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Our goal: full service to the industry

published in McAfee & Taft AgLINC | December 1, 2010

By Jeff Todd

In 1997, this farm kid and calf roper joined McAfee & Taft, then one of Oklahoma’s largest and fastest growing law firms. The firm was a full-service business firm with a solid foundation in tax, corporate, real estate, oil and gas, employment and litigation. Being fresh out of law school, I probably did not fully comprehend the value of working at a full-service firm like McAfee & Taft, but in addition to learning how to be a lawyer, I began cultivating my goal of developing expertise in matters affecting the agriculture industry. After all, I could speak the language, and the agriculture industry comprised diverse business enterprises and continued to play a dominant role in Oklahoma’s economy.

After a few months of working at the firm, I discovered that we already had an underground agriculture practice. Our tax lawyers represented many large farming and ranching families in business succession, estate and tax planning. Our real estate lawyers represented the same clients and others in major real estate transactions. Our corporate lawyers represented numerous local, state and national agri-businesses. Our oil and gas lawyers also assisted mineral owners in oil and gas matters. Our employment lawyers counseled agriculture clients on employment issues and disputes. Our litigators handled a multitude of cases that impacted the agriculture industry. However, most of these lawyers didn’t consider their work to be ag work. They simply viewed this work as an integral part of being a business lawyer in Oklahoma. I also realized the incredible benefits of being able to look within the firm to lawyers with expertise in specific areas.

These revelations confirmed my belief that McAfee & Taft was the perfect place for Oklahoma’s first “full-service” firm to the agriculture industry. Over the years we strengthened our expertise in many facets of the industry and gained expertise through the hiring of new lawyers. We also increased our visibility among industry insiders, both in Oklahoma and way beyond our state’s borders. So, in 2009, a group of our lawyers decided it was time to create a formal group to better leverage our collective experience and expertise for the benefit of the agriculture and fast-growing horse industry.

Today, the McAfee & Taft Agriculture & Equine Group is composed of lawyers from each of our firm’s practice groups who have experience, education or special interests in agriculture matters relevant to their practice. The group represents agriculture and equine interests throughout Oklahoma and the United States in our quest to provide “full-service” legal support to the Agriculture Industry. As it turns out, this downtown law firm, which has since grown to become Oklahoma’s largest with 165 lawyers and offices in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, is a pretty good place for an ag practice.

We hope you find this second edition of AgLINC to be useful and informative. For more information about the comprehensive legal and business consulting services we offer through our Agriculture and Equine Industry Group, please visit our website at www.mcafeetaft.com/ag. Please also feel free to contact me or any of the industry lawyers listed in this publication.

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