DRI Faculty List

Life, Health, Disability, and ERISA Seminar

Swissotel | Chicago, IL | April 3 - 5, 2019

Ann-Martha Andrews
Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC

Ann-Martha Andrews is a shareholder in the Phoenix office of Ogletree Deakins. She practices insurance coverage and bad faith litigation in state and federal courts throughout the Ninth and Tenth Circuits. Her particular expertise is employee benefits litigation, including life, health, and disability insurance, and she has represented numerous major insurers in this field. Ms. Andrews regularly counsels and defends clients on both ERISA and non-ERISA matters, including institutional, "pattern and practice" bad faith cases. Ms. Andrews is actively involved in DRI's Life, Health, and Disability Committee. She currently serves as Co-Editor of DRI's ERISA Report.

Joshua Bachrach
Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker LLP

Joshua Bachrach is the chair of Wilson Elser's Life, Health, Disability & ERISA practice. Josh represents clients in state and federal courts throughout the United States in litigation involving ERISA and non-ERISA life, health and disability disputes, as well as disputes over pension benefits. Josh also represents insurers in coverage and bad faith litigation and has experience with disputes involving managed care issues. He is a frequent speaker at national seminars on ERISA-related subjects and has written numerous articles on ERISA and related topics. Josh is a partner in Wilson Elser's Philadelphia office.

Patrick W. Begos
Robinson & Cole LLP

Patrick W. Begos is a partner at Robinson & Cole LLP in Stamford, Connecticut and New York City. His practice is focused on employee benefit claim defense, and he has represented plans, employers and fiduciaries in courts throughout the Northeast. In addition, Patrick represents companies and individuals in a wide array of commercial disputes, and has 30 years of litigation, arbitration, mediation, and negotiation experience in those matters. Patrick has written and presented extensively on employee benefits, and is a founder of the blog at ERISAClaimDefense.com. He is the Program Chair for the Life, Health, Disability, and ERISA Seminar.

Amy L. Blaisdell
Greensfelder Hemker & Gale PC

Amy L. Blaisdell is an officer at Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C. She represents employers nationwide in the defense of employment and employee benefits litigation, including in the United States Supreme Court. Her practice focuses on highly regulated industries including health care, the securities industry and banking, as well as matters related to absence and leave management. She has defended hundreds of ERISA lawsuits, including class actions. A member of Greensfelder's Board of Directors, she is a graduate of St. Louis University School of Law.

Bryan D. Bolton
Managing Partner
Funk & Bolton PA

Bryan D. Bolton is chairman of the Baltimore based law firm Funk & Bolton, P.A. He is a frequent presenter on life, health and disability insurance, and ERISA. He regularly represents life, health, and disability insurers, self-funded plans, managed care companies, plan sponsors, and trustees. Mr. Bolton has extensive appellate experience, including serving as amicus counsel before the Supreme Court of the United States. Mr. Bolton is a member of the Maryland and Pennsylvania bars. He has been included in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers, Maryland Super Lawyers and the Best Lawyers in America for over ten years

Brett J. Boskiewicz
Cigna Corporation

Brett J. Boskiewicz is Senior Counsel in Cigna's Corporate and Healthcare Litigation group. He manages a variety of healthcare litigation matters, including class action cases directed at Cigna's healthcare and pharmacy benefit management businesses, disputes with contracted and out-of-network healthcare providers, and general business disputes involving Cigna or its subsidiaries. Brett also supports Cigna's Service Operations organization in resolving disputes with clients or customers and mitigating risk stemming from client- and customer-facing operations, and Cigna's Claims Resolution Unit professionals, who handle pre-litigation and litigation matters across the country. Prior to joining Cigna, Brett was a trial lawyer and litigator at Robinson & Cole, LLP in Hartford, Connecticut from 2003-2015.

