Related Navigation


Faculty Biographies

Jessica Agnelly
Langdon & Emison

Ms. Jessica Agnelly is an associate at Langdon & Emison in Lexington, Mo. Her practice is 100% plaintiff oriented; representing individuals who have been injured and the families of those who have been killed by defective products and pharmaceuticals, as well as trucking, train and auto collisions. After completing numerous projects in the interest of public service, including a clerkship with the Honorable Michael W. Farrell at the District of Columbia Court of Appeals and the Honorable Ronald R. Holliger at the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District in Kansas City, Jessica has focused her practice on Plaintiff’s litigation. Jessica has been recognized by Super Lawyers and the National Trial Lawyers as a top practitioner in the field of personal injury law.

Christine A. Alsop
The Elder and Disability Law Firm of Christine A. Alsop, LLC
St. Louis

Ms. Christine A. Alsop, owner of The Elder and Disability Advocacy Firm of Christine A. Alsop, LLC has extensive elder law experience as well as significant litigation and advocacy experience. She has provided advice for both institutional and individual fiduciaries. She regularly represents fiduciaries and family members in contested probate, trust and guardianship matters as well as fiduciary litigation. She is also experienced in helping families with long term care issues, including Medicaid, Veteran’s Benefits, Estate Planning, Asset Protection and Special Needs Trusts. She is a member of both the Missouri and Illinois Bars and is also admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. She is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and served as Chair of the Advocacy and Litigation Section of that organization. She has served as a member of the Board of Directors and as an Officer of the local chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and she is a member of the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys. She is a member of the National Alliance of Medicare Set-Aside Professionals (NAMSAP), Elder Care Matters Alliance, Elder Counsel and The Academy of Special Needs Planners. She has been retained as an expert to give advice in matters involving Medicare Set-Aside Arrangements and Lien Resolution issues. She has served as the Chair of the Elder Law Committee for the Missouri Bar. She graduated from Valparaiso University School of Law, where she was honored for her outstanding work in trial advocacy.

Katie M. Anderson
Anderson Law Offices

Katie M. Anderson is a solo practitioner who opened Anderson Law Offices in 2012, after having served as an associate at Smith & Turley, and the Juvenile Office Attorney for the 25th Judicial Circuit. Katie received her Juris Doctorate from Creighton University School of Law in 1998. After graduation, she became licensed in Iowa and Nebraska. She and her husband, also an attorney, served as Guardians ad Litem for nearly five years with the Douglas County Public Defender's Office, Juvenile Division. She then relocated to Missouri with her family and has continued to maintain Guardian ad Litem work as a large part of her practice. In addition to her busy practice, Katie has served as the Texas County Bar Present for the last three years.

Mark Bassingthwaighte, Esq. 
ALPS Property & Casualty Insurance Company
Missoula, Montana

Mark Bassingthwaighte, Esq. has been a Risk Manager with ALPS, an attorney’s professional liability insurance carrier, since 1998. In his tenure with the company, Mr. Bassingthwaighte has conducted over 1100 law firm risk management assessment visits, presented numerous continuing legal education seminars throughout the United States, and written extensively on risk management and technology. Mr. Bassingthwaighte received his J.D. from Drake University Law School and his undergraduate degree from Gettysburg College.

Melinda J. Bentley
Legal Ethics Counsel
Jefferson City

Melinda J. Bentley serves as Legal Ethics Counsel, and provides oral and written informal advisory opinions to attorneys on issues related to the Missouri Rules of Professional Conduct. In that position, she also serves as administrator and counsel to the Advisory Committee of the Supreme Court of Missouri. She began serving in that position in July 2012. Ms. Bentley graduated from Augustana College in Illinois with her B.A. in Political Science and East Asian Studies, and obtained her J.D. from Valparaiso University School of Law in Indiana. She is admitted to practice in both Missouri and Illinois. Ms. Bentley previously served the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) as Assistant Counsel starting in August 2001, became First Assistant Counsel in May 2003, and was also named as Assistant Director of Legislative Affairs in May 2009. Her prior responsibilities included providing educational information to ISBA member attorneys on professional conduct matters, serving as a moderator and speaker for ISBA continuing legal education programs on professional conduct topics, acting as an in-house counsel on a variety of legal issues, serving as staff liaison to several committees, and representing the ISBA before the Illinois General Assembly.

