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Partner Deirdre Fox and her fellow panelists dove deep and provided insights into critical and pivotal issues and strategies in multi-district litigation (“MDL”) at The National Association of Minority & Women Owned Law Firm’s Driving Diversity & Leadership Conference on February 18, 2019.
In the program, In Re Rising Tide – A Deep Dive Into Current Strategies to Protect the Company in the Throes of Multi-District Litigation, Ms. Fox’s panel conducted an engaging mock status conference before a Magistrate Judge on the heels of a large verdict for plaintiffs in a first bellwether trial and a no liability verdict in a second bellwether trial. Thousands of cases remain on the court’s docket. Ashley Garry (Litigation and Legal Compliance Counsel, Lilly), playing the role of the Magistrate Judge, presided. Ms. Fox and James Grasty (Senior Vice President, Legal, Merck & Co., Inc.) played the role of defense counsel. Scott Freedman (Senior Counsel, Southern California Gas Co.) and Deborah Lewis (Blackwell & Burke, P.A.), played the role of Plaintiffs’ Liaison Counsel. The panelists in their roles engaged in a lively discussion of a range of issues surrounding Defendant’s efforts to eliminate meritless cases, the Court’s selection of new bellwether cases, the plaintiffs’ persistent voluntary dismissal of cases that discovery showed were without merit, plaintiffs’ efforts to withdraw previously given consent to cases to be tried before the MDL court, and more.
From Left to Right: Deborah Lewis, Ashley Garry, Deirdre Fox, James Grasty, Scott Freedman
The National Association of Minority & Women Owned Law Firms, founded in 2001, is a nonprofit trade association comprised of minority and women owned law firms and other interested parties throughout the United States. NAMWOLF’s mission is to promote diversity in the legal profession by fostering successful relationships among preeminent minority and women owned law firms and private/public entities. More information is available at www.namwolf.org. Ms. Fox co-chairs the Product Liability Practicing Area Committee of NAMWOLF.