Kurtis J. Winstead has practiced law in middle Tennessee since 1988. He received his undergraduate degree from Centre College and a law degree from the University of Richmond in Virginia. Practical litigation experience representing businesses in federal and state courts compliments Kurt’s current role as “outside” General Counsel for Tennessee businesses, especially when acting as advisor or advocate on commercial transactions, torts, employment issues, and contracts. Kurt also serves as General Counsel for two statewide business associations. He is admitted to practice in all State and Federal Courts of Tennessee, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court and has served as a Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 31 Listed General Civil Mediator. Kurt has an AV Preeminent Rating by Martindale-Hubbell and formerly served as an Adjunct Instructor of Business Law at Belmont University’s Undergraduate College of Business Administration.
Kurt retired as a Brigadier General from the Tennessee National Guard in 2021 after 30 years of service, including positions as Director of the Joint Staff, State’s Senior Staff Judge Advocate, and Brigade Command Judge Advocate during Operation Iraqi Freedom III. His military career began in late 1990 during soldier preparations in support of “Desert Storm” starting in January 1991 after receiving a direct commission as a 1st Lieutenant in the Judge Advocate General Corps (JAG) assigned to the 194th Engineer Brigade, Tennessee Army National Guard. As the Brigade Command Judge Advocate during Operation Iraqi Freedom III Kurt was instrumental in forming a consolidated legal office that provided service to over five thousand Soldiers and Airmen spanning an area covering one-half of Iraq, receiving the Meritorious Service Medal for these efforts. Subsequently, he served as Tennessee’s Senior Staff Judge Advocate at Joint Force Headquarters in Nashville (2009-2017). Kurt earned a Master of Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College in 2010 and, in 2012, received the Citizen of the Year Award from The Not Alone America’s Future Series Nashville for his service in the Tennessee National Guard.
Kurt has served as Chairman of the Board for both Battle Ground Academy Board of Trustees (Franklin, Tennessee) and Leadership Middle Tennessee Board of Directors. Kurt currently serves on the Boards of Directors for Columbia State Community College Foundation, Franklin Tomorrow, Andrew Jackson Hermitage Foundation, and Campbell Strong Defense Alliance. He is a member of the Industrial Development Board of Williamson County, Rotary Club of Franklin Noon, Williamson, Inc., Heritage Foundation of Williamson County, VFW Post 9543, National Rifle Association, and National Guard Associations of Tennessee and United States. Kurt is a graduate of Leadership Tennessee, Leadership Middle Tennessee, Leadership Franklin, Complete Tennessee Leadership Institute, and received the Centre College Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2021.
Kurt and his wife, Beth, have lived in Franklin for nearly 30 years and have two daughters, Bridget and Mary Hannah.