Defense Attorney of the Year winner: Earning clients' trust, confidence is 'sacred'

By Carrie Salls | Jul 7, 2017

CHARLESTON – Bailey & Wyant PLLC Managing Member Charles Bailey is the Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia’s 2017 Defense Attorney of the Year.

“I feel fortunate and honored to be recognized for something I am passionate about – practicing law,” Bailey told The West Virginia Record. “The DTC WV has many distinguished members of the bar and many of the best trial lawyers in the country.”

Bailey said he edited the DTC WV’s quarterly newsletter at the request of its board of directors, and that experience may have helped him stand out from other nominees for the honor.

“I believe the level of detail and thought that my team and I put into creating a valuable resource for the attorneys of West Virginia is the reason I was selected,” he said.

Charles Bailey   Bailey & Wyant

Bailey is a native of Montgomery. He graduated from the West Virginia University School of Journalism and attended the WVU College of Law. He began his legal career doing title and transactional work in the oil and gas industry.

Bailey said he began his litigation practice in 1983 with the law firm of Shuman & Poe.

“I worked directly for David Shuman, who was an excellent teacher and mentor,” Bailey said.

In 2000, Bailey said he formed a firm with David Wyant, Marc Slotnick, George Joseph “and other attorneys and staff who believed in us.”

In addition to Shuman’s influence, Bailey recognizes the role his family has played in his career.

“I am blessed having a wife, Peggy, and two daughters, Caitlin and Lindsay, who have patiently supported me through the good and the difficult times of being a lawyer,” he said.

Bailey said being an attorney in West Virginia affords me the opportunity to represent a variety of businesses and individuals, including high-ranking elected and appointed state, county and municipal officials, as well as other lawyers.

“Through this representation, I have met extraordinary people and learned from them how business and government works,” Bailey said. “I have learned from my clients how machines are manufactured, how governors and other political leaders make decisions that affect the state, how medical and other professionals are educated and trained, how chemicals interact to form products for sale, how people make complex decisions and how large and small organizations are managed.”

Bailey said receiving the Defense Attorney of the Year honor from the DTC WV “shows that I have earned the respect of my peers, an important milestone for me professionally and personally.

“If there is one thing I could tell newly admitted lawyers, it is that earning clients’ trust and confidence is sacred,” he said.

Bailey also serves as general counsel for the Central West Virginia Regional Airport Authority.

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Bailey & Wyant PLLC West Virginia University

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