UPDATED Thursday, June 14, 8:56 a.m.:
Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands confirmed for NashvillePost.com this morning that long-time legal aid and government attorney Gary Housepian, 54, will become LAS executive director, effective Aug. 1.
The native Michigander is currently managing attorney of Nashville-based Disability Law & Advocacy Center Inc. He earned his J.D. at the University of Detroit (Mich.) Law School in 1977 and his bachelor's at Houghton (N.Y.) College in 1974.
As originally posted:
Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands has chosen a successor to retiring Executive Director Ashley Wiltshire, but LAS is not ready to announce the appointment.
LAS President Kathryn Edge, an attorney with Miller & Martin, told NashvillePost.com this afternoon that if the timing of the new executive's arrival requires an interim appointment following Wiltshire's retirement June 30, then LAS General Counsel Neil McBride will serve in that role.
Commenting on the departure of LAS leader of 31 years, Edge said in a statement released earlier today that Wiltshire's "dedication to seeking justice for Tennessee families serves as an inspiration to the board and to the legal profession."
McBride currently heads the Oak Ridge office of LAS and was instrumental in the organization's 2002 merger with Rural Legal Services of Tennessee, of which he was founding director.
Wiltshire became executive director in 1976. He joined the LAS staff as a law clerk in 1972, after earning his J.D. at Vanderbilt University School of Law and his bachelor's at Washington & Lee University. Prior to law school, Wiltshire earned a Master of Divinity at Union Theological Seminary in New York City.
Wiltshire will be honored during an LAS reception at Metro Courthouse on Monday, June 18, at 4:30 p.m.
LAS and its 33 lawyers provide legal assistance in civil matters at no charge to people in 48 Middle Tennessee counties, via eight LAS offices.