2024 DRI Construction Law Seminar

January 17–19, 2024 | Phoenix, Arizona

Construction plot design and helmet

Explore the Future of Construction Law!

Register by December 4, 2023, to receive the early bird discounted rate.
View registration information here.

Register for the Seminar

The future is upon us. Construction professionals face new challenges at every stage of the build. The race for alternative energy has changed not just how we build but what powers the build. Traditional building methods are rapidly giving way to novel methods due to both necessity and invention. Attorneys, clients, and insurers must be prepared to address the future workforce, products and contractual relationships which come with this change. In challenging legal and economic times, how do we as lawyers best represent our clients moving forward into an era where AI and the global view impact the drafting, management, and litigation of construction? Join the DRI Construction Law Committee as we share our thoughts and strategies for practicing in this challenging and exciting time.

What You Will Learn:

  • How new technology has created a sustainable build.
  • The future of boilerplate construction contracts: what you need to know.
  • Practices and pitfalls of redevelopment and re-purposing of historic buildings and properties with community significance.
  • Coverage trends and client exposure to risks based on new insurer trends.
  • How the economy, worker shortages, and legislation will impact the future of construction.
  • Alternative energy: representing and defending clients that power tomorrow.
  • Effective use of alternative dispute resolution construction disputes.
  • Latest decisions from across the country that impact the defense bar.

Expand Your Network By:

  • Meeting and networking with other Construction Law Committee members.
  • Enjoying networking happy hours.
  • Attending dine-arounds to meet new members and expand your network of contacts!
  • Participate in newly designated small group sessions specifically designed for you to spend time with colleagues from around the country.

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

  • TBD

*Subject to change

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Thank You to DRI's Construction Law Committee Leadership

Denise Montgomery
Denise Montgomery
Program Chair
Rinaldo Cartaya
Rinaldo Cartaya
Program Vice Chair
James Noonan
James Noonan
Program Vice Chair
Andrew Ferguson
Andrew Ferguson
Committee Chair
James Weatherholtz
James Weatherholtz
Law Institute

Join the Construction Law Committee

Registration Information

Save up to $200 when you register on or before December 4!

Register Today

Member Pricing Non-Member Pricing Non-Member Bundle ^
Early Bird Registration*
(Now thru Dec. 4)
$1,395 $1,795 $1,715
Regular Registration*
(Dec. 5–Jan. 16)
$1,595 $1,995 $1,915
Onsite Registration $1,695 $2,095 $2,015
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 Construction Law 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 Event at the XXXXX
Sponsored by: ABC

Date: Wednesday, Month Day from 7:00–10:00 p.m.
Pricing: Free when you register for the seminar (guest tickets $100 each, available at check-out)
Location: XXXXX, Address, City, State


Agenda with Speakers

*Schedule and Speakers subject to change

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Time (Mountain) Program
12:00 p.m. Registration
3:00 p.m. Who Says Construction Law Can’t Be Fun?

Start your seminar with split sessions to learn construction techniques and have a little game show fun.

Track 1: Hands-on Demonstration

More details to come.

Jeffrey E. Anderson, J.S. Held, Denver, CO
Brian Given, J.S. Held, Phoenix, AZ
Andrew Lonergan, J.S. Held, Denver, CO
Ron Mallory, Jr., J.S. Held, Anaheim, CA

Track 2: Jeopardy

Join us for an inclusive and interactive game show-style game where we focus on construction defects. Categories will include SPOT THE DEFECT, WHO’s RESPONSIBLE, TOP THREE, YOU CAN’T MAKE THIS UP, and NAME THAT STATE, as well as a few others. Audience members are encouraged to bring their best/worst/funniest construction defect 30-second story to participate in our YOU CAN’T MAKE THIS UP category. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just looking for more knowledge, audience participation is strongly encouraged. Join us for the prizes and connect with friends old and new.

