NACA Spring Training Speaker Bios

NACA Spring Training Speaker Bios

 

John Albanese is an associate in Berger & Montague’s Minneapolis office. John concentrates his practice on consumer protection issues with a focus on FCRA violations related to criminal background checks. John has helped achieve multi-million-dollar class action settlements for FCRA violations in courts around the country.

 

Mark Aschermann (Office of Mark Aschermann) is an attorney in Austin, who has been Board Certified in Commercial and Consumer Law in Texas since 1995. Mr. Aschermann is a solo practitioner representing consumers in lemon law, insurance, and consumer financial disputes. He has tried a number of cases to jury and to the court as well as a number of arbitration proceedings.

 

Gregory T. Babbitt is a partner at Rosner, Barry & Babbitt, LLP, in San Diego, where he handles California car lemon and auto fraud cases (individual and class actions). Prior to joining Rosner, Barry & Babbitt, LLP, Mr. Babbitt was a Deputy Attorney General for the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, Bureau of Consumer Protection (1998–2001).

 

Penelope Bach (Bach Law Offices) advocates for debtors with complex bankruptcy cases and litigation. Penelope developed a unique and challenging niche by reviewing post-discharge credit and assuring accurate credit files by the removing and correcting of trade-lines and achieving six-figure settlements for clients. Penelope strives to bring harmony “Bach” into clients’ financial futures.

 

Barry S. Balmuth (Barry S. Balmuth, P.A.) was lead counsel for the plaintiffs in cases that resulted in the largest recovery in an inverse condemnation action in Florida ($42 million after a successful liability trial) and the third-largest individual verdict under the FCRA ($3.55 million). He is board certified by the Florida Bar in both civil trial law and business litigation. He obtained JD and MBA degrees from Emory University in 1990. He focuses his practice on property rights, consumer rights, and other civil litigation.

 

Stacy Bardo is the founder of Bardo Law, P.C., a consumer protection litigation firm in Chicago. Stacy has nearly twenty years of experience advocating on behalf of consumers. She has been principally involved in hundreds of actions involving debt collection, identity theft, credit reporting practices, consumer fraud and deceptive sales, warranty breaches, automobile financing, repossession, odometer fraud complaints, and mortgage servicing breaches. She has been appointed class counsel in multiple national and statewide class actions. Stacy was a member of NACA’s Board of Directors from 2012–2018, serving two years as co-chair of the Board, and currently chairs NACA’s Ethics Committee.                       

 

Roy L. De Barbieri of New Haven, CT is of counsel to the firm of Zangari, Cohn, Cuthbertson, Duhl & Grello P.C. Roy is a distinguished dispute resolution netural and continues to perform his independent services as an arbitrator and mediator through Connecticut and across the country. He is a Fellow of the College of Commercial Arbitrators, where he also served as the Chair of the Law Firm CLE Education Committee and a Director. He is a member of the Executive Committee of the Dispute Resolution Section of the Connecticut Bar Association and a Past Chair. Roy has twenty-five years’ experience as an arbitrator and mediator.

 

Justin M. Baxter's practice (Baxter & Baxter, LLP, Portland, OR) focuses on consumer litigation with an emphasis on credit reporting and unlawful debt collection cases. In 2007, he obtained a verdict against Equifax for violations of the FCRA. In 2013, he obtained a verdict against Equifax for $18.5 million for violations of the FCRA. In 2016, he obtained a $190,000 verdict against JP Morgan Chase Bank for violations of the FCRA.

 

Jennifer Beardsley has practiced as a legal services attorney most of the past twenty-five years in places as varied as Chicago to Missoula, MT. She is currently working in the Fair Housing Project of Alaska Legal Services Corporation in Anchorage, AK. She has specialized in bankruptcy, mortgage foreclosure, and FDCPA cases. 

 

Bryce Bell is the founder of Bell Law, LLC, a law firm dedicated to relentlessly pursuing justice against companies that defraud consumers. Bell Law focuses on auto safety, landlord/tenant issues, Fintech, and other Unfair Deceptive Acts and Practices (UDAAP), both individually and as class actions and mass torts across the country. Bryce is the Missouri state chair for NACA. Recent accomplishments for the firm in 2019 include a settlement with Wells Fargo for violations of the SCRA and a $1 million+ data breach settlement for local employees in the Kansas City area whose private information was compromised.

 

Leonard Bennett (Consumer Litigation Associates, PC) has been a trial attorney and consumer advocate since 1994 in Newport News, VA. Mr. Bennett’s practice is focused on the representation of consumers. He has litigated individual and class cases throughout the country, trying as many credit reporting cases to a jury as nearly anyone in the nation and has been approved as Class Counsel in numerous class action cases.

 

Natalie Finkelman Bennett joined Shepherd, Finkelman, Miller and Shah in 2000. Natalie concentrates her practice on antitrust, consumer, and insurance litigation, as well as complex commercial matters. Natalie earned her undergraduate degree from the Pennsylvania State University in 1986 and her law degree from the Temple University School of Law in 1989.

 

Suzanne Begnoche (Suzanne Begnoche, Attorney at Law) represents plaintiffs in matters involving identity theft, security breaches, unfair credit reporting, and unfair debt collection. Now in private practice, she was previously a staff attorney handling consumer matters at Legal Aid of North Carolina.  She is a graduate of Duke University and University of North Carolina School of Law.

 

Dan Blinn is the managing attorney of Consumer Law Group in Rocky Hill, CT. His practice is focused on representing consumers in claims involving auto dealer fraud, auto warranties, and auto financing in both individual and class action lawsuits and arbitrations.

