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​​TLA Committees

As a member of TLA, we hope that you will get involved by becoming active in one (or more) of TLA's committees. Click on the link below to find out more about each committee and how to contact the chair(s) of the committee.

Click here to download committee sign-up form and submit to TLA Executive Office.
Click ​h​ere to go to the Members Only section and revise your committee selections (under "My Account").

PRACTICE DIVISION

SUBJECT AREA COMMITTEES

Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution
Co-Chair: Steven M. Uthoff
The Uthoff Law Corporation – 401 E. Ocean Blvd., Ste. 710, Long Beach, CA  90802
Phone: (562) 437-4301 Fax: (562) 437-4341 E-mail: suthoff@uthofflaw.com
 
Co-Chair: Eric R. Benton
Lorance & Thompson, PC, 2900 N. Loop W., Ste. 500, Houston, TX  77092
Phone: (713) 863-2781 Fax: (713) 864-4671 E-mail: erb@lorancethompson.com
 
DESCRIPTION: The goal of the Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution is to provide members of the Transportation Lawyers Association continued legal education opportunities and updates of federal and state alternative dispute resolution cases as they effect the transportation industry. In addition, the committee promotes alternative means for members to mediate and arbitrate disputes and provides the membership with a list of certified experienced members who are available to the transportation industry.​
 
 
 
Committee on Antitrust and Unfair Trade Practices
Co-Chair: Andrew M. Danas
Grove, Jaskiewicz & Cobert - 1730 M St., NW, Ste. 400, Washington, DC 20036 
Phone: (202) 296-2900 Fax: (202) 296-1370 E-mail: adanas@gjcobert.com 
 
Co-Chair:Michael M. Spurlock
Beery & Spurlock Co., LPA - 275 E. State St., Columbus, OH 43215-4330
Phone: (614) 228-8575 Fax: (614) 228-1408 E-mail:   mspurlock@BeerySpurlock.com
 
DESCRIPTION: The mandate of the committee is to develop antitrust topics for the legal education program at the TLA Annual Conference and the Transportation Law Institute, coordinate written articles prepared by committee members for publication in The Transportation Lawyer and solicit information from committee members regarding new legal developments in the antitrust area for dissemination to other members.
 
 
 
Committee on Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights
Chair: Rick A. Steinberg
Price, Meese, Shulman & D'Arminio, P.C. - 50 Tice Blvd., Suite 380, Woodcliff Lake, NJ 07677 
Phone: (917) 836-7939 Email: rsteinberg@pricemeese.com
 
DESCRIPTION: The Committee on Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights offers its members numerous opportunities to meet and interact with other transportation practitioners whose practices include bankruptcy and creditor-debtor law; stay current on relevant legal issues in that field; contribute articles to The Transportation Lawyer on timely topics in the fields of bankruptcy and creditor-debtor law; and participate in continuing legal education panels at TLA conferences. The committee meets annually at the TLA conference in May or June; and also meets by telephone at other times during the year to plan or discuss activities.
 


Committee on Casualty Litigation
Chair: David B. Hall
Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC - 420 20th St., North-Ste. 1600, Birmingham, AL 35205
Phone: (205) 328-0480 Fax: (205) 488-3833 Email: dhall@bakerdonelson.com 
 
Vice Chair: William Pentecost
Cipriani & Werner, 650 Washington Rd., Ste. 700, Pittsburgh PA 15228 
Phone: (412) 566-6087 Fax: (412) 566-6099 E-mail: wpentecost@c-wlaw.com

Vice Chair: Jonathan Abramson
Kissinger & Fellman, P.C., 3773 Cherry Creek North Dr., Ptarmigan Pl., Ste. 900, Denver, CO 80209
Phone:  (303) 320-6100 Fax: (303) 327-8601 Email: jonathan@kandf.com

DESCRIPTION: The Casualty Litigation Committee is devoted to sharing information, strategies and breaking developments for the effective defense of accident litigation filed against the transportation industry. Motor carrier liability, insurance coverage, discovery issues and trial tactics are primary areas of focus.
Committee on Commercial and Business Litigation
Chair: Scott D. Carey
Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, P.C. - 211 Commerce St., Commerce Ctr., Ste. 800, Nashville, TN 37201
Phone: (615) 726-7379 Fax: (615) 744-7379 Email: scarey@bakerdonelson.com
 
Vice Chair:  Jeremy R. Handschuh
Mitchell-Handschuh Law Group - 3390 Peachtree Rd., NE-Ste. 520, Atlanta, GA  30326
Phone:  (404) 262-9488 Fax:  (404) 231-3774 Email:  jeremy@m-hlawgroup.com​
 
DESCRIPTION: The Commercial and Business Litigation Committee monitors, reviews and informs the TLA of business and commercial litigation in the transportation sector, including but not limited to transactional litigation, collection matters, coverage issues, demurrage and detention, contract issues and disputes and restrictive covenants. The committee intends to distribute case summaries, participate in regional and annual seminars, and identify resources such as expert witnesses. We encourage active participation in the sharing of case law and experience to enable the committee to keep all members of the TLA fully informed of developments in civil litigation concerning transportation issues.
 
