Litigation Services

Scope of Work

Schnader has a long standing reputation as a preeminent litigation firm of trial and appellate lawyers. Our Litigation Services Department, the Firm’s largest, has achieved notable successes at both the trial and appellate levels in sophisticated litigation throughout the United States.

Our litigation partners have substantial courtroom experience and are able to advocate our clients’ positions on a wide variety of substantive legal issues in virtually any forum in the country. Most simply put, we try cases. We are at home in courts, agencies and informal settings. We are involved in every type of civil proceeding, including bet-the-company litigation, and in internal investigations and criminal cases as well. We are known for our skill, aggressiveness, creativity, hard work and ingenuity.

In addition to handling individual cases, our lawyers have served as national trial and coordinating counsel in multidistrict matters and disputes involving up to 1,000 related lawsuits. In this capacity, we have experience in developing consistent defenses, effective fact witnesses and experts who can communicate with juries in a variety of courtroom settings, which enhances the likelihood that our clients will obtain not only favorable litigation results but also cost effective settlements.


Our Clients

Clients whom we have represented in major litigation include advertising companies, accountants, automobile dealers and manufacturers, aircraft manufacturers, airlines, asbestos manufacturers, brokerage houses and brokers, corporations, computer manufacturers, construction engineers, department stores, drug companies, electronics companies, financial institutions, food service companies, health care providers, insurance and reinsurance companies, investment bankers, lawyers, motion picture producers and distributors, oil companies, professional service firms, publishers, real estate developers, telecommunication companies, television networks and other broadcasters, tire manufacturers, tobacco companies, trade associations, transportation companies, steel producers, utility companies and a host of others.

Our clients tell us that we staff matters efficiently and are responsive to their need to budget and manage litigation costs. Our general approach to litigation is aggressive and proactive, and based on the early identification and pursuit of key issues. We seek to avoid costly and inconclusive "wars of attrition" by focusing the litigation on these issues instead of taking a purely reactive approach to the other side’s agenda. We use state of the art litigation support software, and have an experienced in-house litigation support team that works with our trial teams from day one of a litigation to ensure the efficient handling of e-discovery, document management, and other related trial preparation and presentation needs.


Our Attorneys

In recognition of their excellence at the trial bar, eight of the Firm’s lawyers are Fellows of the American College of Trial Lawyers – in a firm of our size, an almost unparalleled recognition of excellence by peers. In addition, four of our attorneys are Fellows of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, including Dennis Suplee, a past president of the Academy. Mr. Suplee also was selected by Lawdragon as among the "500 Leading Lawyers in America," and was selected by Best Lawyers in America as the #1 lawyer in Philadelphia for "Bet-The-Company" litigation. One of our attorneys is a former judge of the U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and one of our former partners in Pittsburgh, Judy Olson, was elevated to the bench of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in 2008. Several of our appellate lawyers are fellows of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers. Many of our litigators were selected as "Best Lawyers in America" and as "Super Lawyers" in 2012.

Our litigators are active members of professional associations including the American Law Institute (11 members, an unparalleled number for a firm of this size), the American Bar Association, the Defense Research Institute, and the American Inns of Court. They have also served in numerous leadership positions including director of the American Judicature Society, chairman of the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia, president of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, chair of the Aerospace Committee of the Defense Research Institute, president of the Third Federal Circuit Bar Association, chair of Division 1 of the ABA Forum on the Construction Industry, and chair of the Federal Courts Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association.

In addition to breaking ground in the courtroom and at the negotiating table, our lawyers are known for their contributions to law reviews and trade journals as well as entire books. Recent examples include texts on the admissibility of expert scientific evidence, damages experts, deposition tactics, the spoliation of evidence, trial and appellate practice, environmental law, aviation law, Internet related issues, antitrust and distribution law, securities fraud and product liability law.

Our attorneys are admitted to practice in federal and state courts throughout the United States, including the Supreme Court, District Courts, Courts of Appeals, Tax Court, Court of Claims, Court of International Trade and Patent and Trademark Office. We regularly participate in alternative dispute resolution proceedings sponsored by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). One of our attorneys is a member of the board of directors of the American Arbitration Association (Executive Committee member), the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, and the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution.


