Overview

Brandon is a Shareholder in Maynard Nexsen's Cybersecurity & Privacy practice group. He is a problem solver and consensus builder who helps businesses overcome obstacles to achieve their goals.

Brandon's practice focuses primarily on three areas: cybersecurity and data privacy, emerging technologies, and energy.  He counsels clients in multiple industries to proactively manage data privacy- and cybersecurity-related risks and compliance while maintaining innovative customer service.  He has advised clients with respect to compliance on an array of international, federal, state, and sector-specific cybersecurity- and privacy-related laws, regulations, and other requirements. Brandon also has extensive experience supporting NERC reliability compliance and policy, fiber and broadband/internet, smart grid innovation, artificial intelligence, unmanned aerial systems (“drones”), contracts, federal funding opportunities, and other consumer protection work.  Finally, Brandon has experience in reviewing, drafting, and commenting on state legislation in multiple states related to these issues, including but not limited to the data breach notification law passed in Alabama in 2018.

Regarding cybersecurity and data privacy, Brandon has extensive experience representing multiple regulated and unregulated industries with respect to issues including, but not limited to, data breach/security incident prevention and response, providing security compliance advice and counsel, developing policies and procedures, negotiating contractual provisions and agreements, updating privacy policies and website terms of use, and more.  Brandon is certified with the International Association of Privacy Professionals (“IAPP”) as both a CIPP/US and CIPP/E professional, signifying particular expertise in U.S. and European privacy law, respectively, and was one of the first attorneys in Alabama to become CIPP/US certified. He currently serves as one of the co-chairs of the IAPP’s Birmingham chapter.

Regarding emerging technologies, Brandon also regularly provides transactional and regulatory counsel on a number of fronts related to various legislative, regulatory and 21st-century technological matters, including drones, blockchain/cryptocurrency, artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, Internet of things (IoT), and fiber/broadband, among other issues.

Finally, Brandon’s energy practice has involved long-time representation of electric utilities and others in the energy industry on various issues.  In particular, part of Brandon’s energy practice focuses on representation before FERC, NERC, and Regional Entities on the issue of electric reliability.  He has also advised such entities with respect to many of the innovative and technological matters listed above, including smart grid, physical security, electric transportation, and other generation and transmission issues. 

Before law school, Brandon worked as a singer-songwriter, a middle school teacher and soccer coach, a marketing and advertising account executive, and an unemployment tax claims account executive. These experiences helped him develop a sense of work ethic, dedication to customer service, and creativity he brings to the table as a legal advisor.

Brandon regularly speaks at conferences and with media outlets nationwide and has been quoted in various local and national publications, including the Wall Street Journal, BloombergLaw, Law360, LegalTechNews, Global Data Review, Business Alabama, and more.

Community & Professional

  • International Association of Privacy Professionals, Birmingham Chapter Co-Chair (2022-Present)
  • Fiber Broadband Association, Public Policy Committee
  • FBI InfraGard
  • Cyber Huntsville
  • Energy Bar Association
  • American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, Committee Vice-Chair
  • Alabama Bar Association
  • Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama
  • Randolph School, Alumni Association President & Board of Trustees Member (2018-2023)
  • Birmingham Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Leadership Class of 2015; Advisory Council (2016-Present)
  • Children's Hospital of Alabama Committee for the Future (2016); Children's Table Committee (2017 & 2018)
  • Lakeshore Foundation Junior Board, Co-Founder; Vice President (2008-2012)
  • Duke Law Alumni Association, Regional Partner (2009-Present); Board Member (2009-2012)
  • Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama (PARCA) Roundtable Executive Committee President (2018)
  • EBA System Reliability and Planning Committee (2009-2012); Vice-chair (2012-2013); Chair (2013-2014)

Experience

Cybersecurity / Data Privacy / Consumer Protection

Advise companies in multiple industries on cybersecurity and data privacy compliance with international, federal, state, and industry sector laws, regulations and requirements, including but not limited to GDPR, CCPA, NIST Standards, NERC CIP, FTC, FERPA, state privacy laws, state data breach notification laws, and other various other requirements; counsel multiple clients in response to data breaches, ransomware attacks, business email compromise (“BEC”) wire fraud incidents, and related crises; develop and update privacy policies and terms of use for company websites; advise on company policies and procedures to ensure cybersecurity and data privacy compliance; negotiate service contracts and controller/processor data security and privacy addenda and provisions; perform cybersecurity and privacy-related due diligence on M&A transactions.