Stephen H. Broer
Senior Counsel
The Guardian Life Insurance Co of America

Catherine M.A. Carroll
Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP

Catherine M.A. Carroll is a partner in WilmerHale's Appellate and Supreme Court Litigation Practice and partner-in-charge of WilmerHale's DC office. She handles litigation and counseling involving complex legal questions across diverse areas, including ERISA, insurance and reinsurance, data privacy, First Amendment, antitrust, and criminal law. Ms. Carroll has argued three cases (including Heimeshoff v. Hartford Life & Accident) and briefed dozens more before the US Supreme Court and has argued numerous cases in US Courts of Appeals across the country. Ms. Carroll served as law clerk to Justice Souter of the Supreme Court and Judge Edwards of the D.C. Circuit.

Fallyn B. Cavalieri
Gerber Ciano Kelly Brady LLP

Fallyn B. Cavalieri is a Partner in the Insurance Solutions practice group of Gerber Ciano Kelly Brady LLP. She focuses her practice on representing insurers, employers and fiduciaries in all areas of litigation including both ERISA and non-ERISA disputes over life, health, and disability coverage. Ms. Cavalieri regularly counsels clients on regulatory and licensing matters. She is a frequent author and speaker on insurance issues and is Marketing Co-Chair of DRI's Life, Health and Disability committee.

Lisa Copp
CNO Financial Group Inc

Lisa Copp is Chief Privacy Officer and Associate General Counsel at CNO Financial Group, Inc. Lisa oversees CNO's privacy program and provides legal counsel and compliance guidance in the area of data privacy, security and other corporate compliance matters. As one of Indiana's ten largest public companies, CNO provides life and health insurance, and retirement solutions through its family of insurance brands including Bankers Life, Colonial Penn and Washington National

Dorothy Hubbard Cornwell
Fox Rothschild

Dorothy Hubbard Cornwell is a partner in the Atlanta office of Smith Moore Leatherwood. Dorothy's practice focuses on the intersection of the health care and health insurance industries. She is an experienced litigator, with substantial involvement in life, health, and disability litigation Her practice includes litigating complex issues related to ERISA preemption and disputes between health plans, health insurers, and providers. Dorothy also advises health plans, Medicare Advantage Organizations, Part D Plans, and related entities on various issues, including compliance with state and federal insurance regulations, and commercial insurance fraud.

Byrne J. Decker
Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC

Byrne J. Decker is the managing shareholder in the Portland, Maine office of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. Mr. Decker has a nation-wide practice that specializes in the defense of employee benefits/ERISA litigation. He has defended benefits cases in federal courts in every federal judicial circuit. Mr. Decker is the Chair of DRI's Life, Health and Disability Committee.

Sarah J. Delaney
Goldberg Segalla LLP

Sarah J. Delaney is a partner in Goldberg Segalla LLP's Global Insurance Services Practice. Her coverage experience is diverse, including life, health, and disability; bad faith; rescission; and fraud. Sarah is an active member of DRI's Life, Health, and Disability Committee, and is currently the vice-chair for the 2019 LHD seminar, as well as a frequent publication contributor. She is one of the editors of the DRI treatise, The Law of Life Insurance: Key Issues in Each State and the forthcoming "Insurance Policy Rescission," a joint project between DRI's Insurance Law and Life, Health and Disability Committees. Sarah is the Program Vice Chair for the 2019 Life, Health, Disability, and ERISA Seminar.

Elizabeth G. Doolin
Chittenden Murday & Novotny LLC

Elizabeth G. Doolin is a member of Chittenden, Murday & Novotny LLC. She has 26 years of experience representing insurance and financial services industry clients and is a frequent author and speaker on insurance and litigation issues. She has also been recognized as one of the Top 10 Women Civil Appellate Lawyers in Illinois by the Leading Lawyers Network. She is a member of DRI's Life, Health and Disability, Data Management and Security, and Women in the Law Committees.

David C. Fisher, PhD, LP, ABPP
PsyBar LLC

David C. Fisher, PhD, LP, ABPP, is a founder and has been president of PsyBar LLC since 1995 and is a Diplomate in Clinical Psychology. Dr. Fisher oversees psychological and psychiatric IMEs, as well as violence and risk assessments performed nationally through a network of 1200 psychologists and psychiatrists. He publishes and lectures across the United States on psychiatric and psychological assessment, and has developed an assessment protocol used by psychologists and psychiatrists nationally. He has consulted for many entities such as insurers, hospitals, employers and governmental agencies.

