1970s Class Notes
Vincent J. Poppiti, Chief Judge of Family Court for the State of Delaware, has joined Blank Rome LLP as Partner in the firm’s Litigation Practice Group. Poppiti is based in the firm’s Wilmington office and concentrates his efforts on growing the firm’s nationally recognized matrimonial and alternative dispute resolution practices. “After having now reached a point in my career where I have accomplished many of the personal and professional goals I set forth for myself years ago, I have made the decision to join Blank Rome in order to pursue public service in a new way, fighting hard now for individuals as an advocate after having advocated for victims for so long,” said Poppiti. The former judge also holds the positions of Chair of the Domestic Violence Coordinating Council and Co-Chair of Fatal Incident Review Team in Delaware.
Thomas A. “Tad” Decker, an attorney and managing partner at Cozen O’Connor, has been appointed by Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell to serve as a commissioner of the Delaware Port Authority. Decker concentrates his practice in general corporate law with an emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance, and alternative dispute resolution. Decker currently serves on the Business Advisory Council for the Law School, the board of directors for the GESU School, and the YMCA of Philadelphia and Vicinity.
Bryan Cave LLP Partner Stephen M. Dichter has been elected to the Arizona State Bar Board of Governors. The Board is the governing body of the State Bar, a nonprofit association that regulates the legal profession under the supervision of the Arizona Supreme Court. Dichter is a trial lawyer, emphasizing white-collar criminal defense and commercial litigation.
Edward B. Lowry, a principal in Charlottesville’s Michie, Hamlett, Lowry, Rasmussen & Tweel, LLC, has become a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. Lowry concentrates his practice in the areas of commercial litigation and securities arbitration. Fellowship in the College is extended by invitation only, and only after careful investigation, to those experienced trial lawyers who have mastered the art of advocacy and whose professional careers have been marked by the highest standards of ethical conduct, professionalism, civility, and collegiality. Lowry was president of the Virginia State Bar, was cochair of the Southern Conference of Bar Presidents, and is a past president of the Charlottesville-Albemarle Bar Association.
Thomas J. Igoe, Jr., was elected as chairman of Thelen Reid & Priest LLP effective April 1. “Our firm is strong and thriving, despite the economic landscape,” said Igoe, who works in the firm’s New York office. Igoe has served as the firm’s vice-chairman, as a member of the firm’s executive committee and partnership council, and as a chair of the Corporate Governance Group. His practice emphasizes corporate governance, corporate finance and securities, federal regulation of utility and energy companies, and mergers and acquisitions.
Paul Hurdle has joined the Washington, D.C., firm of McKee Nelson LLP, and his son Paul is a student in UVA’s College of Arts & Sciences.
Marschall Smith writes, “Alas, I still haven’t written a book.” But he has been working as General Counsel to Brunswick Corporation. He further writes he is “enjoying life, remaining grateful to the Law School for what it’s done, and enthusiastic for what it is doing.”
Alfonso L. Carney, Jr., was recently elected as a member of the University of Virginia Law School Foundation Board of Trustees in May. Carney is Vice President and Associate General Counsel for the Altria Group in New York.
Frank A. Thomas III was chosen as the president of the Virginia Bar Association for 2003. Thomas, who is a partner in the law firm of Shackelford, Thomas & Gregg PLC in Orange, VA, is a “triple graduate” of the University, where he received his B.A., M.A., and J.D. degrees. Thomas chaired the VBA Wills, Trusts and Estates Section from 1997–1999 and is a past chair of the Virginia State Bar Trusts and Estates Section. He is also a member of the VBA Taxation Section. Thomas is also a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, and a member of the American Bar Association.
Kevin Walsh, a partner in the New York office of Kelley Drye & Warren LLP is a contributing author (Investigation of Case and Use of Experts) in Preparing for and Trying the Civil Lawsuit, Second Edition.
Michael J. Horvitz is the President of the University of Virginia Law School Foundation Board of Trustees. He is of counsel and a former partner in Jones Day’s Cleveland office, and focuses on the areas of tax and personal planning. He is also chairman of the trustees of the H.R.H. Family Trust.
Jack W. Bettman is Chair of the General Practice, Solo, and Small Firm Section of the Florida Bar. He is past President of the Phi Beta Kappa Alumni Association of Northeast Florida. Bettman and his family live in Jacksonville, where he can be reached at 5150 Belfort Road, Bldg. 100, Jacksonville, FL 32256 or at email@example.com.
David L.Mulliken was elected to serve as Chairman of the Executive Committee of the University of Virginia Law School Foundation. Mulliken is chairman of the Environmental Department at Latham & Watkins in San Diego, CA.
Fred Lyon has recently relocated the offices of The Lyon Firm, P.A., in Winter Park, FL, where he continues to practice construction and energy law and mediation. He was chosen by World Generation magazine as a member of its Class of 2003 honoring outstanding leaders in the energy industry. He also is pursuing a Masters of Liberal Studies degree at Rollins College where he is concentrating his studies on Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Albert Camus and their responses to evil.
Mike Wallace argued a case in the U.S. Supreme Court in December 2002. He represented the Mississippi Republican Party in a congressional redistricting dispute. “I did not have any trouble cheering him on,” said his Democrat-law partner Luther Munford, “because he was arguing for the supremacy of the federal government.”
E. Tazewell Ellett, of Alexandria, VA, was voted president-elect of the Virginia Bar Association. Ellett, who chaired the VBA Board of Governors in 2002, is a partner in the law firm Hogan & Hartson, LLP, where he serves as administrator of the firm’s aviation group and is a member of the firm’s legislative group.