 

Dwight Bowen is currently the principal at the Law Office of Daniel D. Bowen in Atlanta where he has represented consumers in federal and state court since 1975. Mr. Bowen has filed over 250 cases in federal court under TILA, the Odometer Act, the FDCPA, and the FCRA. Mr. Bowen currently concentrates his practice in the FDCPA, FCRA, and Auto Fraud. In 1970, Mr. Bowen received a B.A. from Yale University. In 1975, Mr. Bowen received a J.D. from the University of Florida Law School.

 

James Brady is a supervisory attorney in the Consumer Practice Group at Legal Aid Chicago. Mr. Brady began his legal career as a staff attorney with Legal Aid Chicago in 1991. Mr. Brady’s practice focuses on bankruptcy, homeownership, and consumer fraud. He is a 1988 graduate of the University of Michigan and a 1991 graduate of the DePaul University College of Law.

 

Lauren Brennan joined Francis Mailman Soumilas, P.C. in 2013 and concentrates her practice on class action litigation on behalf of consumers harmed by credit reporting errors, inaccurate employment background screening, abusive debt collection practices, and other unfair and fraudulent trade practices. Lauren is a 2008 graduate of Swarthmore College and received her J.D. cum laude from Temple University’s Beasley School of Law in 2013.

 

Bernard Brown (The Brown Law Firm) has been in private practice in Kansas City since 1980. Between 1984 and 1996, his office was focused on representing victims of car fraud, such as the fraudulent sale of rebuilt wrecks and cars with odometer rollbacks. More recently, he has also worked on class actions relating to vehicle sales and financing, on mortgage fraud cases, and on “no title” car cases against finance companies. He is a contributing author to NCLC’s Auto Fraud manual. Mr. Brown is a founding member of the NACA. He served on a Department of Justice Advisory Board that was dedicated to building the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS) for all six years of its existence, ending in 2016.

 

Jade Brown is a clinical instructor in the Civil Litigation & Access to Justice Clinic at Boston University School of Law. Jade teaches the art of lawyering in this clinic, where students practice employment, housing, and family law in the context of analyzing issues of systemic justice. She also co-teaches the Access to Justice Seminar, where she examines some of the forces that limit access to justice including poverty, racism, gender bias, LGBTQIA+ discrimination and the intersectionality of marginalized identities. Previously, Jade was a Staff Attorney at Greater Boston Legal Services (GBLS), where she represented consumers in a variety of cases including eviction, foreclosure, debt collection, credit reporting and fraud cases. Jade is a graduate of Boston University School of Law.

 

Known nationwide as a leading Lemon Law attorney, Ronald L. Burdge (Burdge Wells Law Office) has represented thousands of consumers in “lemon” vehicle lawsuits and actively co-counsels and coaches other consumer law attorneys on how to win their cases.

 

Sharon K. Campbell (Sharon K Campbell, Attorney at Law) has been a solo practitioner in Dallas, TX since 1994, where she focuses her practice on consumer litigation. Her current caseload is largely comprised of auto fraud and landlord/tenant cases, although she also handles cases involving debt defense and FDCPA and FCRA matters. She is Board Certified in Consumer and Commercial Law. She accepts many pro bono referrals from the Dallas Volunteer Attorney Program and was named Solo Practitioner of the Year in 2017 by that organization. 

 

Mike Cardoza (The Cardoza Law Corporation) was trained as a trial attorney in the U.S. Marine Corps and has tried countless cases in federal and state courtrooms. Mike is a Consumer Financial Protection Attorney with two young daughters and is an avid student of behavioral psychology. He is also the author of The Secret World of Debt Collection: Beat Collectors at Their Own Game.

 

Elizabeth Carter is the vice president of the East/Central Region of Judicial Arbitration and Mediation Services, Inc (JAMS). Carter oversees regional operations for Resolution Centers located in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Washington, DC, as well as JAMS Canada, based in Toronto, Ontario. Carter also works to identify and create new business opportunities and is actively involved in marketing and practice development initiatives for her region. Carter graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and earned her J.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison Law School. She is a member of the State Bars of Illinois and Wisconsin. 

 

Penny Hays Cauley (Samford University, J.D.) has been representing consumers for twenty years. In 2006, she opened Hays Cauley, P.C., a law firm dedicated to representing consumers, with a particular focus in fair credit reporting, fair debt collection practices, and TCPA claims. She was lead counsel in Jamon Brim v. Midland Credit Management, Inc., a §1681s-2(b) claim, which resulted in a jury verdict of $100,000 in compensatory damages and $623,180 in punitive damages for violations of the FCRA.

 

David Chami is the managing attorney at the Price Law Group and runs the firm's litigation practice. David focuses his practice on FCRA, FDCPA, TCPA, and Civil Rights and has tried approximately twenty cases to verdict in Federal and State Courts as well as JAMS Arbitrations. 

 

Blythe Chandler is a member at Terrell Marshall Law Group, where she concentrates her practice on consumer class actions and appeals. Ms. Chandler joined Terrell Marshall as an associate in 2014. She has played a lead role in class actions challenging denials of healthcare coverage for children with autism, unlawful telemarketing, and deceptive debt collection practices. She graduated with High Honors from University of Washington School of Law.

 

Amy Beth Clark-Downing’s dad told her that she was “ornery” and “would argue with a telephone pole.” She took this as career advice and went to USC Law School. In 2019, after thirteen years in private practice, Amy Beth proudly became manager of the Consumer Protection Team at Texas RioGrande Legal Aid (TRLA).

