Alumni Achievements
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Dionna Lewis, LW'11, joins Fay Law Group PLLC in Washington, D.C.

The Fay Law Group PLLC (FLG) is pleased to welcome Dionna Maria Lewis, Esq. to the firm as a Labor and Employment Associate. Ms. Lewis joins FLG after completing a judicial clerkship for the Honorable John F. McCabe, Jr. at the D.C. Superior Court.

Ms. Lewis brings valuable knowledge and experience to the firm in the areas of civil rights law, employment discrimination, and litigation. Ms. Lewis is former Fair Lending Counsel in the Office of Fair Lending and Equal Opportunity at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), where she investigated fair lending risks and violations at some of the nation’s largest financial institutions and served American consumers by ensuring compliance with federal antidiscrimination consumer laws.

Davis Brown Law Firm elects Meyer, LW'09, and Warnock, AS'06, LW'09, as shareholders

The Davis Brown Law Firm is pleased to announce that Elizabeth R. Meyer and Michele L. Warnock have been elected shareholders, effective January 2015.

Elizabeth is a member of the Litigation Division and maintains a varied practice representing individuals and companies in business litigation matters including contract, real estate, employment, probate and personal injury disputes. She is also an active member of the firm’s employment law and labor relations practice group, working with clients on all aspects of the employment relationship.

Michele is a member of the Litigation Division and maintains a practice with an emphasis in labor and employment and business litigation. She represents employers across the spectrum, from small, local businesses to large multistate employers, including startups, franchises, and large corporations to mitigate liability.

Jonathan Kramer, LW'02

Jonathan Kramer, LW'02, certfified as Creditor's Rights Law Specialist

Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C., attorney Jonathan E. Kramer, LW'02, has been certified by the American Board of Certification (ABC) as a Creditors’ Rights Law Specialist. Kramer complied with all applicable requirements for certification in creditors’ rights law and met all standards as set forth in the ABC program. To be certified, Jonathan passed an extensive, day-long written examination covering creditors’ rights issues, went through a peer review process, and devoted a minimum of 400 hours to the practice of creditors' rights law during each of the last three years.

Jonathan represents creditors in state, federal or bankruptcy court litigation (including hearings, trials and appeals) relating to debt collection. He speaks regularly on issues relating to collecting judgments, obtaining judgments, debt collection practice and good financial decision-making in the judgment collection process.

Lowry, LW'07, elected shareholder

Michael Lowry, AS’03, LW’07, was elected as a shareholder in Thorndal Armstrong Delk Balkenbush & Eisinger, a Reno, Nevada law firm. Lowry joined the law firm in 2007 after graduating from Drake Law School and has developed a successful litigation practice representing clients in Nevada.
“I sincerely appreciate the efforts of everyone who helped contribute to this recognition,” said Lowry. “This would not have been possible without the support I received from the firm.”

Michael Lowry, LW'07

Drake alumnus' blog honored by ABA Journal

On November 24, 2014 Michael Lowry's, AS’03, LW’07, blog Compelling Discovery was included among the country’s top 100 legal blogs for 2014, as determined by the editors of the ABA Journal. This is the second time the ABA Journal has honored this blog, the first time was in 2013. Mr. Lowry is a litigator and trial attorney in the Las Vegas office of Thorndal Armstrong Delk Balkenbush & Eisinger.

Ellen Essman, LW'14, wins writing award from American Agricultural Law Association

Ellen Essman, a 2014 graduate of Drake Law School, was the recipient of the 2014 American Agricultural Law Association award for the best student article related to agricultural law. Essman’s note, The Ohio Livestock Care Standards as a Blueprint for Livestock Welfare Policy, was published in the Fall 2013 Drake Journal of Agricultural Law.

Laura Mommsen, LW'07, joins Hupy and Abraham

Hupy and Abraham, S.C., P.C., personal injury law firm, has announced Attorney Laura L. Mommsen as a new addition to the firm in the Des Moines office.

Prior to joining Hupy and Abraham, Attorney Mommsen successfully arbitrated numerous cases as an attorney for the state of Iowa. She will be representing Hupy and Abraham clients in various personal injury areas. Read more...

Ed Cox, LW'09, joins Orsborn, Milani and Goedken, LLP

The law firm of Orsborn, Milani, Mitchell and Goedken, LLP, announces the addition of attorney Ed Cox. Cox joined the firm's Centerville office in September and will handle general practice matters with a focus on estate planning, real estate and agricultural law.