 
 
Committee on Freight Claims
Co-Chair: C. Fredric Marcinak
Smith Moore Leatherwood, P.O. Box 87, Greenville, SC 29602-0087
Phone: (864) 240-2491 Fax: (864) 240-2475 E-mail:fredric.marcinak@smithmoorelaw.com
 
Co-Chair: Beata Shapiro
Wilson Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker, 1010 Washington Blvd., Stamford, CT  06901
Phone: (203) 388-9100 Fax:  (203) 388-9101 Email: beata.shapiro@wilsonelser.com

Co-Chair: Jason Orleans
Orleans Canty Novy, LLC, 203 N. LaSalle, Ste. 2100, Chicago, IL  60601
Phone: (847) 625-8200 Fax: (847) 625-8262 Email: jorleans@ocnlaw.com
  
DESCRIPTION: The focus of TLA’s Freight Claims Committee is to keep its members informed of current developments in freight claim and related issues and litigation for all modes of transportation, so that we may better advise and protect the interests of our clients. We seek to accomplish this goal by encouraging use of our forum for questions and novel issues, preparation and circulation of summaries of relevant decisions, legislative developments, citations and pleadings, in-person round-table discussion of recent cases and developments at our Annual Meeting and at the Transportation Law Institute and through general networking among committee members.
 
 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources
Co-Chair: Joseph E. "Jess" Sweere
Cross, Gunter, Witherspoon & Galchus, PC - 500 President Clinton Ave., Ste. 200, Little Rock, AR  72201
Phone:  (501) 371-9999 Fax: (501) 371-0035 E-mail: jsweere@cgwg.com
 
Co-Chair: Christopher J. Lalak
Benesch Friedlander Coplan & Aronoff, 200 Public Square, Ste. 2300, Cleveland, OH  44114
Phone:  (216) 363-4500 Email:  clalak@beneschlaw.com
 
DESCRIPTION:     This committee’s principal purpose is to communicate with TLA members on Labor and Human Resource issues which impact the transportation industry.  To meet this objective committee members will provide timely written updates/articles and present programs to TLA members which deal with employment-related matters.  The committee goals will be met by publishing articles in The Transportation Lawyer and presenting part of the Legal Education Program at the TLA Annual Conference and/or Transportation Law Institute.
 
 
 
Committee on Logistics and E-Commerce
Co-Chair: Michael H. Kroul
KTI, Inc., 10301 Wayzata Blvd., Minnetonka, MN  55305
Phone:  (612) 378-9731 Fax: (612) 378-9738  E-mail: michael@ktitrans.com
 
Co-Chair: Stevan R. Baxter
Olsen Skoubye & Nielson, LLC - 999 E. Murray-Holladay Rd., Ste. 200, Salt Lake City, UT 84117
Phone:  (801) 365-1030  Fax: (801) 365-1031 Email:  stevan@osnlaw.com 
 
DESCRIPTION:     The mission of the Committee on Logistics and E-Commerce is to foster interest among the members of TLA in the law and legal decisions affecting transportation logistics and transportation e-commerce; to facilitate the education of the members of TLA concerning the laws and legal decisions affecting transportation logistics and transportation e-commerce; to encourage its members to submit legal articles for publication in The Transportation Lawyer and in The Transportation Law Journal pertaining to transportation logistics and transportation e-commerce; and to encourage its members to make presentations at TLA conferences and seminars and at Transportation Law Institutes pertaining to transportation logistics and transportation e-commerce.