Areas of Practice

While Schnader has always engaged in a general litigation practice, we have considerable experience in the following substantive areas:

Accountant Liability - We regularly represent audit clients, lenders, trustees in bankruptcy and others who have been harmed by their reliance upon inadequate audits by major accounting firms. Our lawyers’ depth of knowledge of our clients’ businesses, the relevant law, the applicable professional standards, and the attorneys and experts who regularly appear in professional liability litigation enables us to work creatively, efficiently and effectively toward the vindication of our clients' rights.

Alternative Dispute Resolution - We have been extensively involved in the resolution of disputes throughout the United States and abroad. The Firm has long been an active member of the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, and our attorneys have served as neutrals and advocates in arbitrations, mediations, minitrials and settlement proceedings in a wide variety of matters. Attorneys have also served as arbitrators, mediators, judges pro tem and settlement masters in federal and state courts, the Court of International Arbitration and private forums. Several attorneys are members of the American Arbitration Association and serve as arbitrators, mediators or advocates in a broad range of commercial and construction disputes.

Antitrust and Trade Regulation - We provide counseling, deal with government enforcement agencies on both the state and federal level and litigate on behalf of both defendants and plaintiffs before state and federal courts and administrative boards throughout the country. We have handled numerous claims under the Robinson-Patman and Sherman Acts as well as other trade regulation statutes. We have had an active antitrust practice almost since our inception and have been involved in a number of landmark cases.

Appeals and Issues - Schnader’s Appellate Practice Group has a long and proud history based in the traditions and work of the Firm’s founders. One of the founders of the Firm and foremost appellate advocates of his day, Bernard G. Segal, argued scores of appeals throughout the country, including a dozen cases in the Supreme Court of the United States. In the seven decades since its founding, Schnader has continued to view appellate litigation as one of its special areas of practice and has attracted such preeminent appellate litigators as former Third Circuit Judges Arlin Adams and Timothy Lewis and renowned appellate specialist James Crawford. The work of Schnader’s Appellate Practice Group ranges from civil, commercial, and criminal appeals to bet-the-company litigation affecting the fundamental workings, and sometimes even the viability, of our clients. We serve both as appellate advocates and as appellate advisors, and frequently are engaged to assist other counsel by providing strategic advice, reviewing briefs, and holding moot courts. At the trial court level, we regularly apply our analytic and advocacy skills on summary judgment and other significant motions in post-trial proceedings, and in advising about how best to preserve issues for appeal and to position them for optimal appellate review. For the past three years, our Practice Group has been recognized as #1 in Philadelphia, PA and in Pennsylvania in Appellate Law by Best Lawyers, with more of our lawyers named "Best Lawyers in America" in appellate law than any other law firm in Pennsylvania.

Aviation - Schnader’s Aviation Practice Group has decades of experience representing and advising a diverse group of domestic and international businesses, airports, and individuals in all aspects of complex aviation litigation. Our Aviation Group members hold national leadership positions in the aviation bar. We have handled matters involving major aviation disasters, international treaties, hull claims, regulatory compliance, code share agreements, airport operations, aircraft noise claims, personal injury, wrongful death, product liability, lost or damaged baggage and cargo, insurance coverage, FAA certificate action, aircraft lease and financing, customs disputes, intellectual property rights, environmental claims, labor and employment, commercial disputes, RICO claims, bankruptcy litigation, airport related work (litigation and regulatory) and aircraft sales and brokerage.

Bankruptcy - Our attorneys engage in complex bankruptcy counseling and litigation involving corporate control, fiduciary liability, preferential transfers, cash collateral, fraudulent conveyances and dischargeability. They have represented secured and unsecured creditors, lenders, landlords, financial institutions, debtors, equity holders and trustees before bankruptcy, federal and state courts at the trial and appellate levels.

Construction Industry - Our experience spans all aspects of construction and procurement law, including design, pricing, contract negotiation and drafting, bids and bid protests, project organization and management, scheduling, change order management, governmental compliance and construction administration. When disputes arise, the attorneys in our Construction Industry Practice Group are experienced in preparing claims and resolving disputes through litigation, arbitration, mediation, and negotiation. Our attorneys coordinate and lead the array of technical experts and claims consultants often needed during the resolution of a substantial construction dispute.