Judge Constance Cohen

The Honorable Constance Cohen, ED'72, ED'79, LW'87, receives 2014 Michele A. Moore Award of Distinction

The Polk County Child Abuse and Neglect (CAN) Council is honoring Judge Cohen with their top honor. Throughout Judge Cohen’s distinguished career, while serving on the Juvenile Court bench in the Fifth Judicial District of Iowa, Judge Cohen has demonstrated her commitment to serving the children and families of Central Iowa. She has routinely gone above and beyond to advocate for our most vulnerable population—abused and neglected children. (Photo courtesy of Lauren Horsch/The Des Moines Register).

The17th Annual Benefit Auction will be held Friday, November 7th at 6:30 p.m., Hotel Ft. Des Moines, 1000 Walnut St., Des Moines.

Register for the benefit.

Read more about CAN.

Danya Hooker, LW'14

Danya Keller, LW'14, has joined Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. as an associate attorney

Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. is pleased to announce Danya M. Keller has joined the firm as an associate attorney in the litigation practice group in the Des Moines, Iowa office. She works with clients on various civil litigation matters in areas including, but not limited to, labor and employment law, family law, and insurance law. Danya has an extensive background in public policy and journalism, having received numerous awards from the Illinois Press Association and Milwaukee Press Club.


Lindsey Purdy, LW'13, makes "The Annual List" of young professionals and executives

Lindsey Purdy, LW'13, was recently named to "The Annual List" by the American Legal and Financial Network (ALFN). The 2014 Picture the Future List is a publication created by the the ALFN’s Junior Professionals & Executives Group (JPEG), a young professionals network representing the best and brightest of the mortgage banking trade association’s attorney/trustee, associate, and servicer members.

Purdy is an associate at Klatt Law Group, PC in Des Moines.

Read more... 

Kathleen Richardson, LW'02, named dean of Drake's School of Journalism and Mass Communication

Kathleen Richardson, director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication (SJMC) at Drake University, has been promoted to dean effective immediately.

“Kathleen brings a history of professional service to the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, a vision for moving forward with a digital media focus, and a keen sense of the Drake culture,” said Provost Deneese Jones. “She is a student-centered administrator with a wealth of practical experiences that will serve the school well."

Richardson earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Drake’s SJMC and her Juris Doctor from Drake University Law School. Since 1997, Richardson has been teaching journalism courses at Drake and was appointed director of the SJMC in 2007.

Gov. Branstad appoints Dustria Relph, LW'05, District Court Judge

Gov. Terry Branstad appointed Dustria Ann Relph District Court Judge in the Fifth Judicial District Wednesday. Relph, of Corydon, earned her law degree from Drake University Law School and is currently working in private practice. Prior to her private practice she practiced as a registered nurse.

Read more... 

Thomas Viner opens Viner Law Firm in Cedar Rapids

Thomas Viner, LW'04, has opened his own firm, Viner Law Firm PC in downtown Cedar Rapids. The new office is located at 228 2nd St. SE in the Granby Building. The firm's primary focus is family law and criminal defense.

Whitfield & Eddy attorneys named The Best Lawyers in America 2015

Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. has six attorneys who are Drake Law alumni selected for The Best Lawyers in America 2015. In otal, the firm had 17 selections.

Drake Law alumni include:
• David D. Nelson, LW’80
• Greg Naylor, LW’78, 2015 “Lawyer of the Year”
• David L. Phipps, LW’69
• Kara M. Sinnard, LW'02
• Sally Reavely, LW’88
• Anjela A. Shutts, LW‘96, 2015 “Lawyer of the Year” in Des Moines

Brandon Clark, LW'10, featured in Des Moines Register's YP Spotlight

Brandon Clark, LW'10, was interviewed for the Des Moines Register's Young Professional Spotlight on Aug. 12, 2014.  Clark is a practicing music lawyer focusing on legal issues in the music industry and represents many local and Midwestern bands.

Read and listen to the interview. 

Todd H. Lahr, GR'86, LW'86, listed in Who's Who among Practicing Attorneys and Who's Who in American Law

Todd H. Lahr, GR'86, LW'86, has been listed in Who's Who among Practicing Attorneys and Who's Who in American Law.

Todd is an attorney and founder of the law firm Lahr & Lahr in Allentown, and has been named president of Onslow Holdings Inc., an international business focusing on mining, energy and real estate acquisitions. 

Todd earned a bachelor's degree from Colorado State University, his master's degree from Drake University College of Business and Public Administration, and a law degree from Drake University Law School.

Troy Bozarth, LW'96

Troy Bozarth, LW'96, installed as President Elect of the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel

Troy Bozarth, partner with HeplerBroom LLC’s Edwardsville office, was installed as President Elect of the Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel (IDC) at the organization’s annual meeting held May 30, 2014. Bozarth has served as a member of the IDC Executive Committee for the past three years and previously served as a member of the organization’s Board of Directors. Bozarth will become President of the IDC in June 2015.

