Jo Ann retired as a Family Court Judge in Lexington, Kentucky and returned to her hometown of Knoxville in 2013. Jo Ann has over 35 years of experience in the practice of family law, and is committed to using that experience to serve her clients. Her practice focuses on representing individuals involved in divorce, child custody, child visitation and child support litigation. Jo Ann also assists clients involved in relocation issues, and clients in need of prenuptial or postnuptial agreements. Jo Ann is trained in the collaborative method of resolving divorce cases and is a founding member of the East Tennessee Collaborative Alliance. She enjoys using her passion for family law to respectfully resolve her client’s family issues.
Jo Ann is a Rule 31 certified Family Mediator. Jo Ann’s years on the bench deciding family law cases, combined with her extensive experience representing clients in family law cases, make her an effective Family Mediator.
In addition to her private practice at Smith, Lehberger & Kennedy, Jo Ann is also an adjunct professor at the University of Tennessee College of Law Domestic Violence Clinic, where she teaches and supervises student lawyers who provide pro bono representation to domestic violence victims in Order of Protection court.
Jo Ann is dedicated to serving her profession. She has been the co-chair of the Family Law Section of the Knoxville Bar Association for the last two years. While on the bench, Jo Ann was the Chair of the Fayette Family Court, and was involved in numerous projects to improve the court and the community, such as the Model Court project for families and children in dependency, neglect and abuse court, truancy court, the Civil Rules Initiative of the Kentucky Supreme Court, the Mayor’s Commission on Youth Development and Public Safety and the Domestic Violence Fatality Review Team. Jo Ann also served as chair of the family law section of the Kentucky Bar Association and the Fayette County Bar Association and as a member of the Kentucky Legislature’s Special Task Force on Parenting and Child Custody.
Jo Ann is licensed to practice law in Tennessee and Kentucky.
University of Tennessee College of Law