Todd A. Smith
Todd A. Smith was born and raised in Evanston, Illinois and is one of the founding partners at Power Rogers & Smith. He has won some of the largest multimillion-dollar jury awards and settlements in Illinois for:
His practice has also included commercial securities matters including accounting malpractice and legal malpractice.
Accomplished & Award-Winning Legal Counsel
A leader among trial lawyers in the U.S., he is a past president of the
60,000 member Association of Trial Lawyers of America, now the American
Association for Justice. Voted Chicago Lawyer Magazine's Person of
the Year, Mr. Smith has made access to justice for regular citizens his
professional pursuit. In his leadership activity as president of the Illinois
State Bar Association, he led the battle against the threats that inhibit
citizens from obtaining justice in the courts, including cutbacks in legal
services for the poor and the inability of people of modest means to afford a lawyer.
Mr. Smith and his accomplishments on behalf of his clients have been featured in numerous publications including Chicago Magazine, Chicago Tribune Magazine, the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun Times, USA Today and the New York Times.
Proven Track Record of Success
Whether it is a product liability, aviation negligence, or medical malpractice case, Mr. Smith regularly confronts powerful corporations, insurance companies, hospitals, and government agencies on behalf of everyday people.
- He recently won an $18.5 million award against Paramount Pictures for a traumatic brain injury case when a young extra was injured in the filming of Transformers: Dark of the Moon in the Chicago area.
- He resolved a U.S. record $10.6 million settlement in a psychiatric malpractice case involving a Chicago area woman and her family
- Additionally, he has obtained settlements of $17.25 million and $20 million in catastrophic injury/medical malpractice cases.
One of the top trial lawyers in Illinois as well as the country, Mr. Smith has been included in the book The Best Lawyers in America in every annual publication since 1995. He was designated The Best Lawyers in America 2012 Medical Malpractice Lawyer of the Year and The Best Lawyers in America 2011 Mass Tort Lawyer of the Year. He has repeatedly been listed at or near the top of the Chicago Lawyer Magazine survey of multimillion-dollar personal injury settlements including his listing recently as No. 1 with $70 million in recovery for his clients. Mr. Smith is a member of the selective Inner Circle of Advocates, an exclusive group of 100 of the very best civil trial lawyers in the U.S.
He is the recipient of the "Medal of Excellence" from the Loyola University Chicago School of Law, his alma mater, its highest honor. He also received the "Damen Award in Law," a University-wide recognition from Loyola. He received the "Lifetime Achievement Award" from the American Association of Justice at its 2009 annual meeting. He is an elected member of the International Society of Barristers, the American College of Trial Lawyers, and the International Academy of Trial Lawyers.
Mr. Smith has been designated a Life Trustee of the Francis W. Parker School in Chicago. In addition, Mr. Smith is active in several local charities and non-profits. In particular, Mr. Smith serves on the Board of Directors of High Jump, which helps elementary students of modest means gain access to top schools in the Chicagoland community and beyond. Historically, High Jump students have gained admission not only to very good secondary schools but a high percentage go on to some of the best Universities in the country. Additionally, Mr. Smith joined the Board of Directors of the Center for Constitutional Litigation in 2012 as well as the Board of Directors for the National Center for State Courts in 2013.
State of Illinois Advisory Council on Spinal Cord-Head Injuries, 1995
Lawyers Trust Fund of Illinois, 2000
Special Supreme Court Committee on Illinois Evidence, 2008-2010
Office of the Cook County Public Defender Advisory Board, 2009
Boards of Directors and Trusteeships
- Trial Lawyers Club of Chicago, 1987-1998
- Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Alumni, 1991-2000
- Illinois State Bar Association, 1991-1999
- Appellate Lawyers Association, 1991-1993
- The Society of Trial Lawyers, 1992-1995
- National College of Advocacy, 1993-1996
- ISBA Mutual Insurance Company, 1995-
- Roscoe Pound Foundation, 1999-2006
- ATLA Endowment, 1999-
- Buffalo Prairie Gang Camp, 1999-2003
- Illinois Bar Foundation, 2000-2008
- Trial Lawyers Care, 2001-2006
- John Howard Association, 2006-2009
- Public Justice Foundation, 2008- ; Executive Committee, 2012-
- Francis W. Parker School, 2001-2010; Life Trustee, 2010-
- Northwestern University School of Music Advisory Board, 2012-
- High Jump, 2012-
- Center for Constitutional Litigation, 2012-
- National Center for State Courts, 2013-
- American Bar Foundation, Fellow, 1996
- American Board of Trial Advocates, Fellow, 1999
- American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow, 1996
- International Academy of Trial Lawyers, Fellow, 1998
- International Society of Barristers, Fellow, 1996
F. v. Safelite Group, 10 L 7384
Automobile: Multi-party motor vehicle collision arising out of a left turning vehicle that was struck from behind and caused to strike an oncoming motorcycle in the opposing lane carrying Plaintiffs, who are husband and wife.