The mission of the IDC is to ensure civil justice with integrity, civility, and professional competence. Bozarth focuses his practice on trials involving complex commercial litigation matters including: class actions, insurance defense, Jones act, maritime law, and antitrust law. In addition to the IDC, he is a member of the American Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, the Madison County Bar Association, The Bar Association of Central and Southern Districts of Illinois, the East St. Louis Bar Association, the Association of Defense Trial Attorneys, the Seventh Circuit Bar Association, and the Defense Research Institute.

Shannon Redd, LW'10, honored by the National Bar Association

Shannon Redd, LW’10, has been recognized as a Trailblazer Under 40 by the National Bar Association (NBA). Redd currently serves as Staff Attorney and Training Manager D.C. Bar Association Pro Bono Program.


Susan Daniels, LW'13, sworn in as Appanoose County attorney

Susan Daniels, of Centerville, announced Judge Daniel P. Wilson had sworn her in as the new county attorney. The position opened up following the passing of Appanoose County Attorney Richard F. Scott in April. Daniels attended Drake University Law School earning a Juris Doctor in May 2013. She attended the Drake University Law School Summer in France program in Nantes in 2011.

Tracy Gallegos, LW'04, featured on cover of Las Vegas Woman Magazine

Tracy Gallegos, LW'04
Tracy A. Gallegos, LW'04, is featured on the cover of the summer issue of Las Vegas Woman Magazine. A profile detailing Tracy’s upbringing and the driving forces that steered her toward a career in the legal field is featured prominently in the issue.

An attorney in Fox Rothschild’s Las Vegas office, Tracy has a multifaceted practice that touches upon corporate, real estate, sports and entertainment law for clients ranging from start-up companies to established businesses.

Tracy was also one of seven Fox Rothschild attorneys to be named to the Nevada Business Magazine's Legal Elite 2014.

Click here to view Tracy’s profile in Las Vegas Woman Magazine.

Molly Brau, LW'13

Molly Brau, LW'13, joins Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C.

Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. is pleased to announce that Molly M. Brau has joined Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. as an associate attorney in our Des Moines office. Molly graduated from Drake University Law School with high honors, and a M.B.A. from Drake University College of Business and Public Administration in 2013. In law school, Molly served as a member of the Junior Staff and Note Editor on the Drake Law Review, an Executive Board member of the Delta Theta Phi legal fraternity, and a member of Drake Law Women. 

Troy Bozarth, LW'96

Troy Bozarth, LW'96, selected as Leading Lawyer

HeplerBroom LLC is proud to announce that Troy Bozarth was recently selected by his peers as a 2014 Leading Lawyer. Troy specializes in class action/mass tort defense, commercial litigation, personal injury defense: general, and transportation defense.  Leading Lawyers surveys lawyers, asking them which of their peers, indeed their competitors, they would recommend to a family member or friend if they could not take a case within their area of law or geographic region.

Anjela A. Shutts, LW‘96, appointed to the Judicial Nominating Commission, District 5C

Anjela A. Shutts, LW‘96, of Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C., has been appointed to the Judicial Nominating Commission, District 5C (Polk County). Her term begins February 1, 2014 and expires January 31, 2020. The 5-person nominating commission submits nominees to the Governor for vacancies on the district court bench in the judicial election district. Shutts was appointed by Iowa Governor Terry E. Branstad.

Jeanie Kunkle Vaudt, GR'83, LW'91, has been appointed judge to the 5C Judicial District

Jeanie Kunkle Vaudt has been appointed as judge to the 5C Judicial District in central Iowa. Vaudt is currently an Iowa assistant attorney general. She will fill a vacancy created by the departure of Judge Glenn E. Pille. The counties in the 5th Judicial District include Adair, Adams, Clarke, Dallas, Decatur, Guthrie, Jasper, Lucas, Madison, Marion, Polk, Ringgold, Taylor, Union, Warren and Wayne.

Elizabeth Shoemaker, LW'12

Elizabeth Shoemaker, LW'12, joins Davis Brown Law Firm

Elizabeth A. Shoemaker recently joined the Davis Brown Law Firm as an associate attorney. She is a multilingual immigration lawyer, who is fluent in Spanish and proficient in Italian. In her practice, she offers experience in several areas of Immigration law, including deportation defense, asylum, family-based immigrant and non-immigrant Visas and criminal and family law matters.

Angela Shutts, LW'96

Shutts, LW'96, and Cooper, LW'04, elected to Executive Committee at Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C.