 

Elliot Conn is the founder of Conn Law, PC, a California consumer protection law practice headquartered in San Francisco. Elliot has successfully litigated hundreds of consumer cases, both individual cases and class actions. Through his class actions and other complex cases, Elliot has been successful in eliminating over $1 billion in consumer debt on behalf of hundreds of thousands of Californians. Elliot's cases have also put millions of dollars back in consumers' pockets nationwide. Elliot is AV Martindale-Hubbell rated. Elliot is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law and received his Bachelors of Arts from Colgate University.

 

Neil B. Currie is a vice president with the American Arbitration Association (AAA). He oversees the AAA’s Consumer ADR Administration Group. He is responsible for the AAA’s consumer policies and procedures, including rule revisions, consumer panel recruitment, and general consumer programs and materials. Mr. Currie reviews consumer arbitration agreements for compliance with the Consumer Due Process Protocol and developed and oversees the AAA’s Consumer Clause Registry. Mr. Currie, a member of the New York State Bar, received a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1993 and a J.D. from University of California, Hastings College of the Law in 1996.

 

Nathan DeLadurantey (DeLadurantey Law Office, LLC) represents Wisconsin consumers in connection with repossession, auto fraud, FDCPA, FCRA and state law claims. He regularly tries consumer cases, earning his clients substantial jury verdicts. In his free time, Nathan enjoys Crossfit, hiking with his family, and reading a good book.

 

E. Michelle Drake is a shareholder at Berger Montague PC, where she supervises the firm’s Minneapolis office. Ms. Drake focuses her practice on consumer protection, improper credit reporting, and financial services class actions. Ms. Drake serves on the NACA Board and the Board of Governors for the Minnesota Association of Justice, is a member of NCLS’s Partners’ Council, and is an at-large council member for the Consumer Litigation Section of the Minnesota State Bar Association.

 

Veronika Fabian has been a partner with Choi & Fabian, PLC since 2003. Ms. Fabian received her Juris Doctorate in Law from the University of Michigan Law School in 1993. She worked at DNA People’s Legal Services, Inc., from 1994 to 2003, and was the Director of DNA’s Consumer Law Project from 1996-2003. In 2003, she was awarded the Sharon A. Fullmer Legal Aid Attorney of the Year Award. She focuses on automobile fraud, abusive debt collection, and credit reporting issues.  

 

For over eighteen years, founder Christine A. Ferraris (A. Ferraris Law, PLLC) has worked relentlessly in the legal arena to help those hurt by fraud. As a business owner herself for most of those eighteen years, she understands the challenges small-business owners face.

 

Cary Flitter is a highly respected expert in consumer law. Many of his cases have broken new ground, helping to shape the law itself and set the precedent for future decisions. He is founding partner in Flitter Milz P.C. He has more than thirty years of trial and appellate experience in federal and state courts. Cary has built his practice around litigating cases on behalf of consumers against debt collectors, banks and finance companies, insurance companies, car dealers, and credit reporting agencies. He represents clients as individuals and in class actions.

 

James Francis (Muhlenberg College, B.A. 1992; Temple University, J.D. 1995), of Francis Mailman Soumilas, P.C. has focused on consumer protection litigation, concentrating on the FCRA, FDCPA, and consumer class actions. He argued the seminal FCRA case of Cortez v. TransUnion before the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals, was certified to serve as Class counsel in over thirty class actions, was involved in the trial of two class actions to verdict, and has received some of the largest FCRA settlements in history.

 

Craig Friedberg (Law Office of Craig B. Friedberg, Esq.) graduated from Vassar College as an undergrad and earned his J.D. from the University of San Diego School of Law. Since 1999, his practice involves representing consumers under the FDCPA, FCRA, TCPA, and Nevada deceptive trade practice act. Craig is also a part-time judge and arbitrator.

 

Minal Gahlot (Rawls Gahlot PLLC) is a trial lawyer with experience litigating auto fraud cases in both federal and state courts. She has also successfully defended and won appeals resulting in multiple publications. She loves what she does because at the end of the day, she is able to tell her kids that she helps people who were defrauded by a bully.

 

Sylvia A. Goldsmith (B.A. and J.D., Ohio State University) is the founder of Goldsmith & Associates, LLC, a consumer protection law practice concentrating on identity theft and credit reporting litigation, debt collection abuses, personal and financial privacy rights, and other consumer protection issues. Goldsmith has had numerous favorable decisions in the FCRA arena on cutting-edge issues ranging from the applicability of the FCRA to nontraditional consumer report information, from automated underwriting reports and criminal background checks to the willful violation of the law for the impermissible access to consumer reports post-bankruptcy.

 

Hon. William E. Gomolinski brings thirty-five years of legal expertise to every mediation. A Northwestern University trained mediator with a deep understanding of the law unearthed from twenty-four years as an attorney and eleven years ruling from the bench has helped him cultivate a keen and sweeping understanding of various and complex personal injury and commercial matters. Since joining ADR Systems in 2018, he has mediated and arbitrated hundreds of complex and high-value cases, more than 300 mediations via Zoom resulting in more than $350 million in settlements further solidifying his reputation as a highly regarded mediator with the ability to resolve the most difficult matters.

 

Elizabeth Gonzales is the directing attorney for the Consumer Unit at the Public Law Center (PLC) in Santa Ana, CA. She litigates matters involving debt collection defense, homeowners association disputes, Rees-Levering cases, student loans, including bankruptcy discharges, elder financial abuse, and various other civil matters involving unfair business practices and fraud. She also directs PLC’s Federal Pro Se, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, and Bankruptcy Reaffirmation clinics for unrepresented individuals. She is also currently a lecturer in law at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law. Prior to joining PLC in 2012, she practiced labor and employment litigation at Loeb & Loeb LLP for three years.