Environmental - Our attorneys represent clients in administrative and judicial enforcement actions, both civil and criminal, brought by the government against corporations and individuals. We have handled matters involving the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (Superfund) and corresponding state laws, issues pertaining to air emissions, EPA enforcement actions under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) with respect to solid waste and toxic substances, advice as to OSHA’s asbestos and Worker Right-to-Know requirements, the EPA’s Community Right-to-Know regulations, water discharge issues pertaining to the EPA’s Clean Water Act and the Clean Streams Law and municipal waste management.

Financial - We have represented financial institutions clients before a host of state and federal regulators, including the Pennsylvania and New Jersey Securities Commissions, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision. We have obtained various regulatory approvals permitting our clients to establish de novo banks, offer Internet banking and Internet access services, convert thrifts from mutual to stock form, establish subsidiaries, offer common stock, merge with or acquire other financial institutions and acquire an independent insurance agency. We represent trust companies and departments regarding issues of fiduciary and tax law and resolve a multitude of diverse compliance issues. We are also proficient in negotiating enforcement documents, defending parties in proxy fights, representing boards of directors and conducting special investigations.

First Amendment - We represent clients in defamation and invasion of privacy litigation before federal and state appellate courts. Our capabilities also include privacy and publicity rights, press access, motion picture distribution rights, equal-time problems, the unique issues faced by the telephone and cable industries, and copyright and other intellectual property matters. We represented a diverse group of Internet content providers and others as amici in Reno v. ACLU, in which the Supreme Court for the first time defined the scope of the First Amendment’s protections for the Internet.

Government Contracts - Our government contracts practice is both domestic and international in scope and involves the representation of clients in the procurement process, including contract formation, contract administration and dispute resolution. Our lawyers represent clients who supply goods and services to federal, state and local government entities. We advise companies seeking to do business with foreign governments, and we counsel foreign governments in their dealings with U.S. contractors and on matters of international trade in defense equipment. In the construction field, we represent general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, sureties, architect-engineers and owners.

Insurance Coverage - Our attorneys have handled insurance coverage disputes involving all types of liability and first-party property insurance policies, including policies that provide comprehensive general liability, all risks, fire, environmental, directors and officers, employment, liability, vendors and advertising coverage. We have also been involved in litigation involving financial institution bonds, which insure against fraudulent or dishonest acts of employees. Clients come to us for assistance in reviewing their insurance policies to determine if they have coverage and in negotiating with their insurance companies, and we have recovered substantial sums through the negotiation process, settlements, and, if necessary, trials.

Intellectual Property - Our intellectual property practice is national and international in scope. We represent plaintiffs and defendants in utility and design patent infringements and in trade secret and other technical unfair competition matters. Our attorneys also file and defend cases involving trademarks, trade names, trade dress and copyrights. We have brought and defended claims for violation of licenses and have acted to protect, through interpleader, the rights of a licensee confronted with competing claims to royalty payments. We have experience in prosecuting and defending motions for temporary restraining orders and preliminary injunctions and are accustomed to responding, on short notice, to the immediate needs of the Firm’s clients, in addition to fulfilling their sustained litigation requirements.

Internet and Technology - We are also conversant in Internet related and technology counseling and litigation, and our lawyers are frequent lecturers and writers and have taught college and law school courses on the issues presented in this area. We have advised a broad range of businesses and nonprofit institutions about the development and enforcement of policies governing the use of computers, electronic mail and the Internet, and especially about privacy, intellectual property and foreign policy concerns. We have also been involved in a variety of litigations involving these subjects, including discovery of electronic files and regulation of Internet content. We have assisted clients with respect to domain name questions and litigation, disputes concerning the use of trademarks on the Internet, linking issues, and Internet advertising and sponsorship practices. We have a number of lawyers with computer or other technological training or work experience who bring that special perspective to this area of our practice.