Nicholas Cooper, LW'04
Anjela A. Shutts, LW'96, and Nicholas Cooper, LW'04, were elected to the three-person Executive Committee.

The Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. Executive Committee develops comprehensive strategic direction and leads all initiatives of the 51-person law firm with three Iowa offices. Members are elected and serve for three year terms.

David Brown Law Firm announces shareholders and new associate

The Davis Brown Law Firm is pleased to announce that Krystle Campa Berry, LW'07, Michael C. Richards, LW'01, Christopher S. Talcott, LW'08, have been elected shareholders, effective January 2014.
Krystle Campa Berry, LW'07
Krystle joined the Business Division in September 2008 and maintains a general real estate practice, focusing primarily on real estate transactions and business transactions. Krystle practices in the firm's Highland Office in West Des Moines.

Michael Richards, LW'01 
Michael joined the Litigation Division as a lateral hire in May 2011. During the last ten years, his litigation practice has focused on all stages of complex civil litigation, with an emphasis on defense litigation. He currently serves as chair of the firm's Product Liability Department.

Christopher Talcott, LW'08
Christopher joined the Business Division in June 2009 and maintains a general business and real estate practice. Christopher graduated from Drake University Law School with highest honors in 2008. He earned an LL.M. (General Studies) from New York University School of Law in 2009, concentrating on real estate and community development.
Emily Stork, LW'07

Emily A. Stork, LW'07
, recently joined the Davis Brown Law Firm as an associate attorney. She is a member of the firm’s Business Division and will practice in the area of real estate transactions. Prior to joining Davis Brown, Emily was an associate attorney at the Knuth Law Office in Anamosa, Iowa, where she maintained a general civil practice including, but not limited to, real estate, family law, probate, business formations, estate planning, collections and tax preparation. She also served as the Jones County Assistant Attorney.

Heather Campbell, LW'01, joins Belin McCormick

Heather Campbell, LW'01
Heather Campbell, LW'01, has joined Belin McCormick as special counsel. Ms. Campbell is part of the Firm’s Health Care and Corporate Groups and will focus her practice providing regulatory and transactional guidance to clients in the health care field.

Prior to joining Belin McCormick, Ms. Campbell practiced at the law firm of Fredrikson & Byron and served as assistant general counsel for Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Iowa. Ms. Campbell is a registered nurse. Heather Campbell graduated from Grand View College in 1996. She earned her law degree from Drake University Law School (with highest honors; Order of the Coif) in 2001.

Ms. Campbell is recognized as an Iowa Super Lawyer. She is a 2007 graduate of the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute and a member of Sigma Theta Tau, the Honor Society of Nursing.

D. Douglas Metcalf, LW'87, appointed judge for Pima County Superior Court

D. Douglas Metcalf, LW'87
Tuscon, Ariz. - Gov. Jan Brewer on Wednesday announced the appointment of D. Douglas Metcalf. He fills the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Howard Hantman. Metcalf has been a partner with the law firm of Lewis and Roca since 2000, focusing primarily on commercial litigation, state and federal tax controversy, and employment law.

He also has criminal, appellate and administrative law experience. Metcalf previously was a trial attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice from 1990 to 1996 and was a law clerk for the U.S. Tax Court from 1987 to 1990.

He graduated from Drake University's law school and earned a master of laws in taxation from Georgetown University.

See the press release online.

August Landis, BN'84, LW'87, appointed judge to U.S. Bankruptcy Court for Nevada

SAN FRANCISCO — Chief Judge Alex Kozinski of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit announced today the appointment of August B. Landis to serve as a judge of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Nevada. Mr. Landis, 50, is currently the acting U.S. trustee for Region 17, which encompasses the District of Nevada and the Eastern and Northern districts of California.

“We are very pleased to welcome Mr. Landis to the bankruptcy bench in Nevada. He brings considerable knowledge and experience, both as a trustee and practitioner, to his new position,” Judge Kozinski said.


David Venables, GR'07, LW'07, recently named Super Lawyer Rising Star for Consumer Law

David Venables, GR'07, LW'07, was recently named a Super Lawyer Rising Star in Consumer Law for the state of Oregon.  Currently an associate at Slominski and Associates in the Portland area, Venables practices in the area of consumer law, general civil litigation, and business law.  In addition, he serves as head of the CLE Committee of the Consumer Law Section of the Oregon State Bar. 

Drake Law alums chosen for 2013 Great Plains Super Lawyers List

A large contingent of Drake Law alumni practicing at Whitfield & Eddy P.L.C. have been selected for the 2013 Great Plains Super Lawyers list. Super Lawyers selects attorneys using a rigorous, multiphase rating process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with third party research. Each candidate is evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Selections are made on an annual, state-by-state basis.

