THURSDAY, MARCH 30, 2023
6:00 Early Arrivals Reception
Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, 505 West Jones Street, Raleigh | 6:00-7:30 PM
Join the Appellate Practice Section for a reception before the Section CLE & Annual Meeting. The Early Arrivals Reception celebrates the endeavors of the section this bar year as well as highlights the dedication of the CLE planners and speakers! All CLE participants, Appellate Practice Section members, and event sponsors are welcome for appetizers and drinks at Tobacco Road Sports Cafe in Raleigh. Thank you to the many sponsors of this reception.
FRIDAY, MARCH 31, 2023
8:25 Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:55 Welcome and Introductions
9:00 Recent Updates in NC Appellate Practice and Procedure
Matthew N. Leerberg, Fox Rothschild LLP, Raleigh Elizabeth B. "Beth" Scherer, Fox Rothschild LLP, Raleigh
From electronic filing in the trial courts to multi-page orders in the appellate courts, there's always change afoot for appellate practitioners. Receive an update on the cutting-edge and evolving issues in appellate practice and rules, and how you can adapt your practice accordingly.
10:10 Effective Amicus Advocacy
Justice Robin E. Hudson, North Carolina Supreme Court, Raleigh Sarah Boyce, North Carolina Department of Justice, Raleigh Narendra K. Ghosh, Patterson Harkavy LLP, Chapel Hill Erik R. Zimmerman, Robinson Bradshaw, Chapel Hill
Amicus curiae briefs can play a critical role in appellate advocacy by highlighting facts, arguments and implications not already addressed by the parties. Hear diverse perspectives to identify best practices in amicus advocacy, including how parties can identify and solicit support from amici, how amicus counsel can most effectively advance their clients' interests, and applicable procedural rules.
11:20 Stays and Concurrent Litigation in Trial and Appellate Courts
Judge Paul C. Ridgeway, North Carolina Superior Court, Raleigh Gagan Gupta, Paynter Law Firm PLLC, Hillsborough Amanda S. Hawkins, Brooks Pierce McLendon Humphrey & Leonard LLP, Raleigh
When is trial-court activity automatically stayed pending an appeal, and when is a stay discretionary? How can appellate counsel obtain a writ when the trial court refused to enter a stay? When is the trial court rendered functus officio based on appellate proceedings? When does it take more than certification of an interlocutory order to ensure appellate jurisdiction? Listen as this panel tackles these questions and more.
12:20 Appellate Practice Section Annual Meeting
James W. “Jamie” Kilbourne Jr., Allen Stahl & Kilbourne, Asheville, 2022-2023 Section Chair, Presiding
12:35 Lunch Break
1:20 Trial and Appellate Counsel Relations
Troy D. Shelton, Fox Rothschild LLP, Raleigh Patricia P. "Tricia" Shields, Hedrick Gardner Kincheloe & Garofalo LLP, Raleigh
Discuss how appellate counsel can manage strategic relationships with trial counsel to ensure success on appeal. Then gain insight into the value appellate attorneys can add as "embedded appellate counsel" at trial.
2:30 Preparing for and Succeeding in Oral Argument
Mark A. Hiller, Robinson Bradshaw, Chapel Hill Michelle A. Liguori, Ellis & Winters LLP, Raleigh Michael Stark, Smithfield Foods Inc., Smithfield, VA
Walk through practical tips on preparing for oral argument, from the day the argument is calendared through last-minute preparation strategies. Then learn about the dos and don'ts of oral argument as courts trend away from Zoom hearings and return to in-person proceedings.
3:40 The North Carolina Constitution in Practice
Judge Allison J. Riggs, North Carolina Court of Appeals, Raleigh R. Daniel "Dan" Gibson, Stam Law Firm PLLC, Apex Robert F. Orr, The Law Offices of Robert F. Orr, Raleigh Ryan Y. Park, Office of the NC Solicitor General, Raleigh
Explore recent and possible future developments in North Carolina constitutional law. Then hear insights and lessons learned from practicing in this unique and growing area of the law.
Appellate advocacy is more than meets the eye. It may involve partnering with trial counsel to preserve issues for appeal using proper procedure and relevant strategic considerations, or to manage concurrent litigation in the trial and appellate courts. It could include representing or coordinating with "friends of the court" to file amicus curiae briefs bringing to light practical or policy considerations affected by the appeal. It always requires navigating complex, developing areas of the law and civil and appellate procedure.
