kentucky Super Lawyers and by Chambers USA as a leader in Kentucky.
“Leading a professional service organization with its mix of business demands and professional values has been both fascinating and challenging,” Helm said. “Serving the very talented attorneys of our firm has been an incredible honor.” Helm says he looks forward to the next phase of his career as he returns to his first love — helping clients achieve their professional and personal goals.
“The years running a nine-figure business has given me insights that will be valuable to our clients as they strive to achieve their business goals,” Helm observed.
In addition to his legal practice, Helm also plans to stay involved with a number of community endeavors, including his return to the board of the Louisville Urban League, and ongoing involvement with Simmons College of Kentucky, the University of Louisville Board of Overseers and Greater Louisville Inc.
About Stites & Harbison
Stites & Harbison, PLLC, is a regional business and litigation firm with attorneys in Louisville, Frankfort and Lexington, Ky.; Alexandria, Va.; Atlanta; Jeffersonville, Ind.; and Nashville and Franklin, Tenn. Tracing its origins to 1832, Stites & Harbison is one of the oldest law practices in the nation and among the largest law firms in the Southeast. Our attorneys are consistently recognized by their peers in the following leading legal directories: Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory®, The Best Lawyers in America®, Chambers USA and Super Lawyers magazine. Recent firm honors include: among America’s Top Law Firms in First Tier Ratings by U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers, one of the Top 15 Places to Work in Kentucky — six years in a row (Kentucky Chamber of Commerce), one of the 50 Best Overall Law Firms in America (Global Research), one of the Leading Law Firms in America (The American Lawyer), a Go-To Law Firm® (Corporate Counsel), one of the Top 100 Law Firms for Diversity (MultiCultural Law Magazine) and a Top 10 Growth Firm (National Law Journal).
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