Good, Bad & Ugly:  Appellate Update
Rhonda P. Chambers is associated with the firm of Taylor & Taylor with offices in Birmingham and Prattville.  She is a graduate of Judson College (1986) and Cumberland School of Law (1989).  For more than twenty years, Rhonda's law practice has been focused exclusively on appellate matters.  Rhonda has been involved in hundreds of appeals to the Alabama Supreme Court, the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court.  She is the author of several articles on appellate law topics and has been a frequent lecturer on appellate matters.  Rhonda has been the Chair of the Standing Committee on the Alabama Rules of Appellate Procedure for the past ten years.  She has been listed in the Alabama Super Lawyers for her appellate practice and was also listed among the Top 25 Women in Alabama Super Lawyers.  She has also been included in The Best Lawyers in America in the specialty of Appellate law.

Changes in the Alabama Legislature: How they Affect Your Law Practice 
Former state senator and attorney Myron Penn, a Bullock County native and resident, represented the 28th Senate District from 2002-2010 before retiring from political office to spend more time with his family and growing law practice.   During his two terms in the Alabama Senate, he was elected Chairman of the Alabama Senate Democratic Caucus and Chairman of the Senate Black Caucus.  He also served in the following leadership positions: Chairman of the Senate Confirmations Committee, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Chairman of the Tourism & Marketing Committee, and Chairman of the Joint Legislative Prisons Committee.  Myron previously served as a cabinet member under Governor Jim Folsom, Jr., and later was elected Chairman of the Bullock County Commission in 2000.  In 2002, Attorney Penn co-founded Penn & Seaborn, LLC, with law offices in Union Springs and Clayton, and was recently inducted into the Million-Dollar Advocates Forum of trial lawyers in the United States.

How to Make Money on a MDL
Ernest Cory is a founding Shareholder of Cory, Watson, Crowder & DeGaris in Birmingham.  His national practice focuses on pharmaceutical and defective medical device litigation; he has been appointed to serve as Lead Counsel and to chair numerous Plaintiffs' Steering Committees in multidistrict litigation and class actions. Mr. Cory currently serves as Lead Counsel and on the Plaintiffs' Executive Committee, In Re:  Chantix (Varenicline) Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2092; and as Co-Lead Counsel, In Re: Kugel Mesh Hernia Patch Product Liability Litigation, MDL No.1842. Mr. Cory serves on the Executive Committee of the Alabama Association for Justice.  A graduate of the University of Alabama, Mr. Cory received his JD at Cumberland School of Law.

Pre-existing Conditions Beat 'em At Their Own Game

David Cowan is the founding member of the Law office of David M. Cowan, LLC.  He graduated in 1986 from the University of Alabama with a B.S. in Business Administration and a minor in English Studies.  He is a 1990 graduate of the Cumberland School of Law.  During his law school career, David was a member of two Cumberland student mock trial teams that competed in National Student Trial Advocacy Competitions in Birmingham, AL and Chicago, IL.  He also received the Edwin L. Rollison Award for Outstanding Writing Ability from the American Journal of Trial Advocacy and the Outstanding Member Award from the Henry Upson Sims Moot Court Board.  His entire legal career has been dedicated to the work of a Trial Lawyer, with an emphasis in personal injury, products liability, business disputes and residential-commercial construction.

State of the Alabama Court System

Charles R. Malone was appointed as the thirtieth Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court on August 1, 2011, by Governor Robert Bentley. Born January 27, 1954, in Tuscaloosa, Chief Justice Malone graduated from Tuscaloosa High School in 1972. He received his B.S. in Commerce and Business Administration from the University of Alabama in 1976 and his Juris Doctorate from Cumberland School of Law in 1981. After being admitted to the Alabama State Bar, Chief Justice Malone entered private practice in his hometown of Tuscaloosa and practiced law for twenty years, handling cases in both state and federal courts.  In 2000, Chief Justice Malone was elected as a circuit judge in the Sixth Judicial Circuit and was re-elected in 2006. During his terms as circuit judge, he was elected twice by the judges of the Sixth Circuit to be presiding judge, once in 2003 and again in 2010.  While serving as a circuit judge, Chief Justice Malone also taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Alabama School of Law and the University of Alabama School of Commerce and Business. In January 2011, Chief Justice Malone left the circuit bench to serve as Chief of Staff for Governor Robert Bentley.

Proposed Changes To the Alabama Rules of Evidence 

Professor Robert Goodwin is the Associate Dean and J. Russell McElroy Professor of Law at Samford University's Cumberland School of Law.  He also serves as Reporter for the Alabama Supreme Court's advisory committee on the Alabama Rules of Evidence.  Professor Goodwin joined Cumberland's faculty in 1983 and served as Director of Cumberland's Center for Advocacy and Clinical Education from 1984 to 1991.  During this period the Center won the American College of Trial Lawyer's prestigious "Emil Gumpert Award" for excellence in teaching trial advocacy.  Professor Goodwin's primary areas of teaching and scholarly research have been evidence and scientific evidence.  He is co-author of the current edition of McELROY'S ALABAMA EVIDENCE with Dean Charles Gamble.  He is a fellow in the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and the author of a nationally adopted casebook, CRIMINAL AND FORENSIC EVIDENCE.  He has published numerous scholarly articles relating to evidence and scientific evidence including:  Fifty Years of Frye in Alabama:  The Continuing Debate over Adopting the Test Established in Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc.: 35 CUMB. L. REV. 231 (2004-2005); The Hidden Significance of Kumho Tire Co. v. Carmichael: A Compass for Problems of Definition and Procedure Created by Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 52 BAYLOR L. REV. 603 (Summer 2000); Roadblocks to Achieving 'Reliability' for Non-Scientific Expert Testimony:  A Response to Professor Edward J. Imwinkelied, 30 CUMB. L. REV. 215 (1999-2000).


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