Governmental Affairs Committees

Committee on Federal Legislation, Agency Practice, and Security
Co-Chair: Henry E. Seaton
Seaton & Husk - 5312 Otter Creek Ct., Brentwood, TN  37027 
Phone:  (703) 573-0700  Fax:  (703) 573-9786 E-mail: heseaton@aol.com
 
Co-Chair: Mark J. Andrews
Strasburger & Price, LLP, 1700 K St., N.W., Ste. 650, Washington, DC 20006
Phone: (202) 742-8601  Fax: (202) 742-8699  Email: mark.andrews@strasburger.com
 
DESCRIPTION:  This committee reviews pending bills relating to the funding of federal transportation regulatory agencies and projects as well as licensing, safety and fitness, and other regulatory statutes affecting carriers and shippers of goods, except for trade security issues; and monitors substantive and procedural developments at federal agencies which affect transportation.  Of particular interest are precedent setting adjudications and rulemakings before the FMCSA, STB, OSHA, FMC and other agencies which affect the operations, duties and obligations of the various transportation modes which TLA members represent.
 
 
 
Committee on International Trade and Transportation
Co-Chair: Kurt B. Gerstner
Lee International IP & Law Group, 14F Poongsan Bldg., 23 Chungjeongro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 120-013
Phone: 82-2-2262-6078, Fax: 82-2-2279-5020 E-mail: kgerstner@leeinternational.com
 
Co-Chair: Peter Quinter
Gray Robinson, 333 S.E. 2nd Ave., Suite 3200, Miami, FL  33131
Phone: (305) 416-6960 Fax: (305) 416-6887 Email: Peter.Quinter@gray-robinson.com​

​DESCRIPTION: The committee’s purpose is to provide information and advice to and a forum for members on international transportation/trade issues: comparative analyses on national laws impacting international transportation issues including taxation, employment, immigration, workers’ compensation, independent and dependent contractors, labor relations, hours of service and drug testing; international customs and trade restrictions affecting global and national transportation industry efficiency, competitiveness and security; and international and national transportation liability regimes.
 
Modal Committees
 
Committee on Admiralty and Maritime Transportation
Chair: Gary F. Seitz
Gellert Scal​i Busenkell & Brown LLC - The Curtis Center, Ste. 280 South, 601 Walnut St., Philadelphia, PA  19106 
Phone: (267) 908-4350 Fax: (215) 238-0016  E-mail: gseitz@gsbblaw.com​

DESCRIPTION: The Admiralty and Maritime Transportation Committee was created to help the members keep up to date on admiralty and maritime law and developments, especially in relation to other modes of transportation and intermodal transactions, and to attract and service attorneys with interest or partial interest in that area and to encourage them to write articles and notes for The Transportation Lawyer.
 


Committee on Aviat​ion
Chair:  Heather C. Devine
Isaacs & Company, 1200-11 King St. W., Toronto, Ontario M5H 4C7, Canada
Phone:  (416) 601-1348 Fax:  (416) 601-1190 Email:  heather@isaacsco.ca
 
Vice Chair:  Professor Paul S. Dempsey
McGill Univeristy, Institute of Air and Space Law, 3661 Peel Street, Montreal, QC H3A-1X1, CANADA
Phone:  (514) 398-8370 Fax: (514) 398-8197 Email: paul.dempsey@mcgill.ca
 
DESCRI​PTION: The Aviation Committee serves three functions: to assist members with questions relating to aviation law; to provide articles and lectures to the membership in a continuing education role; and to be a resource for referrals to experts and counsel with aviation skills throughout the world.
 

Committee on Motor Carrier Transportation
Chair: Katherine T. Garber
Strasburger & Price, LLP - 909 Fannin St., Ste. 2300, Houston, TX  77010-1036
Phone: (713) 951-5600 Fax: (713) 951-5660 E-mail: kathy.garber@strasburger.com
 
Vice Chair: Bridgette M. Blitch
Taylor & Associates, Attorneys At Law PL - 20 Third St., SW, Ste. 209, Winter Haven, FL  33880
Phone: (863) 875-6950 Fax: (863) 875-6955 Email: bblitch@taylorattorneys.net
 
DESCRIPTION: The Committee on Motor Carrier Transportation is charged with monitoring the ever-evolving industry of highway transportation for hire. Members maintain an up-to-date and working knowledge of all facets of the industry and are often looked to for their expertise in this specialized area of law. The committee provides a network of practicing attorneys in multiple jurisdictions able to educate and represent clients on issues unique to motor carrier operations.
 