 

Andrew Guzzo’s practice (Kelly Guzzo, PLC) focuses exclusively on representing consumers, with an emphasis on litigation against internet lenders, credit reporting agencies, and debt collectors. His peers have recognized him as a Rising Star for the past three years, and he serves as the state chair for Hawaii for NACA.

 

Scott Hardy has been in the tech industry for thirty years and was on the internet before the World Wide Web even existed. Scott’s taken this experience and rolled it into Top Class Actions, which he started in 2008. Now Top Class Actions is the world’s most popular website for consumers to find lawsuits and settlements they can participate in, garnering a reach of 6 million monthly who submit tens of thousands of leads every single month to law firms across the country. Scott continues to transform the world of class action lawsuit settlement notification and class action lawsuit advertising by implementing new and innovative ways to connect consumers to class action settlements and attorneys who can provide the legal help they need.

 

Getting her start in the trenches as a legal aid attorney, Erika Heath (Erika Heath, Attorney at Law) has years of experience in seeking justice for employees and consumers against unfair practices. She has fought off debt collectors, obtained justice for wrongfully terminated employees, and untangled thorny credit reporting issues. She has a J.D. from Northeastern University.

 

Jennifer Hendrickson has been practicing bankruptcy law in Northern California for nine years. She is a professor of law at Empire College of Law and has represented over 600 clients in bankruptcy and civil court. Jennifer currently practices in the areas of bankruptcy, dealer fraud, and lemon law. 

 

Following fifteen years of retail auto industry experience, John Hendrickson (Hendrickson Law Group, PC) found himself displaced in 2008 and began representing consumers in lemon law and dealer fraud disputes in California. Here most of the contracts have arbitration clauses, but he has found that dealerships do not actually like arbitration when used against them. 

 

Amy P. Hennen is the director of advocacy and financial stabilization with the Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service (MVLS). Ms. Hennen provides mentoring for volunteer attorneys and oversees MVLS’s advocacy, housing, and consumer initiatives. Ms. Hennen previously worked for Maryland Legal Aid and prior to that, worked in private practice. Ms. Hennen holds a JD from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law.

 

As NACA's legislative director, Christine Hines advocates before Congress and federal administrative agencies on consumer protection, including financial services and access to justice. She is actively engaged in promoting a fair and open marketplace that protects the rights of consumers, particularly those of modest means. 

 

Peter Holland (The Holland Law Firm, PC) has a consumer rights practice in Maryland, focusing on helping consumers and consumer lawyers fight debt collection abuse. He has been co-counsel in class action lawsuits resulting in the dismissal of thousands of lawsuits filed by debt buyers and by automobile finance companies. In addition to co-counselling and case consulting, Peter offers lawyer workshops and trainings, as well as one-on-one confidential attorney mentoring in consumer law, trial practice, and sustainable consumer law practice business models.

 

SaraEllen Hutchison is an experienced consumer protection lawyer, a TLC Warrior from the class of July 2012, and a professional coach certified by the Life Coach School. When she's not lawyering or coaching, she's skiing Cascade crud or singing in a jazz combo. Her websites are seattlefaircredit.com and saraellen.net, and her podcast is Inner Peace for Busy Lawyers

 

Danielle Johnson is a staff attorney in the Housing Unit of Greater Boston Legal Services where she works with tenants who are in danger of losing their housing. Danielle also works to ensure that systemic problems related to housing instability are addressed. Danielle is currently a board member of the Massachusetts Black Women Attorneys and is published in the Boston Bar Journal and the Boston Globe, where she discusses the need for diversity in the legal community.

 

Kelly Overstreet Johnson is the office managing shareholder of Baker Donelson's Tallahassee office and has practiced law for thirty-eight years. Ms. Johnson is an active mediator, arbitrator, and litigator with extensive experience in both state and federal courts in the areas of commercial, employment, real estate, probate, and class action litigation. Ms. Johnson is AV rated by Martindale-Hubbell. Ms. Johnson is a well-respected lawyer throughout the state, and is a Past President of the Florida Bar, the Tallahassee Bar Association, and the Tallahassee Women Lawyers. She serves on the AAA arbitration commercial and employment panels.

 

Scott Kaufman founded California Lemon Lawyers in 2003, after a short stint with one of the nation's largest lemon law firms. Scott's firm is now averaging one new case a day and growing exponentially. The firm has been responsible for returning millions of dollars to California consumers who had been wronged by businesses. Mr. Kaufman serves as state chair for NACA in California.

 

Duran Keller (Keller Law) is a trial lawyer. He is a graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College and is admitted to practice in Indiana, New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, and Wisconsin. Most of Duran’s attention is devoted to consumer law, but he often takes cases to support a good cause. Duran fights against all types of injustices, ranging from unfair charges/collection attempts and credit reporting to egregious police brutality cases. He is the chair of the NACA Indiana Chapter, a Super Lawyers Rising Star with multiple consumer appellate victories and record-breaking verdicts, and he has tried multiple cases to jury verdict, including State and Federal court.

 

Kristi C. Kelly specializes in assisting consumers with credit reporting and employment background check mistakes, mortgage servicing errors, and predatory lending. She has successfully litigated hundreds of individual and class action cases in state and federal courts in Virginia, Maryland, and D.C. Prior to starting Kelly Guzzo, PLC, Kristi was a shareholder at Surovell Isaacs Petersen & Levy and worked for legal aid. She is a board member of the Legal Aid Justice Center, Virginia Poverty Law Center. She is also on the Partner’s Council of NCLC.

