Gray Styers was born, raised, and has lived his entire life in North Carolina. His father was a high school science teacher and principal; his mother worked in the library at Lenoir-Rhyne College. He attended public schools and was valedictorian of Hickory High School in 1981. Receiving a Carswell Scholarship, he attended and graduated from Wake Forest University. He obtained his law degree and an MBA degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In law school, he was the Articles Editor of the North Carolina Law Review.
After graduating from law school, Gray served as a law clerk to the Honorable Sam J. Ervin, III, Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He has since practiced law in Raleigh for almost three decades. Starting his own law firm, Styers, Kemerait & Mitchell, in 2010, Gray knows what it is like to be an entrepreneur and take risks. He merged this firm into Smith Moore Leatherwood (now part of the national law firm of Fox Rothschild) where he now focusses his practice on regulatory law matters, economic development, renewable energy, and infrastructure projects in both rural and urban areas throughout the state. In addition, he also assists those less fortunate, pro bono, though the “Lawyer on the Line” program of Legal Aid of North Carolina, a program that he helped start as its founding co-chair at the North Carolina Bar Association.
Gray is known for his volunteer service to the legal profession, to his community, and to the state for which he received a “Citizen Lawyer” award from the NC Bar Association and was named a “Leader in the Law” by Lawyers Weekly. He was elected by his peers to serve as President of the Wake County Bar Association and as President of the 10th Judicial District Bar. He served on the NC Bar Association Board of Governors and also on its Litigation Section Council and as Chair of its Administrative Law Section Council. Gray is a frequent speaker at continuing legal education courses and has taught legal ethics and Professional Responsibility as an adjunct professor at the UNC School of Law. He has been appointed as an advisory member of the Ethics Committee of the North Carolina State Bar and is a certified mediator to help resolve cases in Superior Court. Gray is a member of the Raleigh Kiwanis Club, the Susie Sharp Inn of Court, the Supreme Court Historical Society, and has served on the boards of the UNC School of Law Alumni Association, the North Carolina Museum of History Associates, the North Carolina Symphony Society, the Wake Forest University School of Divinity, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Triangle.
Gray has lived and served in North Carolina his entire life. He has traveled its highways and byways. There are few counties in which he has not litigated a case, appeared before a town council or county board of commissioners or helped develop an infrastructure project. He loves the state and its people and hopes to now be able to serve them as a judge on the Court of Appeals.
I want to serve you on the North Carolina Court of Appeals.