Turman Service Award Recipients

Chilton Davis Varner 76L


A 1976 graduate of Emory Law School, Chilton Davis Varner served on the Board of Trustees of Emory University from 1995 to 2013, where she chaired the Academic
Affairs Committee for seven years. She continues to serve the university as an Emeritus Trustee. She is a past president of the Emory Law Alumni Association and has been recognized as an Emory Law Distinguished Alumna. In 2012, she was the inaugural recipient of Emory Law’s Eléonore Raoul Greene Trailblazer Award. Varner was the co-chair of the Campaign for the Law School and served with 2008 Turman Alumni Service Award recipient and co-chair Phil Reese 66C 76L 76B.

Varner became King & Spalding’s first female litigation partner in 1983 and the fi rst woman elected to the firm’s management committee in 1995. She is the senior partner in the firm’s product liability practice, which has been named one of the top three in the country by The American Lawyer and one of the top six by Chambers. In March 2012, Benchmark named Varner Georgia Litigator of the Year and cited King & Spalding’s product liability practice as the best in the 14-state region. She has been selected for the short list of leading women lawyers by the National Law Journal, Benchmark, Law360, Chambers, American Lawyer, U.S. News, Best Lawyers, the International Who’s Who in Product Liability, and LMG Life Sciences.

Varner has just completed her term as president of the American College of Trial Lawyers, an organization which recognizes the best of the courtroom bar. Membership in the organization is by invitation only and requires 15 years of distinguished trial work as well as leadership in the profession.

In 2004, Chief Justice Rehnquist appointed Varner to the Advisory Committee on Federal Civil Rules (which govern civil practice in all federal trial courts), and Chief Justice Roberts reappointed her for a second term in 2007. She serves on the editorial board for Moore’s Federal Practice, a leading treatise on practice in the federal courts. She has written and published extensively in her areas of expertise, including pharmaceutical law and trial practice.

Varner has served as national trial and appellate counsel for a variety of corporate clients that includes American Airlines, ExxonMobil, Nissan, UPS, Shell Oil and GlaxoSmithKline. Active in the Atlanta community, Varner has provided service for several terms on the board of directors of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and the board of Wesley Woods Geriatric Center. She is currently a trustee of The Carter Center, the organization founded by former President Jimmy Carter which is engaged in the areas of public health and human rights.

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Turman Recipients

Chilton Davis Varner 76L

John W. Spiegel 65MBA

Virginia Bales Harris 71C 77PH

Walker Ray 62C 65M 68MR

Tommy Owens 59Ox 61C 65D 

Sally Lehr 65N 76MN 

Philip Syng Reese 66C 76MBA 76L

William L. Norton Jr. 42Ox 48C 50L

Renelda Mack 83C

Kenneth Murrah 55C 58L

Lihong DAngelo 89PhD
J. Davidson Porter 85C

The Reverend Samuel M. Clark Jr. 54C
Eleanor Ridley 73L

Beverly Allen 68C
Tom Brodnax 65Ox 68C

Gloria Bowden 74C
Paul McLarty 63C 66L

John Inman Jr. 42C 45M
Ina Thompson 61Ox 63C

Paul Anderson, Sr. 38C 40L
Juliana M. Winters 77L

Marvin Hardy III 61Ox 63C 66L
Pam Pryor 69C 70G