 

Kristin Kemnitzer is a managing partner at the law firm of Kemnitzer Barron & Krieg, LLP. Kristin litigates cases involving lemon law, auto fraud, unfair debt collection, illegal repossessions, motorcycle finance, elder abuse, cell phone abuse, and California’s mortgage anti-deficiency statutes. Kristin has represented hundreds of individual consumers and has been appointed as lead counsel in dozens of class actions. She also has significant experience in arbitration and mediation.

 

Roger Kirnos is a partner at Knight Law Group, LLP. He works in the firm’s Los Angeles office, where he represents clients throughout California. Mr. Kirnos graduated from Southwestern University School of Law with cum laude honors and the Dean’s Merit Award. His professional focus has been to protect consumers from large-scale abuses by large consumer goods manufacturers. He has taken to verdict over twenty-five consumer-protection cases and was one of the trial attorneys on the team that won a record $8.2 million jury verdict against Ford Motor Company.

 

Allison Krumhorn (Wilcox Law Firm, P.C.) has been a consumer protection attorney for over fifteen years, litigating in both court and in arbitration, in the class action context as well as high-value individual cases. In May 2002, Ms. Krumhorn graduated with high honors and Order of the Coif from Chicago-Kent College of Law. She was admitted to practice in Illinois in 2002. In 2003, Ms. Krumhorn received an LLM from Northwestern University School of Law. From February of 2004 to June 2015, Ms. Krumhorn was employed as an attorney at The Consumer Advocacy Center, P.C. in Chicago. Ms. Krumhorn’s practice focused on individual and class litigation, involving consumer fraud, automobile fraud, wrongful repossessions, unlawful debt collections, and violations of various consumer-based federal statutes. Ms. Krumhorn has been with the Wilcox Law Firm P.C. since 2015. Ms. Krumhorn is NACA's California state co-chair. She is also a graduate of Gerry Spence's Trial Lawyers College.

 

Jared Lee is the managing partner at Jackson Lee. He’s served as the chair of Florida’s Consumer Protection Committee. Jared attended Florida State College of Law. He’s had the privilege to represent consumers in obtaining sizable recoveries through trial, arbitration, and settlement, including multiple seven-figure outcomes. Jared serves as an adjunct professor for the Florida State University College of Law Juris Master program.

 

Alexis Lehmann is an attorney at Francis Mailman Soumilas, P.C., who represents individual consumers’ rights under the FCRA and the FDCPA. Alexis is also an active member on the Executive Board for the Justice Rising Advocates. Prior to joining the firm, Alexis worked as a civil litigator for local and state law enforcement officers handling cases under Title VII, The Americans With Disabilities Act, The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, and the First Amendment Free Speech and Petition clause.

 

Dani K. Liblang's firm, The Liblang Law Firm PC, in Birmingham, MI, has been certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy as a civil trial lawyer and was awarded the NACA 2002 Consumer Hero Award. She is a frequent author and presenter on the topic of handling lemon law and auto fraud cases. Ms. Liblang has also twice served as chair of the Michigan State Bar’s Consumer Law.

 

Hans Lodge is senior counsel at Berger Montague, leading the firm’s individual FCRA practice. Hans has litigated numerous individual and class cases throughout the country. Hans assists consumers who have been denied jobs or housing due to inaccurate criminal history information reporting in their employment and tenant screening background check reports. Hans also assists consumers who have been denied credit due to inaccurate information reporting in their credit reports.

 

Matt Loker is the founder of Loker Law, APC and Professor of Contracts at the San Luis Obispo College of Law. Originally from Ohio, Matt moved to California after meeting his wife—a California native—while studying abroad in Alicante, Spain.   These days Matt enjoys exploring the Central Coast along his two daughters, Charley and Hazel.​

 

Mark D. Mailman has concentrated his practice in consumer protection litigation since co-founding his firm, Francis & Mailman, P.C. in 1998. Mark has litigated thousands of FCRA and FDCPA cases. He has been certified to serve as class counsel by state and federal courts in both contested and settlement class actions. In October 2018, Mark was awarded the 2018 Consumer Attorney of the Year award from NACA.

 

David Marco is one of the founding partners of SmithMarco, P.C., and he has devoted the overwhelming majority of his professional career to the practice of consumer litigation and to protecting consumers’ rights.

 

Jonathan R. Marshall (Bailey & Glasser LLP) focuses his practice on solving complex problems for individuals, other lawyers, and business owners. His approach to sophisticated legal work involves a team centered orientation where creative and experienced lawyers, subject matter experts, and technology leaders are leveraged to create practical and valuable solutions for clients. He has a J.D. from West Virginia University College of Law.

 

Nick Mattison is a partner at the consumer protection law firm Feferman, Warren & Mattison in Albuquerque, NM. He is the recipient of the National Consumer Law Center’s 2020 Rising Star Award. Nick’s practice includes individual cases and class actions against car dealers, lenders, credit reporting agencies, and debt collectors.   

 

Dave Maxfield runs a boutique consumer protection practice (Consumer Protection Law) in South Carolina, representing consumers in cases against banks, credit reporting agencies, and insurance companies. He’s the four-time chairman of the Consumer Law section of the SC Bar, and past president of the 1900 member Richland County Bar. Dave is an adjunct professor at the University of SC School of Law. He is the author of ABA bestseller The Lean Law Firm, which describes how law firms can translate Lean practices from companies like Toyota and Intel into a simple, month-by-month template that law firms can use to become more profitable.

 

Adam McNeile is an attorney in the San Francisco office of Kemnitzer, Barron & Krieg, LLP. Mr. McNeile graduated from the University of Southern California in 2008 and the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law in 2011. Mr. McNeile practices consumer protection law, focusing on automotive issues. 