Todd A. Smith represented a number of individuals who were involved in a commercial airplane crash. He, along with the assistance of attorneys Brian LaCien and Jonathan Thomas, recovered over $93 Million on behalf of their clients. Notable settlements included a $16,900,000 settlement on behalf of a 36-year-old female who suffered multiple fractures and ultimately required the amputation of her left leg; an $8,000,000 settlement on behalf of a 32-year-old female who suffered numerous cervical and lumbar vertebrae fractures requiring a posterior surgical fusion of C1-C2; a $7,500,000 settlement on behalf of a 54-year-old male who died as a result of the crash; a $5,800,000 settlement for a 52-year-old female who suffered multiple vertebrae fractures causing nerve damage and requiring multiple past and future spinal surgeries, pain management, and rehabilitative therapy; and a $3,750,000 settlement for a 49-year-old woman who fractured her Th11 and Th12 vertebrae and required a surgical spinal fusion of the TH11 to L1 vertebrae.
Settlement: Over $93,000,000.00
C.A. v. S.N.A. - Multiple court numbers in several states
(2015) Aviation/Product Liability: a 20-year-old male passenger in a small aircraft being piloted by a 20-year single male. Both individuals were traveling in the plane as part of the Aviation Program at their University. The aircraft became unflyable and crashed when the right cabin door completely opened during flight. The 20-year-old pilot was burned over nearly 50% of his body due to the crash. The 20-year-old passenger was severely burned and died days later. Due to jurisdictional concerns, causes of action had to be filed in several venues. Plaintiffs alleged that the locking system on the aircraft doors was defectively designed. Co-counsel with Brian LaCien.
D.Z., as Special Administrator of the Estate of M.R., Deceased v. Northwestern
Memorial Hospital, 15 L 000728
(2015) Medical Malpractice: 40-year-old female delivered twins at Northwestern Memorial Hospital on February 13, 2014. Despite evidence of lower extremity clotting and high-risk status for DVT development, no therapeutic anticoagulation was initiated, nor was a lower extremity venous doppler performed. Additionally, telemetry monitoring previously in place for post-partum cardiomyopathy risks was prematurely discontinued on February 21, 2014. The decedent experienced pulmonary embolism from her lower extremities, cardiopulmonary arrest and was pronounced on February 22, 2014, at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. The decedent was survived by her husband and newborn twins.