David A. Logan has been appointed Dean and Professor of the Roger Williams University Ralph R. Papitto School of Law in Bristol, RI. Logan arrived in Rhode Island from Wake Forest University’s School of Law, where he taught for more than 20 years. His areas of teaching and research expertise are Professional Responsibility, Torts, and Mass Media Law.
Bracewell & Patterson partner Thomas Melo of Houston has been ranked in Texas among Chambers & Partners’ America’s Leading Business Lawyers 2003–04. Melo, who was noted for his work in employment law, is head of the firm's Labor & Employment Section. Bracewell & Patterson maintains 11 offices in Texas; Virginia; Washington, D.C.; London and Kazakhstan. The law firm is one of the largest in Texas, employing more than 350 attorneys.
Christopher Scott D’Angelo was an organizer and the moderator of the seminar, Law and the Media in a Bad Publicity Case, presented at the 2002 Annual Meeting of the International Association of Defense Counsel. The program addressed what to do and what not to do with regard to the media in a case with the potential for bad publicity. D’Angelo is a partner in and Chairman of the Products Liability and Toxic Torts Section of the Litigation Department at Montgomery, McCracken, Walker & Rhoads, LLP, based in Philadelphia, PA. His practice emphasizes business, class action, intellectual property, and products liability counseling and litigation, including his role as national counsel for several major U.S. clients and his representation of foreign concerns in the United States and United States concerns abroad, as well as litigation and other matters in the probate courts or involving estates and trusts. D’Angelo is a member of The American Law Institute, and participated extensively in the creation of the Restatement (Third) of Torts: Products Liability. D’Angelo is a frequent speaker and author on law-related matters. His presentations have involved such topics as business and products liability litigation, multi-national litigation, information and documents management, issues involving the internet and the use of the internet in litigation, and estates and trusts.
Mark Duvall is working for Dow Chemical in Midland, MI. He writes that he regrets missing reunions. His daughter, Amy, is now a sophomore at the University of Michigan, and his sons Sam and Tom are a senior and sophomore at Dow High School. His wife Laura is on the board of the Midland Symphony.
Mitchell J. Kassoff (firstname.lastname@example.org) has had his article, Should a Franchise Holder Be Allowed to Continue Operating While a Termination Suit Is Pending? published in the January 2003 New York State Bar Association Journal. Access his other articles at: www.concentric.net/~Franatty/curricul.htm. Kassoff’s practice includes all aspects of franchise law on a nationwide basis, with offices in New Jersey and New York. He is also a tenured Professor of Law and Taxation at Pace University in New York. Kassoff’s daughter, Sarah, graduated from UVA in May, while his son, Jonathan, is matriculating at UVA in September.
Wendell G. Large was inducted as a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers at its spring meeting. Wendell continues to practice in Portland, ME, where he is a Director and Shareholder with Richardson, Whitman, Large & Badger.
Frank Morgan has been named President & COO of Coller Capital, Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of a global private equity investment firm based in London. Coller Capital’s last fund closed at $2.6 billion, the largest secondaries fund ever raised and is currently evaluating a number of investments, primarily in the U.S. and Europe. Frank co-taught a seminar session at the Law School on corporate venture capital with Professor April Triantis last spring.
Joseph W. Ryan, Jr., was recognized for “#1 Defense Verdict of the Year” and “Most Significant Defense Verdict” of 2002 by the National Law Journal. Ryan is a partner in the firm Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP, in Columbus, OH. He and Patricia A. Screen ’85 headed the defense team that won the case Chang v. Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Raina Krell, M.S. and Scott Strothers in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court last October. Each year, the National Law Journal compiles a list of the most significant courtroom victories. “We are obviously very pleased with the outcome,” said Ryan. “Ms. Krell is a talented and committed therapist who gave her client excellent care. Although it was a challenging case to defend because of sympathy for the girl’s family, we are very proud to have achieved a just result on behalf of our client.”
H. Elizabeth Kelley writes that the entire family (two lawyers, three children) went to Vienna for New Year’s. Four of them went to France’s Loire Valley for spring break. The oldest child, Anne, thrives as a sophomore at St. Andrew’s School in Delaware. The family’s middle child, Parham, went with her eighth grade class at Avery Coonley School to Quebec. The youngest, John Matthias, will enter sixth grade this September at Papplewich School, in Ascot, England.
David Markell joined the Florida State University College of Law faculty as the Steven M. Goldstein Professor in August 2002.
Roy L. Smart III a partner in the Charlotte-based law firm Parker, Poe, Adams & Bernstein L.L.P. has been voted by his peers to the Best Lawyers in America list for 2003–2004 for his outstanding work in corporate, mergers and acquisitions, and securities law. His practice is principally transactional, and his clients include foreign and domestic manufacturing, distribution, technology, franchising, and service sector companies. Smart is a member of the Business Law Section of the North Carolina Bar Association and serves as a member of its Council. He is also a member of the American Bar Association's Business Law Section, and is an active member of its Committee on Negotiated Acquisitions and its Forum on Franchising. Smart is also the chairman of the Carolinas Advisory Council of the Trust for Public Land.
Elaine E. Whitbeck was promoted to General Counsel, Secretary, and Vice President of Alcon Laboratories, Inc. and Alcon, Inc. Alcon is a multi-billion dollar ophthalmic pharmaceutical company listed on the NYSE. Alcon is owned in part by Nestle, S.A. in Vevey, Switzerland. Ms. Whitbeck splits her time between Fort Worth, Texas, and Zurich. Ms. Whitbeck also has been named the President of the state-wide board of the Texas General Counsel Forum, which is comprised of over 250 General Counsels from the state. Whitbeck is married to Kurt Grimm, President of SDR Pharmaceuticals, and has three sons, one of whom is currently serving in the 101st Airborne in Baghdad, Iraq.