Law Seminars International Presents:

A Two-Day Advanced Conference on

Environmental Trials

Strategies and lessons learned from some of the most significant recent cases featuring leading litigators and consultants from around the country

October 16 & 17, 2017

Washington, DC
(or anyplace you may be via webcast!)

Download PDF Brochure
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Program Overview

Who Should Order

In-house, private sector and government attorneys; technical experts; trial-focused consultants (trial graphics company representatives, jury consultants); senior executives and risk managers

Why You Should Order

The most significant and thorny questions in environmental law are often resolved in the courtroom. Far from being a lost art, the ability to try an environmental case remains a fundamental skill that clients will need in coming years. This year's Advanced Conference on Environmental Trials in Washington, D.C. provides a rare opportunity for environmental practitioners to learn from attorneys who have tried some of the most significant recent cases in the environmental arena. The conference will feature both criminal and civil practitioners, prosecutors and defense attorneys, as well as technical experts, in-house counsel, and experts on trial preparation and strategy. The conference will cut across environmental subject matters, examining trials from contexts as diverse as worker safety and the Clean Water Act. Our program is designed to benefit not only practitioners hoping to learn from the recent experiences of other litigators, but also in-house attorneys who manage trials conducted by outside counsel and consultants hoping to provide effective assistance to attorneys trying cases.

Register soon to reserve your place.

~ Robert L. (Buzz) Hines, Esq. of Farella Braun + Martel LLP and Sean Morris, Esq. and Jeremy D. Peterson, Esq. of Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP, Program Co-Chairs

What You Will Learn

  • ~ Federal environmental enforcement in the Trump Administration
  • ~ Criminal trials: Contrasting cases for corporate and individual prosecutions
  • ~ Clean Water Act trials: Lessons from Deepwater Horizon
  • ~ Natural Resource Damages and the ExxonMobil Bayway Refinery trial
  • ~ Whether to go to trial: New Hampshire v. Hess
  • ~ Superfund cost allocation: Northern States Power Co v. City of Ashland
  • ~ Toxic torts: Proving causation
  • ~ Upping your trial game: Advanced persuasion techniques

What Attendees Said

  • "Excellent balance between government and responsible party perspectives"
  • "Speakers were engaging and interesting"
  • "The faculty for this conference are the best in their fields. It's a great opportunity to attend an educational seminar with this group. It's well worth the registration fee. "
  • "Your programs always have the best faculty."

Agenda Day 1

8:00 am

Registration Opens

8:30 am

Introduction & Overview

Robert L. (Buzz) Hines, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Farella Braun + Martel LLP / San Francisco, CA

Sean Morris, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP / Los Angeles, CA

Jeremy D. Peterson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP / Washington, DC

8:45 am

Federal Environmental Enforcement in the Trump Administration

Resources, priorities and differences in policy approach as the Trump Administration charts a new course

Ronald J. Tenpas, Esq.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP / Washington, DC

9:30 am

From the Beginning: Know Thy Judge, Jury, and Adversary

The latest in tools, nuanced and otherwise, for predicting how the people involved in your case are likely to do on specific issues

James A. Bruen, Esq.
Farella Braun + Martel LLP / San Francisco, CA

10:15 am


10:30 am

Landmark Criminal Trials: Contrasting Cases for Corporate and Individual Prosecutions

Corporate and individual prosecutions: The common issues

Jeremy D. Peterson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP / Washington, DC

A detailed look at prosecution of the individual: U.S. v. Jeffrey Wilson

Thomas Ballantine, Esq. , Assistant Section Chief
US Department of Justice / Alexandria, VA

Mass disaster case #1: A detailed look at U.S. v. PG&E

Hartley M. K. West, Esq.
Kobre & Kim LLP / San Francisco, CA

Mass disaster case #2: The Blankenship case

William W. Taylor, III, Esq.
Zuckerman Spaeder LLP / Washington, DC

12:15 pm

Lunch (included)

1:30 pm

Clean Water Act Trials: Lessons from the Deepwater Horizon Trial

Advances in the science and the resulting legal issues on admissibility

Brian D. Israel, Esq. , Moderator
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP / Washington, DC

Government perspective

Steven O'Rourke, Esq.
US Department of Justice / Washington, DC

Defense perspective

Robert (Mike) Brock, Esq.
Kirkland & Ellis LLP / Washington, DC

2:45 pm


3:00 pm

Quick Takes on Recent Cases

Natural Resource Damages and the ExxonMobil Bayway Refinery trial: New Jersey's effort to recover natural resource damages

Allan Kanner, Esq.
Kanner & Whiteley LLC / New Orleans, LA

The decision whether go to trial: Lessons from the recent trial in the New Hampshire v. Hess drinking water case on best practices for evaluating liability, damages, and the pros and cons of proceeding to trial