SV, Individually and as Mother and Next Friend of JV, a minor v. local Chicagoland hospital, 13 L 012322
(2015) Medical Malpractice: On February 4, 2009, in the late a.m., SV was admitted to the hospital’s labor and delivery unit at almost 39 weeks gestation. An external fetal monitor was applied but despite changes in the tracings, including the lack of accelerations, the presence of occasional late decelerations and minimal variability, no testing was done to assess fetal well-being, nor was an effort made to move towards emergency caesarian section until an acute bradycardia developed. The baby was delivered at 6:15 p.m. Additionally, despite obvious deterioration in the fetal monitor tracings, Pitocin augmentation was initiated. Pitocin augmentation is contraindicated in this setting. JV was delivered and experienced hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy. The minor’s impairments are physical and are mild: his gait requires bracing and he has fine motor coordination difficulties in his upper extremity. The hospital was self-insured at the time of this settlement. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
T.R., Individually and as Independent Administrator of the Estate of J.J., Deceased v. The University of Chicago Medical Center, 2009 L 005219 (2014) Medical Malpractice: 21-year-old African-American male was shot in the head and a few months later, while at home, experienced episodes of agitation and confusion. He was taken to The University of Chicago where he was hospitalized for a few weeks, trying to identify the cause. After ruling out a number of conditions, healthcare providers diagnosed acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM). One of the treatments for ADEM is therapeutic plasma exchanges, known as PLEX therapy. PLEX therapy has the side effect of prolonging clotting times as blood factors and other impurities are removed through the plasma exchange process. After receiving his fourth and final PLEX therapy, the large bore Quinton catheter in his right internal jugular was removed. This decision violated the standard of care according to Plaintiff's experts as it exposed the patient to significant bleeding and the potential for air embolism. Here, coughing and bleeding occurred over the next few hours. Later in the evening a Code event occurred followed hours later by another Code event and the patient's death. Plaintiff contended that air embolism took place when the Quinton catheter was removed, allowing air to be entrapped as continued bleeding occurred from the internal jugular vein resulting in the patient coughing, sweating and ultimately experiencing radiographic changes in his lungs. The patient is survived by his mother and father and three half-sisters and a half-brother. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Baleseri.
A.R., Guardian of the Estate of G.C., a disabled person v. Paramount Pictures, et al., 10 L 11309
(2012) G.C. was an extra in the movie production of Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon. On September 1, 2010, G.C. was driving her own car along with 70-100 other vehicles on Cline Avenue in Hammond, Indiana during the filming of the aforesaid movie. During filming, a stunt was performed in which an explosion followed by a stunt car being violently flipped over. The cable pulling the car broke free from the stunt car along with a large iron bracket, which was propelled across lanes of traffic into G.C.'s car windshield and then her head.
G.B. v. KPMG, LLP, 00 MR 44 (Peoria County)
(2000) Accounting Malpractice: Plaintiff contended that the Defendant should have advised him to conduct his business activities in a manner that he would have paid fewer taxes.
T.D. v. Elite Cartage, et al., 08 L 8426 (Cook County)
(2008) Commercial Trucking Negligence: Plaintiff sustained significant personal injuries when he was struck as a pedestrian in a parking lot by a commercial trailer. The trailer had separated from a tractor driving across the parking lot and struck Plaintiff as he stood facing in the opposite direction and placing packages in the trunk of his car. The trailer's brakes were significantly out of adjustment and were fully defective.
P.F. and M.F. v. A.J. Canfield Co., et al., 95 L 9447 (Cook County)
(1995) Automobile Collisi28-year-old-old Polish immigrant/house painter, injured when his automobile was making a left turn and he was struck by a delivery truck that was traveling too fast for conditions. This case was recorded as a record verdict in a mild brain damage/closed head injury case.
D.E. v. Hemker, et al., 09 L 23 (Ogle County)
(2013) Injury/Wrongful Death: A semi-tractor trailer/motorcycle collision at an intersection in Rochelle, Illinois caused the death of the driver and severe injury of his passenger. Record verdict in an injury/wrongful death case in Ogle County. Co-counsel with Joseph A. Power, Jr.
M.W. v. Campground, et al., 11 L 13592 (Cook County)
(2013) Wrongful Death: A 15-year-old camper was attending summer camp in Decatur, Michigan. During a group swim after nightfall, he struggled in the water unobserved by staff members and drowned.
R. v. Provena, et al., 04 L 306 (Cook County)
Medical Malpractice: Plaintiff was admitted too Provena for labor and delivery. She had an epidural injection performed for pain control during labor by an anesthesiologist. The epidural test dose contained Sufenta and was therefore an improper dose because Sufenta can result in respiratory compromise if administered in the subarachnoid space. R. experienced immediate post-injection signs of respiratory deterioration and her healthcare team failed to timely respond. Plaintiff's baby was born without neurologic injury but Plaintiff was left catastrophically brain damaged.
B.R. v. CBOE, et al., 04 L 1954 (Cook County)
(2012) Premises Liability: Plaintiff fell at the Chicago Board of Options Exchange while on the trading floor. He had been a trader at the exchange for approximately 15 years. According to a witness, a wooden board near the top step of a two-step stairway caused Plaintiff's fall. The witness also indicated that Plaintiff struck his head as a result of the fall.
