Drayton Nabers, Jr. serves as director of the Frances Marlin Mann Center for Ethics and Leadership at Samford University. He is a graduate of Princeton University (B.A., 1962) and Yale Law School (LL.B., 1965). Following his graduation from Yale, Mr. Nabers served as a law clerk to Justice Hugo Black on the U.S. Supreme Court. An accomplished businessman and a successful attorney, he began his career practicing law at the Birmingham firm of Cabaniss, Johnston, Gardner, Dumas, and O’Neal for 12 years. He then joined Protective Life Corporation in 1979, where he served first as General Counsel and then as President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board until his retirement in 2002.
After his retirement, Mr. Nabers was appointed Finance Director for the State of Alabama by Governor Bob Riley. He served in this capacity until his appointment as Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court in 2004. Given his extensive professional experience, Mr. Nabers' legal practice has been in multiple areas, including: alternative dispute resolution, appellate law, complex litigation, governmental and regulatory affairs and insurance and financial services litigation.
Mr. Nabers will continue his legal work with Maynard Cooper and Gale PC in Birmingham. He has previously served in the following professional roles: Director, American Council of Life Insurers (1994 – 2001); Chairman, American Council of Life Insurers (2000); Director, Infinity Property and Casualty Corporation (2007 – present); Director, ProAssurance Corporation (retired 2003; resumed, 2007 – present); Director, Protective Life Corporation; Director, Energen Corporation; Director, National Bank of Commerce; and Director, Parisians.
Mr. Nabers is also involved in a number of civic activities, including: President, Kiwanis Club of Birmingham (2012); Chairman, District 7, Rhodes Scholarship Selection Committee (2004 – 2011); Chairman, Cornerstone School of Alabama; Distinguished Lecturer, Beeson Divinity School; Member, Beeson Divinity School Advisory Board; Member, Chief Justice’s Commission on Professionalism; Chairman, Leadership Birmingham (1992 – 2002); Chairman, United Way of Central Alabama (1996); and Campaign Chairman, United Way of Central Alabama (1991).
His publications include two books, The Case for Character (2005) and The Hidden Key to Happiness (2010). Professionally, he has been recognized with a Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent Rating, received the Birmingham Bar Association's L. Burton Barnes Public Service Award in 2011, and has been inducted into the Alabama Business Hall of Fame, the Alabama Academy of Honor, and the Birmingham Business Hall of Fame.
Mr. Nabers is an active member of St. Luke's Episcopal Church in suburban Birmingham. He and his wife, Fairfax, have three children and seven grandchildren.