    Kim Bartosh, LW'06, General Litigation (Rising Stars: 2013)
    Nicholas O. Cooper, LW'04, Business/Corporate (Rising Stars: 2013)
    John Fatino, LW'91, Business/Corporate (Super Lawyers: 2009-2010, 2013)
    Jonathan Kramer, LW'02, Bankruptcy and Creditor/Debtor Rights (Rising Stars: 2013)
    Greg A. Naylor, LW'78, Employment & Labor (Super Lawyers: 2009-2013)
    David L. Phipps, LW'69, General Litigation (Super Lawyers: 2007, 2009-2013)
    Sally A. Reavely, LW'88, Health Care (Super Lawyers: 2007, 2009-2010, 2013)
    Thomas S. Reavely, LW'71, Personal Injury Plaintiff: General (Super Lawyers: 2013)
    Jacki K. Samuelson, LW'79, Employment & Labor (Super Lawyers: 2009-2013)
    Anjela A. Shutts, LW'96, Family Law (Super Lawyers: 2007, 2009-2013)
    Kara Sinnard, LW'02, Real Estate (Rising Stars: 2013)
    Benjamin B. Ullem, LW'69, Business Litigation (Super Lawyers: 2007, 2009-2013)

Pedro Salazar, LW'13

Pedro Salazar, LW'13, hired by Baird Holm LLP in Omaha

Pedro Salazar, LW'13, is one of 8 new attorneys hired by Baird Holm LLP. Salazar will practice in the firm’s Financial Transactions practice section, focusing on International Services. He is a 2013 graduate of Drake University Law School. In 2007 he earned his MBA with an emphasis in Executive Development from Drake University College of Business and Public Administration.

Jorge Alvarado, LW'82, selected as New Mexico's top public defender

Jorge Alvarado was unanimously appointed chief public defender by an 11-member commission, which interviewed four other candidates for the position. Commission chairman Michael Stout said Alvarado will assume the job next month of running the Public Defender Department. He said Alvarado "showed a passion for indigent defense."


Pooja Thakur Rahman, LW'05, joins New York Life

Pedro Salazar, LW'13
New York Life has announced that Pooja Rahman, former in house counsel for the Iowa Insurance Division, and Drake University School of Law alumna, has joined the company as a vice president. She reports to George Nichols III, senior vice president in charge of the Office of Governmental Affairs.

Ms. Rahman is responsible for developing and implementing substantive policy positions influencing domestic and international policymakers’ decisions on issues related to international solvency and accounting standards for insurers, as well as on insurance supervision.

Whitfield & Eddy grows Family Law Practice with the addition of attorney Shannon Woods, LW'03

Shannon Woods
Whitfield & Eddy, P.L.C. welcomes Shannon J. Woods, LW'03, to the Firm as a member in the Family Law Practice Group and the Business Law Team. Ms. Woods will work in the Des Moines office.

For more than ten years, Ms. Woods has maintained a general practice including but not limited to family law encompassing appeals, adoption, child custody, child/spousal support, divorce, and pre-nuptial agreements. She is a Certified Mediator through the American Academy of Alternative Dispute Resolution Attorneys and has undertaken numerous family law mediations.

Ms. Woods also has experience in the areas of real estate, business law, corporate law and civil litigation. She currently serves as General Counsel for various corporations including several multi-state entities where she is solely responsible for all legal matters, including acquisitions and management of multi-state real estate and property. Her duties also include civil rights claims and investigations, human resource issues, DOT compliance, drug testing training, and financial audits. She has also been a presenter and key-note speaker for several contract-based legal seminars.

Emiliano Lerda, LW'08, featured in Omaha's The Daily Record

Emiliano Lerda, LW'08
The Daily Record recently featured a story on what Emiliano Lerda is working on with Justice for Our Neighbors-Nebraska (JFON-NE). According the The Daily Record, JFON-NE provides a full range of family-based and humanitarian-based immigration legal services – free-of-charge – for low-income immigrants who meet the organization’s income guidelines.

Read more about Emiliano's work with immigration law.

Karen Shaff, LW'79, honored as one of Des Moines Business Record's 2013 Women of Influence

Karen Shaff, LW'79, was one of several women honored by the Des Moines Business Record as a 2013 Women of Influence.  Karent currently serves as the Executive Vice President and General Counsel for Principal Financial Inc. in Des Moines. Karen not only serves as the highest ranking female office at Principal Financial, she also serves a vast array of community organizations.  Read more about Karen's accomplishments in the Des Moines Business Record's Women of Inflence.

