Special to The Hays Daily News

One of northwest Kansas's oldest law firms is ushering in its 55th year by adding with attorneys Curtis Brown and Todd Powell as partners.

They will join senior partner, John T. Bird, who started the firm 40 years ago.

The changes take effect today in the firm first started in 1960 by the late Robert F. Glassman. The partnernip will be known as Glassman Bird Brown and Powell LLP.

Their offices are in an historic building across the street from the Ellis County Courthouse.

"Curtis brings fresh energy and a quick legal mind to a law firm that excels in those qualities, and Todd brings experience in representing and counseling one of the premier universities in the Midwest, with a background in transactional law and representation of people who have claims for injuries," said Bird.   "Both are western Kansas natives who share Bob Glassman's and my values and dedication to clients, and they can do the kinds of things I have been doing for four decades and bring new skills, too."

Brown, who has been an associate with the firm for more than two years, was previously an attorney in the Hays office of Kansas Legal Services after earning his law degree in 2008 from the University of Tulsa College of Law. His practice includes criminal defense, divorce, child custody, personal injury and civil litigation. He is also prosecutor for the city of Hays.

Powell, who has been practicing law since 1998, previously served as general counsel and executive assistant to the president for Fort Hays State University the past 10 years. He also has taught at Washburn and FHSU. He earned his law degree from Washburn University School of Law in 1998. He will practice government law, labor-employment, business-transactional, appellate practice, administrative law and personal injury.

Both are highly involved in their community and professional organizations.

In 2012, Brown was recognized as the Community Based Ally of the Year by the Kansas Coalition against Sexual and Domestic Violence. He currently is president of the Ellis County Bar Association and is also a member of the Kansas Bar Association, the Kansas Association for Justice and the Hays Area Young Professionals. He serves on the board of trustees of the Kansas Bar Association Foundation and is vice president of the board of the Hays USD 489 Foundation. Curtis and his wife Jessica have two daughters and are active in many community activities and organizations.

Powell is a member of the Kansas and Ellis County bar associations. He is licensed to practice in Kansas, Missouri, the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas, the U.S. District for the Western District of Missouri and the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals. He currently serves on the Ellis County Economic Development Coalition and is a past president. He is on the board of directors of the Hays Area Chamber of Commerce, and has served as president of the Hays Kiwanis Club. He and his wife Trina have two sons.

"I am confident that our clients will be in great hands when Curtis Brown and Todd Powell are handling their matters and that this law firm will be even stronger in the areas in which we concentrate," said Bird. "My family has been part of this community for more than 100 years and this is an opportunity for me to continue that involvement for many years to come."