Labor and Employment - We provide a full range of counseling and litigation services in all aspects of labor and employment law, including equal employment opportunity, wrongful discharge, OSHA and other safety and hazardous materials statutes, trade secrets, restrictive covenants, family medical leave, wage and overtime issues, and ERISA. Our attorneys frequently negotiate collective bargaining agreements for our clients and assist employers on how to respond to union organizational efforts. We maintain a full spectrum NLRB practice, including representation proceedings, unfair labor practice proceedings and jurisdictional disputes. We have represented numerous employers during labor strikes and resulting litigation and have obtained injunctions and counseled employers on the hiring of replacement workers. Our attorneys practice before administrative agencies such as the NLRB and EEOC, in state and federal courts, and in arbitration proceedings.

Product Liability and Mass Torts - We are known for developing sophisticated factual defenses to product liability claims. Our attorneys have hands-on successful experience obtaining excellent results for product liability clients both at trial and through alternative dispute resolutions. Within the past decade, the Firm has represented clients in various multidistrict proceedings and has defended product liability claims involving machinery (including overhead cranes, forklifts, propane heaters, punch presses, tractors, incinerators and lawn mowers), bicycles, bottles, aircraft, handguns, asbestos, pesticides, insecticides, tires, tobacco, weight loss programs, food products, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and medical devices.

Real Estate - We have seasoned real estate litigators who concentrate their trial practice on and have working familiarity with technical and intricate real estate matters including zoning law, land use permitting, title disputes, contract issues under purchase and sale agreements, construction arbitrations, and cases under the Wetlands Protection Act.

Securities and Shareholder Litigation - We handle a broad range of matters in the securities litigation field for both defendants and plaintiffs. We have represented clients in shareholder class actions and derivative suits; litigation resulting from initial issues and private placements; fraud cases; matters involving bankruptcies and banking failures; suits concerning liability of lawyers, accountants and financial professionals; civil and criminal RICO litigation; and SEC actions and enforcement proceedings. Our capabilities in this area are built upon decades of experience in antitrust, financial, regulatory and other complex commercial litigation, including class actions and multidistrict litigation.

Tax - Our lawyers regularly handle federal tax controversies, including protesting proposed tax adjustments at the appellate level of the IRS and litigating cases in the U.S. Tax Court and federal district and appellate courts. We have been involved in real property assessment and exemption appeals, sales and use tax appeals, corporate income and franchise tax appeals, personal income tax appeals and local business tax appeals. Our attorneys are conversant in criminal tax litigation. We have represented numerous clients in state and local tax controversies and transactions in virtually every state.

White-Collar Crime - Our attorneys represent business entities and corporate executives in developing corporate compliance programs, conducting internal investigations and handling government investigations. We also represent individuals and corporate clients in connection with internal investigations, grand jury investigations and investigations by a broad spectrum of federal agencies including the Securities Exchange Commission, the Department of Health and Human Services/Office of Inspector General, the Internal Revenue Service, the Department of Defense/Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice. We have extensive experience with the RICO statute including its forfeiture provisions.

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Diversity

Below is information regarding Schnader’s Diversity Committee and its programs and initiatives.  Schnader is not a Minority and/or Women-owned business and is not certified as such.

 

A.  Schnader’s Diversity and Equal Opportunity Efforts

Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP’s commitment to diversity extends back to its beginnings in 1935.  From its founding by William A. Schnader and Bernard G. Segal, a Christian and a Jew, the Firm, in standing for religious diversity, was unique in the Philadelphia legal community at that time.  In the 1960s, Schnader partner William H. Brown III was appointed by President Lyndon Johnson as the fourth chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).  Under Mr. Brown’s leadership the EEOC tackled workplace issues related to adverse impact, job testing validation, and national origin discrimination.  Throughout our history and now more than ever, Schnader has always been able to point to our successes in diversity, which often go hand-in-hand with our success in the legal arena.

