Scott J. Rhodes with Jennings, Strouss & Salmon Attorneys at Law in Phoenix, Arizona

J. Scott Rhodes Managing Attorney

P: 602.262.5862
F: 602.495.2648
L: Phoenix

Mr. Rhodes is Jennings, Strouss & Salmon's Managing Attorney and also serves as a member of the firm's three-person Management Committee. Mr. Rhodes previously served as General Counsel to the firm.

Mr. Rhodes has an extensive background in legal ethics. He regularly advises attorneys and law firms in matters relating to State Bar complaints, fee disputes, disciplinary matters, bar admission and other licensing, ethics, and professional responsibility issues.

In 2011, the Arizona Supreme Court appointed Mr. Rhodes to serve on its Attorney Regulation Advisory Committee. This Committee makes recommendations regarding attorney examination, admissions, reinstatement, disability and the lawyer discipline process.

In 2009, the Arizona Supreme Court appointed Mr. Rhodes to serve as a Member of its Attorney Discipline Task Force, which reviewed the rules of the attorney regulation system and recommended substantial changes to the Arizona Supreme Court that were implemented in 2011.

Mr. Rhodes was named Phoenix Administrative Lawyer of the Year 2011 and Phoenix Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law Lawyer of the Year 2013 by The Best Lawyers in America®. The State Bar of Arizona selected Mr. Rhodes for the 2010 Member of the Year Award. Mr. Rhodes is AV® PreeminentTM Peer Review Rated by Martindale Hubbell and has been listed in The Best Lawyers in the categories of Administrative/Regulatory Law, Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law and Legal Malpractice Law from 2009 through 2014. He was also named a Southwest Super Lawyer® in 2007 in the categories of Administrative Law, Law and Politics and in 2011 - 2014 in the categories of Professional Liability, Defense, Government/Cities/Municipalities, and Utilities Law.

Under Mr. Rhodes' leadership, Jennings Strouss & Salmon ranked #1 in the US in Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law by The Best Lawyers in America® 2010, and #1 in Arizona in 2011.

Mr. Rhodes also practices in the areas of energy and utilities law, local government law, and professional corporate governance and structure.

Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Rhodes served as Law Clerk to the Honorable Robert Corcoran and the Honorable Charles E. Jones, Arizona Supreme Court, in 1995-1996. Before embarking on his legal career, Mr. Rhodes operated his own business in Paris for nine years.

Areas of Focus

  • Lawyer Professional Responsibility
  • State Bar Complaints
  • Ethics
  • Legal Malpractice Defense
  • Bar Admission and Licensing Issues
  • Energy and Utility Law
  • Local Government Law

Representative Engagements

Lawyer Professional Responsibility

  • Regularly represents public and private lawyers in defense of Bar complaints and fee arbitrations
  • Regularly provides ethics counsel to lawyers and law firms

Energy and Utilities Law

  • Outside counsel of a municipal electric utility

  • Conducted legal due diligence in view of participation in a construction of an electric generation power plant, including review and negociation of contracts, bond issues, and engineering, environmental, financing, and labor reports and projections

Local Government

  • Extensive experience in local and county governance, and formation and management structures of special taxing districts

Published Opinions

  • In the Matter of RICHARD B. JOHNSON (2013), Arizona Supreme Court, No. SB-12-0040-R.


    Featured, “Lawyers Don't Have to ‘Peel Back' Layers of ‘Psychoanalysis' to Prove Rehabilitation,” 29 Law. Man. Prof. Conduct 243, ABA/BNA Lawyers' Manual on Professional Conduct™, a publication highly regarded as an authoritative source for news and guidance on attorney conduct and legal ethics. The manual is published by the American Bar Association and the Bloomberg BNA.


    Featured, “Delving into Psyche Unnecessary for Reinstatement,” National Law Journal, (April 30, 2013)

  • In the Matter of JANET WHITE-STEINER (2009), Arizona Supreme Court, No. SB-08-0119-D.

  • In the Matter of NANCY E. DEAN (2005), Arizona Supreme Court, No. SB-05-0135-D.

  • In the Matter of WALTER E. MOAK (2003), Arizona Supreme Court, No. SB-03-0007-D. 

  • In the Matter of WILLIAM J. WALKER (2000), Arizona Supreme Court, No. SB-00-0096-D. 