Sarah Boyce is Deputy Attorney General & General Counsel at the North Carolina Department of Justice in Raleigh.
Sarah has been a part-time Senior Lecturing Fellow at Duke University School of Law and previously was an associate at Munger Tolles & Olson LLP in Washington, D.C.
Sarah earned her B.A. in English from Davidson College, her MAT in Secondary Education from American University and her J.D. from Duke University School of Law.
Click here for more information about Sarah.
Christy C. Dunn
Christy C. Dunn is an associate at Young Moore & Henderson PA in Raleigh. She represents insurers and businesses in a variety of civil litigation matters including insurance coverage, employment, electric, and long-term care claims. She also represents employers, electric membership corporations, and long-term care facilities in civil litigation and employment law matters. She is recognized among Business North Carolina's Legal Elite™ in the Young Guns category (2022).
Before obtaining her law degree, Christy spent 13 years working as a sales engineer consulting with end users, engineers, and contractors to design, sell, and install power protection and precision cooling solutions for data centers and industrial applications. This experience provides Christy with unique insight into the responsibilities of professionals whose products and services support mission-critical business operations. By working closely with decision-makers at all levels of the end-user companies, Christy developed an appreciation for the challenges faced by business leaders making major strategic decisions.
Christy earned a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned her law degree,
magna cum laude, from Campbell Law School. While in law school, Christy interned in the Office of the Solicitor General of North Carolina and for The Honorable J. Douglas McCullough at the North Carolina Court of Appeals. Before joining Young Moore, she clerked for The Honorable Allegra Collins at the North Carolina Court of Appeals.
Click here for more information about Christy.
Narendra K. Ghosh
Narendra K. Ghosh is a partner at Patterson Harkavy LLP in Chapel Hill. With more than 15 years of legal experience, he focuses his practice on civil rights, employment law, labor law, workers' compensation, and appellate advocacy. Narendra has litigated many high-profile, notable cases involving ordinary citizens and workers fighting for their rights through the courts.
Narendra is active with the North Carolina Advocates for Justice, particularly with the Employment Law section and Legal Affairs Committee. He has served as the Chair of the North Carolina Bar Association Labor and Employment Section. He has been a member of the AFL-CIO Union Lawyers Alliance for many years and currently serves on the organization's Board. Narendra recently completed six years of service on the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Justice Center, including two years as Co-Chair of the Board.
Narendra earned his A.B.,
summa cum laude, in Computer Science from Harvard University and his J.D., magna cum laude, from the New York University School of Law. In law school, he served on the NYU Review of Law and Social Change as a Staff Member and a Managing Editor. After graduation, he was a law clerk to the Honorable A. Wallace Tashima of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and to the Honorable Emmet G. Sullivan of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. Before attending law school, Narendra was a computer programmer for several companies in Silicon Valley.
Click here for more information about Narendra.
R. Daniel "Dan" Gibson
R. Daniel "Dan" Gibson is a partner at Stam Law Firm PLLC in Apex. He practices in the areas of general civil litigation, business formation and transactions, North Carolina Constitutional law, and appeals. Dan has argued several cases in front of the North Carolina Court of Appeals and North Carolina Supreme Court and represented dozens of clients in North Carolina state courts.
Dan has worked in district attorneys' offices, law firms small and large, and judicial chambers. Dan interned with Justice Paul Newby of the North Carolina Supreme Court, District Attorney Phil Berger, Jr. of Rockingham County, and several law firms in Winston-Salem while attending Wake Forest University School of Law.
Dan is a member of the North Carolina Bar Association, 10th Judicial District Bar and the Wake County Bar Association. He is admitted to practice in all North Carolina state courts, the United States Courts for the Eastern and Middle Districts of North Carolina, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court.
Dan earned his B.A.,
summa cum laude, in Government from Campbell University and his J.D. from Wake Forest University School of Law.
Click here for more information about Dan.
Gagan Gupta; is a partner with Tin Fulton Walker & Owen in Chapel Hill and of counsel at Paynter Law in Hillsborough, where he leads the firm's insurance disputes division. He began his legal career as a clerk to the Honorable Pierre N. Level on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Manhattan. Following his clerkship, Gagan returned to his home state of North Carolina to practice law.
