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Jacob Vanzin

Jacob has broad experience representing clients in all manner of cases, and now focuses his practice primarily on commercial litigation, real estate disputes, and appeals. He has a particular interest in easement, right-of-way, and eminent domain cases.

Jacob A. Vanzin joined the appellate practice team at Dodson Parker in 2022, after practicing for almost a decade with the firm of King, Turnbow, Smith & Vanzin, PLLP, in Franklin, Tennessee, where he was a partner. He also previously clerked for the Honorable Patricia L. Cohen of the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District.

Known as an excellent writer, Jacob authored the winning brief for two major appeals prior to coming to work at Dodson Parker:

  • Walker v. Walker, M2018-01140-COA-R9-CV (Tenn. Ct. App. Jan. 31, 2020) (affirming the Chancery Court’s decision that a prenuptial agreement was unenforceable)
  • Stange v. Roberts, M2019-01060-COA-R3-CV (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 9, 2020) (reversing the Chancery Court’s decision regarding the permissible uses of an easement appurtenant)

Since joining the firm, Jacob has continued to craft exceptional briefs on behalf of Dodson Parker clients, serving as the primary author of our clients’ briefs in:

  • Pogue v. Simms, No. M2022-01095-COA-R3-JV (Tenn. Ct. App. Apr. 19, 2023) (reversing child custody determination for imposition of a more equal parenting plan)
  • Samuel Forrester Hunter v. Winnie Sue Cooper, M2022-01050-COA-R3-CV (decision pending)
  • Jeremy N. Miller v. Casi A. Miller, M2022-00759-COA-R3-CV (decision pending)

He also assists other attorneys at Dodson Parker with writing, editing, formatting, and research for their briefs.

Having observed the appellate process from both sides – as a practitioner before the bench and judicial law clerk behind the curtain – Jacob brings a distinctive set of knowledge and experience to the work he does for our clients. He knows what it is like to stand at the podium and make tough arguments, and he knows how opinions are drafted behind the scenes.

Born in Delaware, Jacob moved to Franklin, Tennessee as a child. After graduating from Centennial High School in Franklin, Jacob received a Chancellor’s Scholarship to attend the University of Pittsburgh, where he graduated with a B.A. in History and Political Science, summa cum laude. After serving for a year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in California, Jacob went on to obtain his J.D., cum laude, from Washington University in St. Louis. While at Washington University, Jacob participated in both the American Bar Association National Appellate Advocacy Competition and the William E. McGee National Civil Rights Moot Court Competition, winning the following awards:

  • ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition National Quarterfinalist
  • ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition National Best Advocate – 10th
  • ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition Regional Champion
  • ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition Regional Best Brief – 1st Place
  • William E. McGee National Civil Rights Moot Court Competition Quarterfinalist (2010)
  • William E. McGee National Civil Rights Moot Court Competition Ninth Overall Oral Advocate (2010)

As a strong believer in equal justice, Jacob engages in extensive pro bono service each year, clocking in at 181.5 pro bono hours in 2023. He has been recognized several times as an Attorney for Justice by the Tennessee Supreme Court pro bono program. 

In his spare time, Jacob enjoys hiking and traveling, having visited thirty-one countries and forty-six states (missing Alaska, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Idaho). You can also frequently find him serving as judge and jury for disputes between the three children that he shares with his wife, Lindsey.


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