2023 DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar

November 15–17, 2023 | Austin, Texas

Skyline of Austin Texas

Connect with Leaders in Asbestos Litigation and Expand Your Knowledge!

Join us in Austin, Texas, for the DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar, where you will learn about the biggest challenges and opportunities facing practitioners in asbestos litigation. This year’s educational focus will involve taking lawyers on a journey through all aspects of a case with a fact pattern involving a young, living, female, mesothelioma plaintiff with a genetic mutation, direct talc exposure and bystander friction exposure. Plus, you'll have an unparalleled opportunity to engage with distinguished faculty on timely topics and national trends, as well as network at various breakout sessions.

View registration information here.

What You Will Learn:

  • Hear from world-renowned pathologist Dr. Michele Carbone and join us during his meet and greet session.
  • Learn how to navigate fact discovery, expert discovery, and trial using our fact pattern.
  • Explore how associates can position themselves to be successful during the pendency of a case.
  • Acquire the skills necessary to defend your corporate representative against new tactics.
  • Gain an understanding of how to tie the jury to the value of a dollar.
  • Be part of our second diversity initiative installment and explore the different experiences of diverse attorneys from Asia.

Expand Your Network By:

  • Forging connections through the Premier Networking Reception included with your registration fee.
  • Joining the new Networking Lunch on Thursday with fellow DRI members from other committees.

Panel Counsel Meetings with Major Companies
Take advantage of the opportunity to engage with key industry companies* including:

  • Chevron
  • Clark
  • Cooper Industries
  • Cummins Inc.
  • Eaton
  • Eckert Seamans
  • Flowserve (Catherine Goldhaber)
  • Gilbarco
  • Hawkins Parnell & Young
  • Kean Miller
  • Rheem Manufacturing Company
  • Segal McCambridge Singer & Mahoney for Nissan
  • Travelers
  • Volvo
  • Williams Kastner

*Subject to change

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Thank You to DRI's Asbestos Medicine Leadership

Evelyn Fletcher Davis
Evelyn Fletcher Davis
Program Chair
Bruce T. Bishop
Bruce T. Bishop
Program Co-Vice Chair
Mahsa Kashani Tippins
Mahsa Kashani Tippins
Program Co-Vice Chair
Roman Lifson
Roman Lifson
Law Institute

Registration Information

Member Pricing Non-Member Pricing
Non-Member Bundle ^
Regular Registration* $1,395 $1,695 $1,695
Group Registration (Non-Sponsored)** $1,095 per person $1,095 per person $1,095 per person
Government Government members will receive the applicable government rate for the seminar upon login. If the government rate does not appear after logging in, please call DRI directly at (312) 795-1101 to receive the discounted rate. Invoices can be sent after purchase upon request.

Not a DRI Member? Select the Non-Member Bundle and Save!

^ Not a DRI Member and new to DRI? Take advantage of the Non-Member / Trial Membership Bundle and receive up to 9 months of membership when you register for the DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar. You’ll be able to add this special offer to your cart at check out. Note: Trial membership processing can take up to 30 days from the date of purchase, please contact DRI Customer Service with any questions.

Learn more about membership at DRI and get started on your DRI journey today!

*If your membership recently lapsed, please renew your membership prior to registering to ensure you receive your discounted member rate. If you would like to join DRI to receive the member pricing and see the benefits of becoming a member, click here to go to the Application page.

**Group registration is for registering four or more attendees, members and non-members. There is one free registration with every 10 registrations. You must lock in the rate three weeks prior to the seminar. If you want to register for the group pricing, fill out the form here (online registration is not available for this offering).

Networking Events

Premier Networking Reception
Sponsored by Hawkins Parnell & Young LLP

Date: Thursday, November 16 from 6:00–8:00 p.m.
Price: Free when you register for the seminar
Location: Moontower Hall at the Austin Marriott Downtown

Get ready for a night of unparalleled networking at our Premier Networking Reception, happening at the stunning Moontower Hall at the Austin Marriott Downtown. This exclusive event on Thursday, November 16th from 6:00–8:00 p.m. is the perfect opportunity to connect with like-minded professionals in a relaxed and engaging setting. Please join us for an unforgettable evening filled with live music from Eric Preston Hall, refreshing cocktails, wine, soft drinks, assorted beers, delectable appetizers, and the chance to mingle with attendees from the Asbestos Medicine Seminar and the Retail and Hospitality Seminar.

