James (Jim) B. Maxwell (now retired) completed his legal education in 1966 at Duke University and was an experienced trial lawyer who successfully represented clients in claims involving wrongful death, catastrophic injuries and medical negligence. He was also represented professionals, including lawyers, judges and physicians, before their respective licensing boards and he was General Counsel to the North Carolina High School Athletic Association.
His legal abilities were consistently recognized by his peers. For more than twenty years he was selected as a “Best Lawyer in America” in civil litigation. He was a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers as well as the International Society of Barristers and was listed as both a “Super Lawyer” in North Carolina and included among North Carolina Business’s “Legal Elite.” In 1986 – 1987, he served as President of the North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers and in 2000 – 2001, he served as the President of the North Carolina Bar Association, becoming the first attorney in North Carolina to have served as President of both those associations. He also served as Chair of Legal Aid of North Carolina from 2002 – 2003 and was a member of the Board of Directors for Lawyers Mutual Liability Insurance Company of North Carolina.
In the community, Jim served as President of the YMCA, the Durham Arts Council and as Chair of the Board of Directors for the Durham Community Shelter for H.O.P.E. For twenty–nine years, he volunteered as the Head Coach of the Jordan High School Swim Team where his team won five State High School Championships and seventeen Regional Championships. He also served as the Coach/Advisor for Duke Law School’s National Moot Court Team and in 2006, this team won the National Competition. He is a member of Duke Law School’s Board of Visitors.
Included among his awards and honors are: Southeastern YMCA Layman Distinguished Service Award, Distinguished Alumni Award from Randolph-Macon College and the 2006 Charles S. Rhyne Award from Duke University’s School of Law. In 2007, he was awarded the I. Beverly Lake Award for Public Service by the North Carolina Bar Association. In 2010, Jim was inducted into the North Carolina High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame.