Trace Blankenship is an attorney and one of the initial members of the Nashville-based law firm Bone McAllester Norton PLLC. For over 20 years, he has regularly advised boards of directors, chief executives, and entrepreneurs on the strategy, structure, and execution of significant business transactions in the life of a company. His practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, venture capital/private equity financings, securities regulation, and corporate governance/board functionality. The Nashville Business Journal has said, “If one of Trace Blankenship’s clients has a big decision to make, you can bet he has a seat at the table.”
Trace has been named to Best Lawyers in America every year since 2014 and is listed in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, banking/finance, and nonprofit governance. He was selected for the Nashville Business Journal’s 2018 “Best of the Bar” among corporate/securities lawyers in Nashville and in 2017 for both corporate/securities and banking/finance (the only attorney overlapping both categories that year). He is also a contributing author of Director’s Handbook: A Field Guide to 101 Situations Commonly Encountered in the Boardroom, recently published by the American Bar Association.
Trace is also the General Counsel of Bone McAllester Norton PLLC and serves on the law firm’s board of directors ex-officio. He’s frequently invited to speak about corporate governance, buying and selling companies, and market trends in capital formation. He’s a long-time faculty member of the Young Leaders Council and trains 150+ young professionals every year about legal responsibilities and best practices of effective board members. Trace serves on the board and executive committee of Nashville’s Center for Nonprofit Management as vice chairman, and chaired the nominating/governance committee from 2017 to 2019. He’s also a director of Cumberland Region Tomorrow, the 10-county planning organization promoting quality regional growth and livability in Middle Tennessee. He assisted the Country Music Association with the formation of its charitable grant-making arm, the CMA Foundation, and continues to serve as the CMA Foundation’s general counsel. He’s an elder and serves on the Session of West End Community Church (Presbyterian Church in America) and the Nashville Presbytery’s Committee on Judicial Process. He and his wife are past presidents of The Oak Hill School Parents Association, and he was the founding co-chair of Oak Hill’s alumni council. He was an ex-officio board member of the Nashville Bar Association in 2012 and 2013 and was its treasurer in 2013. In 2008, Trace led the law firm’s participation as co-founders with Lipscomb University of the Dean Institute for Corporate Governance and Integrity in Nashville and was a founding member of the Institute’s advisory board. He chaired the Tennessee Governor’s Prayer Breakfast in 2012 and remains an active member of the Citizens Committee that sponsors and presents the annual prayer breakfast during each legislative session. He is general counsel of Daystar Counseling Ministries, Inc. and was elected an honorary director in 2006 after serving on Daystar’s board from 1996 to 2005 and as board chair and president from 2002 to 2005. He was an officer and director of the Young Leaders Council of Nashville from 1998 to 2001.
He graduated from Williams College in 1989 and from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 1996. He is a native of Nashville, where he lives with his wife, Jennifer (also an attorney), and their two children, Davis and Grace.