Articles and Publications


Presentations

  • Presenter, “I’ll take Ethics Potpourri for $1000, Please”, Tiffany & Bosco, Continuing Legal Education (2014)

  • Speaker, “Challenges and Tools in Estate Planning: Ethics and Liability Concerns in Estate Planning, Elder Law and Probate,” State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2014)

  • Presenter, “Lawyer Ethics and the Business of Marijuana,” American Bar Association (2014)

  • Presenter, “What All Estate Planning Professionals Should Know About Legal Ethics,” Central Arizona Estate Planning Council (2014)

  • Presenter, “10 Ethical Concepts for Arizona Lawyers to Know in 2014,” Asimou & Associates, PLC (2014)

  • Panelist, "Fee Simple," State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2013)

  • Panelist, "Let's Talk Fees," State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2013)

  • Presenter, "Sixteenth Annual Public Practice Legal Seminar," ACIP & Arizona Counties Civil Deputies Association (2013)

  • Presenter, "2013 Ethics CLE," Gurstel Chargo, PA (2013)

  • Presenter, “Candor, Courtesy & Confidences: Common Courtroom Conundrums,” State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2013)

  • Presenter, Ethical "Tune-Up" Seminar, City of Phoenix Law Department (2012)

  • Presenter, "Ethical Morning at the Movies," State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2012)

  • Presenter, Ethical "Tune-Up" Seminar, City of Glendale City Attorney's Office (2012)

  • Presenter, "Fifteenth Annual Public Practice Legal Seminar," ACIP & Arizona Counties Civil Deputies Association (2012)

  • Presenter, “Ethics and Public Lawyer,” State Bar of Arizona (2012)

  • Presenter, "The Ethics of Ancillary Businesses," Warner Angle Hallam Jackson & Formanek, PLC (2012)

  • Presenter, "The Lawyer Discipline System: How is it Working?," State Bar of Arizona (2012)

  • Presenter, "Dial 'E' for Ethics," State Bar of Arizona (2012)

  • Presenter, "Conflict of Interest Restriction After Carrigan: Legislative Voting and First Amendment," American Bar Association, Section of State and Local Government Law (2011)

  • Presenter, “Avoiding Ethical Pitfalls: Navigating the Ethics Rules,” State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2005-2009; 2011, 2013)

  • Presenter, "Moving On: Closing, Selling or Otherwise Leaving Your Practice," State Bar of Arizona (2010)

  • Presenter, "Ethics Seminar," West Maricopa Bar Association (2010)

  • Presenter, "Changes to Arizona's Attorney Discipline System," Arizona Attorney General's Office (2010)

  • Presenter, "A Lawyer's Day in Court: The Mechanics of Arizona's Attorney Regulation System," State Bar of Arizona's CLE By the Sea Conference (2010)

  • Presenter, "Game Show Ethics!," U.S. Attorney's Office - District of Arizona, AUSA Symposium (2010)

  • Panelist, "Minding the Store: Internal Ethics and Liability Management for Law Firms of All Shapes and Sizes," State Bar of Arizona (2010)

  • Presenter, "Arizona State Bar Ethics Training," Yavapai County Public Defender's Office, Continuing Legal Education (2009, 2010)

  • Presenter, "Are We All In the Same Sandbox? The Various Facets of a Multi-Jurisdictional Practice," State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2009) 

  • Panelist, "Real World Negotiation Ethics," State Bar of Arizona's Alternative Dispute Resolution Section (2009)

  • Presenter, "2009 Course on Professionalism," State Bar of Arizona (2009) 

  • Panelist, "Minding the Store: Internal Ethics and Liability Management," State Bar of Arizona's CLE By the Sea (2009)

  • Presenter, "Ethical Estate Planning and Administration: The Devil's in the Details," Maricopa County Bar Association (2009)

  • Presenter, "Lawyer Discipline - And 20 Tips on How to Avoid It," Lorman Seminars, Legal Ethics in Arizona (2009)

  • Panelist, "Balance in Life and Law Practice," State Bar of Arizona, Minority Bar Convention (2009)

  • Presenter, "Changes to Ethics Rules and Trust Account Audits: Lawyers Who Represent Lawyers Explain What You Need to Know," Maricopa County Bar Association, Continuing Legal Education (2009)