L.P., Mother & Next Friend of J.R., a minor v. St. Francis Hospital of Evanston, et. al., 04 L 4942 (Cook County)
(2008) Medical Malpractice: L.P., a term mother, was inadequately monitored by hospital personnel during her labor and delivery course and bradycardia in her baby was not timely detected. The delay in delivery of J.P. resulted in her suffering permanent severe choreoathetoid cerebral palsy. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
G. v. Bennet Braun, M.D., et al., 03 L 12779 (Cook County)
Psychiatric Malpractice: Plaintiff sought treatment for mild depression from Dr. Braun at Rush-Presbyterian. It was alleged that the doctors used improper techniques to convince her that her depression was caused by sadistic child abuse that was too traumatic for her to recall consciously.
Northern Trust Company and I.D., as Co-Guardians of the Estate of A.D., a Minor, and I.D. v. Advocate Lutheran General Children's Hospital, No. 01 L 11847 (Cook County)
(2007) Medical malpractice: Two day old infant with Down Syndrome underwent surgery for bowel obstruction. A central venous catheter was incorrectly placed and allowed administered fluid to penetrate the heart wall resulting in cardiac arrest and permanent and severe brain injury. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
K.K. and M.K. v. American Home Products, et al., 99 L 6794 (Cook County)
Products Liability: Although blindness and vision loss had been associated with the drug Cordarone since 1985, Defendants failed to alert the medical community of the risk and in February 1997 K.K. was prescribed Coradone for a heart rhythm disturbance. K.K. lost his vision in the summer of 1997.
G.D. v. Lutheran General Hospital, No. 00 L 8534 (Cook County)
(2007) Medical malpractice: Newborn, born 08/11/86 experienced brain damage from a maternal infection that crossed the placenta. Defendants failed to timely deliver the fetus to avoid permanent brain damage. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri, Phillp F. Maher, and William J. Harte.
A.M.H., a minor, by and through her Father and Mother as next friends, J.P. H. and C.H., Individually v. University of Chicago Health Systems, et. al., No. 02 L 2696 (Cook County)
(2006) Medical malpractice: Two year old child underwent surgery at the University of Chicago Hospital to remove a large liver mass. The anesthesiologist should have placed an arterial line in a location other than A.'s right leg which had experienced vasospasm the previous day. Shortly after placing the arterial line the arterial wave form was lost. A.'s right extremity was not checked until after the procedure about six (6) hours later. When A.'s right leg was checked, it was cool, dusky and blue. A. required emergent vascular surgery. The extremity was salvaged however A. lost all feeling in her leg below her knee. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
M.B. v. Mohan Airan M.D., No. 00 L 013288 (Cook County)
(2005) 12 year old female died from cardiac tamponade after a central venous catheter, placed following abdominal surgery, caused fluid administration into her pericardial sac. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
B.L., E.S. v. Village of Barrington Hills, et al., 98 L 4793 (Cook County)
Automobile collision: A Barrington Hills police officer stopped suddenly on Route 63, purportedly to chase another vehicle that was speeding in the opposite direction. The sudden stop caused another vheicle to swerve and strike plaintiffs head-on. Plaintiff was 8 months pregnant and despite an emergency c-section, the fetus suffered brain damage.
S.B., as administrator of the estate of J.B. v. Advocate Health and Hospitals Corp., et al., 97 L 16705 (Cook County)
Medical Negligence: In December of 1996, C.B. was awakened by a sudden onset of upper back pain which kept him from sleeping. He presented to the Defendant Hospital's emergency room, was examined and a chest x-ray was taken. He was discharged with a diagnosis of back pain, only to return later that evening with an advanced aortic dissection. He does shortly before the completion of emergency surgery.
J.E. and R. E. v. Scott Thorndike and Thoms Proestler Company, 00 L 85 (Rock Island County)
Automobile/Truck Collision: A 39-year-old Illinois farmer was struck by Defendant's truck on Interstate 80 near Geneseo, Illinois. He suffered multiple bilateral leg fractures. The case was reported as a Rock Island County record result.