Eric Preston Hall is a singer/songwriter and front man for the award-winning metal band Ceremony of Darkness, who’s 4th album was released in March of 2023. The music of Ceremony of Darkness has been featured on television shows including American Gods and Blindspot, and in the movie The Incredible Jessica James. Ceremony of Darkness’ first album "13" won Best Metal Album in the Independent Music Awards. Eric is also a voting member of the Recording Academy (Grammys).

Networking Opportunities

Experience the great fun that the vibrant city of Austin has to offer while making meaningful connections with your peers. For details and to RSVP or purchase tickets, please click on the blue tab "Networking Opportunities" under "Agenda with Speakers".

  • Scavenger Hunt: Murals and Cocktails
    Wednesday, November 15 at 5:30 p.m. | Downtown Austin
  • Young Lawyers Networking Event
    Wednesday, November 15 at 7:30 p.m. | Smash ATX
  • Speakeasy with the Spazmatics - DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar Special Event
    Wednesday, November 15 at 9:30 p.m. | Speakeasy Austin

Agenda with Speakers

View Schedule with Room Locations

Networking Opportunities

Scavenger Hunt: Murals and Cocktails
Wednesday, November 15 at 5:30 p.m.

Come join us for a scavenger hunt adventure through downtown Austin! There are more than 80 murals throughout the capital city of Texas. We will be searching for several of Austin's famous murals and hidden local gems. Along the way you will get to explore the city with friends and colleagues. After the hunt, we will all convene for a drink at one of Austin's famous watering holes. The event will be held on Wednesday, November 15th at 5:30pm - we will meet in the lobby.

If you have any questions, you can reach out to Kathrin Hashemi at hashemik@kcic.com.

Sign Up for Scavenger Hunt

Young Lawyers Networking Event at Smash ATX
Wednesday, November 15 at 7:30 p.m.

Following Wednesday’s Networking Cocktail Hour, join the Young Lawyers Committee for a one-of a-kind dinner and ping pong tournament at Smash ATX at 7:30 p.m.

To reserve seats for you and your colleagues, email Brianna Bailey at brianna.bailey@cs-law.com.

Speakeasy with the Spazmatics - DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar Special Event
Wednesday, November 15, 2023 at 9:30 p.m.

Join us at the Ballroom at Speakeasy for the Spazmatics, the “Ultimate 80's tribute!” Tickets can be purchased in advance using the link below, or at the door. The Spazmatics always put on a high energy and entertaining show. Address is 412 Congress Avenue #D, Austin, TX 78701.

Tickets are $10 each - attendees are to buy ticket(s) on their own. For any questions, please contact Brianna Bailey brianna.bailey@cs-law.com.

RSVP and Purchase Tickets for Spazmatics

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Time (Central) Program Location
1:00 p.m. Registration
1:45 p.m. Welcome/DRI Cares - Canine Companions

Click here for details on Canine Companions.

Jay Evans, Segal McCambridge, Pittsburgh, PA
2:00 p.m. Update on Jurisdictions and Verdicts

The panel will analyze the most active jurisdictions for asbestos litigation and recent verdicts around the country in order to identify high risk jurisdictions and evaluate potential defense concerns relating to rulings, jury pools, and case values.

Eric P. Hall, Hepler Broom LLC, Edwardsville, IL

Douglas R. Simek, Hawkins Parnell & Young LLP, Dallas, TX
Kevin P. Greene, Willcox Savage, Norfolk, VA

3:00 p.m. Diversity Initiative – The Asian American Lawyer

In Part Two of our multi-year examination of the experiences and challenges of different minority groups, the panel will take a deep dive into what it means to be an Asian American in a defense law firm. With panelists hailing from the so-called “near east” to “far east,” we will build on the highly successful approach first rolled out last year in DRI’s presentation for the Black American lawyer’s experience. As before, we will try to bring a light touch to a subject, a little humor even, and a lot of encouragement to jump into conversations with lawyers in your firm with familial backgrounds hailing from the continent of Asia.

