James Jalenak headshot

James Jalenak


East Memphis
6060 Primacy Parkway, Suite 100
Memphis, TN 38119

  • Bio
  • Education
  • Admissions
  • Accolades

James B. (Jimmy) Jalenak is a well-respected lawyer and supporter of the Memphis community. Over his 50-year career, he has become highly regarded in the matters of real estate and business transactions, and he has been recognized as one of the Best Lawyers in America. Jimmy’s background in real estate law includes representing clients in the acquisition, development, financing and leasing of large real estate projects. He has aided in the acquisition of businesses for buyers and sellers, as well as the reorganization and buyout of business entities. With extensive experience and success in business law, he has served as general counsel to distribution and retail businesses.  As a significantly experienced attorney, Jimmy is looked to as a mentor by many of the firm’s younger attorneys.  Jimmy is married to Natalie Jalenak, former public relations director for Playhouse on the Square. They have two children, Margaret Jalenak Wexler and Catherine Jalenak Levit, and four grandchildren, Ariel Wexler, Jonah Wexler, Hannah Levit, and Caleb Levit.

  • Yale Law School, J.D., Cum Laude, 1964
    • The Order of the Coif, member
    • Phi Delta Phi, member
  • Yale University, B.A., politics and economics, Magna Cum Laude, 1961
    • Yale Banner Publications, chairman
    • Frank M. Patterson Prize, Best Thesis in American Politics – “Beale Street Politics”

Admitted to Practice

  • Tennessee, 1966
  • New York, 1965

Bar Admissions

  • Tennessee, 1966
  • New York, 1965
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Tennessee
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Tax Court

Awards and Recognition

  • Pillar of Excellence, awarded by University of Memphis Law School, 2018
  • National Conference for Community and Justice, Humanitarian of the Year Award, 2000
  • Memphis Urban League, J.A. McDaniel Community Service Award, 1997
  • Volunteer Center of Memphis, Golden Rule Award, 1994
  • Morehouse College Alumni Association, Candle on the Bluff Award, 2008

Professional Organizations and Awards

  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Best Lawyers in America
  • Memphis Bar Association, Member-Director, 1994-1995
  • Tennessee Bar Association, Member
  • Tennessee Bar Foundation, Fellow

Civic and Community Involvement

  • City of Memphis Health, Education and Housing Facility Board, Board Member, 2017 – present
  • Temple Israel, Memphis, President
  • Union of American Hebrew Congregations, Regional Vice President
  • Southern College of Optometry, Board Member, 2005-2013
  • Memphis Zoological Society, Board Chairman, 2002-2005
  • Lemoyne-Owen College, Board of Trustees Member, 2000-2010
  • Memphis Rotary Club, President, 1998
  • Memphis Depot Redevelopment Corporation, Board Member, 1996-2011
  • Memphis Urban League, Board Member and Counsel
  • Memphis PREP Program, Board Member and Counsel
  • Memphis Public Education Fund, President