Matthew Fitzsimmons
Cigna Corporation

Z. Logan Gould
Guardian Life Insurance

Z. Logan Gouldjoined The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America in 2011 after clerking for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. Logan is the lead litigation counsel for the Commercial and Governments Markets (Group) line of business, while also litigating other lines of business. Logan serves as lead interpleader counsel, lead bankruptcy counsel, is a member of Guardian's Direct-to-Consumer Task Force and oversees Guardian's Intellectual Property practice. In 2018, Logan was selected to be a member of Guardian's 2018-19 Emerging Leader Development Program and sits on the Conference Board's Lead IP Council.

James Lewis Griffith, Jr.
Reger Rizzo & Darnall LLP

James Lewis Griffith, Jr. is an experienced class action litigator for the insurance industry. He has defeated class claims in health, life, and disability class actions brought in jurisdictions around the country, and has preserved those victories on appeal. Among his accomplishments, Jim defeated a putative nationwide class action brought by health care providers who asserted that the defendants' RICO conspiracy gave rise to $5 billion in damages. Jim also defeated a putative nationwide class action brought on behalf of all salaried retirees of General Motors Corp., who demanded lifetime life insurance benefits. Jim brings an indefatigable spirit to his work.

Joseph M. Hamilton
Mirick O'Connell DeMallie & Lougee LLP

Joseph M. Hamilton is a Partner at Mirick O'Connell and Chair of the Firm's Life, Health, Disability and ERISA Litigation Group. He concentrates his practice in life, health and disability insurance defense, and ERISA. Mr. Hamilton serves as counsel for numerous life, health and disability insurers and self-insureds at all levels of the state and federal courts. Mr. Hamilton is a past Chair of the ABA's Life Insurance Law Committee; and a Vice-Chair of the ABA's Health and Disability Law Committee. Mr. Hamilton received his B.S. and J.D. from Boston College.

William D. Hittler
Nilan Johnson Lewis PA

William D. Hittler is a graduate of Notre Dame Law School and focuses his practice on disability, life and health benefits litigation. He helps his clients carry out their responsibilities better. He is competitive and focused and makes his clients' legal needs his highest priority. Bill vigorously represents their interests—delivering high quality work—and is well-respected by judges and adversaries. He is particularly adept at counseling clients through difficult litigation issues and achieving a successful resolution of the dispute at hand. Bill is committed to his community, diversity, and volunteering

Leigh Anne Hodge
Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP

Leigh Anne Hodge is a partner at Bradley, a national law firm that provides business clients with a full suite of legal services in dozens of industries and practice areas. Leigh Anne regularly represents clients in managed care, ERISA benefits, and insurance coverage litigation. Leigh Anne has been recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® for Healthcare Law, ERISA Litigation, Employee Benefits, Insurance Law, and Product Liability Litigation Defense, and was named a "Litigation Star" in Benchmark Litigation's Alabama litigation section. She is also listed in the Mid-South and Alabama Super Lawyers for Personal Injury-Products Defense litigation.

Annie Hong
Operation's Manager
Cigna Corporation

Annie Hong manages Cigna Group's claim-related litigation, appeals, regulatory inquiries and consumer-complaint programs. She has over 20 years in disability-industry experience, and has held various roles within benefit operations. Since joining Cigna in 2004, Annie's focus has been on programs that effectively manage risks and resolve disputes arising from Short-Term Disability, Long-Term Disability, Accidental Death and Dismemberment, Life, Accidental Injury and Critical Illness coverages and claims. Prior to joining Cigna, she held various roles within Unum's Benefit Operations.

Jeannine C. Jacobson
Robinson & Cole LLP

Jeannine C. Jacobson has been practicing for over 20 years in Florida and in pro hac vice matters around the country. Jeannine is a graduate of Duke Law School and started her career as an appellate judicial clerk. Since then, she has been devoted to defending employers and insurers in the field of life, health, and disability litigation, under both ERISA and state law. She is an experienced trial and appellate lawyer who has achieved favorable results for clients in state and federal courts and through alternative dispute resolution.

