617.482.8200

Our Firm

Conn Kavanaugh is a Boston law firm that represents individuals and organizations ranging from closely held and family businesses to Fortune 100 companies. Since our founding in 1988, clients have relied on us for practical and realistic strategies to resolve legal issues quickly and effectively, both in and out of the courthouse.

Leadership

Conn Kavanaugh attorneys hold leadership positions in many community and bar organizations, publish articles and speak at continuing legal education seminars. The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts appointed one of our founding partners to the Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers (BBO), the official body that investigates and evaluates complaints against lawyers. Several other firm attorneys are hearing officers for the BBO.

Pro Bono Services

Our attorneys provide pro bono legal services in collaboration with a number of nonprofit organizations, including Massachusetts Advocates for Children, the Women's Bar Foundation, the Victim Rights Law Center, Volunteer Lawyers Project, Health Law Advocates and Discovering Justice.

Awards

  • 2015: Conn Kavanaugh has received a First Tier ranking in Boston for Employment Litigation by U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” for 2015.
  • 2015: Four Conn Kavanaugh attorneys were listed in The Best Lawyers in America © 2015.
  • 2014: The publishers of Boston Magazine selected 16 Conn Kavanaugh attorneys as Massachusetts Super Lawyers. The publication also placed members of our team on its lists of Top 100 Massachusetts Lawyers, Top 100 New England Lawyers, Top 50 Massachusetts Women Lawyers, Top 50 New England Women Lawyers, and Massachusetts Rising Stars.
  • 2014: The American Bar Association's Tort Trial & Insurance Section honored one of our partners with the Edmund S. Muskie Pro Bono Service Award. 
  • 2013: Law & Politics selected 12 Conn Kavanaugh attorneys as Massachusetts Super Lawyers. The publication also placed members of our team on its lists of Top 100 Massachusetts Lawyers, Top 50 Massachusetts Women Lawyers, and Massachusetts Rising Stars.
  • 2013: The Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association (MDLA) honored one of our partners with the Defense Lawyer of the Year award.

Why Choose Conn Kavanaugh

Boston is home to dozens of excellent law firms. Why should you turn to Conn Kavanaugh for assistance with your legal needs?

Accessibility

Conn Kavanaugh offers a level of accessibility and responsive, attentive service that larger firms cannot match. Maintaining close contact and open communication with clients really matters here. We believe in listening to clients and advising them in specific terms to solve their legal challenges. And we aim to develop an ongoing relationship of trust and confidence with clients, becoming part of their team.

Specialized Expertise

We deliver many of the benefits you might associate with a larger firm — for example, breadth and depth of expertise. Each of our attorneys focuses on a select number of practice areas. Collectively, they give our firm the highly specialized expertise necessary to address wide-ranging client needs.

Transactional Experience

Our business attorneys have decades of experience negotiating deals for acquiring and selling companies through mergers, consolidations and asset and stock transactions. We are strong advocates and skilled negotiators. In addition, we bring considerable value to our clients in getting deals done efficiently and effectively while never losing sight of the importance of identifying and managing risk.

Litigation Experience

The Conn Kavanaugh team includes seasoned former prosecutors and a strong, deep bench of attorneys with civil and criminal trial experience, which equips us to solve complex litigation cases for clients. Some of our attorneys are fellows in the American College of Trial Lawyers, the nation's premier professional trial organization.

Cost-efficiency

One reason so many of our clients choose us is that we staff our cases leanly and charge reasonable fees. In addition, we provide practical and realistic strategies to resolve legal issues quickly and effectively, within budgetary constraints.

Please call us today at 617.482.8200 to learn more about what sets Conn Kavanaugh apart.

Search our Attorneys

    A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z View All

    Business Litigation

    Our Business Litigation practice group offers the experience of seasoned lawyers who recognize the value of solving problems to promote your business success.

    Read More...

    Anthony V. Bova
    Anthony Bova
    Russell F. Conn
    Russell Conn
    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew Dennington
    Daniel R. Fishman
    Daniel Fishman
    Kurt B. Fliegauf
    Kurt Fliegauf
    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas Gallitano
    Erin K. Higgins
    Erin Higgins
    James F. Kavanaugh, Jr.
    James Kavanaugh, Jr.
    Katherine A. Kelter
    Katherine Kelter
    Johanna L. Matloff
    Johanna Matloff
    Mary ('Beth') E. O'Neal
    Mary ('Beth') O'Neal
    Kathleen R. O'Toole
    Kathleen O'Toole
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas Peisch
    James B. Peloquin
    James Peloquin
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael Rossi
    Adam M. Santeusanio
    Adam Santeusanio
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol Starkey
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael Sullivan
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher Sweeney
    Alexis P. Theriault
    Alexis Theriault
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray Wagner

    Complex Tort Defense

    Since its founding in 1988, a staple of Conn Kavanaugh’s practice has been the defense of business entities in serious and complex personal injury or property damage actions.