Rep. Kevin McCarthy, LW'98, takes position with Iowa Attorney General's Office

Kevin McCarty, LW'98
Iowa state Rep. Kevin McCarthy will resign his post as the top ranking Democrat in the House to take a job with the state Attorney General’s Office. Attorney General Tom Miller’s office announced the hire in a statement this afternoon. McCarthy, a Democrat from Des Moines, will resign from the House on August 15.

In the AG’s office, he’ll be responsible for directing a unit working on mental health issues in the state justice system, overseeing the elder fraud unit and leading an initiative to educate military members and veterans on consumer fraud.

Read more in The Des Moines Register…

Christian Picone, LW'93, named partner at Berliner Cohen

Christian Picone, LW'93, has been named partner at Berliner Cohen in San Jose, Calif.Picone represents individuals and businesses in civil and ciriminal litigation at the state and federal levels, with a focus on intellectual property disputes, complex commercial and tax litigation, criminal defense, and environmental defense. He previously worked as a lead felony prosecutor.  He has conducted thirty-six jury trials to verdict. Picone is admitted to practice law in state and federal courts in California, Colorado, and Illinois.

Hayley Hanson, LW'00, recognized as Rising Star of Philanthropy

Nonprofit Connect, a membership organization that provides education, resources and networking so Kansas City nonprofits can more effectively achieve their missions, has announced the individuals and companies recognized for their contributions to the community. Hayley Hanson, LW'00, was one of this year's honorees as a Rising Star of Philanthropy.

In addition to honoring individuals and companies for decades of extraordinary generosity and service to community Nonprofit Connect also recognizes “Rising Stars of Philanthropy” who carry forward this important work, have been involved in advanced nonprofit service for 10 years or less, and lead philanthropy and volunteerism in new and creative directions.

According to Nonprofit Connect, Hayley Hanson has been a devoted Kansas City Friends of the Zoo board member since 2008. A partner with HuschBlackwell whose practice focuses on higher education, Haley donated numerous hours drafting the legislation for the Missouri House of Representatives, which authorized the Zoo to place up to a ¼ cent sales tax on the ballot in Jackson, Clay and Platte Counties. She also worked extensively to pass the sales tax initiative and serves on the boards of Debate Kansas City and the Northwest Missouri State University Foundation.

Gillian Ruddy Wilcox, LW'07, named Kansas City's
Young Lawyer of the Year

Gillian Ruddy Wilcox
Gillian Ruddy Wilcox, LW'07, was recently named Young Lawyer of the Year by the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association.  The honor is presented to a young lawyer who promotes the highest standards of professionalism, competence, and ethical conduct.

She currently serves as a Judicial Law Clerk at the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District and lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Andrew Wilcox.

Read more about Gillian's outstanding accomplishments in the KC Counselor, the official publication of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association.

Tracy Gallegos, LW'04, now an associate at Fox Rothschild LLP

Tracy Gallegos
Tracy Gallegos, LW'04, has recently moved her law practice to Fox Rothschild LLP in Las Vegas, Nev. Working in the corportate department.

In addition to corporate services, she will continue to provide comprehensive real estate and entertainment counsel to clients ranging from start-ups to established businesses. Fox is a national law firm with more than 550 attorneys practicing in 18 offices coast to coast. The firm provides a full range of legal services to public and private companies as well as individuals, government entities and nonprofit organizations both in the United States and in more than 50 countries worldwide. The firm offers more than 40 practice areas and eight core services, including corporate, entertainment, financial restructuring and bankruptcy, intellectual property, labor and employment, litigation, real estate and taxation and wealth planning.

Bill Miller, LW'02, promoted to partner at Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Bill Miller, LW'02, was recently promoted to partner of Dorsey & Whitney LLP along with colleague Alissa Smith.

Speaking of the two attorneys named to partnership, David Claypool, Managing Partner of the Des Moines office, said the following, “Bill and Alissa have invested countless hours in the success of our clients and we are very proud to welcome them to the partnership. They are exceptional attorneys in their respective areas of law, and they exemplify the qualities that our clients expect from Dorsey: superb legal ability, dedication to client service, professionalism, integrity and commitment to community.”

Bill is a trial lawyer practicing in complex business litigation, employment, products liability, and personal injury defense for clients in fields including health care, government, financial services, and transportation. He handles matters through all stages of litigation, including trial and appeal, for clients throughout Iowa and elsewhere.

Bill is also an active member of the bar, serving on the Boards of Governors of the Iowa State and Polk County Bar Associations, the PCBA Volunteer Lawyers Project Board of Directors, and as co-chair of the Iowa Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Rules of Civil Procedure. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Amanda the Panda, and a 2008 graduate of the Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute. Bill and his wife, Lucy, live in Des Moines with their three children.