R.M v. Michael D. Kornblatt, M.D., et al., No. 00 L 14275 (Cook County)
(2005) Medical Malpractice: 48 year old male experienced incomplete quadriplegia on December 23, 1998, when his cervical discs herniated into a congenitally narrowed spiral canal. The defendants failed to refer the plaintiff for an MRI between December 11 and December 23 1998 when they were advised of his neck pain symptoms with radiation into his right arm. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
T.B. v. Sherman Hospital, a corporation. et al., No. 00 L 14977 (Cook County)
(2004) Medical Malpractice: 48 year old female entered Sherman Hospital on an elective basis to treat heart and vascular conditions. She underwent carotid artery surgery and coronary artery stenting which included femoral artery access. Due to a failure to monitor her vital signs, the staff of the hospital were unaware of retro-peritoneal bleeding from the site where the femoral artery sheath was removed after surgery. An arrest as a result of blood loss resulted in her death. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
The Northern Trust Company v. Bradley Allen, M.D., No. 98 L 5560 (Cook County)
(2004) Medical Malpractice: 19 year old female underwent mitral valve surgery for rheumatic heart disease and experienced an air embolus due to errors in surgical technique resulting in brain damage and quadriplegia. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
The Northern Trust Company v. Advocate Health and Hospitals Corporation d/b/a Advocate Christ Hospital and Medical Center, No. 00 L 3444 (Cook County)
(2004) Medical Malpractice: 17 year old female hospitalized for rehabilitation during recovery from a motor vehicle accident after two brain surgeries, was prescribed anticoagulation therapy for a blood clot in her neck. This therapy was inadequately monitored causing subarachnoid hemorrhage, a cardiopulmonary arrest and additional brain injury causing a minimally conscious vegetative state. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
W.R. v. Sudershan D. Saxena, M.D., et. al., No. 00 L 7745 (Cook County)
(2003) Medical Malpractice: 68 year old male was given an epidural injection while he was on Plavix, an antiplatelet agent. An epidural hematoma developed but over 3.5 hours passed before transfer for emergent neurosurgical care was effectuated. The epidural hematoma resulted in paraplegia. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
K.H. v. Waste Management, Inc., et.al., No. 98 L 53 (DeKaIb County)
(2003) Automobile: 23 year old male was killed when his motorcycle encountered power steering fluid which had leaked from a truck that had been negligently maintained. The sole heir in this wrongful death action was the decedent’s daughter who was not born until six months after her Dad’s passing. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
A.K. v. Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke's Medical Center, et. al., 98 L 13165 (Cook County)
(2003) Medical malpractice: Nine month old boy underwent ventriculoperitoneal shunt revision surgery and two months later experienced permanent brain damage due to negligent surgical technique and surveillance. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
P.S. v.Columbus Hospital, et. al., No. 99 L 8486 (Cook County)
(2003) Medical malpractice: 72 year old female passed away during an angioplasty procedure due to perforation of her coronary vessel and the failure of the hospital and health care providers to arrange for cardiovascular back-up. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
M.R. v. The University of Illinois Hospital, No. 98 L 467 (Cook County)
(2001) Medical malpractice: 58 year old man at known high risk for myocardial infarction, underwent vascular surgery for long-standing diabetes, suffered cardiopulmonary arrest the day following surgery, resulting in his death. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
M.R. v. Loyola University Medical Center, et. al., No. 98 L 9369 (Cook County)
(2001) Medical malpractice: During a laparoscopic cholecystectomy, 40 year old woman suffered injuries to her common bile duct resulting in subsequent drain placement for infection and later surgical repair to allow for proper flow of bile from the liver through the common bile duct. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
M.G. v. Saint Marv of Nazareth Hospital, No. 96 L 14398 (Cook County)
(2001) Medical malpractice: 61 year-old man after suffering a TIA or stroke was given Heparin therapy. A brain hemorrhage from excessive Heparin administration occurred within 24 hours causing death. Defendants argued that the hemorrhage was from a stroke in evolution and was a risk of Heparinization. Co-counsel with Todd A. Smith
D.H.v. The University of Chicago Hospital d/b/a Wyler Children’s Hospital; J. Dean Waldman, M.D., Court No. 94 L 16986 (Cook County)
(2000) Medical Malpractice: 11 year-old girl being treated for cardiac rhythm disturbances suffered an arrhythmia while showering at home and passed away on April 29, 1994. Defendants University of Chicago Hospitals and Dr. J. Deane Waldman failed to address her condition with appropriate medication and failed to provide her family, with information and recommendation of an implantable cardiac defibrillator during the 18 months she was under their care. Co-counsel with Joseph W. Balesteri.
