Rawle’s Reports

Rawle’s Reports, September 2019: John C. McMeekin II elected Chair Elect of ABA TIPS

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AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION

John C. McMeekin II, a member of the firm’s Executive Committee, was elected Chair Elect of the American Bar Association Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) at the ABA Annual Meeting in San Francisco, California, on August 12, 2019.  He currently serves as Vice Chair of ABA TIPS.  He will assume the role of the Section Chair in August 2020. The TIPS Section of the ABA is a diverse Section which represents private, in house, governmental, military and public interest lawyers and affiliate members in all 50 states, territories and internationally. The TIPS Section offers a home to lawyers to gain knowledge and experience in their given practices from Aviation to Workers’ Compensation and all practice areas in between.

John follows a long line of Rawle & Henderson partners who have dedicated themselves to the profession and to service with the ABA.  In 1878, Francis Rawle, a leader of the Rawle law offices, became one of the founders of the American Bar Association, and its first secretary and treasurer. In 1902, Francis Rawle became the American Bar Association’s president. John follows Peter J. Neeson, who served as Chair of ABA TIPS in 2006-2007 and in 2012 received its most prestigious honor, the James K. Carroll Award for outstanding leadership qualities and service.

The American Bar Association is committed to supporting the legal profession with practical resources for legal professionals while improving the administration of justice, accrediting law schools and establishing model ethical codes. The ABA has nearly 400,000 members today.  The ABA TIPS section was established in 1932 and is composed of over 17,000 lawyers, judges, law students and non-lawyers who are committed to providing a source of knowledge and leadership on trial practice and critical issues of justice in the areas of tort and insurance law. In addition, ABA TIPS has 36 general committees and task forces focused on substantive areas of law and practice.

John has also served the American Bar Association as a Council Member, Section Secretary, the Section Revenue Officer, Chair of the Toxic Tort & Environmental Law Committee, Chair of the International Law Committee, and Chair of the CLE Board. He is currently co-chairing the Corporate Counsel Initiative Task Force.  In addition to his service with the ABA, John chaired the Philadelphia Bar Association Environmental and Toxic Tort Law Committee and has been a member of the Delaware Valley Environmental Inn of Court.

John is a partner in Rawle & Henderson LLP’s Philadelphia office. He represents clients as local, national and trial counsel in environmental, toxic and mass torts product and related class actions, products liability, insurance coverage and aviation litigation. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of Baltimore School of Law. John is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Maryland and related U.S. District Courts as well as the Supreme Court of the United States. He has been published in professional and law review journals on a variety of topics related to toxic tort and environmental litigation throughout the United States and at law schools in Japan, China and Korea. His significant cases can be found in the BNA Law Reports and Law360. He has volunteered as an emergency medical technician and is a volunteer firefighter with HazMat certification. He has been rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell, was selected as a “Top 40 under 40 lawyer” and has been repeatedly selected as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.

John can be reached directly at (215) 575-4324 • jmcmeekin@rawle.com

NEW YORK SUPER LAWYER

Robert A. Fitch has been named a 2019 New York Metro Super Lawyer. Super Lawyers, a service of Thomson Reuters, selects attorneys each year for recognition through a rigorous nomination process that includes peer review by practice area and independent research on candidates. Only the top 5% of the lawyers in the New York metro area are chosen annually for this honor. Bob was also selected as a Super Lawyer in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. He is the resident partner in our New York City office and is a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee.

Bob concentrates his practice in the defense of architects and engineers, construction, medical and oral surgery malpractice claims, and commercial motor vehicle litigation. He received his undergraduate degree from Syracuse University and his J.D. from Syracuse University College of Law. He is admitted to practice in New York since 1974, as well as in federal courts in Southern, Eastern and Northern Districts of New York and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. He has tried over 100 cases to verdict and is a member of the Defense Research Institute, Federal Bar Council, PIAA and Trucking Industry Defense Association. He has a peer review rating by Martindale-Hubbell of AV (the highest).

Bob can be reached directly at: (212) 323-7060 • rfitch@rawle.com

ARKANSAS TRUCKING SEMINAR

Nigel A. Greene will speak at the annual Arkansas Trucking Seminar in Rogers, Arkansas, on September 18, 2019. Nigel will be a panelist for the session “Beyond the Basics: Best Practices for Effective Accident Investigation and Early Case Evaluation.”

Nigel is a partner in Rawle & Henderson LLP’s Philadelphia office. He focuses his practice on the defense of commercial motor vehicle companies, municipalities, commercial general liability, and premises liability matters. In addition, he serves as an arbitrator in Philadelphia County. He is admitted to practice in the state courts of Pennsylvania, the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Middle Districts of Pennsylvania and the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1994 and his B.A. from the Virginia Polytechnic and State University in 1989.

Nigel is a member of the American Bar Association and the Trucking Industry Defense Association. He currently serves as Vice-Chair of the ABA Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) Commercial Transportation Litigation General Committee.

Nigel can be reached directly at (215) 575-4278 • ngreene@rawle.com

PA BAR ASSOCIATION / ABA TIPS

Zachary M. Rubinich, a partner in our Philadelphia office, has been selected as a faculty member for the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Workers’ Compensation Fall Section Meeting 2019. The Fall Section Meeting will be held September 26 and 27 at the Hershey Lodge and Convention Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Rubinich will speak on a panel regarding “Handling a Concussion Case.”  He will provide tips, tactics and strategy from a defense attorney perspective on the handling, evaluation, litigation and settlement of a work injury concussion case.