 

B.  Diversity at Schnader

Schnader is fully committed to recruiting and retaining minority attorneys.  The Firm’s Hiring Committee is comprised of partners & associates to lead our efforts to hire a diverse pool of associates each year.  The Committee has expanded on-campus recruiting to include schools with a diverse student population, including Howard University.  Participation at minority student job fairs, 1L minority hiring programs and outreach at the college level are all priorities of the committee.  Some of the programs in which the Firm is involved are:

·         Philadelphia Diversity Law Group (PDLG)

·         Western Pennsylvania Diversity Initiative (WPDI)

·         Philadelphia Minority Job Fair

·         Philadelphia First Year Minority Reception

·         Rutgers-Camden Diversity Initiative Program

·         Villanova Law Diversity Program sponsor

·         Overbrook High School Scholars Program

·         Allegheny County Bar Association’s Minority Summer Internship annual participant sponsor since 1998

·         Allegheny County Bar Association’s Diversity Collaborative Committee member

·         The Philadelphia Bar Association’s Statement of Goals of Philadelphia Law Firms and Legal Departments for the Retention and Promotion of Women (signatory)

·         The Philadelphia Bar Association’s Statement of Goals of Philadelphia Law Firms and Legal Departments for Increasing Minority Representation and Retention (signatory)

·         Sponsorship of organizations for minority students & professionals

 

C.  Mentoring and Training

Schnader encourages our attorneys to partake in all aspects of Firm life, including internal committees and participation in community activities.  Our summer associates and junior associates are each assigned partner and associate mentors and assignments are allocated through coordinators during the summer program and during the associate's career.  This ensures that all lawyers work on a variety of assignments with a mix of partners.  The Firm provides extensive training for all lawyers; all are encouraged to do pro bono work; and we have a comprehensive annual evaluation process in place so that our attorneys are developing professionally each year.

 

The Firm’s Diversity Committee and Associates Professional Development Committee have improved our mentoring programs to include a Women’s Initiative for female attorneys at all levels.  We have brought in a consultant to do training, and hold roundtable discussions as well as social events.  A Pathway to Partnership program has been implemented for our senior associates.  It is a mix of training and mentoring to guide senior associates and newly elected partners through the transition from associate to partner.

 

The Firm has sponsored our diverse associates to attend retention conferences and seminars like the Philadelphia Diversity Law Group’s (PDLG) Associate Development Seminar and the PDLG’s Program for Women Lawyers of Color.

 

Schnader's Pittsburgh office regularly works with minority summer interns from the Allegheny County Bar Association's Minority Summer Law Internship Program.  This program recruits students predominantly from Pittsburgh city high schools.  Schnader's Rosa Copeland Miller has acted as a mentor to the interns from the Internship Program for over 10 years.

 

D.  Leadership Positions

The following diverse attorneys are in key leadership roles at Schnader.

·         Elizabeth Ainslie (female partner) is co-chair of our Government Investigations, Corporate Compliance and Criminal Defense Practice Group. 

·         Jeanne Barnum (female partner) is co-chair of our Construction Practice Group and the Litigation Partner-In-Charge for our Cherry Hill, NJ office.

·         Christine Carty (female partner) is managing partner of our New York office.  Ms. Carty is also a member of the Firm’s Executive Committee.

·         Cynthia Fischer (female partner) is chair of the Nonprofit Organizations Practice Group.           

·         Christine Cushman (female associate) is co-chair of the Employee Benefits Practice Group.

·         Al Dandridge (African-American partner) is chair of the Firm-wide Diversity Committee and Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance Committee, and chair of the Firm’s Securities Practice Group.

·         Catherine McFadden (female partner) is co-chair of the Family Law Department.

·         Megan Harmon (female partner) is co-chair of the Environmental Practice and Waste Management Practice groups.

·         Joan Kluger (female partner) is managing partner of our Delaware office and co-chair of the Firm’s Intellectual Property Practice. 

·         Hon. Timothy K. Lewis (African-American counsel) is co-chair of the Appellate Practice Group and co-chair of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Practice Group.

·         Theresa Loscalzo (female partner) is chair of the Firm-wide Billings and Collections Committee and the Accountant Liability Practice Group.  Ms. Loscalzo also co-chairs Schnader’s Financial Services Litigation Practice Group and the E-Commerce/Technology Litigation Practice Group.

·         Nicole Reimann (female partner) is chair of our Insurance Recovery Practice Group and our Lender Liability Practice Group.  She is also chair of the Firm-wide Associates Professional Development Committee.