Honorable Brian G. Kanner
Social Security Administration

Honorable Brian G. Kanner was appointed as a United States Administrative Law Judge in 2015. As an ALJ, he holds full evidentiary hearings and issues final decisions, regarding claims for disability benefits arising under the laws and regulations of the Social Security Administration. Brian was previously employed by Unum Corporation for 20 years, where he held the position of Vice President, Antitrust and Litigation, and co-directed Unum's litigation efforts nationally. He litigated hundreds of disability cases, including UNUM Life Insurance Company of America v. Ward, 526 U.S. 358 (1999). Brian has also worked as an insurance practice expert for McKinsey & Co.

Leonor M. (Leo) Lagomasino
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP

Leonor M. (Leo) Lagomasino, a partner with Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP in the Miami, Florida office, defends insurers in cases involving individual disability and ERISA, bad faith, life insurance and commercial first party coverage actions. She is the past Chair of DRI's Life, Health and Disability Committee.

Linda M. Lawson
Managing Partner
Meserve Mumper & Hughes LLP

Linda M. Lawson is the managing partner of the Los Angeles office of Meserve Mumper & Hughes LLP. Ms. Lawson represents insurance companies in matters relating to life, health and disability coverage and ERISA. She also represents management in employment-related litigation involving wrongful termination, sexual harassment and employment discrimination. Ms. Lawson is currently a member of DRI's Life, Health & Disability and Employment Law Committees and is a past chair of DRI's Law Institute and the Life, Health & Disability Committee.

Joshua D. Lerner
Rumberger Kirk & Caldwell

Joshua D. Lerner is a shareholder with the Florida and Alabama firm of Rumberger, Kirk & Caldwell. Josh represents insurers and insureds in complex litigation, including prosecuting recovery actions arising from insurance fraud. He represents life and disability carriers in claims litigation He has written for the ERISA Report, and was a regional editor for a compendium on the law of rescission, which is pending publication. Josh has been designated as a "Top Lawyer" by the South Florida Legal Guide and as a member of the "Legal Elite" by Florida Trend magazine. Josh is chair of the professionalism panels for the Florida's Eleventh Judicial Circuit.

Bob Madden
Lawley Insurance

Bob Madden is a consultant with Lawley Benefits Group. Bob's primary role is to specialize in employee benefits, specifically medical captives. Bob started his insurance career in 1993. Prior to joining Lawley Benefits Group, he was a vice president at First Niagara Benefits Consulting and Gernold Agency. Bob has become a nationally known expert in health insurance captives.

Nancy Jerian Marr
Burke Williams & Sorensen LLP

Nancy Jerian Marr is a partner in the ERISA and Insurance Group of Burke, Williams & Sorensen at its Los Angeles, California office. Nancy began practicing in 1989, and has both private practice and in-house counsel defense litigation experience. She served as litigation counsel for Unum in Portland, Maine. Previously, she was an associate in a boutique life, health, disability coverage firm in Los Angeles, and a federal extern for Hon. Dickran Tevrizian in the Central District of California.

Lisa E. Montelongo-Connor
Asst. VP & Managing Counsel
Unum Group

Lisa E. Montelongo-Connor is Assistant Vice President and Managing Counsel in Unum Group's Chattanooga, Tennessee office, providing legal counsel to claim professionals handling multiple Unum products. Lisa is a magna cum laude graduate of the University Mississippi School of Law. While at Unum, she managed disability litigation and continues to assist with ERISA claims training and projects. Prior to joining Unum, she was in private practice trying state and federal cases. She has served on federal committees for Ethics and Civility and Judicial Merit Selection Committees. She is a member of the Chattanooga Bar and Hispanic National Bar Associations.

Stephen E. Reynolds, CIPP/US, CISSP
Ice Miller LLP

Stephen E. Reynolds, CIPP/US, CISSP is a partner in Ice Miller's Litigation Group, and co-chair of the Data Security and Privacy Practice, with a practice that focuses on commercial litigation and data security and privacy law. He has represented companies in several types of litigation, including products liability cases, mass torts litigation, construction litigation, trade secrets litigation, securities litigation and other commercial litigation. As a former computer programmer and IT analyst, Stephen is uniquely able to and routinely uses his computer background in cases involving data security and privacy and computer forensics. Stephen was Program Chair of the 2018 DRI Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Seminar.