  • Presenter, "Ethics Café," State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2008)

  • Presenter, "The Ethics of Dealing with Difficult People," City of Glendale, City Attorney's Office (2008) 

  • Presenter, “Double Trouble: Concurrent Disciplinary Actions and Legal Malpractice Suits,” ABA (2007)

  • Presenter, “The Ethical Challenges and Opportunities of Public Representation,” Glendale City Attorney’s Office (2007)

  • Presenter, “Annual Ethics Game Show!,” State Bar of Arizona (2006)

  • Presenter, “Twenty Ways to Avoid Discipline!,” State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2006)

  • Moderator, "Confessions for the Pocketbook as Well as the Soul?," American Bar Association Center for Professional Responsibility National Conference (2005)

  • Presenter, “Due Process and Ethical Considerations in Probate Litigation and Estate Planning,” Maricopa County Bar Association Estate Planning, Probate and Trust Section (2005)

  • Presenter, “What to Do When the Bar Comes Knocking at Your Door: What You Should Know About the Discipline Process,” Arizona Attorney General’s Office (2005)

  • Presenter, “How to Open and Keep Open a Profitable Law Firm,” State Bar of Arizona, Continuing Legal Education (2004)

  • Guest Lecturer, "Professional Responsibility," ASU Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Professional Responsibility Course (2004)

  • Presenter, “Ethics and Professionalism Seminar,” Salt River Project (2003)

  • Presenter, “2003 Amendments to Arizona Rules of Professional Conduct,” Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Arizona (2003)

  • Presenter, “Lawyer Discipline System: Introduction,” State Bar of Arizona (2002, 2003)

  • Presenter, “Fifth Annual Public Practice Legal Seminar,” ACIP & Arizona Counties Civil Deputies Association (2002)

  • Presenter, “Fourth Annual Public Practice Legal Seminar,” ACIP & Arizona Counties Civil Deputies Association (2001)


Media


Honors, Appointments and Awards

  • Listed, The Best Lawyers in America (2009-2015) in the categories of Administrative/Regulatory Law, Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law, Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants

  • Listed, Southwest Super Lawyers (2007, 2011-2014) in the categories of Professional Liability: Defense, State, Local & Municiple, Utilities

  • Named Phoenix Administrative/Regulatory Law Lawyer of the Year 2011 and Phoenix Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law Lawyer of the Year 2013, The Best Lawyers in America

  • Member of the Year Award, selected by the State Bar of Arizona Board of Governors (2010)

  • AV® PreeminentTM Peer Review Rated

  • Chevalier de l’Ordre Mérite National (Knight of the Order of National Merit, Republic of France)

Other Languages

  • French (Fluent)

Professional Affiliations

  • Arizona Supreme Court
    Attorney Regulation Advisory Committee, Member, (2011 - present)
    Attorney Discipline Task Force, Member, (2009 - 2010)
  • State Bar of Arizona
    Ethics Committee, Member, (2002 - present)
    Rules of Professional Conduct Committee, Chair, (2009 - 2011)
  • Mesa Judicial Advisory Board
    Member, (2007 - 2010)
    Chairman, (2009 - 2010)
  • Arizona Equal Justice Foundation
    Board Member, (2010-present)
  • Arizona State University Alumni Association
    Board of Directors, (2010 - 2012)
  • Arizona Town Hall
    Chair, (2013 - present)
    Chair-Elect, (2012 - 2013)
  • Law Firm Alliance
    Board of Directors, Member, (Nov. 2014 - present)
  • Mesa 2025: Financing the Future
    Citizen Committee Member, (2005 - 2006)
  • Mesa Leadership Training & Development, Class of 2002
  • Acting Honorary Consul for France (2001 - 2003)
  • Member, Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers
  • American Bar Association
    Antitrust Law, Member
    Center for Professional Responsibility, Member

Admitted to Practice

  • Arizona, 1995

Court Admission

  • U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, 2000
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Education

  • J.D., Arizona State University, Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law, 1995
    cum laude
    Arizona State Law Journal, Executive Managing Editor
    Sandra Day O'Connor Award
    Alan A. Matheson Award
  • B.A., Yale University, English, 1980
    cum laude
    Distinction in the English Major

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