Jeffrey E. Anderson, J.S. Held, Denver, CO
Brian Given, J.S. Held, Phoenix, AZ
Andrew Lonergan, J.S. Held, Denver, CO
Ron Mallory, Jr., J.S. Held, Anaheim, CA
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, January 18, 2024

Time (Mountain) Program
8:30 a.m. Registration & Coffee Service

Get to know the early risers in our group over a cup of coffee.
9:00 a.m. Welcome and Introductions

James E. Weatherholtz, Womble Bond Dickinson LLP, Charleston, SC
Denise M. Montgomery, Sweeney & Sheehan PC, Philadelphia, PA
9:10 a.m. The Future of Homebuilding

Learn from industry professionals about the development and use of sustainable materials and AI building techniques. The products and AI utilized in construction impacts not just how we build but also the future of construction-based claims. Products like Hempcrete and Modular/3d Construction have changed how homes are built and their use has changed not just the builds themselves but also the contracts and coverage related to projects.

Robert A. Escher, US Hemp Building Association, Dorset, VT
Kristen Wendler, JV Driver Group, Tucson, AZ
Thamir Kaddouri, Law Office of Thamir A. R. Kaddouri, Jr. P.A., Tampa, FL
10:10 a.m. Quick Hit: The Future of Boilerplate Construction Contracts

Find out how changes in the build and the use of AI in both the construction and drafting of construction documents have impacted the use of boilerplate construction contracts. Projects have changed, and with that so have the terms of the contracts that we as professionals encounter during the project and in litigation after the project. Learn about how these changes impact your client’s rights.

Brian Perlberg, ConsensusDocs, Arlington, VA
10:30 a.m. Coffee Break
10:45 a.m. Alternative Dispute Resolution

"You Can’t Handle the Truth," or Can You? Effective Use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) for resolution of Construction Disputes. The dispute resolution provisions of most construction contracts contain clauses requiring mediation and arbitration as opposed to litigation in state or federal court. ADR can be used by agreement of the parties in construction defect cases or in cases where the contract does not provide for ADR. This program will provide an overview of the various ADR options available for efficient resolution of construction disputes, including recommended best practices for preparing the dispute for the ADR process to obtain resolution either through early neutral evaluation, mediation, or arbitration.

Denise Motta, Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani, LLP, Louisville, KY
11:35 a.m. Urban Housing Revitalization – Case Studies of Successful Historic Conversions

Learn about the practices and pitfalls in historic conversions. Construction today is centered on sustainability. As communities look to preserve and revitalize resources, we as practitioners need to understand the approval process, engineering limitations, and ultimately the tax benefits which impact these projects. You will learn through a series of case studies presented by those who have successfully handled both residential and commercial conversions how to successfully manage the build while maximizing the benefit to the community and your client.

Stephanie Calhoun, Related Midwest, Detroit, MI
Katie Twomey, J.S. Held, Charlotte, NC
12:30 p.m. DRI Cares - Blessings in a Backpack

On your way to lunch, support Blessings in a Backpack, DRI Cares, and the DRI Foundation by filling a bag with food for a child experiencing food insecurity in our community. Feed a child before you feed yourself to make a difference in the lives of children and families all over our country and in this local community.

Click here for details.
12:30 p.m. DRI Networking Lunch

Join the Civil Rights seminar attendees for lunch and networking opportunities that are second to none!
2:00 p.m. Coverage Battles – Case Law Update

Hear from industry professionals about the changing landscape of coverage and how it may impact your client’s ability to prosecute, defend, and ultimately resolve claims arising from construction. Learn about the current trends in excess insurance, multiple occurrences, aggregates and what your client can expect. Hear from a coverage and alternative dispute expert on how to navigate coverage obstacles during mediation and arbitration.

