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Resolution RS2018-1479

A resolution honoring the life and legacy of renowned immigration and civil rights attorney Elliott Ozment.

WHEREAS, on October 16, 2018, Nashville and Davidson County lost one of its most beloved and respected immigration and civil rights attorneys in the passing of Mr. Elliott Ozment; and

WHEREAS, raised in East Nashville, Mr. Ozment served for many years as a Church of Christ minister in Donelson and in Hermitage during the 1960s; and

WHEREAS, upon graduating summa cum laude from Middle Tennessee State University, Mr. Ozment enrolled at Vanderbilt University Law School where he graduated in 1975. In 1990, Mr. Ozment obtained a Certificate in the Program for Instruction for Lawyers from Harvard Law School; and

WHEREAS, from 1976 to 1978, Mr. Ozment served a term as a Democrat in the Tennessee House of Representatives, representing House District 60 which includes Old Hickory, Tennessee; and

WHEREAS, beginning in 1998, Mr. Ozment began to focus his legal practice on immigration law, passionately representing an underserved population and eventually serving as chief legal counsel for some of the most significant immigration cases in Tennessee throughout the following decades; and

WHEREAS, throughout his career as an immigration attorney, Mr. Ozment provided initial consultations to over a thousand individuals, and he represented hundreds more before immigration courts across the south as well as before the Board of Immigration Appeals in Washington, D.C.; and

WHEREAS, Mr Ozment often served clients with limited financial resources by providing legal services for free or at low cost, even occasionally accepting payment in the form of vegetables and fruit from those unable to pay otherwise. He also provided food, housing, transportation to and from work, and free legal services to dozens of residents of the Clairmont Apartment complex after residents were frightened away from their homes by a joint raid operation between U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office and the Metro Nashville Police Department; and

WHEREAS, Mr. Ozment was recognized as the Tennessee Bar Association’s Harris A. Gilbert Pro Bono Volunteer of the Year in 2012 and he received the Tennessee Human Rights Commission’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013; and

WHEREAS, Mr. Ozment’s accomplishments and dedication to social justice have made Nashville a more welcoming city for all people, including countless immigrants from around the world; and

WHEREAS, it is fitting and proper that the Metropolitan Council should recognize the achievements, the lifetime of service, and the zealous advocacy rendered by Mr. Ozment.


Section 1. The Metropolitan County Council hereby goes on record honoring the life, accomplishments, and tenacious pursuit of justice by Mr. Elliott Ozment.

Section 2. The Metro Council office is instructed to prepared a copy of this Resolution for presentation to Mr. Ozment’s children: Beth Duryea of Franklin, Tennessee; Chris Ozment of Texas; Johan Ozment and Alejandro Ozment, both of Nashville, Tennessee; as well as his longtime companion, Elizabeth Ozment.

Section 3. This Resolution shall take effect from and after its adoption, the welfare of The Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County requiring it.


Fabian Bedne, Mina Johnson, Kathleen Murphy

Related Documents

Legislative History

Referred toRules, Confirmations, and Public Elections Committee

IntroducedNovember 6, 2018

AdoptedNovember 6, 2018

ApprovedNovember 13, 2018

ByMayor Briley's signature

Requests for ADA accommodation should be directed to the Metropolitan Clerk at 615-862-6770.

Last Modified: 01/11/2019 12:07 PM