Mark Bronson
Newman Bronson & Wallis
St. Louis

Mr. Mark Bronson received his JD from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. He is Board Certified in Civil Trial Advocacy and Civil Pretrial Practice Advocacy; serves on the Board of Governors of Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys; is a Sustaining Member of American Association for Justice, an Advocate of American Board of Trial Advocates, a member of National Trial Lawyers, APITLA National Advisory Board, and maintains membership with numerous professional associations including Public Justice and American Bar Association. In 2009, he was named “Lawyer of the Year” by Missouri Lawyers Weekly for his successful advocacy on behalf of a family devastated by an automobile collision with a drunk driver that resulted in an $89 Million Jury Verdict in Franklin County, Missouri. Subsequently, he was again recognized as “Lawyer of the Year” in 2012 by Missouri Lawyers Weekly and also received the prestigious “Public Justice 2012 Trial Lawyer of the Year” award for his more than fifteen-year legal battle against the current and former owners of the Doe Run smelter in Herculaneum, Missouri, for their contamination of the surrounding community that caused hundreds of individuals to be poisoned by lead and other toxic emissions. The four-month trial on behalf of sixteen of those children resulted in a $358 Million Jury Verdict. Since 2005, he has annually been recognized as a Missouri/Kansas Super Lawyer. For forty years, Mark has been advocating on behalf of victims of motor vehicle crashes, medical negligence, dangerous products, consumer fraud, and exposure to environmental toxins. His office is located at Newman Bronson & Wallis, St. Louis, MO.

Anne Chambers, LCSW
The Missouri Bar
Jefferson City

Anne Chambers, LCSW serves as the Director of the Missouri Lawyers’ Assistance Program. Mrs. Chambers received her Master of Social Work degree from Louisiana State University in 1990. She has been licensed in clinical social work in Missouri since 1992. Mrs. Chambers has a good deal of experience working with people with serious mental illness and substance use disorders. Mrs. Chambers has served a board member and past president for the National Organization of Forensic Social Work. She is a long-time member of National Association of Social Workers and serves on the National Association of Social Workers Legal Defense Fund Service Board. She lives with her family in Columbia. 

Jason Clough
Clough Law Firm, LLC

Mr. Jason Clough is a graduate of the Virginia Military Institute and the University of Richmond, School of Law. His practice, the Clough Law Firm, LLC, in Springfield, Missouri is focused on family law. He has received the Equal Access to Justice Award, the Pro Bono Award and has been named a Super Lawyer’s Rising Star for the years 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013.
Chastidy Dillon-Amelung
Dillon-Amelung, Attorney at Law, LLC

Ms. Chastidy Dillon-Amelung is the owner of Dillon-Amelung, Attorney at Law, LLC. Chastidy has been practicing law for over eleven years and is licensed to practice in Missouri, Connecticut, and the Eastern District of Missouri. She has handled cases in more than 22 Missouri Counties as well as the Eastern, Western, and Southern District Courts of Appeals in Missouri. After graduating from the University of Missouri - Columbia, School of Law, Chastidy pursued a tax law degree from Washington University School of Law in St. Louis. Chastidy serves clients in the areas of criminal defense, administrative licensing actions, and estate and tax controversies and planning. Chastidy has served the citizens of the State of Missouri as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney, a Special Assistant Attorney General, and Senior Counsel for the Director of Revenue. Chastidy has trained law enforcement officers and prosecutors since 2003 and has appeared as a guest speaker for the Missouri Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and The Missouri Bar.