Brandon Edmundson, LW'06, named partner at Moses, Palmer & Howell, L.L.P, Fort Worth, Texas

Brandon Edmundson
The law firm of Moses, Palmer & Howell, L.L.P. is pleased to announce that Brandon J. Edmundson is a partner in the firm effective January 1, 2013.  Mr. Edmundson's primary concentration is commercial litigation with a focus in the areas of banking and trust, oil and gas, construction and contracts. He is a member of the Tarrant County Bar Association, Tarrant County Young Lawyers Association and the Defense Research Institute. Mr. Edmundson is licensed to practice law in Texas and Minnesota.

Brandon joins Shayne D. Moses, David A. Palmer, Timothy D. Howell and Whitney L. Cardwell as a partner in the firm. "Brandon is a great asset to the firm. All of us are pleased to have him join the partnership," said Mr. Moses.

The Honorable Randy DeGeest, LW'78, appointed Iowa District Court Judge by Governor Branstad

Hon. Randy DeGeest
From The Des Moines Register, Jan. 30, 2013, by William Petroski

Gov. Branstad has appointed Randy DeGeest of Oskaloosa as an Iowa District Court Judge in the 8A Judicial District. DeGeest, a graduate of Drake University Law School, was appointed to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge James Blomgren. DeGeest is currently serving as a District Associate Judge.

Dustin Miller, LW'08, named governmental affairs manager at The Iowa League of Cities

Dustin Miller
Dustin Miller joined the League as the new Government Affairs Manager this January. Dustin will work with the League staff and contract lobbyists, Julie Smith and Jessica Harder, to advance the League’s legislative priorities. Dustin was born and raised in Lacona, IA, and his father currently serves on the Lacona City Council. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Iowa and a law degree from Drake University.

Kristy Latta, LW'05, elected shareholder at Ahlers & Cooney, P.C.

Kristy Latta
Kristy Latta was recently elected shareholder at Ahlers & Cooney, P.C. Kristy’s primary practice is in the firm’s Education Law area, serving school district and community college clients. She has handled a variety of matters that arise in the education arena, with a focus on minimizing client risk through general contract and board policy reviews. Kristy is a frequent speaker at school law programs, including programs presented by the Iowa Association of School Business Officials. She is also a member of the firm’s Public Finance & Law and Employment & Labor Law practice areas, as it relates to her education clients. Kristy graduated with High Honors from Drake Law School, where she served on the Drake Law Review. After law school and prior to joining the firm, Kristy served as a judicial law clerk for Justice David S. Wiggins of the Iowa Supreme Court.

Christopher E. James, LW'06, has been elected shareholder of The Davis Brown Law Firm

Christopher E. James, a 2006 Drake Law graduate, has been elected shareholder of The Davis Brown Law Firm, effective January 2013.

Christopher joined the Business Division in 2009 and maintains a general practice including, but not limited to, tax controversy, state and local taxation, international tax and federal tax.

Chinyere Ukabiala, LW'01, named Grinnell College ombudsperson

Chinyere Ukabiala, LW'01
From Grinnell College, 12/18/2012 Grinnell, Iowa -- After an extensive search and selection process, Grinnell College has named Chinyere Ukabiala as the college's first ombudsperson. Her appointment is effective February 1, 2013.

As ombudsperson, Ukabiala will assist members of the Grinnell campus community who are experiencing problems, conduct critical analyses of the college, and educate and coach Grinnellians on communication and conflict management skills.

Read more…

Jill Alesch Finken, LW'04, Nebraska’s new tribal special assistant U.S. attorney

Jill Alesch Finken, LW'04, is Nebraska’s new tribal special assistant U.S. attorney, charged with pursuing violence against women cases in both tribal and federal courts. The appointment rose out of the Justice Department’s Office on Violence Against Women (OVW), which authorized the designation of four new tribal prosecutors in agreements with the Nebraska tribes and three other tribes in South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana and New Mexico.

Read more in The Daily Record…

Chris Myers, LW'95, honored for fight against drug crime

The federal prosecutor in Fargo targeting drug cases that killed three people in the Red River Valley this summer was named the most outstanding drug prosecutor in seven states Nov. 15, 2012.

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John McGehee, LW'89, recently elected State's Attorney for Rock Island County, Ill.

John McGehee
John McGehee, LW'89, was recently elected as State's Attorney for Rock Island County, Ill. After practicing in Silvis, Ill. Since his graduation from Drake Law.  Fellow Drake Law alumnus, David Cunningham, LW'85, said, "John is a fantastic reflection on our Law School."