 
 
Committee on Rail Transportation
Chair: Robert B. Ledoux, Jr.
Florida East Coast Railway - 7411 Fullerton Dr. Ste 100, Jacksonville, FL 32256
Phone: (904) 614-0400, Email: robert.ledoux@fecrwy.com
 
DESCRIPTION: The Committee on Rail Transportation is comprised of TLA members who have an interest in transportation by rail. A purpose of the Rail Transportation Committee is to keep its members abreast of current developments in the rail industry. In addition, the Rail Transportation Committee is committed to educating all TLA members by submitting material for publication in The Transportation Lawyer presenting speakers at TLA’s Annual Conference.​
 

COMMUNICATIONS DIVISION

 

The Transportation Lawyer
First Vice President, Hillary Arrow Booth 
Booth LLP - 1849 Sawtelle Blvd., Ste. 500, Los Angeles, CA  90025
Phone:  (310) 641-1800 Fax: (310) 641-1818 Email: hbooth@boothllp.com

DESCRIPTION:     The mission of the Publicity Committee is to raise the profile of TLA, both in the transportation industry and with other members of the legal profession.  To that end, the Publicity Committee works to identify mechanisms and forums through which to promote the organization, its activities and its members, and then follows through as appropriate.
 


Technology/Social Media Committee
Co-Chair: J. Allen Jones
The Law Offices of J. Allen Jones​, III - 2167 Stringtown Road #128, Grove City, OH 43123
Phone:  (614) 499-1595​ E-mail:  jajones@jaj3law.com

Co-Chair: Bryan P. Sugar
Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, LLP, 550 W. Adams, Ste. 300, Chicago, IL 60661
Phone:  (312) 463-3473  E-mail: bryan.sugar@lewisbrisbois.com
 
DESCRIPTION:     The committee’s goal is to improve communications among TLA members and with the general public through the use of technology through the TLA website in particular.  The committee is responsible for maintaining, updating and expanding the capabilities of the TLA website.  The committee works with the TLA Executive Director, committee chairmen and TLA members to update information that is available on the website, including directories, the Brief Bank, links to other websites, and upcoming education events.  The committee also strives to advise the membership of new sources of information that are available on the Internet, in particular at government and other transportation-related websites.
 
 
 
Committee on Memorials/History
Co-Chair: David B. Schneider
Law Offices of David B. Schneider, P.C. - P.O. Box 1147, Oklahoma City, OK 73101
Phone:  (405) 232-9990  Fax:  (405) 232-9992 E-mail:  schnlaw@swbell.net
 
Co-Chair: Donald J. Vogel
Scopelitis, Garvin, Light, Hanson & Feary - 30 W. Monroe St., Ste. 600, Chicago, IL  60603
Phone:  (312) 255-7200 Fax: (312) 422-1224 Email:  dvogel@scopelitis.com
 
Co-Chair: Richard H. Champlin
2300 NW 56th St., Oklahoma City, OK 73112-7704
Phone:  (405) 842-8253
 
DESCRIPTION:     The TLA History and Memorials Committee is the custodian of memories of the organization. Richard Champlin, past president and long time chairman of the committee has written two informal “histories” of the group, the latest version is available on the website.  Included in its mission, the committee is charged with  publishing memorials of deceased members in The Transportation Lawyer.   The committee would appreciate being notified of the death of any member preferably not by the decedent.
 
 
 
 
ADMINISTRATION AND MEMBER SERVICES DIVISION
 
Committee on Recruitment and Member Services
Chair: Fritz R. Damm
Scopelitis, Garvin, Light, Hanson & Feary, PLC, 535 Griswold St, Ste. 1818, Detroit, MI 48226
Phone:  (313) 237-7400  Fax:  (313) 963-7425 E-mail:  fdamm@scopelitis.com  

Vice Chair:  Patrick E. Foppe
Lashly & Baer, P.C., 714 Locust St., St. Louis, MO  63101-1699
Phone:  (314) 621-2939  Fax:  (314) 621-6844  Email: pfoppe@lashlybaer.com 
 
DESCRIPTION:     The Committee on Recruitment and Member Services is specifically devoted to broadening the base of TLA membership.  The Membership Committee strives to broaden that base both in terms of numerosity and diversity.  The Membership Committee is constantly seeking new members, along with organizational groups with which to liaison, to generate new members.  The Membership and Recruitment Committee continues to urge all members to let us know about any prospects.
 