Douglas C. Fredrick
Law Office of Doug Fredrick, LLC

Mr. Fredrick received both his Bachelors in Business Administration and law degree from the University of Missouri Kansas City. Before entering private practice, Mr. Fredrick had the opportunity to clerk for Commissioner Cheryl Rosen in Independence, Missouri, study comparative law at Peking University in Beijing, China, and work on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. In 2005, he entered the Army Reserves as a JAG officer, and graduated from the United States Army Judge Advocate General School in Charlottesville, Virginia. After practicing with Fredrick, Rogers, & Vaughn, P.C. in Springfield, Missouri for five years, Mr. Fredrick started his own solo practice in 2008 with an emphasis in family law, business transactions and litigation, and real estate law. He has successfully argued before the Southern District Court of Appeals and the Missouri Supreme Court. In 2011, Mr. Fredrick authored the Missouri Bar publication Military Issues in Family Law, which has become the definitive guide in that area of Missouri law. He is also part owner of two real estate investment/management companies involving both residential and commercial units. In February, 2013 his accession to the Air Force Reserve JAG Corps was approved and he is currently attached to the 509 Bomb Wing at Whiteman Air Force Base. In addition, he serves on the Missouri Bar Family Law Executive Council, the Family Law Conference Planning Committee, and the Special Committee on Veterans Issues.

Joseph A. Gagnon
Gagnon Law Firm, LLC

Mr. Joseph A. Gagnon received his A.B. from the University of Missouri, and his J.D. from Duke University School of Law in 2004. He is the founding member and sole attorney in the Gagnon Law Firm, LLC in Lathrop, Missouri. In his practice, Joe represents public entities in transactional and litigation matters, including municipal prosecutions. He also practices in the areas of real estate, estate planning, and business law.

Justin K. Gelfand
Capes Sokol Goodman & Sarachan P.C.
St. Louis

Justin Gelfand is Counsel at Capes, Sokol, Goodman & Sarachan in St. Louis, Missouri, where he focuses his practice primarily on criminal tax, criminal defense, white collar defense, and internal investigations. From 2009 through February 2014, Gelfand was a Trial Attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice’s Tax Division, where he prosecuted federal tax crimes throughout the country. In addition to prosecuting offshore banking and international and domestic tax evasion, Gelfand played a large role in crafting the innovative way stolen identity tax refund fraud cases are now investigated and prosecuted and trained federal agents and federal prosecutors throughout the country on cutting-edge investigative techniques utilized by law enforcement today. For this work, Gelfand and a small team of colleagues received the 2013 Attorney General’s Award for Fraud Prevention.

Michael Gunn
The Gunn Law Firm
St. Louis

Michael Gunn is a 1968 graduate of St. Louis University School of Law. His practice has concentrated in the areas of estate planning, probate and trust administration as well as litigation in those areas. He is Past President of The Missouri Bar and the Missouri Lawyer Trust Account Foundation (IOLTA). Mike practices law in West St. Louis County.

Paul G. Henry
Denlow & Henry
St. Louis

Mr. Paul Henry is a member of the Denlow & Henry law firm in St. Louis. He is a former Chair of the MoBar Solo Small Firm Committee as well as the Committee on Technology. He currently serves as the chair of the Eminent Domain Committee. He is a frequent speaker on issues pertaining to eminent domain law and the uses of technology in the practice of law.

Amy Hereford

Amy Hereford has almost 20 years of experience in various areas of law including trusts and estates, business and nonprofit law, and taxation. She has her law degree from Boston University and a degree in Canon Law from Louvaine U. in Belgium, and is admitted to practice in Missouri, Massachusetts and the US Tax Court. Amy has been working the non-profit world for over 30 years, beginning in education and communication, moving into management and administration and then into law. She works mainly with small to mid-sized religious communities and non-profits all over the US. She uses computers and information technology effectively to enhance communication and further her law practice and her clients' goals.

Robert D. Kingsland, Jr.
Dempsey and Kingsland, P.C.
Kansas City

Robert D. Kingsland, Jr. is a founding partner in the law firm of Dempsey and Kingsland, P. C. in Kansas City, Missouri. Mr. Kingsland’s practice is limited to medical negligence, catastrophic injury, products liability, auto collision and other serious personal injury cases. A frequent speaker on topics related to civil trial practice, Mr. Kingsland has also published various articles on trial advocacy. He recently authored an article: “Gallbladder Surgery Gone Wrong- Handling the Bowel Perforation Case” which has been accepted for publication in a nationally circulated, peer reviewed magazine, Trial. Mr. Kingsland is an associate member of the American Board of Trial Advocates. He has also been selected to membership in Superlawyers. Additionally, he is a longstanding member of the Board of Governors of the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys and a former board member of the Jackson County Law Library. Mr. Kingsland is licensed to practice in both Missouri and Kansas. He is a member of the bar of the United States Supreme Court among many others. Mr. Kingsland earned his B. A. and J.D. degrees from Georgetown University.