James W. Stephenson, LW’79, named vice president, associate general counsel and sector counsel for Northrop Grumman Corporation’s Electronic Systems sector

James W. Stephenson
Northrop Grumman Corporation has named James W. Stephenson, vice president, associate general counsel and sector counsel for its Electronic Systems sector, effective Dec. 1,2012. In his new role, Stephenson will serve as primary legal counsel to the Electronic Systems sector president and senior staff. He will be responsible for managing the delivery of legal advice and Law department support to all elements of the sector, including its multiple sites, programs and subsidiaries. He will oversee a wide range of legal matters including contracts, business development, litigation, investigations, environmental, trademarks and intellectual property, employment, general corporate matters, audit and compliance.

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Honorary Phan-Quang Tue, LW’85, spoke at Naturalization Ceremony in California

Phan Quang Tue
Judge Phan-Quang Tue offered remarks at the Naturalization Ceremony at the Paramount Theater in Oakland, Calif. His speech was titled, “American by Faith.”

Read his remarks…

Diane Henson, LW’79, on election ballot for Texas Third Court of Appeals

Diane Henson
A brief profile on Diane Henson appears in the Go San Angelo Standard-Times.  Judge Henson is a candidate that will appear on the Nov. 6 election ballot for the Texas Third Court of Appeals. Her positions are on a questionnaire provided by the League of Women Voters of Texas and are reproduced with the league's permission.

Read Judge Henson's profile…

Lorenzo Creighton, LW’88, rejoins MGM Resorts International

MGM Resorts International announced that Lorenzo Creighton has rejoined the company. A veteran of the gaming industry and MGM Resorts, Mr. Creighton will focus on the company's efforts in developing markets in the eastern U.S. Mr. Creighton brings the perspective of his extensive experience, both as an industry regulator in two U.S. states and as a seasoned business executive.

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Alan Pendleton, LW’80 earns recognition from judges groupTenth Judicial District

Judge Alan Pendleton has been named the recipient of the 2012 Minnesota District Judges Association Outstanding Judge Award for his commitment to improvement in the judicial system and promotion of judicial efficiency.

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David Erickson, LW’79 and Sharon Malheiro, LW’89 selected as “Lawyer of the Year” in specialty areas

David Erickson and Sharon Malheiro have been selected as central Iowa’s “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers in America® 2013. Best Lawyers designates just one “Lawyer of the Year” from each specialty area in each community. David Erickson - Des Moines Litigation - Real Estate “Lawyer of the Year” Sharon K. Malheiro - Des Moines Employment Law - Management “Lawyer of the Year” Nominations for the award are based on peer-review surveys in which thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers. Receiving this designation reflects the high level of respect a lawyer has earned among other leading lawyers in the same communities and the same practice areas for their abilities, their professionalism, and their integrity. Both work for the Davis Brown Law Firm in Des Moines.

Troy Groetken, LW’97 selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2013

Shareholder Troy A. Groetken were recently selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2013. Troy A. Groetken has 15 years of experience in the intellectual property field and over 20 years of experience in the pharmaceutical, biotechnological and chemical fields. As a registered U.S. patent practitioner, Groetken regularly counsels international and Fortune 100 clients regarding advanced patent litigation and procurement matters; advises upon global licensing, acquisition and divestiture issues coordinated with client-centered business modeling and approaches; and analyzes and addresses complex global intellectual property transactional issues, including due diligence analysis, valuation assessment, competitive landscape review, white space analysis, opinion development and global portfolio management. He was named a “Rising Star” by the Illinois Super Lawyers independent survey in 2008 and 2009, and was included as one the Law Bulletin Publishing Company’s “40 Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch.” This is the second year that Groetken has been listed as one of the Best Lawyers in America.

Ralph Rosenberg, LW’74, has recently been named the new director of Iowa Environmental Council

Ralph Rosenberg, a former Democratic state lawmaker and former director of the Iowa Civil Rights Commission, has been named the new executive director of the nonprofit Iowa Environmental Council. Read more…

Drake Law graduate John Crotty LW’12 also serves the Iowa Environmental Council as the water program assistant.

Joel Dalrymple, LW’96, appointed as judge to 1B Judicial District

Judge Dalrymple, Waterloo, was appointed to the bench in 2012. He was born and raised in Waterloo, Iowa, and graduated magna cum laude in 1993 from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa. In 1996, he earned his law degree from Drake University Law School. Before being appointed to the bench, Judge Dalrymple worked in the Black Hawk County Attorneys Office where he was promoted to First Assistant in 2006. He is a member of the Black Hawk County Bar Association. Judge Dalrymple is married with three children.

Last Modified: 2/18/2015 3:42:00 PM by Ann Van Hemert