Jonathan Terrell, KCIC, Washington, D.C.
Mahsa Kashani Tippins (Iran), DCo LLC, Nashville, TN

Macy M. Chan (China), Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP, Los Angeles, CA
Hannah Lee Mohrman (Korea), Bowman and Brooke LLP, Los Angeles, CA
Raghu N. Bandlamudi (India), MG+M Law, New York, NY

4:00 p.m. North Carolina Revisited – 10 Years Later

Kurt Rasmussen will take another look at the people and products at the North Carolina textile plants, updating his presentation from ten years ago.

Kurt Rasmussen, Rasmussen Dickey Moore LLC, Kansas City, MO

4:30 p.m. Attend Dr. Carbone’s Highly Educational Presentation and Join Us for his Meet and Greet Session!

What is new about Mesothelioma in 2023.

Michele Carbone, MD, PhD, University of Hawaii Cancer Center, Honolulu, HI

5:30 p.m. Adjourn

6:00 p.m. Networking / Cocktail Hour
7:30 p.m. Dine-Arounds

Join colleagues and friends at selected restaurants for dinner (on your own).

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Time (Central) Program Location
8:00 a.m. Registration
8:30 a.m. Coffee & Conversations

The early bird gets the most out of this networking session. Get to know the early risers in our group over a cup of coffee. Rise, shine, caffeinate and connect!
9:00 a.m. Welcome and Introductions

Roman Lifson, Christian & Barton LLP, Richmond, VA
Evelyn Fletcher Davis, Hawkins Parnell & Young LLP, Atlanta, GA

9:15 a.m. Voir Dire in a Post-COVID World

Are plaintiffs really faring better at trial after the coronavirus pandemic? Have potential jurors emerged from the pandemic with more empathy for injured individuals and an eagerness to hold perceived corporate “wrongdoers” accountable? Join us as we deliver insights and strategies for an effective voir dire in our post-pandemic world.

M. Douglas Eisler, Wilbraham, Lawler & Buba, P.C., Philadelphia, PA
Rick R. Fuentes, PhD, R&D Strategic Solutions, Atlanta, GA
10:15 a.m. Coffee Break

10:30 a.m. Let’s Get Real: Why Jurors Award Damages

Ms. Filichio and Mr. Popovich will discuss the trends of high-dollar verdicts, the psychology of why jurors award or reject damages, the tactics used by plaintiffs’ counsel and strategies to combat them.

Susan Filichio, Fillichio & Hastings, El Segundo, CA
Jerry Popovich, Hawkins Parnell & Young LLP, Santa Ana, CA

11:20 a.m. Opening Statement – Demonstrate the Case Facts and How to Tell the Story

Opening statements are one of the most pivotal moments in a trial. What an attorney says, communicates, and presents to the jury in the opening statement may have a greater impact on the verdict than any other time in the case. Mr. Radcliffe will seize the moment, grab the jury’s attention, and satisfy their curiosity by delivering a dynamic opening statement tethered to the fact pattern guiding this year’s DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar.

R. Thomas Radcliffe, DeHay & Elliston LLP, Baltimore, MD

12:15 p.m. DRI Cares - Blessings in a Backpack

Click here for details on Blessings in a Backpack.
12:30 p.m. DRI Networking Lunch

Join the Retail and Hospitality Litigation Seminar attendees for lunch and networking opportunities that are second to none.

1:30 p.m. Young Lawyers Breakout

For more details, click on the "Young Lawyers Breakout" tab below.

Brianna Bailey, Cosmich Simmons & Brown, Jackson, MS

1:30 p.m. The Impact of Asbestos Bankruptcies on the Tort System

This session will examine defense strategies to assign asbestos tort liability to now bankrupt former co-defendants. The presentation will include a discussion of the historical and current impact asbestos bankruptcies had on peripheral tort defendants and an update on the status of pending asbestos bankruptcy cases. The speakers will include an overview of current trust assets and payments, outline jurisdictional issues related to recent trust transparency legislation, and discuss potential actions to be taken in line with the fact pattern guiding this year’s DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar.

Mary Margaret Gay, Gay Jones & Kuhn PLLC, Jackson, MS
Peter R. Kelso, Roux Associates, Inc., Washington, D.C.

