Practicing Law in a Post-Covid World - On Demand CLE
Length: 85 minutes plus 30 minutes of Q&A
A graduate of Austin College, where she has been recognized as a distinguished alumni, and the Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law, Charla Aldous has been a trial lawyer for over 30 years. She began her legal career doing civil defense litigation and in 1997 switched sides to do plaintiff’s work. Since that time, she has amassed verdicts in excess of $1 billion, while trying everything from complex commercial to sexual abuse cases. Twice, Lawyers USA has listed her verdicts among the top 10 in the nation. The National Law Journal has recognized her as one of the Ten “Winning Lawyers in America”. Texas Lawyer has listed her among a select group of only five top plaintiffs personal injury attorneys in its Go-To Guide. In 2007, Charla was invited to become the fourth female member of the Inner Circle of Advocates, a national organization of plaintiff’s lawyers limited to 100 attorneys across the country. Charla has been listed in Best Lawyers in America each year since 2003, and has been singled out as Best Lawyers, Dallas Lawyer of the Year for Personal Injury and Medical Malpractice litigation. She has been recognized numerous times as a Texas Super Lawyer, as published in Texas Monthly magazine. D Magazine has recognized Charla as one of the Best Lawyers in Dallas consistently since 2001. An active member of the American Board of Trial Advocates, Charla is past President of the Dallas Chapter and was selected by the Texas Chapters as Trial Lawyer of the Year for 2008. She is a Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and the International Society of Barristers. In 2017, the Dallas Bar Association named her Trial Lawyer of the Year.
Lisa Blue, JD, PhD, is a practicing trial lawyer, psychologist, and the 2014-2015 president of the American Association for Justice. From 1980 to 1986, Blue worked as an assistant DA, prosecuting over 125 cases to verdict. In 1986, she went to work with her husband, the late Fred Baron, working at one of the largest environmental firms in the country. Over the course of her career Lisa Blue has earned over $350 million in winning verdicts, and has been named one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Lawyers in America” by The National Law Journal. She is now a solo practitioner and mother to five children ranging from ages forty-one to six years old.
Lisa’s passions are her kids, French, Spanish, Italian, yoga, and swimming.
Zoe is one of America’s most respected litigators-a standout talent even among the most talented trial lawyers. Her practice focuses on complex cases including mass torts, defective medical product or drug cases as well as human rights issues. In the past decade, she has achieved more than $500 million in jury verdicts and settlements for her clients, including more than a dozen trials on hormone therapy chases that resulted in verdicts in excess of $260 million.
In 2011, Zoe was induced into The Inner Circle of Advocates, and she has been recognized by Fortune magazine as one of America's top twelve lawyers. She obtained verdicts of $78.7 million in a Prempro case for a breast cancer survivor in Illinois, a $134 Million verdict for three women injured by Premarin/Prempro in Nevada, and other notable outcomes. Her jury verdicts have made the list of the Top 10 Largest Verdicts in the country in 2007, 2009, and 2010.
Zoe led the charge for the state court Rezulin litigation. Littlepage Booth reviewed more than six million pages of Rezulin documents, took more than 100 days of depositions and Zoe tried five of the nine Rezulin trials nationwide, achieving jury verdicts of over $40 million. In 2003, she was appointed Lead Counsel of the Plaintiff’s Steering Committee for the Hormone Replacement Therapy MDL Litigation
Fell Law, PC represents plaintiffs who suffered catastrophic injuries or the death of a loved one. Bibi is one of the few women attorneys to have received a verdict over $100,000,000.00 as lead trial counsel. Bibi is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA). Membership is extended by invitation only to lawyers who have demonstrated extensive trial experience, civility and professionalism. In 2018, Bibi was one of three finalists for Consumer Attorneys of San Diego’s “Trial Lawyer of the Year” award. In 2020, she received the “Trial Lawyer of the Year” award from Pepperdine Law School. Bibi has also been selected to be a member of The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Trial Lawyers, the Daily Journal’s Top 100 Women Lawyers, and Superlawyers.
Bibi gives back by teaching Advanced Trial Advocacy at the USD Law, serving as the program director for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy’s Pacific Deposition Skills program, and teaching trial skills through NITA around the country and in Northern Ireland.