·         Nancy Winkelman (female partner) is co-chair of the Firm’s Litigation Services Department, co-chair of the Railroad Litigation and Class Action Practice groups and chair of the Firm-wide Recruiting Committee.  Ms. Winkelman is past chair of the Firm-wide Pro Bono Committee and past co-chair of the Appellate Practice Group.

 

E.  Other Activities

The Firm has participated in the Overbrook High School Scholars Program in Philadelphia, where we hire high school students to work in different departments of the Firm to introduce them to the practice of law.  The Firm is also a participant sponsor of the Allegheny County Bar Association’s Minority Summer Internship Program for high school students.

 

Schnader was also a co-sponsor of the 2008 Biennial Conference of the Just The Beginning Foundation (JTBF), titled “Reaching Back, Lifting Up.”  The Honorable Timothy K. Lewis, a former federal appeals judge and current co-chair of Schnader’s Appellate Practice Group, was a co-chair for this three-day conference that brought together a diverse group of federal and state judges, lawyers, law professors, and students from law schools, colleges, high schools and middle schools to enjoy the living stories of judges from diverse backgrounds and participate in panel discussions focused on contemporary legal issues.  JTBF supports students of color and other underrepresented groups by providing free educational and mentoring programs.  JTBF also offers a series of pipeline programs to prepare students for careers in law, which include Middle School and High School Summer Legal Institutes, an Advanced Summer Legal Institute, law student externships, law student scholarships, programming in schools that target underserved and minority high school and college students, and biennial conferences that bring together diverse legal leaders of local communities.  The organization’s long-term goal is to increase diversity in the legal profession and on the bench.

 

Schnader supports The Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, a group that helps address the professional needs and development of black lawyers in the City of Philadelphia.  Schnader attorney Rachel Branson is an Executive Board member of the Barristers' Association and the Firm has shown its support by sponsoring events like the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Memorial Breakfast and the Annual Awards & Scholarship Gala.  The Firm's Al Momjian was the 2010 recipient of the Cecil B. Moore award from the Barrister's Association in recognition of his work on behalf of the Republic of Haiti as Honorary Consul for that country.

 

F.  Achievements Noted in the Legal Community

A number of our women and minority attorneys have been recognized for their professional achievements:

·         Hon. Timothy K. Lewis (African-American counsel) was the keynote speaker at the 2010 National Symposium for Minority Professionals in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).  The purpose and focus of this year's program was to encourage scholarly dialogue about the impact of ADR on minority groups.  Judge Lewis spoke on the topic of "Diversity in ADR: Expanding Opportunities for Minority Neutrals."

·         Judge Lewis received the Pennsylvania Bar Association’s Minority Bar Committee Award of Achievement.  Judge Lewis also was the expert presenter at the second meeting of the U.S.-Russia Roundtable on Democracy and Human Rights, co-sponsored by The Office of the Ombudsman for Human Rights of the Russian Federation and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.  The event was held in Moscow, Russia, February 13-14, 2008.  He delivered the opening statement on behalf of the U.S. delegation, which focused on the history of habeas corpus issues in the United States in the context of human rights.

·         Jeanne Schubert Barnum (female partner) was named a “New Jersey Super Lawyer” by Super Lawyers.

·         Al Dandridge (African-American partner) was named in The Best Lawyers in America for corporate law, and noted as a “Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.”  Before joining Schnader, Mr. Dandridge served the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as associate director of small business and international corporate finance in the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance.  In addition, he served as special counsel in the Division of Corporation Finance.

·         Marilyn Kutler (female partner) is repeatedly noted as a “Pennsylvania Super Lawyer” and listed in The Best Lawyers in America.

·         Elizabeth Ainslie (female partner) was recognized in “Women of Influence,” a special supplement published by American Lawyer Media.  She was also named one of “America’s Top 50 Women Litigators” by the National Law Journal and included in the 2006 and 2007 editions of The Best Lawyers in America.  She is also a “Pennsylvania Super Lawyer,” recognized as one of the top lawyers (male and female) in the state.  Liz is a member of the American College of Trial Lawyers and the International Academy of Trial Lawyers.

