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Birmingham Law School Dean Considered for Jefferson County Attorney
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It is very common for law school faculty members to make the leap into government positions, and Birmingham School of Law Dean James Bushnell may be the latest to make that transition. Though he has not been confirmed for the position of county attorney, reports that two of the commissioners who will be making the appointment have revealed that they are leaning towards Bushnell. spoke with Jefferson County Commissioner Jimmie Stephen, who said that Bushnell was among his “top three candidates.”


“He’s very qualified. He has the expertise. He’s a teacher of lawyers, he’s a mentor to lawyers. He has executive capabilities. He’s a very good and viable candidate. I believe that he would make a very capable county attorney. He has general knowledge of Alabama law. He is vested in Jefferson County and wants to see us succeed. And he has one of the requisites that I like to have – he has a few gray hairs and that means he has experience.”

Bushnell is being considered to replace former County Attorney Jeff Sewell, who was forced into retirement by the commission after demanding what was viewed as an exorbitant raise and then shirking his responsibilities after his demands were not met. Bushnell is currently one of several candidates being considered, along with Carol Sue Nelson, an attorney with Maynard Cooper Gale, who has received an endorsement from County Commission President David Carrington. Another candidate for the position is current Assistant County Attorney Theo Lawson, who is being supported by Commissioner George Bowman.

The new Jefferson County Attorney will be appointed rather than elected, as Sewell left the position in the midst of his term. Any appointee will then run for reelection in the next Jefferson County election.

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