Dennis J. Rhodes
Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker LLP

Dennis J. Rhodes is Of Counsel in the San Francisco office of Wilson, Elser. He focuses his practice on the defense of insurance companies in life, health and disability litigation involving individual as well as group Policies. He is a member of DRI's LHDE Diversity Committee and DRI's LHDE Marketing Committee.

Mark E. Schmidtke
Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC

Mark E. Schmidtke is a shareholder with Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. in Valparaiso, Indiana where he heads the Employee Benefit Litigation Practice Group. In a career that has spanned nearly forty years, Mr. Schmidtke has represented clients in employee benefits litigation matters in every state in the United States as well as jurisdictions outside the United States. He has authored books and numerous articles on employee benefit topics and is a regular speaker at national seminars. Mr. Schmidtke is a past chair of the ERISA Advisory Council of the U.S. Department of Labor, is named as a Best Lawyer, and is an AV lawyer with Martindale Hubbell.

Christopher T. (Chris) Sheean
Swanson Martin & Bell LLP

Christopher T. (Chris) Sheean is a partner at Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP in the Chicago office where he practices in commercial, products liability and intellectual property litigation. He is a past chair of the DRI Commercial Litigation Committee, and is a frequent author and lecturer on products liability, class actions, trade secrets and unfair competition for various publications. Chris is also chair of his firm's Class Action Practice Group. As lead trial counsel, Chris has handled trials throughout the country. He currently serves as a member of the DRI Law Institute and is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern University Law School where e teeaches trial advocacy.

Leasa M. Stewart

Leasa M. Stewart is a shareholder in the Oklahoma City, OK office of Gable Gotwals. During her 27 years of practice, Leasa has focused on assisting insurance carriers with litigation in state and federal courts throughout Oklahoma and Texas. She has expertise in life, health, disability, ERISA, and bad faith claims in addition to general business litigation. She is also a contributing editor and author for "The Law of Life Insurance" published by DRI.

Scott M. Trager
Funk & Bolton PA

Scott M. Trager has a practice covers a broad spectrum of general litigation matters in the state and federal courts of Maryland and the District of Columbia, as well as the Maryland Insurance Administration and Maryland Office of Administrative Hearings. He focuses his practice on the defense of life, health and disability insurance claims (ERISA and non-ERISA), as well as administrative claims before insurance regulators. He also has extensive experience with policy rescissions and interpleaders. He is Vice-Chair of DRI's Life, Health and Disability Committee, and previously served as Program Chair of the 2017 DRI Life, Health, Disability & ERISA Seminar. He was selected as a Maryland "Rising Star" by Baltimore Magazine and Maryland Super Lawyers in 2011 and 2012. Mr. Trager has achieved an A/V rating, the highest possible peer review rating for ethics and legal ability, from Martindale Hubbell.

Theodore J. (Ted) Tucci
Robinson & Cole

Theodore J. (Ted) Tucci is a partner in Robinson+Cole's Managed Care and Employee Benefit Practice Group. Mr. Tucci's practice involves both counseling and litigation on behalf of managed care organizations, insurers, and other clients in the health and benefits industries. He has handled numerous lawsuits against managed care organizations, plan administrators, and health care clients in state and federal courts throughout the Northeast. His experience in this area includes defending class action claims, provider reimbursement disputes, drug formulary systems, data breach claims, Medicaid and Medicare claims network adequacy, antitrust issues, benefit claim litigation and commercial relationships in the managed care industry.

Christine Olson Zdrojeski
Managing Assistant General Counsel
The Hartford

Christine Olson Zdrojeskiis Managing Assistant General Counsel of Hartford's Group Benefits litigation team. Christine earned her J.D., cum laude, from Suffolk University Law School and practiced as a Litigation Associate at LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene and MacRae prior to joining the Hartford's P&C Coverage unit as Counsel in 2003 where she managed complex coverage disputes.