Gagan's practice includes trial and appellate work in state and federal courts in broad areas of civil rights, including wrongful convictions, police misconduct, employment and housing discrimination, and personal injury. He also maintains an active commercial and class action practice in the areas of insurance and products liability.
Gagan is currently a member of North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper's Board of Science, Technology, and Innovation, and currently serves on the board of the nonprofit North Carolina Prisoner Legal Services. He is also an active member of the NC Advocates for Justice and is an alum of NCAJ Next, the organization's leadership fellowship program.
Gagan earned his B.A. from Davidson College, his MSc. degree from The London School of Economics and Political Science and his J.D. from Stanford Law School.
Click here for more information about Gagan.
Amanda S. Hawkins
Amanda S. Hawkins is an associate at Brooks Pierce McLendon Humphrey & Leonard LLP in Raleigh. She represents businesses and individuals in all levels of state and federal courts. She uses her experience as a law clerk to inform her litigation strategy and assist clients in all stages of litigation.
Amanda leverages her experience as a law clerk in the U.S. Court of Appeals and the U.S. District Court to advise clients at all stages of litigation. She has significant experience litigating complex cases in both state and federal court, including class and mass actions, financial services disputes, and products liability suits.
Amanda earned her B.A., with highest distinction, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her J.D., with high honors, from the University of North Carolina School of Law, where she was Order of the Coif and Executive Comments Editor of the North Carolina Law Review.
Click here for more information about Amanda.
Mark A. Hiller
Mark A. Hiller is a shareholder and commercial litigator at Robinson Bradshaw in Chapel Hill. He helps clients navigate their complex disputes at all stages, from pre-litigation through appeals. He has represented clients in high-stakes disputes in a range of industries, including health care, manufacturing, telecommunications, banking and government contracting.
Mark's experience includes representing or advising clients on significant matters involving class actions, business and contract disputes, intellectual property, trade secret disputes, cybersecurity and the False Claims Act. He also has represented clients in government investigations.
Mark is also active in the legal community, where he has been appointed a member of the NCBA Appellate Section Council.
Before joining Robinson Bradshaw, Mark served as a law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and practiced law at a litigation boutique in Washington, D.C.
Mark earned his A.B.,
magna cum laude, in Political Science and Government from Harvard University and his J.D. from University of Virginia School of Law.
Click here for more information about Mark.
Travis S. Hinman
Travis S. Hinman is an attorney with Robinson Bradshaw in Charlotte. She represents clients in complex business litigation and appeals. Clients benefit from Travis' broad range of experience litigating significant business disputes, class actions, employment matters and other high-stakes cases in state and federal courts in North Carolina and across the country. Her experience allows her to advise clients through all stages of litigation, including fact investigation, discovery, motions practice, mediation and settlement efforts, and appeals.
Travis maintains an active pro bono practice focused on appellate work. Among other matters, she has represented the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law as amicus curiae before the U.S. Supreme Court and the North Carolina Legislative Black Caucus as amicus curiae before the North Carolina Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of North Carolina.
Travis earned her B.A., with highest distinction, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her J.D., with highest honors, from the University of North Carolina School of Law, where she was Order of the Coif and Editor-in-Chief of the North Carolina Law Review.
Click here for more information about Travis.
Justice Robin E. Hudson
Justice Robin E. Hudson was admitted to the North Carolina Bar in 1976 and practiced law in Raleigh and Durham until elected to the Court of Appeals in November 2000. She is the first North Carolina woman elected to the appellate court division without having been appointed first. She served on the NC Court of Appeals from January 2001 through December 2006. During that time, she helped organize and coordinate the Court of Appeals voluntary mediation program. She was elected to the North Carolina Supreme Court and began her first 8-year term in January 2007. In 2014, she was re-elected to her current term, which runs through 2022.
Except for 3 years as assistant appellant defender in the mid 1980's, Justice Hudson practiced law in the private sector and handled a variety of trials and appeals, but concentrated on workers' compensation and tort litigation, with particular emphasis on occupational disease and products liability, as well as criminal law. She practiced extensively before the Industrial Commission, as well as in all levels of State and Federal courts. From 1994 until she began serving on the Court of Appeals, she was certified to mediate cases from Superior Court and the Industrial Commission.
Click here for more information about Justice Hudson.