 

Andy Milz is a trial lawyer at Flitter Milz, PC (PA, NJ, NY offices). He tries consumer fraud cases against corporate bad actors and has obtained actual and punitive damage jury verdicts for victimized consumers. Andy has been published in peer-reviewed journals and treatises, has lectured nationally on consumer law subjects, and is an active member of the National Association of Consumer Advocates. Andy attended Temple Law School in Philadelphia, PA, and is a graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College.       

 

Robert W. Murphy (Law Office of Robert W. Murphy) is in private practice in Fort Lauderdale, FL, focusing on consumer class action litigation. Mr. Murphy has been lead counsel in over 200 consumer class actions. Recently, he was recognized by TopVerdict.com for having two of the largest class settlements in the United States for a nationwide truck warranty action against Mitsubishi in 2017 and a $19.7 million class settlement involving automobile deficiencies.

 

Casey Nash (Kelly Guzzo, PLC) is a consumer attorney in Fairfax, VA specializing in FCRA, FDCPA, mortgage servicing, predatory lending, and TCPA litigation. She has litigated over 350 individual and class action federal cases, has been named a Rising Star by Super Lawyers magazine since 2015, and currently serves on Legal Aid Justice Center’s Advisory Board. 

 

John O’Neal (O'Neal Law Office) represents persons across North Carolina in matters of auto fraud, unfair/harassing debt collection, credit reporting, illegal repossessions, and various other civil matters. John was a founding member and later chair of the consumer law section of the North Carolina Advocates of Justice (formerly NCATL) and has provided seminars, resources, and advice to countless lawyers and consumers across North Carolina. John is a proud alumnus of UNCG and UNC Chapel Hill School of Law.

 

Chelsea Ortega is a partner in the law firm of Santoni, Vocci & Ortega, LLC, which is located in Baltimore, MD. She regularly defends consumers and brings affirmative claims for violations of Maryland’s consumer protection statutes and the FDCPA in debt collection cases, including landlord/tenant cases, automobile deficiencies, and predatory loans. Chelsea has brought and settled several class action cases against large property management companies, debt collectors, and auto finance companies. Chelsea graduated from the University of Maryland School of Law, cum laude.

 

Matt Osborne (Matthew R. Osborne, P.C.) practices in Northglenn, CO. His practice focuses on FCRA, auto fraud, and bad faith insurance. Prior to becoming a lawyer, he served five years in the Navy. Matt went to law school at Michigan State. He is married with two kids. His main hobby is suing big corporations.

 

Scott D. Owens is the founder of Scott D. Owens, P.A., which since 2011 has recovered millions of dollars on behalf of consumers throughout the United States. Scott has been an active member of the National Association of Consumer Advocates since 2007 and currently serves on the Partners’ Council of the National Consumer Law Center.

 

David J. Philipps (Philipps & Philipps) has almost thirty years of experience as a consumer litigator, on both an individual and class basis, advocating for consumers who have been defrauded in a variety of ways. Mr. Philipps is most well-known for his strong advocacy for consumers who have been subjected to abusive and illegal actions by debt collectors. He has a J.D. from the University of Illinois College of Law.

 

Anna Prakash is a partner at Nichols Kaster in Minneapolis, MN. She focuses on class and multi-plaintiff actions on behalf of protected groups and those harmed by corporate or governmental wrongdoing. Anna’s cases involve a variety of issues, including labor trafficking, discrimination in schools, wiretapping, unlawful lending practices, and employment discrimination.

 

M. Kathi Rawls (Rawls Gahlot PLLC) has been practicing law since 2001. She is a graduate of the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College and the Reptile Litigation Group. She has litigated hundreds of consumer law cases, including auto fraud, predatory lending, debt collection abuse, repossession defense, identity theft, and false credit reporting. Her efforts have resulted in settlements in multiple millions of dollars in recovery for Oklahoma consumers and jury trial verdicts that garnered the attention and referrals from even some local judges.

 

Gretchen Reimert (Consumer Law Center) specializes in foreclosure defense and consumer bankruptcy. She started practicing law in California by advocating for safe, affordable housing before obtaining a masters degree from the Harvard Kennedy School. During the 2008 foreclosure crisis, Gretchen worked for legal services providers representing low-income homeowners at foreclosure mediation sessions. In 2017, she entered private practice where she continues to assist struggling homeowners. She has degrees from American University (B.S. concentration finance 1989), the University of San Diego School of Law (J.D. 1998), and the Harvard Kennedy School (M.P.A. concentration leadership 2004).

 

Ira Rheingold is NACA's executive director. Ira has testified before both houses of Congress on various mortgage lending and consumer finance issues, offered commentary before federal agencies charged with regulating financial service industries and protecting consumers, and helped draft amicus briefs on issues of great concern to consumers before the nation's highest courts.

 

Christina Gill Roseman represents consumers at Roseman Law Firm, PLLC, with offices in Pittsburgh, PA and Morgantown, WV. She has successfully tried numerous cases against automobile manufacturers and dealerships. She is rated as an AV Preeminent attorney, the highest ranking, by her peers through Martindale Hubbell, has been selected as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer for 2014, 2016, and 2017 and is NACA’s West Virginia state co-chair.

 

Craig Rothburd (Craig E. Rothburd, P.A.) practices law in Tampa, FL, where he devotes a considerable amount of his complex civil litigation practice on consumer law and litigation, with a special focus on class action litigation, including insurance, mortgage loan servicing, truth in lending, deceptive practices, and consumer statutory violations. He is AV Martindale-Hubbell rated and recently received the Judge Don Castor Justice Award (2019), and the Consumer Protection Lawyer of the Year by the Florida Bar (2017). Craig graduated from the University of Florida College of Law with honors and received his Bachelor of Science from there.