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    Anthony V. Bova
    Anthony Bova
    Russell F. Conn
    Russell Conn
    Erin K. Higgins
    Erin Higgins
    James F. Kavanaugh, Jr.
    James Kavanaugh, Jr.
    Katherine A. Kelter
    Katherine Kelter
    Kathleen R. O'Toole
    Kathleen O'Toole
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas Peisch
    James B. Peloquin
    James Peloquin
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael Rossi
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael Sullivan
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher Sweeney
    Alexis P. Theriault
    Alexis Theriault
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray Wagner

    Construction

    Whether you are the owner, design professional, general contractor, project administrator, subcontractor, or supplier on a construction project, our Construction practice will assist you in achieving a successful project outcome.

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    Russell F. Conn
    Russell Conn
    James B. Peloquin
    James Peloquin
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael Sullivan
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray Wagner

    Corporate / Transactional

    Our Corporate/Transactional practice has a broad range of skills. This versatility allows them to remain a principal point of contact with our business clients and to move freely across multiple disciplines to ensure continuity of representation.

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    Barry E. Gold
    Barry Gold
    Bob B. Rosenthal
    Bob Rosenthal
    Neil R. Schauer
    Neil Schauer

    Criminal / White Collar / Regulatory

    We have extensive experience advising businesses and individuals who are the subject of criminal or regulatory investigations or proceedings.

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    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas Gallitano
    Anna O. Klimas
    Anna Klimas
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas Peisch
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol Starkey
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher Sweeney
    Glen A. Tagliamonte
    Glen Tagliamonte
    Kirsten Z. Young
    Kirsten Young

    Employment Litigation / Counseling

    Employers and employees alike look to Conn Kavanaugh’s employment lawyers for advice in navigating the increasingly complex web of state and federal statutes,

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    Anthony V. Bova
    Anthony Bova
    Russell F. Conn
    Russell Conn
    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew Dennington
    Daniel R. Fishman
    Daniel Fishman
    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas Gallitano
    Barry E. Gold
    Barry Gold
    James F. Kavanaugh, Jr.
    James Kavanaugh, Jr.
    Katherine A. Kelter
    Katherine Kelter
    Mary ('Beth') E. O'Neal
    Mary ('Beth') O'Neal
    Kathleen R. O'Toole
    Kathleen O'Toole
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael Rossi
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol Starkey
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher Sweeney
    Alexis P. Theriault
    Alexis Theriault

    Estate Planning / Administration

    Our Estate Planning attorneys help individuals and their families plan for the future and protect their assets. We handle all aspects of estate planning.

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    George M. Ford
    George Ford
    Sheila B. Giglio
    Sheila Giglio
    Anna O. Klimas
    Anna Klimas
    Neil R. Schauer
    Neil Schauer
    Kirsten Z. Young
    Kirsten Young

    Family Law / Probate Litigation

    Our experienced Family Law/Probate Litigation attorneys work zealously to ensure rightful asset distributions in these emotionally charged proceedings. Our group handles a wide range of areas including prenuptial agreements, custody disputes, and post-divorce support or estate modifications.

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    George M. Ford
    George Ford
    Sheila B. Giglio
    Sheila Giglio
    Anna O. Klimas
    Anna Klimas
    Laurel K.  Spallone
    Laurel K. Spallone
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray Wagner
    Kirsten Z. Young
    Kirsten Young

    Land Use / Real Estate Litigation

    Our Land Use/Real Estate Litigation practice has extensive experience in handling real estate disputes of all kinds and at all levels. We can develop a strategy for your dispute.

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    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew Dennington
    Daniel R. Fishman
    Daniel Fishman
    George M. Ford
    George Ford
    Katherine A. Kelter
    Katherine Kelter
    James B. Peloquin
    James Peloquin
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael Rossi
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael Sullivan
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray Wagner

    Mediation / Arbitration

    Having litigated hundreds of cases, the Mediation/Arbitration practice is well-equipped to effectively value cases to resolve disputes according to your needs and goals.

