Tyler J. Russell

Business and Creditors' Rights Attorney
Ward and Smith, P.A.
Email tjr@wardandsmith.com
919.277.9122 Fax 919.277.9177
Post Office Box 33009, Raleigh, NC 27636-3009

Tyler co-chairs the firm's Hemp Law practice group. He regularly works with clients involved in all levels of hemp and CBD industries and guides the firm's practice in those efforts. 

Tyler is passionate about the hemp and cannabidiol ("CBD") industries, their products, and their people.  He co-chairs the firm's Hemp Law practice group, and he represents clients in all aspects of the hemp and CBD industries – both in North Carolina and beyond.  His clients include farmers and growers, processors, extractors, product manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors, and retailers.  He also assists clients who are involved in the industry but do not directly "touch the plant" – including brokers, consultants, marketing agencies, lenders and financial institutions, and other suppliers and vendors. 

In his hemp and CBD practice, Tyler regularly provides advice and counsel to his clients on Federal, state, and local legal and regulatory compliance matters, and he regularly represents clients in all types of agribusiness, transactional, and corporate deals and agreements within the industry.  He is also actively engaged in state-level lobbying and public activism efforts in support of the industry, its companies, and their products.  The hemp and CBD industries are unique, and Tyler and the firm's Hemp Law team are committed to helping the people and businesses within them.

Tyler's previous practice experience also includes a broad range of corporate and transactional matters, including drafting and negotiating corporate agreements and documents, managing all aspects of mergers, acquisitions, and other transactions for a variety of companies, and assisting privately held companies in all aspects of their business needs, from corporate governance and transactions to business structuring, development and expansion opportunities, and succession planning. 

Tyler also works with other regulated industries – including breweries, distilleries, and wineries – to address permitting needs, compliance issues, distribution and supply chain matters, and negotiations and interactions with local, state, and federal governmental and regulatory agencies.  Tyler has also represented financial institutions and other creditors in bankruptcy cases and litigation in state and federal court, including workouts, reorganizations, collection cases, and other contested matters.  

Education

  • J.D., summa cum laude, North Carolina Central University School of Law, 2010. Senior Editor, North Carolina Central University Law Review.
  • B.A., Virginia Military Institute, 2007

Honors and Distinctions*

  • The Best Lawyers in America, 2020
  • "Legal Elite," Business North Carolina, Bankruptcy, 2018

Legal Elite

Professional and Community Affiliations

  • American Bar Association — Division: Young Lawyers
  • Capital City Clauses, Inc. (board member, 2019)
  • Community Associations Institute
  • Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce (Member; Young Professionals Network; Leadership Raleigh Alumnus, Class of 2018)
  • Greenville-Pitt County Chamber of Commerce (Leadership Greenville Alumnus, Class of 2013)
  • North Carolina Bar Association — Division: Young Lawyers
  • North Carolina Bar Association — Section: Bankruptcy
  • Wake County Bar Association

Admitted to Practice

  • North Carolina, 2010
  • All state courts in North Carolina
  • United States District Court for the Eastern, Middle, and Western Districts of North Carolina

* Please see the following websites for an explanation of the membership standards for the following recognitions: www.bestlawyers.com; businessnc.com/special-sections/legal-elite/; and www.superlawyers.com/north-carolina.

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