Matthew N. "Matt" Leerberg
Matthew N. "Matt" Leerberg is a partner with Fox Rothschild LLP in Raleigh. He is a member of the firm's Executive Committee and Co-Chair of the Appellate Practice Group. He focuses his practice on helping businesses navigate state and federal litigation and appeals. He leads Fox's national appellate team, which serves clients before the U.S. Supreme Court, every federal circuit court in the country and more than 20 state appellate courts.
Widely recognized for his work as a litigator and strategist, Matt is often hired to handle appeals in cases that met with unfavorable results in the lower courts. He centers his practice on helping businesses navigate complex state and federal litigation and appeals, including bet-the-company and other high-stakes litigation.
Along with his Fox colleague Beth Scherer, Matt authors the comprehensive treatise
North Carolina Appellate Practice and Procedure, published by LexisNexis, © 2022, 2019. Matt enjoys thinking through appellate strategy issues and is always happy to chat.
Matt is a member of the North Carolina, Wake County and Federal Bar Associations, North Carolina Business Court the Defense Research Institute.
Matt earned his B.A.,
magna cum laude, from Harvard University and his J.D., with high honors, from Duke University School of Law.
Matt is a founder and regular writer for the
North Carolina Appellate Practice Blog, which provides news, information, tips and resources for practicing law in North Carolina's state and federal appellate courts.
Click here for more information about Matt.
Michelle A. Liguori
Michelle A. Liguori is a partner at Ellis & Winters LLP in Raleigh, where she focuses her practice on appeals, class actions, and section 1983 litigation. Her appellate practice spans the broad array of subject matters litigated by Ellis & Winters, including complex commercial disputes, class actions, medical malpractice, land use, and estate litigation. In addition to handling cases on appeal, she advises on matters of appellate strategy while cases are proceeding in trial court. She also represents criminal defendants as appointed counsel in the North Carolina appellate courts and the Fourth Circuit.
Michelle is a founding member of
, Ellis & Winters's class action blog, and she regularly writes and edits articles for the blog. Best in Class
Before joining Ellis & Winters in 2018, Michelle spent three years helping federal judges decide appeals as a staff attorney and law clerk at the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. She later worked for the Solicitor General's Office at the North Carolina Department of Justice, handling civil and criminal appeals in the state and federal appellate courts. At Ellis & Winters, Michelle has worked on numerous appeals that have arisen in civil litigation matters, and she represents criminal defendants in the North Carolina appellate courts as a member of the Office of the Appellate Defender's Criminal Appellate Roster. Michelle is also on the Criminal Justice Act Appointments list for the Eleventh Circuit.
In addition to her law practice, Michelle serves the next generation of lawyers as an adjunct professor at Duke Law School, where she has taught legal writing to international L.L.M. students, and scholarly writing to J.D. students. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Harvard Club of the Research Triangle.
Michelle earner her B.A. from Amherst College and her J.D.,
cum laude, from Harvard Law School.
Click here for more information about Michelle.
Former Justice Robert F. Orr
Former Justice Robert F. Orr is a solo practitioner with The Law Offices of Robert F. Orr in Raleigh.
Justice Orr was licensed to practice law in 1975 beginning his practice in Asheville doing civil litigation. In 1986 he was appointed by Governor James G. Martin to the NC Court of Appeals and served on that Court through 1994. From 1995 until his retirement, he served on the NC Supreme Court. Over the course of his 18 years in the judiciary, he successfully ran 4 statewide elections, twice for the Court of Appeals and twice for the Supreme Court.
In 2004, Justice Orr became the Executive Director for the NC Institute for Constitutional Law litigating cases involving the NC Constitution. In 2010 he returned to private practice primarily handling litigation and appellate work focused on state constitutional issues plus serving a brief term as the interim District Attorney for the 35
th Prosecutorial District. Over the course of nearly twenty years, he taught a course on the North Carolina Constitution as an adjunct professor at UNC School of Law and prior to that as adjunct professor at NC Central School of Law teaching Appellate Advocacy.
Justice Orr has served on numerous boards and commissions over the years including as a member and then Chairman of the Secretary of the Interior's National Parks System Advisory Board. In 2022, he co-chaired work for the Carter Center in Atlanta, GA with former Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts focused on strengthening confidence and support for the election process in North Carolina. He served in the U.S Army from 1968–1971.
Justice Orr earned his A.B. in Radio/Television/Motion Pictures from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University and his J.D. from UNC School of Law.
Click here for more information about Justice Orr.