·         Our attorneys are frequently asked to comment on diversity issues.  For example, an interview with Judge Lewis was highlighted in the Dispute Resolution Journal (February – April 2008 edition) article “Striving for Diversity in ADR & Why It Matters.”  In the article, Judge Lewis, chairman of the American Arbitration Association Diversity Committee and a member of the association’s Board of Directors, discusses his interest and involvement in promoting and supporting diversity in decision-making professions, and why it’s critical to provide equal employment opportunities for minorities and women.

·         Also, Schnader partner Scott Wenner has co-chaired a session in Singapore on sex, race and age discrimination in law firms.  This session considered why some law firms seem to limit partnership opportunities for women and protected minorities, refusing to embrace diversity and multiculturalism and limiting the talent available as a result.  The session addressed diversity strategies and the limits of discrimination laws for promoting opportunities for victims of discrimination in law firms.

 

G.  Enhancing Diversity in Our Communities

We also have long strived to foster diversity beyond our own doors.  In March 2001, Schnader was among the founding members of the Philadelphia Diversity Law Group (PDLG), a city-wide organization of approximately a dozen major law firms and five corporate legal departments.  PDLG focuses on encouraging and supporting the promotion of diversity in the practice of law, particularly in the greater Philadelphia area, by recruiting and retaining attorneys of color, and is committed to fostering a diverse group of lawyers in the region to make the profession stronger‚ more productive and better equipped to address modern challenges.  Schnader has actively supported the PDLG First-Year Summer Program, which offers first-year students from participating area law schools summer employment in law firms and corporate law departments throughout the region, and Schnader has been pleased to have a first-year PDLG summer associate in its summer program each year.  This highly successful program allows law students to come away with valuable experience and a good impression of Schnader, often resulting in permanent employment with the Firm once a participant has graduated.

 

Also in Philadelphia, we are a founder of, and active participant in, the Philadelphia Minority Job Fair and among the original signatories of the Philadelphia Bar Association's Statement of Goals for Increasing Minority Representation and Retention.

 

Schnader's Pittsburgh office is an active, supporting member of the Western Pennsylvania Diversity Initiative (WPDI), which seeks to promote regional economic growth in Pittsburgh and the surrounding region by providing resources to employers to attract, hire, and retain employees from a variety of diverse backgrounds and perspectives.  Schnader Pittsburgh has hired individuals from the WPDI summer associate program for the entire time Schnader’s Pittsburgh office summer program has been in existence, with resounding success.

 

Schnader attorneys also serve on boards of a wide array of religious, multicultural and community organizations:

·         David Smith, the Firm's Chairman, is a past Chairman of the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia, a local affiliate of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.  He is a former member of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Professional Competence.  He is President of the Auerbach Central Agency for Jewish Education, a past President of The Jewish Publication Society, a past president of Jewish Outreach Partnership and Community Hebrew Schools of Philadelphia, and a past Vice-President of the Perelman-Schechter Jewish Day School of Philadelphia.  He is a former member of the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia.

·         Marilyn Kutler (female partner) is a past President and current board member of Akiba Hebrew Academy, located in Merion Station, Pennsylvania.

·         Marilyn Kutler and David Smith are both board members (and Smith is current President, as noted above) of the Auerbach Central Agency for Jewish Education, which was established by the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia in 1987 for the purpose of developing and enhancing strong and positive Jewish identity, lifelong Jewish learning, and commitment to and participation in the Jewish community in the United States, Israel and throughout the world.

·         Hon. Timothy K. Lewis (African-American counsel) serves as a member of the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution Diversity Committee and also serves on its Board of Directors.

·         Nancy Winkelman (female partner) is a member of the Board for the Disabilities Rights Network of Pennsylvania.

·         Jerry Tanenbaum, a partner in our Cherry Hill office, served as the area chair for the Anti-Defamation League of New Jersey from 2001 to 2003.

·         Rosa Copeland Miller (African-American female partner), named among the “Top 40 under 40” by the Pittsburgh Courier and Pittsburgh Magazine, is the Governance Chair for the Board of the Multicultural Arts Initiative, a Pittsburgh-based group whose objective is to enhance the cultural landscape of the region by funding consistently high quality African-American and African-influenced arts programming.  The Initiative also strives to focus on Latin, Asian, and Native American culturally-specific arts.  Ms. Copeland Miller also serves on the Development Committee for Pennsylvania Cultural Trust. 