Fiber, Broadband & Telecommunications

Provided counsel to multiple Fortune 500 utilities throughout the Southeast and the Southwest on strategic partnerships regarding fiber optic cable; assisted in landmark state legislation involving the use of electric easements for broadband purposes; lead counsel on contracts involving fiber lease agreements, public Wi-Fi agreements; and other telecommunications/broadband-related agreements; advised on federal and state broadband plans, strategies, and funding opportunities; provided advice and counsel on federal legislation involving broadband; negotiation of dozens of fiber lease agreements between electric utilities and broadband service providers; provided assistance and counsel on federal and state broadband grant opportunities and grant applications.

Smart Grid & Privacy

Counseled Fortune 500 company in drafting and submitting comments in response to various requests for information regarding smart grid and privacy from various federal agencies, including DOE, Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Federal Communications Commission (FCC), DOC, and others.

Innovation

Assisted large Fortune 500 company in identifying and addressing regulatory risks associated with innovative projects involving technology, customer data, big data and IoT, telecommunications, and other emerging issues.

Artificial Intelligence

Regular review and counsel with respect to legal, regulatory and industry developments in artificial intelligence; advised and supported policy development to C-Suite executives of major electric generation owner and operator on the use of generative AI in the workplace.

Unmanned Aerial Systems (“drones”)

Regularly assist clients in creating employee policies as well as navigating compliance state and federal (FAA) rules regarding drone operations.

Contracts

Draft and/or review of vendor agreements, nondisclosure agreements, and other types of contracts with vendors, partners, and other third parties involving customer data, confidential and proprietary trade secrets and other information, and critical energy infrastructure information (CEII) or other sensitive information.

Federal Funding Opportunities

Served in primary role for Fortune 500 utility in advising and providing counsel for Recovery Act (stimulus) funding throughout lifecycle of multi-million dollar project, including grant application, compliance and project management, and award closeout; assisted in preparation of multiple grant applications to DOE related to the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA).

NERC Reliability Compliance

Provided assistance to multiple electric utility clients around the country in preparing for NERC compliance audits and other compliance proceedings (including witness preparation and mock audits), responding to data requests and investigations from FERC, NERC, and Regional Entities (including SERC and Texas RE, among others), drafting of self-reports, RFI responses, and other compliance-related documentation related to multiple Regional Entities, performing NERC-related due diligence on potential transactions, drafting and negotiating contracts with third parties to address and allocate NERC compliance and other reliability-related risks, and other NERC compliance-related issues.

NERC Reliability Policy

Regularly assist Fortune 500 utility in responding to FERC proposed rulemakings and other issues surrounding NERC standards and other reliability issues; provide assistance in drafting comments on reliability-related and others issues before FERC and NERC.

Other Reliability-Related Work

Contract and FERC regulatory counsel on filing for approval of transformer reserve sparing program on behalf of multiple electric utilities; advised on formation of industry group of reliability coordinators for transition of responsibility from NERC of reliability-related software and tools; counsel to nonprofit corporation that serves as network for sharing of operating reliability data among transmission owners/operators and reliability coordinators across the Eastern Interconnection; negotiation of service contracts on behalf of multiple utilities across the country (both investor-owned utilities and independent power producers/developers) of NERC compliance and operations/maintenance services.

Recognitions

Recognition

  • International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US) (one of the first in Alabama); CIPP/E
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers, Rising Star (2012-Present)
  • Birmingham Business Journal “Top 40 Under 40” (2019)
  • Birmingham Business Journal, Rising Star Lawyer (2015)
  • B-Metro, Top Lawyer (2017 & 2018)
  • B-Metro Magazine, Top Lawyer, Stars of the Bar (2016-2018)
  • Birmingham Magazine, Top Attorney (2018 & 2020)

Admissions

  • State Bar: Alabama
  • U.S. District Court: Alabama (Northern, Southern)
  • Supreme Court of Alabama

Clerkships

  • Honorable W. Harold Albritton, III
    U.S. District Court, Middle District of Alabama
  • Honorable Loyd H. Little, Jr.
    23rd Judicial Circuit of Alabama

Languages

  • Spanish
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