Buckley King partner/founder receives prestigious designation
Legal News Reporter
Published: November 11, 2022
He’s one of the original founders of the business law firm Buckley King and now The Best Lawyers in America has named Brent Buckley as its 2023 Lawyer of the Year for Litigation—Banking and Finance.
The oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession, Best Lawyers designates one lawyer per recognized practice area as “Lawyer of the Year” in the country’s largest legal markets.
The decisions are based on surveys in which tens of thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers.
“I was taken completely by surprise,” said Buckley, one of three attorneys who founded the firm in Cleveland in 1983. “I certainly did not solicit, campaign or market myself for this award, but I was thrilled to get it.”
Buckley King Administrative Partner Rosemary Sweeney said Buckley is “an outstanding lawyer,” who is “very deserving” of this prestigious designation.
“We have worked together since I started at the firm in 1992,” said Sweeney, who focuses on corporate, finance and real estate matters. “I can tell you that you won’t find a better strategic thinker or client developer. The firm is coming up on its 40th anniversary and Brent played a key role in expanding it to where it is today.
“His visionary leadership is one of the reasons that many of us have chosen to make our careers here,” said Sweeney. “He does an amazing job keeping our clients happy and managing the firm. I’m not surprised that he’s earned this honor. It’s his ability to think out of the box that really makes a difference.”
Born in Cleveland Heights, Buckley grew up in Euclid. He received his bachelor’s degree from Case Western Reserve University and juris doctorate from the Cleveland State University—Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.
Buckley began his legal career at Levin & Jackson.
In 1983, he joined hands with law school classmates Woods King III and Linda Bluso to start Buckley, King & Bluso (now Buckley King).
“All three of us had gone to law school together and had talked about one day practicing law together,” said Buckley. “After we gained some experience, we decided to make it happen.”
When it began, the firm had a single office in Cleveland with three lawyers. Today it also has locations in Dayton, Ohio, Atlanta, Phoenix and Naples, Florida and includes about 40 attorneys.
“We primarily handle business and business-related matters, but we also have clients in many other practice areas,” Buckley said.
Buckley is a member of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, where he served as chair of the Business, Banking & Corporate Counsel Section.
He’s also a member of the Ohio State and American bar associations, the Judge John M. Manos American Inn of Court and is a life member of the Ohio 8th Judicial District Conference.
Outside of the legal profession, Buckley is on the boards of the Cleveland Institute of Music, College Now Greater Cleveland, the Euclid Schools Foundation, the Euclid Chamber of Commerce, the Cleveland Ballet, the Lake County Free Clinic, the Lakeland Foundation, Cleveland Sight Center and many other civic and professional organizations.
Buckley is also a member of the executive board of the Greater Cleveland Chapter of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives and previously served as chair of the Cleveland State University Cleveland-Marshall Board of Visitors.
In 2019, Buckley received the Distinguished Alumni of the Year Award from Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.
In addition to being named 2023 “Lawyer of the Year” for Litigation—Banking and Finance, Buckley was also recognized by Best Lawyers® in a number of other areas of law and earned Corporate Responsibility Magazine’s Legal Who’s Who as one of the nation’s top high-stakes (Bet-the-company) trial lawyers in 2014.
While he considered different career options before choosing the legal profession, Buckley said he now knows he made the right choice.
“I find practicing law very satisfying because it offers opportunities to make a big difference in the lives of clients, colleagues and the community,” he said. “I love what I do and I do my best to give back to the profession and com