Solicitor General Ryan Y. Park
Solicitor General Ryan Y. Park is Solicitor General with the North Carolina Department of Justice at the North Carolina Department of Justice in Raleigh where he oversees the State's civil appellate litigation and advises Attorney General Josh Stein on legal policy and constitutional issues. He teaches North Carolina Constitutional Law as an adjunct professor at UNC Law School.
Ryan had served alongside Matt Sawchak as a Deputy Solicitor General since 2017. He previously clerked for Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and David H. Souter on the U.S. Supreme Court, Chief Judge Robert A. Katzmann on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and Judge Jed S. Rakoff on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. He also has practiced appellate and complex commercial litigation at a large international law firm and served in the legal office of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Justice's Antitrust Division.
While serving as Deputy Solicitor General, Ryan presented oral argument in more than a dozen appeals in the North Carolina and federal appellate courts on matters ranging from free speech to tax. He also led the briefing and presented oral argument in both the Fourth Circuit and U.S. Supreme Court in
Allen v. Cooper, a case at the intersection of copyright law and sovereign immunity.
Ryan is a graduate,
summa cum laude, of Harvard Law School and Amherst College.
Judge Paul C. Ridgeway
Judge Paul C. Ridgeway is Senior Resident Superior Court Judge of the 10 th Judicial District (Wake County), North Carolina.
Judge Ridgeway received his B.S. and M.P.A. from North Carolina State University, and his J.D. from Campbell School of Law, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the law review. Following law school, Judge Ridgeway received a post-graduate degree from the University of Amsterdam in the law of the European Community.
Prior to becoming a judge in 2007, Judge Ridgeway was engaged in the private practice of law for 20 years, primarily in the fields of commercial litigation and transactions. Judge Ridgeway has served as President of the Wake County Bar Association and as a Vice President of the NCBA.
For 25 years, Judge Ridgeway has also been an adjunct professor of law at Campbell School of Law, where he teaches seminars in International Litigation and Law & Public Policy.
Click here for more information about Judge Ridgeway.
Judge Allison J. Riggs
Judge Allison J. Riggs was appointed to the North Carolina Court of Appeals by Governor Roy Cooper and formally sworn in on February 9, 2023.
Prior to being appointed, Allison was the Co-Executive Director and Chief Counsel for Voting Rights at the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, an organization she joined in 2009. Her voting rights work during her tenure at SCSJ had been focused on fighting for fair redistricting plans, fighting against voter suppression, and advocating for electoral reforms that would expand access to voting.
Allison has litigated redistricting cases on behalf of State NAACP Conferences in Texas, Florida, Virginia and North Carolina. In 2018, she argued the Texas redistricting case in the United States Supreme Court, and in 2019, she argued the North Carolina partisan gerrymandering case in the Supreme Court. Allison works closely with grassroots organizations and communities of color as they seek to advance their political and civil rights.
Allison earned her undergraduate, Master's Degree and J.D. from the University of Florida.
Click here for more information about Allison.
Elizabeth B. "Beth" Scherer
Elizabeth B. "Beth" Scherer is of counsel with Fox Rothschild LLP in Raleigh. She is a Board Certified Specialist in Appellate Practice who for 15 years has devoted her entire practice to federal and state appeals. She has briefed and argued cases in both the North Carolina appellate courts and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. She has also represented clients before the Supreme Court of the United States.
Beth recently co-authored Lexis'
North Carolina Appellate Practice and Procedure treatise (©2019) with her Fox Rothschild colleague, Matt Leerberg. She is also a founding member and regular contributor to the North Carolina Appellate Practice Blog, a leading resource on North Carolina appellate practice and procedure.
Additionally, Beth assists and counsels attorneys throughout North Carolina in preparing their appeals, complying with rules of appellate procedure and correcting appellate rules violations.
Beth is a member and past chair of the North Carolina Bar Association's Appellate Rules Committee, which recommends changes to the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure to the Supreme Court, publishes appellate advocacy practice guides and seeks to improve the quality of appellate advocacy in North Carolina.
Beth earned her A.S. from Gainesville College, her B.S.,
summa cum laude, from University of Georgia and her J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Georgia School of Law.
Click here for more information about Beth.
Troy D. Shelton
Troy D. Shelton is a board-certified appellate specialist and a partner at the Raleigh office of Fox Rothschild LLP. He partners with trial attorneys to defend their judgment or find creative paths to reversal. He handles appeals in every area of the law.
