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LAW


FARHAD AGHDAMI MANAGING PARTNER, RICHMOND OFFICE, WILLIAMS MULLEN, RICHMOND


In his 22-year career with Williams Mullen, the state’s third-largest law firm, Aghdami has focused on high-net-worth individuals and families, middle-mar- ket business owners, institutional fiduciaries and charitable entities. An expert in wealth transfer tax and business succession, he has published numerous articles on private-wealth law. He became managing partner at the firm’s Richmond office in 2015. A graduate of Wake Forest University School of Law and Georgetown University Law Center, where he received a Master of Laws degree in tax, Aghdami is a member of the Southern Federal Tax Institute board and has held leadership positions in numerous


professional organizations, including the Virginia Bar Association’s wills, trusts and estates section, of which he was chairman from 2011 to 2013. He has been the state chairman and southeast region chairman for the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and serves on the board of directors of the Mutual Assurance Society of Virginia, a mutual property and casualty insurance company. He has also sat on boards for the Medical College


of Virginia Foundation, Venture Richmond and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Foundation.


FAVORITE SPORTS TEAM: University of Virginia men’s basketball


VICTOR O. CARDWELL PRINCIPAL AND CHAIRMAN, WOODS ROGERS PLC, ROANOKE


As co-chairman of the firm’s labor and employment law section, Cardwell focuses on diversity, the Fair Labor Standards Act and labor/management relations, including union-organizing campaigns and union-avoidance techniques, as well as workplace violence. President-elect of the Virginia Bar Association, Cardwell is chairman of Woods Rogers’ board, presi- dent-elect of the Virginia Bar Association Board of Governors and a member of the Virginia State Bar board that organizes its annual diversity conference. A graduate of the University of Virginia


and the Washington and Lee University School of Law, Cardwell counsels the Bradley Free Clinic and is on the board for the Virginia Foundation of Independent Colleges. In 2019, he received the Martin


Luther King Jr. Drum Major for Social Justice Award from the Roanoke chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. In an interview with Virginia Business last year, Cardwell said that structural and cultural racism is a “historical impediment … so ingrained in our culture that to have a fair conversation, we must look at the health care, housing, educational and judicial systems.”


FAVORITE APP: Duolingo; I am over 300 days taking my Spanish lessons. I am not good, but I can understand and speak more than I could.


RICHARD CULLEN SENIOR PARTNER AND FORMER CHAIRMAN, McGUIREWOODS LLP, RICHMOND


The former longtime chairman of Virginia’s largest law firm, Cullen is senior partner in the government investigations and white-collar litigation department. He counsels corporate exec- utives, boards of directors, elected officials (such as former Vice President Mike Pence) and the heads of major nonprofit institutions on sensitive matters oſten involving national security. Cullen’s government roots run deep. He served as Virginia’s attorney general from 1997 to 1998 and was U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia during President George H.W. Bush’s administration. He was on President George W. Bush’s legal team during the 2000 Florida recount, served as special counsel to then-U.S. Sen. Paul Trible during the Iran-Contra investigation and was on the staff of U.S. Rep. M. Caldwell Butler during the Watergate investigation. He also was one of the attorneys advising Virginia Military Institute during a state-ordered investigation into alleged systemic racism at the college, but in early 2021, VMI switched firms. A graduate of Furman University in South Carolina and the University of Richmond School of Law, Cullen is admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court bar and was behind the institu- tion of McGuireWoods Consulting, the firm’s public affairs arm.


120 VIRGINIA 500


CALVIN W. ‘WOODY’


FOWLER JR. CHAIRMAN, PRESIDENT AND CEO, WILLIAMS MULLEN, RICHMOND


Admitted to the commonwealth bar in 1987, Fowler specializes in business litigation. Serving as chairman, president and CEO of the state’s third-largest law firm since 2015, he has represented a variety of institutional clients, including universities, health care systems, insurance companies, nursing homes and assisted living facilities. He’s one of just 20 attorneys who have been included in Virginia Business’ Legal Elite each year since the project began in 2000. This year, he was named Richmond Lawyer of the Year for Litigation, Banking and Finance by Best Lawyers. Chambers USA ranks him as an eminent practitioner. The University of Virginia alum serves on the boards of the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges and the Virginia Chamber of Commerce. With seven offices, including five


in Virginia, Williams Mullen reported $148 million in 2020 revenue.


RECENT READ: “My American Journey,” by Colin Powell with Joseph E. Persico


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