Nellie has helped drive a broad variety of transactions involving commercial real estate in over 25 years of practicing law. She leads teams in complex projects, including expansions and relocations and additions to and divestitures of product lines. In that regard, she also assists with economic development programs. In addition, Nellie has deep experience with developer projects, including housing (single-family and multi-family), mixed-use, assisted living, office parks, industrial parks and malls.  She also helps investors in real estate with their acquisitions and sales.  If commercial real estate is involved, consider having Nellie on your team. 

Even commercial real estate projects that share similarities can have unique characteristics, goals and pressure points. Nellie brings a dedication to understanding client goals and circumstances, and she customizes her counsel and the team she brings to the table accordingly. Clients should be allowed to reach for the stars while keeping their feet on the ground. Nellie thinks ahead so project teams can be strategic in a changing environment, focusing on both the critical details and the broader picture. As needed, she surgically engages additional resources to address special questions or challenges. Her teams work together to impose order on chaos to efficiently achieve desired results. Nellie’s clients also appreciate the sense of camaraderie that she brings to her work, and they know that underlying it all, she has their backs.

Nellie thrives on utilizing an eclectic background (including a degree in computer science) to provide atypical perspectives to her clients. She loves new trends and industry disruptors and thinking about navigating resulting market changes opportunistically. Nellie also invests herself in personal passions like human rights. She enjoys traveling and gardening, just one example of juxtaposing apparently opposite interests.

Civic and Professional Activities

Professional Activities - Current

  • Urban Land Institute (Member: 2002-present, Health Leaders Cohort 3: 2020; Founding Member of Triangle District Council: 2005)
  • Commercial Real Estate Women Atlanta (Member: 2016-present; Chapter Champion: 2020-2021)
  • Triangle Commercial Real Estate Women (Member: 1997-present; President: 2001-2002; Board member: 1999-2003)
  • Commercial Real Estate Women Network (Member: 1997-present; Delegate: 1999-2001; Communications Committee, 2013-2017)
  • Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce (Member: Board of Advisors)
  • Georgia Economic Developers Association (2015-present)
  • North Carolina Economic Developers Association (2005-present)
  • CoreNet Global: Atlanta and Carolinas Chapters (Member: 2013-present)
  • Southern Economic Development Council (2013-present)
  • U.S. Green Building Council— Atlanta and North Carolina Chapters (2007-present)
  • Georgia Bar Association (Real Property Section)
  • North Carolina Bar Association (Real Property Section and Land Use Section)

Civic Activities - Current

  • HRC Atlanta (Federal Club Council: 2016-present; Federal Club: 2014-2016)
  • Atlanta Yale Club

Representative Previous Professional and Civic Activities

  • Cary Chamber of Commerce (Chair: 2003-2004, Board Member 1999-2005, Member 1996-2016)
  • NC Tomorrow Advisory Committee (Member, 2013)
  • North Carolina Habitat for Humanity (General Counsel: 2010-2012)
  • Wake County Sustainability Task Force (Member, 2009-2012)
  • Cary Economic Development Commission (Chair: 2006-2011; Member, 2005-2011);
  • North Carolina Downtown Development Association (2003-2016)
  • HRC North Carolina (Triangle Steering Committee: 2014-2015)
  • Triangle Yale Club (President: 2012-2015)

Publications and Presentations


  • Forging Ahead Instead of Forcing a Pause, Womble Bond Dickinson client alert, April 13, 2020 (with Seth Johnson)
  • What Landlords Need to Know about Eviction, Lender Talks, and Rent Concessions, Womble Bond Dickinson client alert, April 6, 2020 (with Alex Neal)
  • The Multigenerational Impact on CRE: Dealing with a Barbell Makes the Heavy Lifting Easier, Newsletter of the CREW Network, August 2015 (with Sarah Core)
  • Bringing Downtown to the Suburbs: Revitalizing North America’s Office Parks, Newsletter of the CREW Network, March 2014
  • Effects of Technology on Commercial Real Estate, Newsletter of CREW Network, August 2013 (with Beverly Keith)
  • Mitigating Circumstances You Can Bank On, Triangle Business Journal, October 30, 2009 (with Anna Pond McLamb)
  • When It Comes to Zoning, Cary Puts It Online, Triangle Business Journal, February 1, 2008 (with Anna Pond McLamb)
  • Adult living brings new dimension to economy, Triangle Business Journal, July 27, 2007 (with Anna Pond McLamb)
  • Freeze! Moratoriums are Popular, But are They Proper? Triangle Business Journal, December 8, 2006 (with Anna Pond McLamb)
  • Inconvenient or Not, Truth is Green has Made Inroads, Triangle Business Journal, Space quarterly insert, July 28, 2006 (with Anna Pond McLamb) 


  • Co-Presenter, “Has Office Space Become a Dinosaur Because We Are All Working Effectively from Home?”, Womble Bond Dickinson Everything from Everywhere Virtual Summit, January 29, 2021
  • Presenter, “Rent Collection & Enforcement Challenges from COVID-19: What Landlords Need to Know,” myLawCLE webinar, April 22, 2020
  • Moderator, Building a Better Tomorrow: Emerging Construction Trends, Marcus & Millichap/IPA Multifamily Forum Southeast, Atlanta, GA, March 22, 2018 
  • Co-Presenter, Managing your Commercial Real Estate Deal for Success: Before, During and After the Firestorm, Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) Georgia Deep Dive Program, Atlanta, GA, Jan. 30, 2018
  • Moderator, Marcus & Millichap/IPA Multifamily Forum Southeast, Atlanta, GA, March 9, 2016
  • Panelist, Business Leaders and What’s Important in 2014, CoreNet Global, Carolinas Chapter, Raleigh, NC, March 6, 2014
  • Panelist, Understanding North Carolina’s New Lien Laws, Triangle Commercial Real Estate Women, Raleigh, NC, October 2, 2013

Honors and Awards

  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America (BL Rankings) in the fields of Land Use and Zoning Law, Real Estate Law, 2011 – Present
  • AV rating, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Women of Western Wake Award, Cary Magazine, 2008
  • Women in Business Award Recipient, Triangle Business Journal, 2006 
  • “Woman of the Year,” Triangle Commercial Real Estate Women, 2002


Any result the lawyer or law firm may have achieved on behalf of clients in other matters does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.

Recent representative projects include:

  • North American corporate real estate strategy and execution (acquisition, management and disposition) for multinational companies, including: 
    • A global computer company expansion of corporate, sales, and technical support offices due to the acquisition of a competitor’s product line and associated necessary new locations.
    • A global company specializing in insulation products - various real estate assignments to support strategic business decisions as they arise.
  • Developer representation, including: 
    • Large community developments, some with active adult lifestyle components.
    • Assisted living and other multifamily projects, including apartments.
  • Projects with economic development features, such as a global contract pharmaceutical developer and manufacturer, and a national furniture seller and services company expanding manufacturing, showroom and headquarters facilities in the US.