Jessica L. Grant, Esq.
Venable LLP / San Francisco, CA

4:15 pm

Let the Jury Decide: What We Know About How Jurors Evaluate Environmental Issues

The science of persuasion: Using the psychology of persuasion for effectively using science in environmental litigation; tips for creating messages for the judge or jury and testing them in a systematic way

Ross P. Laguzza, Ph.D.
R&D Strategic Solutions / Portland, OR

5:00 pm

Continue the Exchange of Ideas: Reception & Dinner for Attendees and Faculty

Sponsored by Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP and Farella Braun + Martel LLP

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

8:30 am

Introduction to Day 2

Robert L. (Buzz) Hines, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Farella Braun + Martel LLP / San Francisco, CA

Sean Morris, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer Llp / Los Angeles, CA

Jeremy D. Peterson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP / Washington, DC

8:45 am

Superfund Cost Allocation: Northern States Power Co v. City of Ashland

Contrary to common assumptions, not all Superfund cases settle: Using a recent allocation case as the backdrop, this panel will discuss the unique characteristics of Superfund trials

Malorie R. Medellin, Esq.
Latham & Watkins LLP / Chicago, IL

Richard C. Yde, Esq.
Stafford Rosenbaum LLP / Madison, WI

Vanessa D. Wishart, Esq.
Stafford Rosenbaum LLP / Madison, WI

From an In-House Counsel Perspective

Kimberly Hughes, Esq. , Senior Attorney
Microsoft Corporation / Redmond, WA

Contrary to common assumptions, not all Superfund cases settle: Using a recent allocation case as the backdrop, this panel will discuss the unique characteristics of Superfund trials

Paul D. Boehm, Ph.D. , Group VP, Principal Scientist
Exponent, Inc. / Maynard, MA

10:30 am


10:45 am

Toxic Torts: Does Proving Causation Still Matter?

Best practices for trying complex toxic tort matters; addressing causation in toxic torts including the most effective use of expert testimony

Sean Morris, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer Llp / Los Angeles, CA

James L. Lucari, Esq. , Managing Counsel
BP America Inc. / Chicago, IL

11:45 am

Trial Practice Tips: The Importance of Developing Your Strategy Before You Know the Case is Going to Trial

The beginning of the case as the best time to craft a coherent and compelling story: The need for harmony between incident response, the "facts," and public relations strategies

Robert L. (Buzz) Hines, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Farella Braun + Martel LLP / San Francisco, CA

12:15 pm

Lunch (included)

1:30 pm

Upping Your Game for Trial Presentations: Advanced Techniques for Persuading the Jury

Graphics speak louder than words: Harnessing technology to present complex environmental science in a way that makes it more comprehensible for lay judges and juries

April Tate Tishler, Esq.
Core Legal Concepts / Washington, DC

How jurors think: Adapting to more technologically sophisticated millennials coming into the jury pool and the image intensive lenses they use to view the world; use of virtual techniques for mock jury testing

Hiliary Remick, Esq. , Director, Senior Litigation Consultant
Magna Legal Services / Philadelphia, PA

3:00 pm

Evaluations and Adjourn

Faculty Bios

Robert L. (Buzz) Hines, Robert L. (Buzz) Hines, Program Co-Chair, chairs the Air Quality and Climate Change practice group at Farella Braun + Martel LLP. He focuses on complex governmental and private litigation and enforcement actions, including state and federal cost recovery actions and natural resource damage claims.
Full bio and contact info for Robert L. (Buzz) Hines at Farella Braun + Martel LLP

Sean Morris, Sean Morris, Program Co-Chair, is a partner at Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP. He represents clients in complex commercial litigation, including mass tort and environmental contamination actions.

Jeremy D. Peterson, Jeremy D. Peterson, Program Co-Chair, was an Honors Trial Attorney for the U.S. DOJ Environmental Crimes Section before joining Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP. He assists clients in responding to enforcement actions, including crisis response.

Brian Israel, M Brian Israel, M oderator, is Chair of Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP's Environmental Practice Group. His practice focuses broadly on environmental litigation and counseling, serving as lead counsel to BP in relation to the Deepwater Horizon NRD claim, and as one of the trial attorneys at the Deepwater Horizon Clean Water Act (CWA) penalty trial.

Thomas Ballantine is an Assistant Section Chief with the US Department of Justice's Environmental Crimes Section (ECS). He's been with ECS since October 2000.

Paul D. Boehm, Ph.D., Paul D. Boehm, Ph.D., is Corporate Vice President & Principal Scientist at Exponent, Inc. He is a leading practitioner and a recognized expert in the fields of natural resource damage assessments (NRDA) for oil spills and contaminated sites involving organic chemicals.