 
 
CONTINUING LEGAL EDUCATION DIVISION
  
2017 Transportation Law Institute (Planning Committee)
Co-Chair: Bridgette M. Blitch, 
Taylor & Associates, Attorneys At Law PL - 20 Third St., SW, Ste. 209, Winter Haven, FL  33880
Phone: (863) 875-6950 Fax: (863) 875-6955 Email: bblitch@taylorattorneys.net

Co-Chair: Charles E. Riley, IV
Simon, Peragine, Smith & Redfearn, LLP - 1100 Poydras St., Ste. 3000, New Orleans, LA 70130
Phone:  (504) 569-2030  Fax:  (504) 569-2999 Email:  criley@spsr-law.com

Committee on 2017 Regional Seminar-Chicago

Co-Chair: Steven M. Canty
Orleans Canty Novy LLC, 203 N. LaSalle, Ste. 2100, Chicago, IL  60601
Phone: (847) 625-8200  Fax:  (847) 625-8262  E-mail:  scanty@ocnlaw.com
 
Co-Chair:  Timothy S. Groustra
Kitch, Drutchas, Wagner, Valitutti & Sherbrook - 10 S. Main St., Ste. 200, Mount Clemens, MI  48043
Phone: (586) 463-9770 Fax (586) 463-8994 Email: t.groustra@kitch.com
 
Co-Chair:  Matthew P. Barrette
Sullivan Hincks & Conway - 120 W. 22nd St., Ste. 100 Oak Brook, IL 60523
Phone: (630) 573-5021 Fax (630) 573-5130 Email: mattbarrette@shlawfirm.com
 
Committee on 2017 Annual Conference
 
Co-Chair: Christopher M. Kelly
 
Committee on Webinars
Chair:  Michael J. Tauscher
Scopelitis, Garvin, Light, Hanson & Feary, PC, 535 Griswold St., Ste. 1818, Detroit, MI  48226
Phone: (313) 237-7400  Fax: (313) 963-7425  Email:  mtauscher@scopelitis.com

 
PLANNING DIVISION
2017 Annual Conference 
Steve Novy 
Orleans Canty Novy LLC, 203 NLaSalle, Ste. 2100, Chicago, IL  60601 
Phone:  (847) 625-8200 Fax: (847) 625-8262  Email: snovy@ocnlaw.com
 
2018 Annual Conference 
Frank C. Botta
Samuels and Son Seafood Co., Inc., Pittsburgh, PA
Cipriani & Werner, 650 Washington Road, Suite 700, Pittsburgh, PA  15228
Phone:  (412) 563-2080  Email: f​botta@c-wlaw.com​
2019 Annual Conference 
Hillary Arrow Booth ​
Booth LLP - 1849 Sawtelle Blvd., Ste. 500, Los Angeles, CA  90025
Phone:  (310) 641-1800 Fax: (310) 641-1818 Email: hbooth@boothllp.com
 
Committee on Constitution and Bylaws
Chair: Mark J. Andrews
Strasburger & Price, LLP -1800 K St., NW, Ste. 640, Washington, DC 20006
Phone:  (202) 742-8601  Fax:  (202) 742-8699 E-mail:  mark.andrews@strasburger.com
 
DESCRIPTION:     This committee furnishes the Executive Committee with assistance and advice on drafting proposed or approved amendments to the Association’s bylaws and considers and makes recommendations on issues relating to the legal structure and governance of the Association.
 
 
AD HOC COMMITTEES
 
Corporate Counsel Committee (Inside Counsel)
Chair: Sandra K. Hiller
Dart Transit Company, P.O. Box 64110, St. Paul, MN 55164-0110
Phone:  (651) 688-2000  Fax:  (651) 683-1825, E-mail: shiller@amcorp.net
 
Co-Chair: Mickey R. Dragash
Swift Transportation Inc., 2200 S. 75th Ave., Phoenix, AZ  85043-7410
Phone: (602) 477-3574  Fax: (623) 907-7464, E-mail: mick_dragash@swifttrans.com 
​DESCRIPTION:     TLA’s Corporate Counsel Committee’s main goal is to increase corporate counsel’s active and continuing membership in TLA.  Our members are in-house corporate attorneys for shippers and transportation companies.  Our committee serves as ​the “home team” for in-house members within TLA’s preponderance of litigator-members.  We strive to facilitate liaisons between our members and appropriately specialized and located transportation firms.  We encourage our members to consult and share with one another best practices and tricks of the in-house trade.  Last but not least, we keep the litigator-members informed as to what we, as in-house counsel, need from our outside counsel.
 
 
New Members
Chair:  Charles E. Riley, IV
Simon, Peragine, Smith & Redfearn, LLP - 1100 Poydras St., Ste. 3000, New Orleans, LA 70130
Phone:  (504) 569-2030  Fax:  (504) 569-2999 Email:  criley@spsr-law.com
 
DESCRIPTION:     The New Lawyers Committee’s primary goals are to facilitate the involvement of new members in TLA, promote interaction between new/younger members with the veteran/seasoned members of TLA and to foster relationships among the new/younger members that will create life long involvement with one another and commitment to TLA.
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