Charlotte, N.C. – W. Edward Poe Jr., a beloved partner in Parker Poe’s Charlotte office, died on August 9. Eddie, as everyone called him, was a leader within the North Carolina legal community, a devoted family man, and an extraordinary friend.
“He was one of the kindest, most gracious people I have ever known,” Managing Partner Tom Griffin says. “He was always stopping by to check in, relay something humorous, or ask some impossibly detailed question about a child or family member, a detail that he remembered because he cared deeply about all of us.”
Eddie became part of the Parker Poe family as a toddler, when his father, Bill, joined the Charlotte firm Taliaferro, Clarkson & Grier. Bill Poe’s name eventually became part of the name the firm still uses today: Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein.
Eddie grew up in Charlotte and graduated from Myers Park High School in 1967. He served as president of the student council during his senior year and was a varsity basketball and baseball player. He went to Wake Forest for college and law school, and then began his legal career with Duke Power Company, today known as Duke Energy.
He became deputy general counsel at Duke. “He was the best manager of outside counsel that I ever experienced or observed,” says Hank Hankins, a retired partner at Parker Poe. “He knew how to use positive encouragement and complimentary comments to get the best out of outside counsel, as well as his own staff. I believe that diplomatic touch has characterized Eddie’s life as a lawyer and as a person."
After a successful career with Duke, Eddie joined Parker Poe in 1999. In the two decades that followed, Eddie helped expand the firm’s energy practice significantly and served on the firm’s board of directors.
Eddie was also a leader in the community. He has served on the North Carolina Bar Association’s board of governors, the board of advisors for Queens University’s School of Education, and the board of directors for the Catawba Lands Conservancy. In 2009, he was named Conservationist of the Year in North Carolina.
Eddie retired from Parker Poe in June of this year. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2009. “I don't get up every morning and think, gosh, I’ve got cancer,” he said in an article about his experience with the disease. “I don’t think about it much at all, until I get reminded when someone asks me how I’m doing. But more than I ever did before, I truly appreciate each day as it unfolds.”
Eddie passed away early Thursday morning, surrounded by his family. He was 68 years old. You can learn more about him in this obituary in The Charlotte Observer.