Arkansas Workers' Compensation Commission

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Arkansas.gov

Scotty Dale Douthit

Scotty Dale Douthit, of Russellville, Arkansas, was appointed by Governor Asa Hutchinson to be Chairman of the Arkansas Workers' Compensation Commission effective January 20, 2015, for a six-year term.

By law, the Chairman must be an attorney, and Chairman Douthit is a graduate of the University of Arkansas School of Law in Fayetteville, Arkansas, and a licensed attorney since 1995. Prior to law school, Chairman Douthit graduated from Arkansas Tech University with a Bachelor of Science degree.

Chairman Douthit first began his legal career working for the Eddy Law Firm in Russellville, Arkansas, before starting his own firm with Partner Jeff Phillips, The Phillips and Douthit Law Firm, in 1996. In private practice, Chairman Douthit handled domestic relations, criminal defense, bankruptcy, Social Security, personal injury, real estate, and civil rights cases. While in private practice, Chairman Douthit also served Arkansas' Fifth Judicial District as a deputy prosecuting attorney, and attorney for the Fifth Judicial District Drug Task Force.

In November of 2004, Chairman Douthit was appointed as an Administrative Law Judge for the Arkansas Workers' Compensation Commission where he served District 6 for over a decade

As Chairman of the Arkansas Workers' Compensation Commission, he serves on the Board of Kids Chance of Arkansas, a charitable organization which provides scholarships to the children of Arkansas workers, whose parents were killed or left permanently and totally disabled due to job related injury.

Chairman Douthit resides in Russellville, Arkansas, with his wife Tracy and son Scott Douthit III.

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Christopher L. Palmer

Chris Palmer is a University of Arkansas School of law alumni and graduate of Hendrix College. Chris has extensive legal experience in the areas of litigation, mediation, mortgage banking/real estate related litigation and criminal defense. He served as head of the litigation department for one of the largest mortgage bank firms in the state of Arkansas. Chris gained early trial experience while in the office of the prosecuting attorney. He served as the Division Chief over the division of sexual assault and domestic violence and later as the Division Chief over the drug task force.

By Governor's appointment Chris has served on numerous committees including the Alcohol Beverage control Board. He was also appointed circuit judge to fill a vacancy left upon the appointment of Jay Moody to the federal bench.

Additionally, Chris is a member of the Arkansas and Tennessee Bar Association, Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and served under the late Judge Stephen M. Reasoner on the executive committee for the Henry Woods Inns of Court and a member of William Overton Inns of Court.

Chris was born in Summit, New Jersey. He was admitted to the Bar of the state of Arkansas in 1985 and, in to the Bar of Tennessee in 1998. He was also previously certified in the field of general civil matters in 2002 and in the field of family law in 2005.

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M. Scott Willhite

M. Scott Willhite was appointed by Governor, Asa Hutchinson, on January 15, 2019 to serve a six-year term as the Labor Commissioner for the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission.

Commissioner Willhite is an attorney who holds law licenses in Arkansas and Tennessee, and has been involved in the private practice of law since 1989.

Commissioner Willhite was born and raised in Jonesboro, Arkansas, graduating from Jonesboro High School in 1979, and Arkansas State University in 1984 where he obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in business. He attended the University Of Arkansas School Of Law in Fayetteville from 1986 to 1989 and he was a member of the Arkansas Law Review. He initially earned his law license in Tennessee in 1989 and began his legal career with the Baker, Donelson Law Firm of Memphis, Tennessee in the fall of 1989. Within a short time, Commissioner Willhite also obtained his Arkansas law license and focused his practice on various insurance related claims in Arkansas and Tennessee. In 1997 he accepted an opportunity to relocate to his hometown in Jonesboro and began to focus on representing injured employees in workers’ compensation claims. In 1999 he formed a partnership with other Jonesboro attorneys and further devoted his practice to the resolution of various workers’ compensation issues. He continued representing injured employees through the time of his appointment in 2019.

Commissioner Willhite currently serves on boards of several nonprofit organizations which promote education and art issues. He currently resides in Jonesboro with his two daughters and is active in the music ministry of his local church.

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State of Arkansas
Workers' Compensation Commission
324 South Spring Street
P.O. Box 950
Little Rock, Arkansas 72203-0950
Telephone 1-501-682-3930 / 1-800-622-4472
Legal Advisor Direct 1-800-250-2511
Arkansas Relay System TDD 1-800-285-1131

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