Governor Hutchinson Appoints Scott Willhite to the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission

Staff Report

Little Rock, AR ( – Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson announced Thursday his intent to appoint Scott Willhite of Jonesboro to the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission (AWCC). Willhite will serve as the labor commissioner and will replace outgoing Commissioner Philip Hood. Hood earned $133,654 in the position.

AWCC commissioners are appointed to 6-year terms. There are three commissioners serving the system. Christopher L. Palmer and Chairman Scotty Dale Douthit are the other two existing members.

“The Workers’ Compensation Commission provides vital services for our hard-working Arkansans,” Governor Hutchinson said. “Scott’s extensive experience representing workers in compensation will make him a valuable voice on the commission as he works to protect Arkansas’s workers. I look forward to seeing great things from Scott in this new role.”

Scott Willhite has been a partner with Orr Willhite, PLC since 1999. Prior to moving to Jonesboro, he practiced with the Baker Donelson and Hardison law firms in Memphis, Tennessee.

“I am honored that Governor Hutchinson has appointed me to the commission,” Willhite said. “I have handled workers’ compensation cases for the past 25 years and have concentrated on the representation of injured employees before the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission, the Arkansas Court of Appeals, and the Arkansas Supreme Court since 1997. Recently, we have seen the improvement of workplace safety and the decrease of the cost of insurance.”

Willhite has donated more than 50 hours toward pro bono cases. Willhite was also appointed to sit as Special Associate Justice to Arkansas Supreme Court in April 2015. Willhite is chair of the Craighead County Republican Committee; a member of the board of directors for the Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council; a member of the board for Arkansans for the Arts; and a member of the board of directors for the Be Free Revolution, a nonprofit entity providing educational and spiritual guidance for children in Kenya and Uganda.

Willhite graduated from Arkansas State University and received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Arkansas School of Law in 1989. He is licensed to practice law in Arkansas and Tennessee, and he is a member of the Arkansas Bar Association, the Tennessee Bar Association, the Craighead County Bar Association, and the Memphis Bar Association.

Willhite lives in Jonesboro. He and his wife, Amy, have two daughters, Payton and Channing.


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