 

Evan S. Rothfarb (Schlanger Law Group, LLP) is an accomplished litigator whose complex litigation experience includes both class action lawsuits and multi-district litigation. Evan is a graduate of Cornell Law School. He began his legal career as an associate in a small New York City litigation firm, specializing in commercial litigation and class actions. Subsequently, he founded a litigation firm, where he represented individuals and businesses in a variety of commercial actions. In 2017, Evan brought his considerable litigation skills to Schlanger Law Group, putting his extensive experience to work in the consumer protection, identity theft, and consumer class action arenas.

 

Kari Rudd is a senior attorney in the consumer protection unit at Bay Area Legal Aid, representing low-income consumers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area in cases involving a variety of debt and credit issues. She is a 2009 graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School.

 

Carla L. Sanchez-Adams is a managing attorney with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Inc. (TRLA). She assists low-income Texans on issues related to debt collection, credit reporting, auto fraud, debt management, and other consumer-related disputes. Carla received her undergraduate degree in politics and economics from New York University and her law degree from the University of Texas School of Law.

 

Benjamin Sanchez (Sanchez Law Firm) is an experienced litigator, having represented businesses and individuals as plaintiffs and defendants in a variety of civil disputes.   After starting his career in 1998 as a solo practitioner, Benjamin joined a six-attorney litigation firm in Dallas in 2002 and quickly became its senior associate.   Upon returning to Houston in 2004, Benjamin joined an eight-attorney litigation firm, again quickly becoming its senior associate. In March 2007, Benjamin re-opened his own practice. Benjamin changed his collection-focused practiced at the end of 2012 and has been primarily representing people since then.

 

Jeff Sand (Weiner & Sand LLC) spent the first six years of his career as a defense lawyer at two of the country's premier defense firms, where he defended Fortune 500 companies in class action and single-plaintiff lawsuits. In 2014, Jeff left his defense practice to represent employees and consumers, rather than large corporations. Jeff's consumer rights law practice focuses on litigation under the FCRA, including claims for credit reporting errors, employment background reports, tenant screening reports, and identity theft. Jeff's FCRA experience focuses on both class actions as well as single-plaintiff lawsuits.

 

Jane Santoni is a partner with Santoni, Vocci & Ortega, LLC in Maryland. She has been a litigator since 1988, handling thousands of mediations and dealing with many different personality types. She represents people injured by landlord/tenant violations, debt collection abuses, bail bond violations, car fraud, and credit reporting errors. 

 

As founder of the Law Office of Adam G. Singer, PLLC, Adam Singer has focused his practice on helping consumers enforce their Fair Credit rights. Most frequently, Adam's cases involve the defamatory fallout from negative credit reporting that arises from identity theft or mixed files. Adam earned a B.A., summa cum laude, at Washington University and a J.D., cum laude, at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.  Adam began his legal career as a law clerk to the Hon. Sidney H. Stein, U.S.D.J. in the S.D.N.Y. and as an associate at the law firms of Skadden Arps and Akin Gump.  

 

Alysson Snow leads the Consumer Protection Division of the Legal Aid Society of San Diego, Inc. Ms. Snow is an aggressive litigator with extensive experience in consumer protection litigation. She and her team provide free legal assistance and representation to low-income San Diegans who struggle to save their homes from foreclosure and predatory lending schemes. Ms. Snow was awarded Consumer Advocate of the Year for 2019 from Consumer Attorneys of San Diego. Prior to working at Legal Aid, Ms. Snow worked for DLA Piper (US) LLP. She graduated from the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University.

 

Robert S. Sola is the founding member of Robert S. Sola, P.C., a consumer law firm based in Portland, OR. He has been handling FCRA cases since 1996. He represents consumers across the country and has litigated FCRA cases in twenty-five states as co-counsel with many NACA members. Mr. Sola has obtained large jury verdicts against all three major credit reporting agencies. In 2002, he was lead counsel in Thomas v. Trans Union, where the jury awarded the consumer $5.3 million. In 2007, he was co-counsel in Williams v. Equifax, which resulted in a judgment of $3.4 million. Mr. Sola was named Trial Lawyer of the Year in 2003 by NACA.

 

John Soumilas (Francis Mailman Soumilas, P.C.) is a no-nonsense litigator and one of the firm’s shareholders. He concentrates his practice in consumer class actions and other complex litigation matters. John litigates primarily in federal court on behalf of victims of identity theft, persons defamed and otherwise harmed by credit and background screening errors, individuals harassed and deceived by collectors and other businesses, and consumers who are subjected to unwelcome invasions of their privacy, fraud, overcharging, and other deceptive or unfair trade practices.

 

After graduating from Stetson Law in 2011, Aaron Swift litigated FDCPA, TCPA, and FCRA cases as an associate in St. Petersburg, FL. In 2017, Aaron started his own firm, and Swift Law represents consumers throughout Florida. Swift Law routinely sues debt collectors, credit reporting agencies, and timeshare companies. Aaron loves playing poker and golf, spending time with his wife and two dogs, and traveling.

 

Subhan Tariq (The Law Offices of Subhan Tariq) regularly handles complex commercial litigation, with particular experience in consumer finance litigation in individual and class action cases in the areas of federal and state consumer protection laws. Mr. Tariq has successfully helped thousands of consumers exercise their consumer rights against large institutional banks, debt collectors, and consumer reporting agencies. Subhan also consults with other lawyers and law firms on blockchain automation, working towards a streamlined efficient network of client files, document automation, and cost-effective workflows.

 

Stephanie Tatar has been a consumer advocate since graduating cum laude from DePaul University, College of Law. Prior to founding The Tatar Law Firm, Ms. Tatar gained extensive litigation and appellate experience with firms in Chicago and Los Angeles. During her career, she has successfully fought debt collectors, credit reporting agencies, creditors, manufacturers, and car dealers.

