News and Information
June 24, 2022

Chidi James to Step into Role of VSB President-elect July 1

Chidi I. James of Blankingship & Keith, P.C. in Fairfax was elected to serve as president-elect of the Virginia State Bar at the Annual Meeting in Virginia Beach. He will be the the first African American man to hold this role in the Bar’s 84-year history. His term as president-elect begins July 1, 2022.

James is a personal injury lawyer handling cases including wrongful death, products liability, and inadequate security.  He is the immediate past president of the Board of Legal Services of Northern Virginia, former president of the Northern Virginia Black Attorneys Association, and a member of both the Fairfax Law Foundation Board and the Old Dominion Bar Association Foundation Board. James has also served on the Board of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association for many years.  

James’ prior Bar service includes:

  • Six years as a member of the Committee on Lawyer Discipline (at one point as Chair of the Oversight Committee and at another point as Vice Chair); 
  • One year as a member of a VSB District Committee for the 5th District (resigned to serve his first term as an elected member of Bar Council in 2015); 
  • Six years as an elected member of Bar Council serving the 19th judicial circuit (Two of his six years on Bar Council he served on the Executive Council including one year as the chair of the VSB Diversity Conference).  

Before joining Blankingship & Keith in 2003, James served as a Judicial Law Clerk to the judges of the Arlington County Circuit Court and completed the Judge Advocate General School Course at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama. James has served for over 25 years as a military reservist and is currently assigned to the National Guard Bureau’s Legal Service Office in Arlington, Virginia.

James is a 1997 graduate of Texas A&M University and a 2001 graduate of the George Mason University School of Law.  

Updated: Jun 24, 2022