2:30 p.m. Defending the Indefensible Case: The Importance of Alternative Exposures

In this timely session, Ms. Riggins will discuss the importance of exploring and developing alternative exposures in cases that are seemingly indefensible and how to effectively assert the low-dose Chrysotile defense.

Jeanette Riggins, MG+M LLP, Dallas, TX

3:20 p.m. Expert Panel on Women and Mesothelioma

Experts on the toxicology and epidemiology of asbestos will share scientific information related to the recent trials involving mesothelioma in women.

Dennis Paustenbach, PhD, CIH, DABT, Paustenbach & Associates, Jackson, WY
Julie Goodman, PhD, DABT, FACE, ATS, Gradient, Boston, MA

4:20 p.m. Break

4:30 p.m. Breakout Sessions

For more details, click on the "Breakout Sessions" tab below.

5:30 p.m. Adjourn

6:00 p.m. Premier Networking Reception
Sponsored by Hawkins Parnell & Young LLP

Click here for details.
8:00 p.m. Dine-Arounds

Join colleagues and friends at selected restaurants for dinner (on your own).

Friday, November 17, 2023

Time (Central) Program Location
8:00 a.m. Registration and Coffee Service
9:00 a.m. Welcome and Announcements

Bruce T. Bishop, Willcox Savage, Norfolk, VA
Mahsa Kashani Tippins, DCo LLC, Nashville, TN

9:10 a.m. State of the Art Relevant to Domestic / "Take Home" Exposures

Mr. Pugh and Dr. Mowat will discuss issues related to domestic (or take-home) exposures from the perspective of what was available in the scientific and medical literature and how those authorities apply to the fact pattern guiding this year’s DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar. Mr. Pugh and Dr. Mowat will also discuss how attorneys can obtain information during discovery to ascertain details to help expert scientists perform valid and detailed exposure assessments in domestic asbestos exposure case.

Fionna S. Mowat, PhD, Exponent, Menlo Park, CA
Lawrence G. Pugh III, Pugh Accardo LLP, New Orleans, LA

10:10 a.m. Coffee Break

10:25 a.m. Taking the Offensive to Effectively Prepare and Present Your Corporate Representative at Deposition and in Trial

Mr. Lowery will present on the strategies for identifying, preparing and defending corporate representative witnesses in toxic tort litigation. He will demonstrate how to use corporate representative testimony offensively to defend corporate clients and affirmatively prove key elements of the defense case necessary for a successful outcome.

James A. Lowery, GRSM LLP, Dallas, TX

11:15 a.m. Closing Argument

Closing argument is your last chance to talk to jurors before they decide the case. It’s time to close the deal. In this session, Ms. Frost will demonstrate how to effectively deliver a closing argument that is tethered to the fact pattern guiding this year’s DRI Asbestos Medicine Seminar.

Sharla Frost, Sharla J. Frost, Attorney at Law, Houston, TX

12:05 p.m. Climate Change: Hot Topics in Ethics

Join the dynamic duo of Hong and Mohan for updates on how courts, clients and law firms have responded to recent ethics issues involving over zealousness, the use of artificial intelligence, conflicts of interest, sanctions, and conduct unbecoming.

Laura Kingsley Hong, Tucker Ellis LLP, Cleveland, OH
Catherine A. Mohan, McCarter & English, LLP, Hartford, CT

1:05 p.m. Adjourn

Young Lawyers Breakout (November 16 1:30–4:20 p.m.)

Moderator: Brianna Bailey, Cosmich Simmons & Brown, Jackson, MS

Time (Central) Program Location
1:30 p.m. An Associate’s Role at Trial: What to Expect and How to Succeed

Lions, and Tigers, and Bears, Oh My! Trying a case is stressful and can be scary. Learn what you can do to help prepare, starting at the beginning of the case, and assist during trial and strategies during trial to keep the stressors and nerves in check and set you up for success – even if the verdict isn’t in your client’s favor.