 

Adam Thoresen is a senior staff attorney with the public interest law firm, Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, Inc. He has worked at JALA for over ten years, and his practice is currently focused on FCRA litigation related to landlord/tenant debts and other inaccuracies in tenant screening reports. Adam has litigated cases with all of the Big Three Consumer Reporting Agencies as well as specialty debt collectors whose focus is the collection of residential landlord/tenant debts. Adam handles cases on an individual and class basis under the FCRA, FDCPA, FCCPA, and other consumer protection statutes.

 

John Ukegbu is a senior staff attorney at Northeast New Jersey Legal Services, where he represents low-income consumers. He has served as a member of the District Ethics Committee and as a trustee for the Lawyers’ Fund for Client Protection. He is currently a member of the Supreme Court Committee on Special Civil Part Practice. He is a graduate of Western New England University School of Law. 

 

Janet Varnell (Varnell & Warwick, PA) is a consumer class action expert leading over fifty cases and serving on plaintiff steering committees in MDL litigation, and she also handles a variety of other high-impact public interest litigation. Her firm has won a multitude of appellate victories in state and federal courts, including a 2019 United Supreme Court win in a consumer class action. Varnell was awarded “Consumer Lawyer of the Year” in 2019 by the Florida Bar, 2009 “Consumer Advocate of the Year” by NACA, and 2018 “Trial Lawyer of the Year” by Public Justice.

 

Dan Vedra (Vedra Law LLC) is a sole practitioner in Denver, Colorado. He has run a small or solo practice for seven years. He works primarily on FDCPA individual and class cases, medical debt, and general consumer litigation including auto fraud and deceptive trade practice cases.  

 

Susan Warren is a partner at Feferman, Warren & Mattison, a consumer fraud law firm located in Albuquerque, NM. She particularly loves suing car dealers. Ms. Warren once obtained a $669,000 jury verdict on behalf of a Navajo couple, who had purchased a used vehicle for $3,995. Ms. Warren has numerous published federal court decisions in the area of consumer law. Ms. Warren graduated from Harvard Law School in 1990. She is a past New Mexico state chairperson for NACA. 

 

Brian Warwick (Varnell & Warwick) has been practicing class action law for more than twenty years and has been appointed Class Counsel by judges across the country. In 2018, Mr. Warwick and his partner, Janet Varnell, received the Trial Lawyer of the Year Award from the Public Justice Foundation in Washington, D.C., for their litigation against tribal payday lenders in Florida. Mr. Warwick is also an experienced appellate advocate and has argued numerous cases before both Federal and State appellate courts. His practice focuses on a variety of class actions including product liability, unfair and deceptive practices, and consumer fraud.   

 

Courtney Weiner (Law Office of Courtney Weiner PLLC) is a solo practitioner representing consumers primarily in Washington, DC and Maryland in consumer finance matters, including FCRA, FDCPA, RESPA, TILA, and student loans. Prior to opening her firm, Courtney honed her litigation skills in a variety of settings, ranging from the U.S. Department of Justice to some of the top litigation firms in the country. Courtney is a member of the boards of Tzedek DC, the DC Bar, and the DC Bar Pro Bono Center. Courtney graduated from Columbia Law School and Princeton University and is a native of Washington, DC.

 

Sarah White joined the Connecticut Fair Housing Center’s fair lending and foreclosure prevention program in 2012. Previously, she was a staff attorney at the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands. Ms. White received her B.A. from Hendrix College and her M.A. and J.D. from the University of Washington. She was the recipient of the National Lawyers Guild’s C. B. King award in 2010 for her social justice efforts.

 

Ronald Wilcox (Wilcox Law Firm, P.C.) has been a consumer protection attorney since 1995, with an office in San Jose.   Ron is a graduate of Gerry Spence’s Trial Lawyers College and has tried consumer protection cases in federal and state court, as well as JAMS and AAA. He is a member of the CAOC, CAALA, and NACBA. He has presented webinars and spoken at national conferences on consumer law and arbitration. He was awarded Santa Clara University’s Community Law Center’s Community Service Award. Ron is the author of “Conducting Individual Arbitrations” in NCLC's Consumer Arbitration Agreements.

 

Susan Yeck (Lemon Law Associates of California) has exclusively practiced automobile litigation since 2004, representing California consumers. She has been a trial attorney for over thirty years and has appeared in superior and appellate courts throughout the state. She has several Appellate Decisions—two notably in the warranty law area. She has served as a Judge Pro Tem, settlement panel judge and arbitrator for San Diego County.

 

Tashia Zeigler practices in Georgia. She worked for over a decade as a public interest lawyer in State government and with The Zeigler Firm in Atlanta, Georgia. She is currently an attorney for the Georgia Legal Services Program.

 

Noah Zinner is a regional managing attorney for consumer issues at Bay Area Legal Aid. Previously, he was a managing attorney at Housing and Economic Rights Advocates (HERA). He received his J.D. from University of California, Berkeley School of Law.

 

Scarlett Steuart is an associate attorney at the Burdge Wells Law Office in Dayton, OH. She joined the firm in 2016 to combine two of her passions: helping people and cars. She has represented consumers across the country in lemon law and breach of warranty cases for cars, motorcycles, ATVs, and RVs, and auto sales fraud cases. Scarlett has co-authored the chapter of the Baldwin's Ohio Consumer Law Handbook on Arbitration since 2018. The Baldwin's Ohio Consumer Law Handbook is widely considered to be the leading authority on Consumer Law in Ohio.