Robert (Mike) Brock Robert (Mike) Brock is a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP where his practice focuses on representing pharmaceuticals and life sciences companies, particularly in product liability and mass tort cases. He has also served as lead trial lawyer for BP in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill litigation.

James A. Bruen, James A. Bruen, partner at Farella Braun + Martel LLP, currently serves as President of the American College of Environmental Lawyers. He has served as lead trial counsel in mass tort litigation, natural resource damage litigation, environmental enforcement litigation, environmental cost recovery/contribution litigation and white collar environmental crimes defense.
Full bio and contact info for James A. Bruen at Farella Braun + Martel LLP

Jessica L. Grant Jessica L. Grant is a partner at Venable LLP where she focuses on products liability and class action matters. This includes representing the State of New Hampshire against numerous major oil companies in a statewide products liability case, which resulted in $130 million in settlements and a $816 million jury verdict.

Kimberly Hughes, Senior Attorney at Microsoft Corporation, currently focuses on the product safety and security concerns that may affect Microsoft products. Previously, she was Senior Legal Counsel at Weyerhaeuser Company where she resolved environmental, health, and safety issues including Superfund litigation and other environmental remediation issues.

Allan Kanner, Allan Kanner, Kanner & Whiteley LLC, currently represents the State of New Jersey against ExxonMobil in a major natural resource damages case. In addition, he represented the State of Louisiana in the Deepwater Horizon Horizon oil spill litigation. He also serves as Lead Plaintiffs' counsel in a national MDL class action against Dollar General for the sale of obsolete motor oils.

Ross P. Laguzza, Ph.D. Ross P. Laguzza, Ph.D. is an expert in the psychology of persuasion at R&D Strategic Solutions. His clients include major corporations faced with the challenge of developing persuasive messages for many different types of stakeholders, assisting key messengers (witnesses, corporate spokespersons) in being persuasive while under attack.

James L. Lucari is Managing Counsel at BP America Inc. He's responsible for Environmental Litigation and Regulatory Counseling.

Malorie R. Medellin is a member of the Environment, Land & Resources Department of Latham & Watkins. Her practice includes environmental remediation under CERCLA.

Steven O'Rourke is a Senior Attorney in the US Department of Justice's Environmental Enforcement Section. Most recently he was trial counsel in US v. BP, et al. related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Hiliary Remick is a Director and Senior Litigation Consultant at Magna Legal Services. She assists trial counsel with creation of trial strategies in litigation throughout the country, focusing on focus group facilitation and analysis, creation of case themes and arguments, and the development of complex trial graphics as persuasive courtroom tools.

William W. Taylor, III, William W. Taylor, III, is a founding partner of Zuckerman Spaeder LLP and one of the country's foremost litigators. He recently obtained an acquittal of all felony charges against Donald Blankenship, the former CEO of Massey Energy Company following a highly publicized and emotional trial.

Ronald J. Tenpas Ronald J. Tenpas is a partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP. He previously spent 12 years at the US Department of Justice, serving in both career and senior political positions. This included serving from 2007-2009 as Assistant Attorney General (AAG) for the Environment and Natural Resources Division.

April Tate Tishler April Tate Tishler at Core Legal Concepts is an expert in the art of information design, providing visual strategy analysis and consulting to the country's lead litigators in all manner of disputes. As a recovering attorney, she is able to pair effective information design with legal strategy.

Hartley M. K. West Hartley M. K. West served as Deputy Chief of the Justice's Economic Crimes and Securities Fraud Section for the Northern District of California before joining Kobre & Kim LLP. She was part of the prosecutorial team for the PG&E 2010 San Bruno gas line explosion litigation that resulted in the maximum $3 million civil penalty.

Vanessa D. Wishart Vanessa D. Wishart focuses on environmental law issues at Stafford Rosenbaum LLP. In that role, she was part of the trial team representing the city in Northern States Power Co v. City of Ashland.

Richard C. Yde Richard C. Yde joined Stafford Rosenbaum LLP in 2001 after serving 14 years as the City Attorney for the City of West Bend. His practice is focused on government law, with a special emphasis on matters relating to land use and development including CERCLA superfund issues.

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Continuing Education Credits

Live credits: This program qualifies for 11.75 CA and 11.25 WA MCLE credits. Upon request, we will apply for, or help you apply for, CLE credits in other states and other types of credits.

Replay Options

Video Replays allow you to time-shift your content. The Vodcast has navigation tools and search capabilities that allow you to quickly find the portions most important to you. It allows you to plug a flashdrive into your laptop and make effective use of in-flight plane time.

Audio Podcasts are perfect for making more effective use of the time you spend commuting.


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