Nicole MacKenzie, Williams Kastner, Seattle, WA
Robin Silver, Miles & Stockbridge, Baltimore, MD

2:10 p.m. Preparing for the Direct and Cross Examination of Expert Witnesses

This presentation will focus on how to prepare expert witnesses for direct and cross-examination at trial, whether you are preparing your client’s retained expert or preparing for opposing counsel’s expert. The panel will explore fact scenarios, provide tips from asbestos trials, and give perspective from an expert on trial testimony.

Amanda Burns, MSPH DABT, Stantec, Washington, D.C.
Kate Mercer-Lawson, Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell, Denver, CO
Amber Barlow Garcia, Deutsch Kerrigan, LLP, New Orleans, LA

2:50 p.m. How the Communication of Facts in the Litigation Impacts a Damages Analysis by the Client and the Insurer

From evaluating a case for a potential early settlement to a later-stage assessment of a defendant’s trial risk, local counsels’ communications regarding key facts impacting the damages analysis are crucial. This panel will discuss the kinds of facts that clients, national coordinating counsel, in-house counsel and insurers rely upon and seek to identify, develop and have communicated to them at various stages of the litigation in order to achieve the best possible resolution.

Melissa Malloy, Pierce Davis & Perritano, Boston, MA
Amanda Webber, Allianz, Petaluma, CA
Eddie Medina, Foley Mansfield, Miami, FL
Dan Kuszmerski, Hoagland Longo, New Brunswick, NJ

3:30 p.m. Exploring Artificial Intelligence in Litigation

Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly changing the world, and the legal profession is no exception. The panel will discuss how to use AI safely in your practice to improve efficiency and provide new insights.

Clare S. Millette, Cosmich Simmons & Brown, Jackson, MS
Brianna Bailey, Cosmich Simmons & Brown, Jackson, MS

Breakout Sessions (November 16 4:30–5:30 p.m.)

Breakout Session 1

Time (Central) Program Location
4:30 p.m. Plaintiff Trial Tactics / Changing Bad Behavior

Kurt Greve, Lathrop GPM, Dallas, TX
Benjamin Pucci, Darger Errante Yavitz & Blau, New York, NY

Breakout Session 2

Time (Central) Program Location
4:30 p.m. Fall 2023 Talc Update

Eric D. Cook, Willcox Savage, Norfolk, VA

Breakout Session 3

Time (Central) Program Location
4:30 p.m. Corporate / Insurance Roundtable (Open to Defense Counsel)

Frederick Schaefer, Nationwide, Wausau, WI
Amanda Webber, Allianz, Petaluma, CA
Alexandra Nassopoulos, Resolute Management, Boston, MA
Marsharee Wilcox, Brandywine, Philadelphia, PA
Jay Surdukowki, The Riverstone Group, Concord, NH
Greg Jolivette, Sherwin Williams, Cleveland, OH
Nicholas Fox, Volvo Group, Greensboro, NC

Headquarters Hotel Information

The DRI room block at the Austin Marriott Downtown is now sold out. Please use the link below to reserve a room at a nearby available hotel.

Alternative Hotels

If you are planning on attending the seminar and have not secured a hotel reservation, search for hotel availability via our trusted partner aRes Travel**.

**aRes Travel is a third-party travel planner. Rates, deposits, and cancellation policies may vary and are the responsibility of the guest. Questions on hotel policies or payments made on aRes website should be directed to the aRes Reservation Center or to the hotel directly.

CLE Information

Earn up to 13.00 hours of continuing legal education hours (CLE), including one (1) hour of Ethics from this seminar.

Asbestos Medicine CLE by State


DRI's Asbestos Medicine Seminar is proudly sponsored by:

Burr Forman LLP Results Matter Cetrulo LLP Clyde & Co logo
FM Foley & Mansfield Gordon & Rees Scully Mansukhani Hawkins Parnell & Young, LLP
HeplerBroom LLC
Husch Blackwell KCIC Be Certain
Leader Berkon Colao & Silverstein LLP
McCaffery & Associates Inc Historical Research PDP Pierce Davis & Perritano LLP Polsinelli
Tucker Ellis | LLP
WLB Wilbraham, Lawler & Buba, P.C.
Williams Kastner

Thank you to our Official Supporter: TBD

If you would like to contact DRI about seminar sponsorship opportunities, including pricing, or to reserve a spot, please go to Advertising and Sponsorship.

