Jay Steed is a partner at Jones Hawkins & Farmer, PLC. Mr. Steed has more than fifteen years of experience as a trial and appellate attorney, advocating for clients charged with offenses ranging from the most serious state and federal criminal offenses, to misdemeanor citations. Since moving to Nashville in 1999, he has established himself both as a passionate advocate for his clients, and an attorney dedicated to the public interest.
Mr. Steed's practice areas include state and federal criminal defense, as well as select civil litigation. He appears regularly in the federal District Courts for the Middle District of Tennessee, where he successfully represents clients facing federal prosecution for offenses ranging from firearms and narcotics violations, to complex white collar fraud and conspiracies. In state courts throughout Middle Tennessee, Mr. Steed effectively defends clients charged with misdemeanors and felonies, in many types of cases.
Before joining the firm in 2010, Mr. Steed served for six years with the Office of the Federal Public Defender. As an Assistant Federal Defender, he successfully negotiated settlements in hundreds of serious federal cases. Where no agreement was possible, Mr. Steed earned multiple verdicts of 'not guilty' for federal defendants, before judge and jury. He also achieved successful results for clients at countless hearings, from preliminary and detention hearings, through pre-trial motions and contested sentencings. On appeal, he briefed and argued cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. From 1999 through 2004, Mr. Steed served as a trial and appellate attorney with the Nashville Office of the Metropolitan Public Defender, where he obtained numerous verdicts of 'not guilty', including jury acquittals for driving under the influence (DUI), forgery, firearms violations, and homicide. At the appellate level, he briefed and argued cases before both the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals and the Supreme Court of Tennessee.
Mr. Steed's many years as a state and federal public defender, and his time in private practice as a member of Jones Hawkins & Farmer, PLC, have given him a broad range of experience that proves valuable to clients. He has also completed some of the most rigorous training programs in the nation for trial attorneys, including the National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA), the Faubush Litigation Persuasion Institute, and the National Criminal Defense College's (NCDC) Trial Practice Institute. He is often invited to lecture on criminal justice issues, at continuing legal education programs for attorneys, and at schools and universities. In recent years, he has been a regular speaker at the annual DUI training seminar hosted by the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (TACDL), and at training seminars hosted by the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Middle District of Tennessee. Mr. Steed remains committed to public service and advocacy, serving as a member of the federal Criminal Justice Act Panel for the Middle District of Tennessee, the Tennessee Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (TACDL), the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), and the Nashville Bar Association (NBA).
Raised in North Carolina, Mr. Steed attended law school and graduate school at Duke University, where he earned a Juris Doctor (J.D.) and Master of Arts (M.A.), in 1999. He previously studied philosophy at the University of Chicago, earning his Bachelor's Degree (B.A.) with Honors in 1995.