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    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas Peisch
    James B. Peloquin
    James Peloquin

    Professional Liability

    Our trial attorneys are accomplished in defending claims against attorneys, health care professionals, insurance agents and brokers, and other professionals.

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    Anthony V. Bova
    Anthony Bova
    Russell F. Conn
    Russell Conn
    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew Dennington
    Kurt B. Fliegauf
    Kurt Fliegauf
    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas Gallitano
    Erin K. Higgins
    Erin Higgins
    Kathleen R. O'Toole
    Kathleen O'Toole
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas Peisch
    James B. Peloquin
    James Peloquin
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael Rossi
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol Starkey
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael Sullivan
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher Sweeney
    Glen A. Tagliamonte
    Glen Tagliamonte
    Alexis P. Theriault
    Alexis Theriault
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray Wagner

    Real Estate

    Our Real Estate practice provides skilled representation in a variety of transactions, including the financing, leasing, acquisition and disposition of commercial properties.

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    Barry E. Gold
    Barry Gold
    Bob B. Rosenthal
    Bob Rosenthal
    Neil R. Schauer
    Neil Schauer

    Architects/Engineers

    Conn Kavanaugh has a wealth of experience advising and representing architects and engineers in many aspects of their businesses.

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    Russell F. Conn
    Russell ConnPartner
    James B. Peloquin
    James PeloquinPartner
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael SullivanPartner
    Glen A. Tagliamonte
    Glen TagliamonteAssociate

    Closely Held/Family Businesses

    Conn Kavanaugh’s business attorneys have a broad range of skills and are very experienced in providing legal services to family-owned and other closely-held businesses.

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    Barry E. Gold
    Barry GoldPartner
    Bob B. Rosenthal
    Bob RosenthalPartner
    Neil R. Schauer
    Neil SchauerPartner

    Construction

    Conn Kavanaugh has provided an array of services to private and public clients in the construction industry, including the manufacturers of building materials and systems.

    Read More...

    Kurt B. Fliegauf
    Kurt FliegaufPartner
    James B. Peloquin
    James PeloquinPartner
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael SullivanPartner
    Glen A. Tagliamonte
    Glen TagliamonteAssociate
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray WagnerPartner

    Financial Services

    Conn Kavanaugh draws upon a wide range of disciplines to meet the needs of individual and institutional clients in the financial services industry.

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    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew DenningtonPartner
    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas GallitanoPartner
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol StarkeyPartner
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher SweeneyAssociate

    Food and Beverage

    Our decades of work in the food and beverage industry, including alcohol regulatory and distribution, have permitted us to gain expertise and insight into the typically fast paced and challenging world of our clients engaged in the food and beverage industry.

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    Anthony V. Bova
    Anthony BovaAssociate
    James F. Kavanaugh, Jr.
    James Kavanaugh, Jr.Partner
    Mary ('Beth') E. O'Neal
    Mary ('Beth') O'NealPartner
    Kathleen R. O'Toole
    Kathleen O'TooleAssociate

    Government

    Conn Kavanaugh provides an array of services to clients in the public sector, including state agencies, municipalities, and public officials.

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    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew DenningtonPartner
    Kurt B. Fliegauf
    Kurt FliegaufPartner
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol StarkeyPartner

    Healthcare

    The Conn Kavanaugh team has the skills and experience necessary to successfully maneuver our clients through the increasingly complex and highly regulated environment of the health care industry.

    Read More...

    Andrew R. Dennington
    Andrew DenningtonPartner
    Johanna L. Matloff
    Johanna MatloffSenior Counsel
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas PeischPartner
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael RossiPartner
    Carol A. Starkey
    Carol StarkeyPartner
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael SullivanPartner
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher SweeneyAssociate

    Insurance

    Our lawyers work with our insurance industry clients in a variety of ways. We represent their insureds in virtually every type of lawsuit for which insurance coverage is available. We represent insurance companies directly in bad faith actions, and in high-exposure losses or losses that present unusual or challenging coverage issues.

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    Russell F. Conn
    Russell ConnPartner
    Kurt B. Fliegauf
    Kurt FliegaufPartner
    Erin K. Higgins
    Erin HigginsPartner
    Katherine A. Kelter
    Katherine KelterAssociate
    Johanna L. Matloff
    Johanna MatloffSenior Counsel
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas PeischPartner
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael RossiPartner
    Alexis P. Theriault
    Alexis TheriaultAssociate
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray WagnerPartner

    Law Firms

    Since the firm was founded in 1988, our attorneys have been known as “lawyers’ lawyers.”