Diana Gerstberger, Arch Insurance Group Inc., Roswell, GA
Lee Shidlofsky, Shidlofsky Law Firm PLLC, Austin, TX
Jason Gunther, Gunther Legal, PLLC, Fort Lauderdale, FL
2:50 p.m. Shortage of Workers and Legislative Impacts

A labor attorney and industry professional sit down for a frank discussion about the challenges builders face in a market with a need for a housing and development, and workforce shortage. How can we successfully navigate the legislative hurdles, to meet America’s needs.

Helen Holden, Spencer Fane LLP, Phoenix, AZ
Marguerite Charlson, TopBuild, Daytona Beach, FL
3:40 p.m. Committee Business Meeting
4:00 p.m. Small Group Networking Opportunities
6:00 p.m. Premier Networking Reception

Join fellow seminar attendees at our Premier Networking Reception. More details to come.
8:00 p.m. Dine-Arounds

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

Friday, January 19, 2024

Time (Mountain) Program
8:30 a.m. Registration and Coffee Service
9:00 a.m. Welcome and Announcements

James Noonan, Ryan, Ryan & Deluca, LLP, Bridgeport, CT
9:10 a.m. Renewable Energy – Wind and Solar – Powering Tomorrow

Practitioners and experts will discuss the practicalities of building the energy infrastructure of tomorrow, the legislation which requires it, and how it impacts future building projects. Building the structures that harness the energy necessary to create a sustainable supply of energy and run the construction that requires it is a layered process that requires knowledge of the legislation requiring it, the technology needed to build it, and the legal expertise to ensure the projects stay on track and deliver what’s promised.

Spencer R. Murphy, Baird Holm LLP, Omaha, NE
Patrick Bartman, Baird Holm LLP, Omaha, NE
John Rejebian, Blended Power, Phoenix, AZ
10:10 a.m. Coffee Break
10:25 a.m. Developments – Case Law Update

Lawyers from around the country will update us on significant statutory and case law developments that impact our practice. The cases and statutes will cover regional and national bases. So, this will likely impact your direct practice or the venues in which your clients work. Our speakers are versed on national legal developments and will keep you updated on important developments.

Kurt Campbell, Klinedinst PC, San Diego, CA
Ellen Greiper, Wilson Elser, New York, NY
David Henderson, Hartline Barger LLP, Dallas, TX
Victoria Godwin-Reese, Chartwell Law, Miami, FL
11:25 a.m. Break
11:30 a.m. Implicit Bias in Depositions (Ethics) (Joint Session with Women in the Law Seminar)

Even if you know how to recognize implicit bias, do you know how to address it during a deposition? Our panelists will share examples of where implicit bias is raised, how to address it on (or off the record), and ways to prevent it from happening in the first place. Leave this seminar with tips to make your next deposition your best deposition.

Jaime L. Regan, Harris Beach PLLC, New York, NY
Chris S. Egner, Continental Tire Company, Fort Mill, SC
12:30 p.m. Adjourn

Headquarters Hotel Information

A limited number of discounted hotel rooms have been made available at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown, 340 N 3rd Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004. Take advantage of the group rate of $259.00 Single/Double in one of two ways:

The hotel block is limited, and rooms and rates are available on a first-come, first-served basis. You must make reservations by December 19, 2023, to be eligible for the hotel's group rate. Requests for reservations made after December 19 are subject to room and rate availability.

CLE Information

Earn up to TBD hours of continuing legal education hours (CLE) from this seminar.

View CLE Credit by State

CLE Late Fees


DRI's Construction Law Seminar is proudly sponsored by:

Cox P.L.L.C. Dinsmore Legal Counsel ESi Exponent logo FSSV Fee, Smith, Sharp & Vitullo LLP Gunther Legal logo HAAG Since 1924 Hartline Barger LLP HKA Claims Advisory & Dispute Resolution Experts Jackson Kelly PLLC JS | Held Nelson Forensics S-E-A Know. Wilson Elser

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, January 18th. Feeding a child before you feed yourself is a wonderful way to support children and families in the Phoenix community.

Donate to Blessings in a Backpack

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.