·         Co-Chair of Schnader’s Family Law Department, Albert Momjian plays a special and important role in the city’s Haitian community – he serves as the honorary Consul to the Republic of Haiti for the Philadelphia region, and sits on the board of the Haitian Community Culture Development Abroad Association (HCCDA).  In 2004, he was central to organizing a fundraising event for Haitian children at the Wachovia Center, which included the presentation of a trophy to Samuel Dalembert, a Haitian native who played for the Philadelphia 76ers, and the donation of money from Dalembert and other friends for the purchase of medical supplies for the children of Haiti.  In March of 2010, Mr. Momjian delivered the opening remarks at a fundraising event being held at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology in support of Haiti earthquake relief.  In his role as honorary Consul, he routinely assists Haitian nationals with various issues and concerns, and promotes friendship and understanding of the Haitian community within Philadelphia.

·         Rachel Branson (African-American female associate) is an elected Executive Board member of The Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

·         Keith Whitson, chair of the Product Liability Practice and administrative partner of Schnader's Pittsburgh office, has volunteered as a mentor for several years with the University of Pittsburgh's Black Law Students Association's (BLSA) "Footprints Mentorship Program."  "Footprints" provides minority law students with academic and professional guidance from mentors who are legal professionals with experience in the students' areas of interest. 

 

H.  Schnader’s Relationships with Diverse Businesses

Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP works in conjunction with or represents several minority- and/or woman-owned business enterprises, including attorneys, vendors, benefits providers, legal employment search firms, and others.  Schnader is committed to minority and women’s business enterprise growth and involvement throughout the United States.  For example, we have a history of partnering with diverse vendors:

·         Our benefits broker is The Commonwealth Consulting Group in Jenkintown, PA; the principal is Ivy Silver, a recent Women's Way leadership award recipient.

·         prWerks serves as the public relations firm on retainer with the Pittsburgh office.  The firm is founded by and owned and operated by Kelley Denny and Lynn Seay.

·         Schnader uses TransPerfect, a litigation support service company that was named Fifth Fastest-Growing Women-Led Company in America by the Women Presidents' Organization and American Express.

·         Schnader uses Strategic Design, a woman-owned, full-service graphic design company, for many of its graphics and marketing needs.

·         We also have partnerships with the following woman-owned legal employment search firms:  Laura Segal & Associates; McCanney, Esposito & Craybill; Oxford Legal Associates and Abelson Legal Search.

 

Our representations of diverse businesses include:

·         Splash Media, a media buying company owned by Wendy Clayton-Gonzalez, for all of its needs.

·         PITG Gaming, the company owned by Don Barden, which will operate the Majestic Casino on Pittsburgh’s North Shore.

·         J.E.Stuckert, Inc., a service station and towing company owned by Gladys Stuckert, for all of its needs.

·         Advanced Systems Advisors, Inc., a medical software reseller owned by Nancy Novic.

·         Innovation Exhibits, Inc., a company, owned by Laura Gables, which provides display systems for booths at conventions, etc.

·         Paula Lysy, a sole-proprietor graphics artist.

·         Mary Olliffe, an architect.

·         CAM International, Inc., an evangelical nonprofit, mission-sending agency, and a WBE contractor.

·         ImbuTec, an energy consultation and contracting services company, is an MBE contractor.

·         Peoplechart, a woman owned and run business.

·         Mad Maps, a woman owned and run business.

·         Etcetera Edutainment, a woman owned and operated business

·         Iremsys, a new technology company being formed by an African professor from CMU.

 

I.  Looking to the Future

While Schnader is proud of these and other examples of our diversity and our efforts to enhance it, we do not rest on our laurels.  We remain committed to enhancing our reputation as a law firm in which people of diverse backgrounds want to work, a place where they can thrive professionally and become part of a multifaceted team that serves the needs of our diverse clients in the global marketplace.  The Firm recently began a formal assessment of its progress toward its diversity goals, with an eye toward defining objectives and next steps for the near future.