A.S., Administrator of the Estate of D.J., deceased v. USAir, Inc., et al., 95 L 2685 (Cook County)
Wrongful Death; Aviation: D.J., 28, wife and mother of two, was on USAir Flight 427 when it crashed in Aliquippa, PA on September 9, 1994, killing 127 passengers and 5 crew members. Extensive discovery uncovered a defect in the rudder system of the Boeing 737-300. This was reported as a record settlement for the wrongful death of a woman in an aviation liability case.
N.B. v. Yolanda DelaCruz, et al., 95 L 18 (Lee County)
Medical Negligence: N.B., 60, following knee replacement surgery, was left on epidural anesthesia despite increasing neurological defects in her lower extremities, resulting in permanent paraparesis. This represented a record settlement in a personal injury case in Lee County and the Northwest County region of Illinois.
R.T. and T. T., co-special administrators of the Estate of G.T., Deceased v. Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, et al., 97 L 327 (DuPage County)
Wrongful Death: 5-year-old G.T. was a passenger in the rear of her mother's vehicle when they were struck by a Forest Preserve District truck. G.T. suffered massive head injuries resulting in her death shortly following the impact. This was reported as a record wrongful death settlement in DuPage.
J.O., Independent Administrator of the Estate of D.O., Deceased v. Lutheran General Medical Group, et al., 93 L 5823 (Cook County)
Wrongful Death; Medical Negligence: Failure to properly diagnose an abdominal onstruction and the severance of major blood vessels during surgery which supplied blood to the liver causing the death of D.O., age 38.
P.B. and M.B., et al. v. Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke's Medical Center, et al., 91 L 8492 (Cook County)
Psychiatric Malpractice: 29-year-old Plaintiff was admitted to Rush-Presbyterian on a diagnosis of Multiple Personality Disorder. She was hospitalized there for two and a half years and then out-patient for an additional four years. During the course of her therapy, she was caused to believe that she had been involved in satanic ritual abuse, sexual abuse and cannibalism. This represented a record settlement nationally in a psychiatric malpractice case.
Estate of C.P., a minor v. Children's Memorial Hospital, 92 L 6821 (Cook County)
Medical Malpractice: Failure to diagnose a cardiac tamponade three days post-cardiac surgery resulting in irreversible brain damage.
Estate of D.E. v. Mercy Hospital and Medical Center, et al., 92 L 4210
Medical Malpractice; Wrongful Death: Significant delay in treating massive hydrocephalus condition, which resulted in irreversible brain damage for a five year period until Mrs. Evans' death.
Estate of J.D. v. Dover Elevator Systems, Inc., et al., 90 L 690
Construction Negligence; Wrongful Death: A 29-year-old elevator mechanic suffered fatal injuries after falling a significant height on a construction site.
L.G. v. Poseidon Pools, 88 L 3655
Product Liability: 16-year-old Plaintiff was injured after diving into an above-ground pool.
Estate of J.M., a minor v. Children's Memorial Hospital, et al., 92 L 6143 (Cook County)
Medical Malpractice: Improper placement of a central venous catheter resulted in cardiac arrest and brain damage to the minor Plaintiff.
Estate of K.M., Deceased v. Kubota Tractor, et al., 87 L 5068
Product Liability; Wrongful Death: The 44-year-old Plaintiff was killed when a defective tractor rolled over.
Estate of D.L., Deceased, et al. v. Chicago Transit Authority, et al., 85 L 20348 (Cook County)
Automobile Collision; Wrongful Death
Estate of W.M., a minor v. Crawford Bus Co., 87 L 649
Auto/Pedestrian; Traumatic Brain Injury: 12-year-old Plaintiff suffered a severe head injury when he was struck by a bus.
