around the bar
March 4, 2010

Annual Meeting of Litigators Set for New York City

Experts in trial practice, leading public officials, jurists and representatives of the news media will participate in sessions for the nation’s largest gathering of trial lawyers when the _ Section of Litigation meets in New York City for its annual conference April 21-23 at the Hilton New York Hotel.

This year’s meeting features a kick off plenary program on April 22 that will focus on the long-standing tensions between the press and the bar, the First and Sixth Amendments.  Leading the session will be George Freeman of The New York Times Company. Panelists, including Dan Abrams, NBC News; Alison Frankel, The American Lawyer; Ashby Jones, The Wall Street Journal; David Lat, Abovethelaw.com; The New York Times’ Supreme Court Reporter Adam Liptak; and Judge Kimba Wood, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, will discuss a wide range of issues and address the relationship between the courts, lawyers and the news media. In this changing media environment, and with the advent of legal blogs, social media and Twitter, this session will prove to be timely and instructive and will focus on the ethics of dealing with the media.

The April 23 plenary will feature noted litigators presenting their winning opening and closing arguments.  Judge Denise Cote of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York will be the moderator.  Presenters include Robert S. Bennett, David Boies, Willie Gary and Robert Morvillo.

The annual John Minor Wisdom Public Service and Professionalism Awards luncheon is set for April 23. The section will recognize Martha Bergmark, president and CEO of the Mississippi Center for Justice; the law firm of Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP; and the Pittsburgh Pro Bono Partnership for their pro bono efforts and dedication to public service.

The section will present the Diversity Leadership Award on April 21 at the welcome reception. This year’s recipients are Justice Frank Sullivan Jr. of the Indiana Supreme Court and the legal division of the Coca-Cola Company.

On April 22 the section will honor Judge Joseph A. Greenaway Jr. of New Jersey, who was recently confirmed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

Among the other high profile speakers participating in the annual conference are DeMaurice Smith, executive director of the NFL Players Association; former U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey; Prof. Arthur Miller of New York University; New York Regional Director for the SEC, George S. Canellos; Edward Turan, managing director and deputy general counsel, Citigroup Inc., Stuart Alderoty, chief litigation counsel, American Express Company, numerous  federal judges and academics.

“The annual conference of the Section of Litigation is the premier event for litigators, providing them with a full schedule of high quality CLE, the opportunity to hear from the top minds in the law, and to develop practical skills to help them be better lawyers in an increasingly complex system,” said Section of Litigation Chair Lorna G. Schofield of New York.  “We also take this opportunity to recognize those who have made a difference in our profession, and to learn from them.”

Over the course of the meeting, more than 50 programs and networking events will allow practitioners to meet with their colleagues and learn the latest in trial skills and practice trends, and analyze complex issues facing the profession and the law.  Sessions include alternative dispute resolution, advocacy, attorney-client privilege, technology, employment law, intellectual property, environment, class actions, financial litigation, ethics, product liability, securities, trial evidence and business development.

For a complete program, visit the section Web site at www.abanet.org/litigation/sectionannual.

Key programs include:

April 22

  • Plenary: How the Media Covers the Law – and How Lawyers Should Deal Ethically with the Media
  • Appellate Review of Adverse Discovery Orders in Federal Court – A Mock Oral
  • Argument Based on Mohawk Industries, Inc. v. Carpenter
  • Litigating in the Marble Palace: The ABC’s of Supreme Court Practice
  • Enforcement Priorities of the Obama Administration
  • Dialogue with the New SEC
  • Sports Arbitration – Hear from the Head of the NFL Players Association

April 23

  • Plenary: Great Openings and Closings – By the Lawyers Who Gave Them
  • Arguing Crime/Fraud and Other Exceptions to Privilege: An Expert Demonstration
  • Magistrate’s Panel on Discovery Issues
  • Pitfalls and Pratfalls: Ethical Considerations When Interviewing Witnesses
  • Getting Caught in a Web – Ethical Issues of Web 2.0
  • Steering Clear of Daubert/Frye Minefields

The ABA Section of Litigation represents about 68,000 lawyers, judges and others involved in all aspects of litigation and the dispute resolution process. It is the national voice for litigators and a leader in advocating improvements in the justice system.  The section provides tools and resources to assist lawyers to be better litigators as they serve their clients. It offers opportunities for growth, learning and networking through its professional communities. Its activities reflect and support the commitment of its members to a strong, diverse and vibrant profession, a fair and accessible justice system, and the continuing obligation to achieve both through a wide range of pro bono activities.

Learn More About:  Litigation