Adjunct Professor of Law & Managing Attorney William & Mary's Federal Tax Clinic
Degrees: J.D., University of Buffalo Law School; L.L.M., William & Mary; B.S., M.B.A., Syracuse University
Mr. Bell is a nationally recognized tax attorney and chair of the business tax group at the law firm of McGuireWoods LLP. He also heads the firm's state and local tax, and tax litigation practice areas. He serves as the firm's lead tax litigator in both trial and appellate federal, state, and local tax disputes. He has substantial experience in all areas of tax law with a primary focus on state and local taxation, civil and criminal tax litigation, and general business tax planning.
He also regularly represents and advises businesses and their owners on matters relating to tax strategies for mergers and acquisitions; joint ventures; purchase and sale of business entities and divisions; business reorganizations; the negotiation, design and implementation of business expansion and relocation economic incentive programs and legislation; state tax legislation lobby activities; and other business transaction services. He is a co-founder and board chairman of Village Bank Financial Corporation, a publicly held commercial bank headquartered in Richmond.
He graduated from the State University of New York at Buffalo School of Law in 1983, and received his post-doctorate masters of law and taxation from the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary in 1986. He also graduated from Syracuse University, magna cum laude, in 1979; and received his masters in business administration from Syracuse University in 1980.
He served as a Judge Advocate General in the U.S. Army for six years on active duty. Upon leaving active duty he joined the Army Reserves where he was assigned to the U.S. Army's law school and served as the Tax and Estate Planning Advisor to the Judge Advocate General of the U.S. Army. He was selected to lead the Department of Defense emergency legal office created to provide legal assistance to victims and their families from the 9-11 Pentagon Attack. Mr. Bell retired from the Army Reserves in 2006 as a Lieutenant Colonel after completing 27 years of service.
He is a Fellow of the American College of Tax Counsel and serves on the William and Mary Tax Conference Advisory Council. Mr. Bell is a past chair of both the Virginia State Bar Section of Taxation and Virginia Bar Association Tax Section, as well as past chair of the Virginia State Bar Military Law Section. He is a member of the J. Edgar Murdock Inn of Court (U.S. Tax Court). He is a former adjunct professor for Virginia Commonwealth University's master in taxation program and a frequent lecturer on federal, state and local tax topics for a number of law and accounting professional organizations.
Mr. Bell also serves as director of the Community Tax Law Project, a charitable nonprofit organization that provides low income Virginia taxpayers with pro bono legal representation in federal, state and local tax disputes, and he is a past president of the organization. He is also a director on the Virginia Endowment Fund of the United Methodist Church, its former chairman, and he also serves as its tax counsel, and as a member of its Executive and Investment Committees. Mr. Bell serves as a board trustee for the Virginia War Museum and the Henricus Historical Park Foundation.