The Voice of Business, Industry & the Professions Since 1942
North Carolina's largest business group proudly serves as the state chamber of commerce


NCCBI Connections for April 2005

Efforts Launched to Reform Work's Comp



NCCBI will lead a coalition focused on major reforms of the workers’ compensation system during the 2005 session of the General Assembly.

The NCCBI Coalition on Workers’ Compensation Reform has been established with representatives of several  industry sectors. Coalition members will lobby the legislature, supported by the strategic planning efforts of a professional team. Don Beason and Lisa Piercy with the Capital Group, Bill Scoggin of Kennedy Covington and George Teague of Nelson Mullins have been retained to lead the lobbying and planning effort, courtesy of contributions from coalition members. 

Workers’ comp issues are dominating discussions across the state.  The Legislative Bulletin recently had articles citing examples of problems within the current system. This month’s North Carolina Magazine focuses on the issue.

“The North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act should be fully restored to its original intent as a simple and efficient system of compensating employees injured in workplace accidents while protecting employers from civil litigation and unlimited and unpredictable compensation liability,” President Phil Kirk said.

Specifically, NCCBI supports:

--streamlining the administration of the act to reduce the need for costly litigation;

--procedural, evidentiary and medical reforms which give clear guidance to the Industrial Commission in its decision-making; and

--limiting payment of workers’ comp benefits only to those who are physically unable to work as a direct result of their workplace accident.

Companies participating in the worker’s comp coalition are the American Insurance Association; Bank of America; Capital Associated Industries; Carolinas AGC; Capital Group; Cranfill, Sumner & Hartzog; Duke Energy Corp.; Insurance Federation of N.C.; Kelly-Springfield Tire Co.; Kennedy Covington Lobdell & Hickman, LLP; Law Office of Robert Kaylor; Liberty Mutual; MCIC; Murphy-Brown LLC; N.C. Association of Self insurers; N.C. Automobile Dealers Association; N.C. Home Builders Association; N.C. Forestry Association; N.C. Medical Society; N.C. Retail Merchants Association; N.C. Trucking Association, N.C. Association of Defense Attorneys; N.C. Farm Bureau; Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough; Poyner & Spruill LLP; Progress Energy; Teague, Campbell, Dennis & Gorham; and Weyerhaeuser.

If you are interested in joining the Coalition on Workers Compensation Reform, please contact Rolf Blizzard at 919-836-1406 or by email at


Reaching Out to Minorities: More than 50 persons attended a membership recruitment/retention reception designed to involve more minorities in NCCBI on Feb. 17 at Progressive Business Solutions in Raleigh.

Tim Catlett, co-owner of Progressive Business Solutions, along with his wife Sonya, and a member of NCCBI’s Small Business Advisory Board, served as host and welcomed the group to his business.

NCCBI Chair Barry Eveland and Chair Emeritus Jim Hyler discussed the roles NCCBI plays in influencing a positive business climate in North Carolina.  Andrea Harris, President of the North Carolina Institute of Minority Economic Development, and Julian Brown of Carolinas Minority Suppliers Development Councils Inc. gave testimonials about the value the minority community receives from being active in NCCBI.  Networking opportunities, along with NCCBI’s lobbying, were emphasized.

NCCBI President Phil Kirk urged those present who are already members to get more involved in the committees, meetings, and programs which NCCBI offers.  Also attending were Ralph Shelton of Greensboro, a member of NCCBI’s board of directors and executive committee; Lew Myers, former chair of NCCBI’s economic development committee; and Dr. Clarence Newsome, president of Shaw University.


Membership News: Companies that joined or rejoined NCCBI during January and February,  along with the name of the key contact, include: Advanced Vehicle Research of N.C., Richard Dell, Raleigh; Arts & Science Council — Charlotte/Mecklenburg, Lee Keesler, Charlotte; Bassett Furniture Industries Inc., Rob Spilman, Bassett, Va.; Brinkley Insurance Agency, Jim Brinkley, Valdese; Carolinas Minority Supplier Development Councils Inc., Julian Brown, Charlotte; Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, Timothy E. Newman, Charlotte; Decision Support Inc., Anita Doran, Matthews; Edgecombe-Martin County Electric Membership Corp., Eddie Stocks, Tarboro; Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., Richard L. Ellis, Statesville; Granville County Chamber of Commerce, Ginnie D. Currin, Oxford; Hendrick Automotive Group, James F. Huzl, Charlotte; High Point University, Dr. Nido R. Qubein, High Point; Hutchison & Mason PLLC, William Wofford, Raleigh; Kemper Strategy - Business Growth Solutions, David Kemper, Asheville; KMD Construction, Kyle Davis, Salisbury; McNairy & Associates, Jim McNairy, Greensboro; Morris, Manning & Martin Attorneys, Keith Burns, RTP; NFIB/ NC, Gregg Thompson, Raleigh; N.C. Manufacturers Association Inc., James M. Bell, Raleigh; Nucor Corp., Dan DiMicco, Charlotte; Office of Barbara K. Allen, Ms. Barbara Allen, Raleigh; Ollivierre Capital Projects, Lance A. Ollivierre, Charlotte; Onslow Container Service, Al Hill, Deep Run; Our State Magazine, Amy Wood, Greensboro; Rotterman & Associates, Marc Rotterman, Raleigh; Salem Senior Housing, William Benton, Winston-Salem; Selectron Corp., Chet Coates, Morrisville; Shanahan Law Group, Kieran J. Shanahan, Raleigh; Showplace LLC, Joanna Easter, High Point; SilkRoad Technology Inc., Barbara Cannon, Winston-Salem; Swiss Bear Downtown Development Corp., Susan Moffat-Thomas, New Bern; TEK Systems, David McCall, Raleigh; Total Lubricants USA Inc., Eugene B. McLaurin II, Rockingham; Trammell Crow Co., Curtis Grantham, Charlotte; and Triarch Capital Partners LLC, Brett Bond, Charlotte.