Robert K. Kirkland
Kirkland Woods & Martinsen PC

Bob Kirkland is President of the law firm of Kirkland Woods & Martinsen PC, which has offices in Liberty, Missouri and Overland Park, Kansas. He works with a variety of individual clients, handling the preparation of Wills, Living Trusts, Durable Powers of Attorney, Irrevocable Trusts, Charitable Trusts and Minor’s Trusts, and counseling clients in the areas of gifting techniques, asset protection, charitable planning and business succession planning. He also advises fiduciaries in estate, conservatorship and trust administration matters.

Mr. Kirkland is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (“ACTEC”), is the immediate past Missouri State Chair of ACTEC, and is a member of the ACTEC Board of Regents and the ACTEC Executive Committee. He is also a member of the Employee Benefits Committee (Chair), Sponsorship Advisory Committee, Digital Property Task Force, Charitable Planning Committee, Communications Committee and Bylaws and Manuals Committee of ACTEC. He is listed in the most recent editions of The Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers. Mr. Kirkland has successfully completed the Effective Probate Mediation Training course sponsored by ACTEC, and frequently serves as a mediator of trust and estate disputes.

Bob also currently serves as the ACTEC Observer to the Uniform Law Commission Drafting Committee on Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets, and is the Chair of the Missouri Bar Subcommittee of the Probate and Trust Committee on digital assets.

Among several professional and civic activities, Mr. Kirkland is a member of the Board of Directors of the Liberty Women’s Clinic, the Board of Directors of Autism Works, and the Executive Planned Giving Council of the Kansas City chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Mr. Kirkland also serves as Planning Chair of the annual Missouri Bar Estate & Trust Institute (which conducts annual attorney seminars across the state), and is a Vice Chair of the Missouri Bar Probate and Trust Committee.

Mr. Kirkland is a frequent author and lecturer in the estate planning and charitable giving areas. He has lectured on a variety of topics at seminars sponsored by ACTEC, The Missouri Bar, The Kansas Bar Association, The Oklahoma Bar Association, the UCLA Institute on Estate Planning, The MO-KAN Trust Conference, University of Missouri-Columbia, and the Estate Planning Councils of Baltimore, Philadelphia and St. Louis.

Mr. Kirkland holds a B.S. in accounting from William Jewell College (1980), a J.D. from the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law (1983), and an L.L.M. in estate planning from the University of Miami, Florida School of Law (1985). During his tenure at the UMKC School of Law, he served as Managing Editor of the UMKC Law Review. 

Hon. Aaron Koeppen
Associate Circuit Judge in Camden County

Judge Aaron Koeppen is finishing up his first term as Associate Circuit Judge in Camden County. Prior to taking the bench Judge Koeppen worked as a prosecutor, defense attorney and city attorney. In the evenings Judge Koeppen also teaches American Government at OTC and Criminal Law, Procedure and Evidence at Columbia College. He also served as Guardian ad litem for several years in the 26th Judicial Circuit. Judge Koeppen, his wife Nancy and their five children live in the Village of Four Seasons at Lake of the Ozarks where he and his family enjoy all kinds of water related activities.

Margaret K. Landwehr
Project Manager for Electronic Discovery & Legal Technology
Office of the Missouri Attorney General

Ms. Margaret “Peggy” Landwehr is in her second tour of duty at the Office of the Attorney General. She originally served under Attorneys General Ashcroft and Webster. In the time between, she worked as a Legal Editor at the Missouri Bar, a Hearing Officer for the Personnel Advisory Board, and a Prescreening Attorney at the Samaritan Center’s Legal Care Office. Peggy returned to the AGO under Attorney General Nixon in September 2008. She began in the Governmental Affairs Division and is now in Administration as the Project Manager for Electronic Discovery and Legal Technology. In addition, Peggy continues to prosecute teacher decertification cases and handle Sunshine Law inquiries.

Over the years, Peggy has been on the following Missouri Bar Committees: Solo and Small Firm Planning Committee: Speaker and Moderator; Technology Committee; Administrative Law Committee; Legislative Committee; School Law Committee; and Speaker, Mo Bar CLE, Exploring Career Changes and Social Media and Ethics. Peggy has also done presentations on the Sunshine Law, eDiscovery, and Effective Time Management. She is on the Discover Jefferson City Foundation and has belonged to appleJAC, an Apple Computer club, for over twenty years.