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    Russell F. Conn
    Russell ConnPartner
    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas GallitanoPartner
    Erin K. Higgins
    Erin HigginsPartner
    Thomas E. Peisch
    Thomas PeischPartner
    Bob B. Rosenthal
    Bob RosenthalPartner
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael RossiPartner
    Christopher K. Sweeney
    Christopher SweeneyAssociate

    Manufacturing

    Conn Kavanaugh has broad experience in representing the interests and needs of various manufacturers.

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    Russell F. Conn
    Russell ConnPartner
    Barry E. Gold
    Barry GoldPartner
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael SullivanPartner

    Real Estate

    Conn Kavanaugh has a wealth of experience in the real estate field.

    Read More...

    George M. Ford
    George FordOf-Counsel
    Katherine A. Kelter
    Katherine KelterAssociate
    Bob B. Rosenthal
    Bob RosenthalPartner
    Michael J. Rossi
    Michael RossiPartner
    Neil R. Schauer
    Neil SchauerPartner
    Michael T. Sullivan
    Michael SullivanPartner
    James Gray  Wagner
    James Gray WagnerPartner

    Staffing and Recruiting

    Staffing companies and Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs) are playing an increasingly important role in many aspects of human resource management, as employers are relying more and more on staffing companies and PEOs for payroll and employee benefit administration, risk management, and other increasingly complex administrative burdens.

    Read More...

    Thomas J. Gallitano
    Thomas GallitanoPartner
    Barry E. Gold
    Barry GoldPartner
    Mary ('Beth') E. O'Neal
    Mary ('Beth') O'NealPartner
    Biography

    Jim is a trial lawyer with extensive experience in both state and federal courts. His practice is primarily in the litigation of commercial, employment, and insurance disputes. He has represented businesses of all sizes and individuals in a wide variety of industries. Jim was formerley chair of the firm's Litigation Department and serves as co-chair of the firm's employment law and commercial litigation groups. Jim is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), a national association of experienced trial lawyers and judges dedicated to upholding the ethical standards of the legal profession. 

    Jim has been selected for inclusion in the 2015, 2016, and 2017 publications of The Best Lawyers in America©, with specific recognition in the following practice areas: Commercial Litigation, Insurance Litigation, and Labor and Employment. Jim has been selected as a "Massachusetts Super Lawyer" every year since the designation was created in 2004. In addition, he was selected as one of the "Top 100 Massachusetts Lawyers" in 2006, 2007, and 2008 and one of the "Top 100 New England Super Lawyers" in 2008 by Law & Politics and the publishers of Boston Magazine. Jim has also received an AV Peer Review Rating, the highest rating, in The Martindale-Hubbell Lawyers Directory.

    Mr. Kavanaugh represented Avon Products on its successful appeal to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in the case of Knight vs. Avon Products, Inc., which was named one of the Ten Most Important Decisions of the year in 2003 by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.

    Credentials

    Practice Areas

    Industries

    Education

    • Boston College Law School, J.D. magna cum laude (1977)
    • College of the Holy Cross, B.A. (1970)

    Court Admissions

    • Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts
    • United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
    • United States Supreme Court

    Recognition

    • Selected for inclusion in the 2015, 2016, and 2017 publications of The Best Lawyers in America ©.
    • Selected as Massachusetts Super Lawyer by Law & Politics and the publishers of Boston Magazine (2004-present)
    • Selected as Top 100 Lawyer in New England by Law & Politics and the publishers of Boston Magazine (2008)
    • Selected as Top 100 Lawyer in Massachusetts by Law & Politics and the publishers of Boston Magazine (2006, 2007, 2008)
    • Jim's work gained the Firm recognition as a "Go-To Law Firm for the Top 500 Companies" (2013)
    • Rev. James B. Malley, SJ, Award for BC Law School (1999)
    Matters & Cases

    Representative Matters

    • Business Litigation

      • Represented a commercial landlord as a defendant in a state Superior Court action by a commercial tenant alleging fraud and misrepresentation. The case was tried to a jury, which decided in favor of Conn Kavanaugh’s client. In addition to awarding judgment for Conn Kavanaugh’s client, the Court ordered that the plaintiff tenant pay all of the firm’s client’s legal fees.
      • Represented a major publisher in a contract action brought by an author alleging breach and substantial unpaid royalties. After a ten day arbitration, Conn Kavanaugh’s client received an award wholly in its favor, the arbitrator ruling that the plaintiff author was entitled to no damages.
      • Defended a start-up company and its founder against claims brought by the founder’s former employer for misappropriation of trade secrets. Mr. Kavanaugh succeeded in defeating an application for preliminary injunction which, if allowed, would have effectively shut down our client’s business and ultimately obtained a dismissal of all claims prior to trial.
      • Obtained a Superior Court preliminary injunction order enforcing non-competition and non-solicitation provisions in an employment agreement and prohibiting a departing employee from competing with his former employer and from soliciting his former employer’s customers.