 Mitchell's Best Advice: Give Back to the State

Henry Mitchell, a partner in the Smith, Anderson, Blount, Dorsett, Mitchell & Jernigan law firm in Raleigh, decided to become an attorney because he “enjoys helping individuals, organizations, and business entities in identifying and solving legal problems affecting their interests and in resolving legal disputes.”

That same line of reasoning applies to his involvement in NCCBI as our long-time general counsel. “I am a member of NCCBI because we are the premier association of business leaders in North Carolina, and we have a signficant influence on major policy issues in our state,” Mitchell said. His more than 20 years of service to NCCBI has earned him the designation of “Volunteer of the Month” for the organization.

 Mitchell practices law in the areas of corporate, insurance, and administrative law. He regularly represents clients concerning general corporate and business matters including advice on a broad range of issues from litigation strategy to governmental relations. He currently serves as general counsel to the Governor’s Business Council and formerly served as deputy general counsel of the Export-Import Bank of the United States. He is a graduate of Guilford College and the Wake Forest University School of Law.

In addition to being a member of the NCCBI Board of Directors, he is chairman of the board and executive committee of Lawyers Mutual Liability Insurance Co. of North Carolina and a member of the board and executive committee of Georgia Lawyers Insurance Co. He serves as vice chair of the N.C. Symphony Board of Trustees. He is state chair of the Fellows of the American Bar Foundation, past president and member of the board of directors of the American Counsel Association and vice president and member of the board of governors of the N.C. Bar Association.

Well respected by his fellow lawyers, Mitchell has been recognized in Business North Carolina’s “Legal Elite” and is listed in Best Lawyers in America. He is married to Helen Heck of Salisbury and they have three children, Henry III, Michael, and Martha (Mrs. John) Peterson, all of Raleigh, and they are the proud grandparents of four granddaughters. When not performing volunteer service for the professional boards of interest, he enjoys travel, hiking, photography, and reading.

“Henry is the type of volunteer leader who is efficient and extremely helpful,” NCCBI President Phil Kirk said. “He is someone whose judgment is top-notch, and his opinions are sought because we know they will be helpful in focusing NCCBI on meeting the challenges facing us a lobbying group and as a non-partisan, membership-driven non-profit.”


 Magazine Names Travel Editor

Renee Wright of Charlotte joins North Carolina magazine as its new travel editor this month.

Wright replaces Bill Hensley, who retired as travel editor in 2004. Wright will continue to write the Tar Heel Travels column, which she has handled since February. She also will write the magazine’s periodic travel features, beginning with our May tourism issue.

Wright, 54, a veteran traveler, has covered North Carolina and the Southeast for a wide variety of books and magazines for the past 20 years. She wrote both the Charlotte and Triad Guest Guides from 2000 through 2004 published by Lone Wolf and distributed as hardcover books in regional hotels. She also wrote the Charlotte and North Carolina chapters for the 2004 edition of Insight Guides’ USA: The New South.

Her travel articles, on subjects ranging from Lowe’s Motor Speedway to Blowing Rock, have been published in magazines that include Digital South, Charlotte VIP, Square Dancing Today, In the Spotlight, Charlotte’s Best Magazine, Charlotte Magazine, and others.

Although her published articles cover destinations across the country, she especially enjoys writing about her home state. “I watched Charlotte grow from a small city into a major player on the national scene and was lucky enough to be able to write about all the exciting changes,” she says. “I look forward to the challenge of covering the state’s booming travel industry”

Wright has written business-related travel features for magazines such as Charlotte Business Quarterly, Charlotte Business Journal, and the web sites, and


Visit us at 225 Hillsborough Street, Suite 460, Raleigh, N.C.
Write to us at P.O. Box 2508, Raleigh, N.C. 27602
Call us at 919.836.1400 or fax us at 919.836.1425

Copyright © 1998, All Rights Reserved
Last Modified: April 20, 2005
Web Design By The
Let Us Help You With Your Web Site Needs!