Attorney Mike Nichols is on the front lines of development in the Springfield area. Whether he is advancing projects such as the Hickory Hills Marketplace in east Springfield, serving on the Battlefield Planning and Zoning Commission, or managing the summer intern program at Husch Blackwell LLP, Nichols is invested in the future.
As a partner at Husch Blackwell, Nichols’ primary focus is on business and corporate matters, real estate transactions and commercial financing.
He represents a range of small businesses and large corporations in all phases of operations including the purchase, sale, formation and mergers of businesses. He also represents developers and investors in real estate acquisition, development and disposition.
Nichols’ diverse client roster includes Carson’s Nursery, Drury University, North Star Battery Co., Regions Bank and HCW Development Co. He says he’s proudest of the work he’s done to expand the local economy by representing clients such as Larino Properties LLC, developer of Chestnut Crossing and Wilson’s Creek Marketplace.
Larino’s latest project, Hickory Hills Marketplace at the corner of Chestnut Expressway and Highway 65, has come with significant hurdles, says Nichols, who worked with developer Paul Larino and city planning and zoning officials to secure the rezoning and subdivision of the property previously owned by Springfield Public Schools. Nichols helped secure community improvement district financing approved by Springfield City Council and has negotiated contracts with future tenants.
“The Hickory Hills Marketplace development is going to be a wonderful addition to the east side of Springfield, and I’m proud of my influence on the growth and economic development that Springfield will enjoy as a result,” Nichols says.
Nichols, who was named partner with Husch Blackwell in 2007, says helping clients in their business dealings allows him to demonstrate his leadership capabilities.
“To me, being a leader is identifying the goals of a situation, assessing the available resources and then effectively guiding and enabling those resources to the desired result. Nichols says. “Many times the parties to the deals I work on have competing interests and timelines. One of the most important aspects of my job is bringing people together for the common good and for the benefit of both parties while still advocating for my client.”
As Husch Blackwell’s partner in charge of the summer intern program, Nichols enjoys mentoring law students and helping them find their niches in the legal community. He also has served on a number of local boards and has been a member of various civic organizations, including the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
“I try to use my education, relationships, resources and energy to make Springfield a better community for all,” Nichols says.Click here for full coverage of the 2011 40 Under 40.