DRI Cares

Blessings in a Backpack

Blessings in a Backpack Who Will Feed the Kids this Weekend?

Please join us in supporting Blessings in a Backpack, an organization that mobilizes communities, individuals, and resources to provide food on the weekends for school-aged children across America who might otherwise go hungry. Seminar attendees will have the opportunity to fill bags of food on the way to the joint networking lunch on Thursday, November 16th. Feeding a child before you feed yourself is a wonderful way to support children and families in the Austin community.

Donate to Blessings in a Backpack

Canine Companions

Canine Companions logo

DRI Cares is partnering with Canine Companions, an organization that provides service dogs to adults, children and veterans with disabilities and facility dogs to professionals working in healthcare, criminal justice and educational settings. Learn more from DRI member and Canine Companions puppy-raiser Jay Evans and meet some canine companions and their humans on Wednesday, November 15th during registration between 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. You don’t want to miss the dogs!

Donate to Canine Companions


NEW in 2023 – Four Additional On-Demand Programs Included With Every Seminar!

CLE Credit will be sought from every state requiring CLE hours in elimination of bias/diversity and inclusion, ethics, substance abuse/mental health, and law practice management. The CLE grid will provide updated information concerning hours that have been approved by each jurisdiction and for which credits. For states not requiring these special credits, general education credits will be sought. Access to these on-demand programs will expire 30 days after the seminar ends.

View On-Demand Library

Diversity/Elimination of Bias in the Profession

Invisible or Mixed-Visible Diversity – Combatting Bias

Often diversity programs and initiatives are focused on visible traits such as gender or race, but bias exists related to sexual orientation, gender identity, and some disabilities that are not readily visible to the eye. This panel will discuss how to address these biases and to create an environment where those with invisible or mixed-visible diversity can operate at the highest level.

Stacy Douglas, Everett Dorey LLP, Irvine, CA
Gary Howard, Bradley, Birmingham, AL
Ronna Kinsella, Glassman Wyatt Tuttle & Cox PC, Memphis, TN

Law Practice Management Credit

Succession Planning: Failing to Plan Is a Plan to Fail

Succession planning is considered one of the most pressing issues facing not only law firms but also clients. Senior partners are working into their golden years and can sometimes be reluctant to engage in a succession plan, but clients want to know that there is a plan for the transition of their work without interruption. Join us to learn:

  1. the importance of succession planning for the benefit both the law firm and its clients;
  2. how succession planning impacts retention and continuity of the firm and client relationships;
  3. how to approach the subject with senior attorneys; and
  4. strategies for implementing a successful succession plan.

Marie E. Chafe, Conn Kavanaugh, Boston, MA
Matthew Cairns, Textron Inc., Providence, RI
Elizabeth M. Brotten, Foley & Mansfield PLLP, Minneapolis, MN
Meade Hartfield, Bradley Arant, Birmingham, AL


Technology, Ethics & Remote Work: What You Need to Know Now

The Rules of Professional Conduct regarding competence and diligence require all lawyers to keep abreast of changes in technology. This webinar will provide you with tips and information on new issues related to technology and the practice of law, including the challenges of the remote work environment. You will learn the ethics and professionalism considerations when using technology in your practice and your ethical duties when it comes to “keeping abreast of changes” in technology.

Amber Garcia, Deutsch Kerrigan LLP, New Orleans, LA
Alyssa Johnson, Barron & Newberger PC, Milwaukee, WI
Clare Roubion, Louisiana Legal Ethics, LLC, Lafayette, LA

Mental Health & Attorney Wellness

Lessons for Lawyers from the Science of Well-Being

This presentation will focus on the practical steps that we can take as individuals to improve well-being, drawing on recent research from cognitive science and beginning with the preface that happiness can be learned and applied. Specifically, we will provide an evidence-based arsenal of practical tools that lawyers can apply in their own lives to improve their well-being.

Emma Ross, Goldman Ismail Tomaselli Brennan & Baum, Chicago, IL
Shayna Cook, Goldman Ismail Tomaselli Brennan & Baum, Chicago, IL

Other Information

If you have any questions or concerns regarding DRI programs, please contact DRI Customer Service at 312.795.1101 or custservice@dri.org.