Troy has been certified by the North Carolina State Bar as an Appellate Specialist. He has a wide variety of trial and appellate experience involving class actions, antitrust, employment, land use and family law cases. He also frequently litigates commercial disputes in federal and North Carolina Business courts and serves as a class action consultant to attorneys inside and outside the firm, for both plaintiffs and defendants.
Troy is a contributing author to the
, which provides news, information and tips for practicing law in North Carolina's State and Federal Appellate Courts. North Carolina Appellate Practice Blog
Troy is a member of the Appellate Practice of the North Carolina Bar Association.
Troy earned his B.A.,
magna cum laude, from Duke University and his J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of North Carolina School of Law.
Click here for more information about Troy.
Patricia P. "Tricia" Shields
Patricia P. "Tricia" Shields is a partner at Hedrick Gardner Kincheloe & Garofalo LLP in Raleigh. She is a highly experienced trial and appellate attorney whose practice focuses on civil litigation. She represents people and their businesses in a wide variety of cases, including complex commercial litigation, malpractice and professional responsibility, products liability claims, and civil rights claims. In addition, she litigates before occupational licensing boards, defending and prosecuting licensees.
Throughout her 35-year career, she has enjoyed an active appellate practice, appearing regularly before North Carolina's Court of Appeals and Supreme Court. She has also argued before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and is often retained to assist other attorneys with their appeals.
Tricia has been an active member of the North Carolina Association of Defense Attorneys, serving as its President in 2011-2012. In 2020, she received the NCADA's Robert J. Elster Award for Professional Excellence, which recognizes contributions to the Bar as a whole, and to the community. She is a member of the Wake County, North Carolina, and American Bar Associations, and the North Carolina Association of Women Attorneys. She is managing partner of Hedrick Gardner's Raleigh office, serves as General Counsel for the firm, and is on the Management Committee.
Tricia has been recognized by her peers for her professional accomplishments. She is ranked in Chambers® and Partners and holds an AV® Preeminent™ 5 out of 5 by Martindale-Hubbell. Tricia received a Women of Justice Award from North Carolina Lawyers Weekly in 2012, the inaugural year of that award. She also received a Diversity and Inclusion Award from North Carolina/South Carolina Lawyers Weekly in 2019. She has been listed in Best Lawyers in America since 2003 and is listed in Best Lawyers for Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law.
Tricia earned her B.A.,
cum laude, from Wake Forest University and her J.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Click here for more information about Tricia.
Michael Stark is Assistant General Counsel at Smithfield Foods Inc. in Smithfield, VA. In this role he helps manage Smithfield's litigation docket.
Michael was an associate in McGuireWoods' Business & Securities Litigation Department in Richmond prior to joining firm client Smithfield Foods in 2020. At McGuireWoods, Michael's practice focused on class action litigation with an emphasis on cases involving high-exposure punitive damages claims. He argued and won appeals and dispositive motions in state and federal court and helped clients secure favorable outcomes during and before trial.
Michael does pro bono work through the Virginia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Legal Aid Justice Center's
Just Children Program. He has served as pro bono counsel to incarcerated juveniles and to plaintiffs in federal civil rights cases.
Before joining McGuireWoods, Michael served as a law clerk for Judge Stephanie Thacker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit.
Michael earned his B.A. in Economics from West Virginia University and his J.D. from West Virginia University College of Law.
Click here for more information about Michael.
Erik R. Zimmerman
Erik R. Zimmerman is a shareholder with Robinson Bradshaw in Research Triangle Park. His principal areas are antitrust and competition, appeals, class actions, education, litigation, intellectual property and technology. He guides clients through complex litigation and appeals. He has helped companies, universities and individuals navigate antitrust suits, class actions, constitutional cases and other high stakes disputes in courts across the country.
Erik has particular experience in appellate litigation. He often joins cases for the first time on appeal and helps his clients overturn unfavorable rulings from the lower courts. He has argued appeals in the Fourth Circuit and the North Carolina appellate courts. He has also filed numerous briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court and appellate courts nationwide.
Erik co-chairs the firm's Appeals Practice Group and serves on the North Carolina Bar Association’s Appellate Rules Committee and Appellate Practice Section Council.
Erik earned his B.A.,
summa cum laude from Harvard College and his J.D., with distinction, from Stanford University.
Click here for more information about Erik.
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