J.B., a minor, by her mother and next friend, L.B. v. Chicago Housing Authority, et al., 82 L 15783 (Cook County)
Premises Liability: 10-year-old Plaintiff suffered Locked-in Syndrome after she was stabbed in a CHA elevator.
M. v. S&Z Development Co., et al. - 90 L 20375
A 29-year old carpenter, fell through a skylight hole 38-feet to his death while erecting a skylight on a penthouse roof at the Eugenie Terrace Development. This was the largest verdict for a wrongful death of a tradesman in Illinois. It is also the largest wrongful death verdict under the Structural Work Act in Illinois history. The decedent left a wife and a 5-year old son. Co-counsel with Joseph A. Power, Jr.
- J.D., Loyola University Chicago School of Law, 1976
- M.B.A., Northwestern University Graduate School of Business, Evanston, Illinois, 1973
- B.S.B., Kansas University, Lawrence, Kansas, 1971
- Admitted to Illinois Bar, 1976
- Admitted to Northern District of Illinois, 1980
- Admitted to U.S. Supreme Court, 1990
- Admitted to U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1991
- Admitted to U.S. District Court Central District of Illinois, 1994
- Admitted to District of Columbia, 2012
American Bar Association
- Member, Litigation Section -- Task Force on the Independent
- Lawyer, 1999;
- Member, Tort and Insurance Practice Section;
- Member, Space and Aviation Section;
- Member, Editorial Board of the "Brief", 1990-92;
- Member, House of Delegates, 1995-99
American Inn of Court - Markey Wigmore chapter
Appellate Lawyers Association
Member, Board of Directors, 1991-93
Association of Trial Lawyers of America
- Sustaining Member;
- President, 2004 - 05;
- President-Elect, 2003-04 ;
- Vice President, 2002-03;
- Secretary, 2001-02;
- Treasurer, 2000-01;
- Parliamentarian, 1999-2000 ;
- Member, Executive Committee, 1998 -;
- ATLA Endowment, Trustee, 1999 - ;
- Chair, ATLA PAC board of trustees - 2005;
- Roscoe Pound Foundation, Fellow, Trustee, 1999 - ;
- Member, Board of Governors, 1989- ;
- Roscoe Pound Foundation, Chair, Regional Judges Forum, 2000 - ;
- Co-Chair, Legal Affairs Committee, 2000 - ;
- Co-Chair, Public Affairs Committee, 2002-2003;
- Chair, Committee on Investments, 1999-2000;
- Co-Chair, Membership Oversight Committee, 1999-2000;
- Chair, Coordinating Committee of State Relations, 1999-2000;
- Member, Vice Chair, Legal Affairs Committee, 1992-93 and 1996-98;
- Chair, Aviation Law Section, 1994-95; Vice Chair, Aviation Law Section, 1992-94;
- Chair, Constitutional Litigation Committee, 1993-94;
- Chair, Amicus Curiae Committee, 1990-92;
- Member, Eagles Club, 1998 - ;
- Member, "M" Club, 1990 - ;
- Member, Amicus Curiae Committee, 1988-93;
- Constitutional Litigation Committee, 1988-95;
- Fundraising Events Subcommittee, 1988-89;
- Member, Steering Subcommittee on Special Events;
- ATLA PAC Committee, 1989-91;
- Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, 1989- ;
- Fellow, Civil Justice Foundation, 1989- ;
- Member, Organizational Review Committee, 1991-93;
- Member, Aviation Advisory Committee, 1991-93;
- Member, Federal Rules Committee, 1991-93;
- Member, Mass Tort Subcommittee, 1992-93;
- Member, Board of Trustees, National College of Advocacy, 1993-96;
- Program Advisory Committee 1994 ATLA Annual Convention;
- Elected Member, Organization and Home Office Committee, 1994-96;
- Member, Judicial Independence Committee, 1998-2000;
- Elaine Osborne Jacobson Award Selection Committee, 2002
Chicago Bar Association
- Member, Federal Trial Advocacy Program Faculty 1984- ;
- Member, Tort Litigation Section;
- Judicial Evaluation Committee 1985-90;
