I chose Taylor English because as the ninth largest law firm in Atlanta with experienced attorneys in the full spectrum of practice areas, the firm offers an economic model that creates value, as defined by my clients. 

Joel C. Williams concentrates in general corporate, international trade and regulatory/legislative representation.

Mr. Williams derived extensive experience in these areas during more than 26 years as inside counsel for a major food company. As inside General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer, he was responsible for all legal compliance. In addition, he participated with the business development team in acquisitions and divestitures of the company. He brings a business understanding to corporate legal problems and can identify with the needs of today's corporate management.

Mr. Williams has 26 years of experience with an international sugar company as assistant general counsel, general counsel, and compliance officer with responsibility for all intellectual property. He has represented Aflac, among other companies, in intellectual property matters, including litigation against Assurant for copyright infringement of cancer policies as well as by organizing insurance companies to obtain reduced royalty rates and defending against patent infringement allegations. He also represented an international hair care company in the United States and 40 foreign countries in various matters, including helping maintain its extensive trademark portfolio.

From 1991 through 1999 he served as a member of the trade advisory committee to the United States Special Trade Ambassador and the Secretary of Agriculture. His experiences in the negotiations of NAFTA and GATT, coupled with more than 26 years in international trade and Customs law representation of his former company, provide him with a unique combination of an inside understanding of trade regulation and practical business application.

Heavy regulation by state and federal agencies of the food industry resulted in extensive administrative law experience spanning the spectrum of federal and state agencies, including the U.S. Departments of Commerce, Special Trade Ambassador, State, Treasury, Justice, Agriculture, Customs Service, EPA, FDA, OSHA, FTC and the various states' insurance, environmental, food and agricultural agencies and revenue departments. He has extensive administrative law experience with which to deal with a client's problems on issues of antitrust, environment, international trade, insurance, product recall and crisis management. This experience in the private corporate arena was supplemented by his earlier experience as an Assistant Attorney General of Georgia. There he was engaged in administrative practice representing the Georgia Department of Transportation, the Pardon and Paroles Board, the Department of Public Safety and the Department of Corrections.

The food industry provided a myriad of legislative issues on the federal and state level. Mr. Williams utilized his almost two years of experience as legal counsel to two United States Senators to provide counsel for the formulation and implementation of federal, state and legislative strategies for the food industry in seven major farm bills, two trade bills and three treaty implementation bills.

Mr. Williams served on the Board of Directors of South College, a privately owned and accredited four year institution, for more than six years and was Chairman for two. The college, while headquartered in Savannah, Georgia, has additional campuses in Knoxville, Tennessee, and Palm Beach, Florida, as well. His experience in giving counsel as a board member helped the college solve complicated issues arising from federal aid.

In addition, Mr. Williams has previously served on the boards of two financial institutions, a state bank and a NASDAQ traded mortgage company. Therefore, he possesses a financial understanding to assist with the needs of a corporate client.

Mr. Williams has represented clients in the telecommunications industry, financial institutions, environmental and waste industries, local governmental entities and public and private utilities.


Atlanta Bar Association

State Bar of Georgia, Corporations and Corporate Counsel Sections, Former Chair of the Corporate Counsel Section

Georgia Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors

Georgia Chamber's Government Affairs Council, Member

Board of the Georgia United Methodist Foundation, Member, 2010-2016

Board of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, Former Member, 2005-2011

Community Involvement

Georgia Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors, 1992-2016

Georgia United Methodist Foundation, Board of Directors, 2008-present

Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors, 1979-1997; Chair, 1988-1989

Georgia Public Policy Foundation, Director, 1991-2010

United Way of Savannah, Director, 1979-1981; Chairman, 1987


Speaking Engagements



Mercer University, Walter F. George School of Law, LLB, magna cum laude, 1967

Shorter University, BA, cum laude, 1964

Bar Admissions


Courts & Adjudicative Bodies

Supreme Court of Georgia

Court of Appeals of Georgia

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia

U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit


Marquis Who's Who Listee, 2003-present

Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated

Leadership Georgia, 1972; Program Chair, 1973