Bibi and her husband raise three daughters ages 4, 13, and 15.
Deborah Chang is the founder of Athena, a trial lawyer, and Of Counsel with Panish Shea & Boyle LLP in Los Angeles. She focuses her practice representing plaintiffs in complex catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases and has achieved some of the highest verdicts and settlements in the country.
Deborah has been an integral part of the trial teams in significant and important trials, including the Michael Jackson wrongful death case, the first ASR model hip implant trial tried in the country, and a nightclub liability case resulting in a $160,500,000 verdict that led to necessary changes to the security guard industry. Many of her cases of first impression led to vast improvements in standards and protocols that enhanced safety for the public, including the following:
• A record $17 million verdict in wrongful death of adult child that ensured that visually impaired patrons using trains would be protected from falling in the gap between cars–thereby setting the stage for changes throughout the industry nationwide (Cuthbertson v. LACMTA).
• After a nearly ten-year battle in the trial court, Court of Appeal and California Supreme Court, Deborah prevailed in a landmark case that established that colleges and universities in California have a duty to protect students from known dangers in the classroom (Rosen v. The Regents of the University of California).
• Bringing the first class action in the country on behalf of prisoners with AIDS in a maximum security prison, which led to a landmark settlement that established medical, programming, and housing protocols nationwide and was cited with approval by the 1991 Report to the President and Senate by the National Commission on AIDS. She thereafter drafted enacted Connecticut legislation that permitted the release of terminally ill prisoners, and established the first medical scholarship for individuals pursuing a nursing degree to work with patients with AIDS.
• In 1996, she brought the first lawsuit in the country based on the Violence Against Women Act of 1994, 42 U.S.C. section 13891 (VAWA) and successfully argued for the uphold¬ing of the constitutionality of the statute in the first federal court to consider the issue. After reaching a settlement in the case, she lectured extensively on the issue of gender-motivated violence, and was a guest commentator on several national television shows regarding the statute, both before and after the United States Supreme Court eventually ruled that the civil remedy portion of the statute was unconstitutional.
Prior to her practice at Panish Shea & Boyle LLP, Deborah represented both plaintiffs and defendants throughout the country in products liability, commercial litigation, professional liability securities fraud, and complex torts cases. She previously served as local, regional, and national counsel for a variety of companies, insurers, and manufacturers, including AIG Excess and Ford Motor Company. Understanding how defendants and insurers analyze and prepare cases has been invaluable to Deborah, and helped her achieve record settlements and verdicts.
As part of her trial practice, Deborah has been extensively involved in jury research and focus groups. In 2000, she helped conceptualize and launch one of the first companies to provide online focus groups from a unique database of nearly 3.5 million Internet users. The service is used by trial attorneys and insurers in prominent cases pending throughout the country, and was recognized by The National Law Journal as a helpful tool for assessing the strength and value of cases. For over a year, she served as its CEO and General Counsel.
Randi McGinn is the senior partner in a five-woman, two-man law firm in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She is known for her creativity in the courtroom and her use of demonstrative evidence to visualize opening, direct, cross-examination, and closing argument. She has destroyed adverse witnesses by leaving a pretentious Beverly Hills doctor standing in front of the jury covered with post-it notes and clutching a grapefruit to his chest, by grilling a government snitch until he threw up, and by exposing the fact that a world-renowned polygraph expert had been polygraphing his own sperm cells in the dead of night. In a particularly hard-won police shooting case, the local SWAT officers once put her face on their Christmas piñata and took turns whacking it with a big stick.
Randi started her career by giving birth to daughter Heather, now age thirty-four, the day before the three-day bar examination.
Randi is the president of the Inner Circle of Advocates. She is double-listed in criminal and civil litigation in Best Lawyers in America, and is a fellow in the International Academy of Trial Lawyers. She is a former governor of the American Association for Justice, a past president of the New Mexico Trial Lawyers Association, and a former board member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Randi has taught trial practice for the National Institute for Trial Advocacy and the National Criminal Defense College, and has been an adjunct professor for the University of New Mexico.