In addition, Zach was recently appointed to several American Bar Association Tort Trial and Insurance Practice (TIPS) leadership positions: Vice-Chair of the Litigation and Trial Practice Committee; Vice-Chair of the Appellate Advocacy Committee; member of the Ethics and Professionalism Standing Committee and member of the CLE Board Committee. These appointments become effective in September 2019. He is currently Chair of the ABA TIPS Workers’ Compensation and Employers’ Liability Law Committee for 2018-2019. He served as Vice-Chair of this committee in 2015-2016, 2016-2017 and 2017-2018. In addition, Zach served as Vice-Chair of the 2017-2018 ABA Standing Committee for Diversity and Inclusion.

Zach focuses his practice on the defense of insurance carriers, self-insured entities and third-party administrators against workers’ compensation claims in Pennsylvania. Based on his extensive experience, the Pennsylvania Bar Association Workers’ Compensation Law Section has certified him as Specialist in the practice of workers’ compensation law. Zach has handled all aspects of litigation before workers’ compensation judges, the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board, the Commonwealth Court and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. He routinely counsels employers, insurance carriers and third party administrators on claims management, workplace safety, return-to-work programs, employment practices and risk management. Zach has been rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell for the seventh consecutive year in 2019. He has been selected as a 2019 Pennsylvania Super Lawyer by Super Lawyers. He was selected as a Pennsylvania Rising Star by Super Lawyers from 2010 to 2014.

Zach can be reached directly at (215) 575-4340 • zrubinich@rawle.com

FETTI CONFERENCE

John C. McMeekin II will speak at the 26th Annual National Forum for Environmental & Toxic Tort Issues (FETTI) Conference on September 27, 2019, in Chicago, Illinois. He will speak on the topic “Navigating Talc Litigation: A view from the mine to bankruptcy.”  John will discuss industrial talc vs. cosmetic use, regulatory issues associated with talc, and causation and source tracking.

John is a partner in Rawle & Henderson LLP’s Philadelphia office and a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee. He represents clients as local, national and trial counsel in environmental, toxic and mass torts product and related class actions, products liability, insurance coverage and aviation litigation.  See his biography above..

John can be reached directly at: (215) 575-4324 • jmcmeekin@rawle.com

PHILADELPHIA

Daniel J. O’Connell, Jr., has joined the Philadelphia office of Rawle & Henderson LLP as an associate. He concentrates his law practice in the areas of casualty & premises liability, construction, insurance coverage and product liability.

Daniel earned his J.D. from the Widener University Delaware Law School in 2018. While attending law school, he served as a certified legal assistant for the Delaware County District Attorney’s office in Media, Pennsylvania, from June 2017–August 2017. In addition, he was a law clerk for a mortgage foreclosure law firm in Philadelphia from February 2017–May 2018. He also served as a law clerk for a general liability defense law firm in Philadelphia in the Summers of 2015 and 2016. He earned his B.S. in Marketing from De Sales University in 2015.

Daniel is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania.

Dan can be reached directly at (215) 575-4354 • djoconnell@rawle.com

PITTSBURGH

Thomas DiStefano has joined the Pittsburgh office of Rawle & Henderson LLP as an associate. He focuses his law practice in the areas of insurance coverage, commercial motor vehicle defense, casualty & premises liability, medical professional liability, product liability, and environmental torts.

Thomas earned his J.D. from Villanova University School of Law in 2006. While attending Villanova Law, he served as a legal intern for the West Chester County District Attorney’s office in West Chester, Pennsylvania. In addition, Thomas externed at the United States Attorney’s Office in Philadelphia. He earned his B.A. in Political Science and Speech Communications with a Minor in Philosophy from the Pennsylvania State University in 2000.

Thomas is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania (2006). Prior to joining Rawle & Henderson LLP, he was an attorney with a business and real estate law firm in Pittsburgh. He served as Assistant District Attorney for the Bucks County District Attorney’s office in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, from 2007 to 2011.

Tom can be reached directly at (412) 261-5704 • tdistefano@rawle.com

HARRISBURG

Inder Deep Paul has rejoined our Harrisburg office as an associate. Inder worked previously with Rawle & Henderson in 2017 and 2018 and has returned again to work in the Firm’s Commercial Motor Vehicle Section. Prior to rejoining the Firm, he was a Deputy Attorney General for the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  Inder concentrates his law practice in the area of commercial motor vehicle defense.

He earned his J.D. from the Widener University Commonwealth Law School, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in 2016. While in law school, he served as vice president of the Moot Court Honor Society and was a member of the Trial Advocacy Honor Society. He was also a representative of the Student Bar Association. Inder won the national award “The Order of Barristers” in 2016 at Widener Law for excellence in oral and written advocacy. He served as a student clerk in 2016 for the Honorable John F. Cherry, Dauphin County Court of Common Pleas in Harrisburg. In 2015, he served as a student clerk for the Honorable J. Michael Eakin of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in Mechanicsburg and as a law clerk for a Harrisburg law firm. He is fluent in English, Hindi and Urdu.

Inder earned his B.A., with honors, from the University Institute of Legal Studies, Panjab University in Chandigarh, India, in 2012. He majored in International Law. In addition, he won “Best North Zone Oralist” in 2009.

Inder is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania.

Inder can be reached directly at (717) 234-7700 • ipaul@rawle.com

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