National Geographic fired Karen Bass, an Emmy award winning producer and documentarian. She was the vice president of natural history projects. Her former attorney forged her signature on Visa documents, which National Geographic discovered. The signature was that of the National Geographic general counsel. She filed a breach of fiduciary duty and legal malpractice claim against Ogletree, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, and a former attorney at the firm. Due to the mistakes made by Brandi Knox, Bass’ former attorney at Ogletree, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, she lost her 0-1B visa. An 0-1B visa is specifically for “individuals with an extraordinary ability in the arts”.
Brandi Knox admitted to believing she could sign the documents for the general counsel and said this is a misunderstanding. The misunderstanding led to Bass being terminated when Megan Edwards, National Geographic’s general counsel, was called to discuss Bass’ visa application. Edwards had not signed off on any of these documents. She didn’t know about them because Knox said that she had the power of attorney to sign them. The firm defending Knox will defend all claims.