- Past Chairman, Subcommittee on Legislation of Tort Litigation Section;
- Past Chairman, Subcommittee on Pending Legislation of Tort Litigation Section
Illinois State Bar Association
- President, 1997-98;
- President-Elect, 1996-97;
- Second Vice President, 1995-96;
- Third Vice President, 1994-95;
- Member, Editorial Board of the Illinois Bar Journal, 1989-92;
- Associate Editor, 1990-92;
- Elected Member, ISBA Assembly,
- Elected Member, Board of Governors, 1991-99;
- Board Liaison to Illinois Bar Journal, 1991-93;
- International and Immigration Law Section, 1991-93;
- Health Care Section, 1991-92;
- Bench and Bar Section, 1992-93;
- Young Lawyers Section, 1993-94;
- Civil Practice & Procedure, 1993-94;
- Member, Rules & By-Laws Committee, 1990-91;
- Mutual Insurance Company Board Committee on Long Range Planning, 1992-93;
- Life Fellow, Illinois Bar Foundation;
- - Board of Directors, Illinois Bar Foundation;
- Member, Standing Committee on Long Range Planning, 1992-93;
- Vice Chair, Task Force on Minorities and the Justice System, 1993-96;
- Elected Member, Scope & Correlation Committee, 1992-93;
- Elected, ISBA Treasurer, 1993-94;
- Chair, Assembly Committee on Integrated Bar, 1993-94;
- Chair, Standing Committee on Investments, 1993-94;
- Member, Standing Committee on Budget & Audit, 1993-94;
- Chairman, Standing Committee on ISBA Properties, 1994-95;
- Member, Standing Committee on Legislation, 2000
ISBA Mutual Insurance Company
- Chairman of the Board, 1999-2000;
- Member, Board of Directors, 1995- ;
- First Vice President, 1998-99;
- Second Vice President, 1997-98;
- Chair, Executive Committee, 1999-2000;
- Chair, Nominating Committee, 1999-2000;
- Chair, Reinsurance Committee, 1999-2000;
- Chair, Standing Committee on Personnel 1996-97
Illinois Bar Foundation
Fundraising Steering Committee, 2000
Illinois Trial Lawyers Association
- President, 2010
- Executive Committee, 2011-2013;
- Nominating Committee, 1998;
- Constitutional Challenge Committee, 1995-97;
- Co-Chairman, Publications Committee, 1995-97;
- Chairman, Constitutional Litigation Committee, 1992-94;
- Chairman, Seminar Planning, 1992-94;
- Chairman, Legislative Committee, 1989-92;
- Rules of Professional Conduct Committee, 1990-92;
- Chairman, Amicus Curiae Committee, 1987-89;
- Secretary, Amicus Curiae Committee, 1985-87;
- Member, Legislative Committee, 1989-93;
- Member, Board of Managers, 1985
- Loyola University of Chicago School of Law
Loyola University of Chicago School of Law
- President, Law Alumni Association, 1998-99;
- Alumni Board of Directors, 1991-2000;
- Member, Presidents Club, 1990- ;
- Member, Dean's Circle, 1998
The Society of Trial Lawyers
Member, Board of Directors, 1992-95
Trial Lawyers for Public Justice
Trial Lawyers Club of Chicago
Member, Board of Directors, 1987
- Leading Lawyers Magazine 2016, #7 personal injury plaintiff’s attorney as well as #7 consumer lawyer
- Senator Paul Wellstone Award, 2012
- Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Association for Justice, 2009
- Awarded the Medal of Excellence by Loyola University Chicago School of Law, 2005
- Recognized as Illinois Super Lawyer 2005-Present
- Listed by Harvard Law Graduates Naifeh and Smith in their book The Best Lawyers in America 1995 - Present
- Damen Award - Loyola University Chicago School of Chicago - Founders' Day 2002
- Joe Tonahill Award - ATLA Annual Convention 2002
- American Legion Award of Excellence - C. D. Burton Post 808 - 2002
- TLPJ Trial Lawyer of the Year Finalist - 1999
- Chicago Lawyer Magazine - Person of the Year - 1998
- Law Journal - Loyola University Chicago School of Law