Everett Gaskins Hancock traces its roots back to two of North Carolina’s most highly regarded law firms and is founded on an approach to law practice learned through the mentorship of influential and respected North Carolina attorneys. Everett Gaskins Hancocks founding partners Ed Gaskins and Gerry Hancock ensure that the rich history and legacy of the firm live on today.
In his early practice, Gerry was a member of the Durham, NC, firm founded close to 100 years ago by Reuben Oscar Everett (1878-1971) and his wife, Kathrine Everett (1893-1992).
Katherine Everett is known as a pioneer in North Carolina’s legal history, being the first woman to argue and win a case in the North Carolina Supreme Court. The year Kathrine graduated as of one of UNC Law School’s first female graduates, she earned the highest score on the bar exam in the State of North Carolina.
In turn, Reuben and Kathrine’s son, Robinson O. Everett (1928-2009), is equally revered in North Carolina’s legal history. Robinson Everett graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University at age 19, and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School 3 years later. At 22, Robinson Everett was the youngest person to serve as a Duke Law professor, a position he continued until his death. He also served as the first Chief Justice of the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces. Judge Everett’s son, Rob Everett, is of counsel with the firm today.
In addition to their many accomplishments, the Everett family had and continues to have a passion for service to the community and great insight into how politics and legislation can shape that community for the better.
Ed Gaskins was a member of EGH’s other predecessor firm, Sanford & Cannon. Sanford & Cannon was formed in 1965 by Terry Sanford (1917-1998), former Governor of North Carolina, and Hugh Cannon (1931-2006), one of Governor Sanford’s senior advisors who served as counsel to the governor.
Governor Sanford, who was elected the same day that John F. Kennedy was elected president, was known as a political progressive and governed North Carolina during a time where the ability to change the state and the country for the better was strong. In his own right, Hugh Cannon served as a parliamentarian for the National Democratic Party and is the author of the well-known book Cannon’s Concise Guide to Rules of Order.
Ed Gaskins and Gerry Hancock have practiced together for over 30 years and attribute their leadership success to the rich history and legacy of the firm. They understand that the future of the firm’s attorneys and practicing law in a way that will shape North Carolina for the better is fundamentally what makes law practice a uniquely admirable profession.
Robinson Everett, Kathrine Everett, and Reuben Everett (Courtesy of the Everett family)
Meeting at Governor’s Mansion 1964.
Seated, left to right are: Governor Terry Sanford; H. L. Riddle, Jr.; Franklin D. Roosevelt, Jr.; and Hugh Cannon. Standing, left to right are: Tom I. Davis and Graham Jones (Courtesy of the State Archives of North Carolina)