    • Employment Litigation / Counseling

      • Defended an employer in an age discrimination case that arose from the termination of the employment of a middle manager. The case ended with a jury trial in the Massachusetts Superior Court, with the jury entering a verdict in the Conn Kavanaugh client employer’s favor, awarding no damages and dismissing the case.
      • Retained by a Fortune 500 company after that company had lost a jury trial and been ordered to pay substantial damages to the plaintiff in an age discrimination case. Mr. Kavanaugh prosecuted an appeal of that decision to the Supreme Judicial Court and obtained its wholesale reversal, with the result that the verdict against the client was vacated, the case was dismissed, and judgment entered in favor of the employer client.
      • Obtained a favorable judgment after trial for a client sued in the United States District Court for alleged disability discrimination arising from an employment termination. Mr. Kavanaugh tried the case to the District Court, with the Court deciding in favor of our client and dismissing the discrimination claim.
      • Obtained a favorable judgment after trial in a race and ethnicity discrimination case which arose out of the termination of the plaintiff’s employment for reasons of misconduct. Mr. Kavanaugh tried the case to a verdict, with the Court deciding in favor of our client and dismissing the discrimination claim.
      • Obtained pre-trial dismissal of numerous state and Federal court cases brought against Conn Kavanaugh client employers sued for employment discrimination by making successful motions for summary judgment to the Courts, which resulted in judgments for the firm’s clients.

    • ERISA Litigation

      • Obtained a defense judgment in favor of an ERISA pension plan administrator in a case involving alleged misrepresentations to an employee. The judgment was affirmed by the First Circuit Court of Appeals, which agreed with our argument that the employee's claims were preempted by ERISA. We successfully opposed the employee's request for review at the U.S. Supreme Court.
      • Obtained summary judgments in favor of ERISA plans and employer clients in numerous cases, on ERISA claims made by employees and other plan beneficiaries against those plans and plan fiduciaries. In a number of these cases, Mr. Kavanaugh has successfully defeated attempts to overturn these judgments in the United States Circuit Court of Appeals.

    • Complex Tort Defense

      • Successfully tried an FMLA case in the US District Court, obtaining a net verdict in favor of the railroad client against a former employee claiming injuries from a railroad accident. Also successfully defended that verdict on an appeal to the US Court of Appeals.
      • Obtained a defense verdict in a complex personal injury case against a client commercial landlord.
      • Tried numerous personal injury and product liability cases in State Superior and Federal Courts.

    • Insurance Coverage Disputes

      • Obtained summary judgment for insurer in US District Court case seeking coverage and defense for liability claims asserted against firearm manufacturers and dealers arising out of crimes committed with firearms.
      • Obtained summary judgment for insured in a Superior Court duty to defend coverage case arising out of an underlying patent and tortious interference claim against firm’s client.

    Affiliations

    Professional Affiliation and Activities

    • American Board of Trial Advocates, Member
    • Massachusetts Board of Bar Overseers of the Supreme Judicial Court, Hearing Committee Member (2012-2015)
    • Labor and Employment Section of the America Bar Association, Member
    • Civil Litigation Section of the American Bar Association, Member
    • Labor and Employment Section of the Massachusetts Bar Association, Member
    • Litigation Section of the Boston Bar Association, Member
    • Supreme Judicial Court Historical Society, Member
    • Legal education programs in the areas of business and employment litigation for the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Panelist
    • Legal education programs for the Massachusetts Bar Association, Panelist
    • Past President of Boston College Law School's Alumni Association
    • Past chairman of Boston College Law School's Leadership Gifts Committee
    • New England Legal Foundation's Massachusetts Advisory Council, Member (2013-present)
    • Law Clerk, Honorable Francis J. Quirico, Supreme Judicial Court Justice
    Publications
    • Adjunct Lecturer and Litigation Specialist at Boston College Law School, 1994 through 1999
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