Shook, Hardy & Bacon has been committed to legal excellence, community involvement and a collegial firm environment for over a century. Founded in 1889 by Frank P. Sebree, SHB quickly became “the” law practice in Kansas City by attracting the region’s top legal talent. Now a litigation powerhouse with 10 offices worldwide, SHB enjoys a record of success built on the veteran lawyers, long-standing client relationships and diverse expertise that distinguished the firm from its beginning.
Frank Payne Sebree started his career in Marshall, Missouri, as a well-respected attorney and member of the 1888 state legislature. After declining a second term in favor of private practice, Frank relocated to Kansas City to take part in the area’s exponential growth. One of his first partners, Henry C. McDougal, served as a special prosecutor in the murder trial of the notorious outlaw Frank James. In 1911, Samuel B. Sebree entered his father’s practice, where he represented a prominent railway company that is still counted among SHB clients. The Sebrees were later joined by another Marshall lawyer named Edgar Shook, who received the city’s first “Man of the Year” award for cleaning up corrupt local politics; famed trial attorney Charlie L. Bacon; and products liability pioneer David R. Hardy. The latter in particular garnered the firm a reputation for crafting meticulous, creative and cost-effective strategies capable of winning contentious cases.
Known today by the names of these three innovative litigators, Shook, Hardy & Bacon has established itself as a premier defense firm in the most challenging legal arenas. After early successes in tobacco litigation led to a cutting-edge pharmaceutical and medical device practice, SHB expanded its services to assist regional, national and international companies in multiple industries. SHB counsel now offers world-class expertise that covers class actions and complex litigation; arbitration and dispute resolution; electronic discovery and document management; and corporate transactions. In honor of this commitment to legal excellence, the firm continues to invoke the core values of its founders while looking ahead to the next generation of SHB attorneys.