Peggy graduated from Colby College in Waterville, Maine, and earned her law degree from St. Louis University School of Law.

She is married to John Landwehr, a partner in the law firm of Cook, Vetter, Doerhoff and Landwehr, P.C., and former Mayor of the City of Jefferson. They have two grown children, Becca, who studies interior architecture in Washington, D.C., and David, an accountant, in St. Louis.

Melissa Q. Leavy
The Elder & Disability Advocacy Firm of Christine A. Alsop, LLC
St. Louis

Melissa Q. Leavy, Associate Attorney at The Elder & Disability Advocacy Firm of Christine A. Alsop, LLC, received her J.D. from the St. Louis University School of Law, with a Tax Concentration. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is a member of the Missouri Bar. She also is an active member of the Missouri Chapter of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, ElderCounsel, as well as a member of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis. Prior to joining this firm, she served as the Uptown Coordinator for the City of Collinsville. She worked with businesses and residents in a low-income district to develop policies and procedures that still benefit Collinsville’s historic location today. During law school, she worked at both the Internal Revenue Service and the Missouri Department of Revenue, assisting in complex litigation cases and resolution of tax controversy cases. She has represented numerous clients in Medicaid eligibility cases as well as matters involving the Missouri Department of Social Services and the Social Security Administration. She is VA accredited which authorizes her to represent clients directly in their claims for Veteran Benefits. She helps clients and their families with a wide-range of long-term care issues, including Medicaid, Veteran’s Benefits, other government programs, tax and estate planning, asset protection and Special Needs Trusts.

Carol Love, MA, LMFT
Therapist; Treatment Team Supervisor
Kids In The Middle
St. Louis
Carol Love joined Kids In The Middle as a therapist in August 2009. She became Treatment Team Supervisor in February 2013. Kids In The Middle is one of only a handful of non-profit agencies in the nation that focus exclusively on helping families deal with divorce. Ms. Love provides Group and Individual Therapy to children as well as therapeutic services to parents including Individual Therapy, Co-Parenting Counseling and Family Therapy for all family members. She also supervises the therapists providing these services to families.
Ms. Love earned a bachelor’s degree in Child and Family Development from the University of Missouri – Columbia and completed a special program in Human Development at the Merrill-Palmer Institute in Detroit. She received her master’s degree from the University of Connecticut – Storrs in Family Studies specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy. Ms. Love has over 30 years of experience as a therapist in many settings including a residential facility, mental health clinic, youth service agencies, and schools. She has worked as a Domestic Relations Counselor at the St. Louis County Family Court where she assisted parents in highly contested cases to resolve their custody disputes. Ms. Love is also trained as a mediator.

Nalini Mahadevan
Nalini S. Mahadevan is General Counsel at Phinix, LLC
St Louis

Ms. Nalini S. Mahadevan is General Counsel at Phinix, LLC. She was an attorney with The Lowenbaum Partnership LLC, leading their immigration and estate planning practice group. She is the owner of Mahadevan Law Office, LLC and in practice since 2003. Nalini has an undergraduate degree in Accounting and a Masters in Law from the University of Bombay, India. She practiced as a corporate lawyer in Mumbai, India for five years before relocating to the United States to earn her Master’s in Business Administration from Washington University in St. Louis and her JD from St. Louis University School of Law. She is licensed to practice in the States Missouri and Illinois. Nalini was the Chair of Immigration Law Committee of Missouri Bar; and is a member of the American Immigration Law Association; Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis; Missouri Asian American Bar Association and the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association; the American Bar Association and a member of South Asian Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis. She advises SAWERAA, a nonprofit that protects immigrant women who are victims of domestic violence. Nalini is a speaker for the Missouri Bar; St. Louis University Law School; Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis, ABA and UMKC Law School on immigration and the business of law. She is currently an adjunct Professor at St. Louis University School of Law, St. Louis, Missouri. She is the author of ‘How to Start a Law Practice and Succeed, available on Amazon. She has written for the St. Louis Bar Journal and she was featured on the cover of St. Louis Brief and recognized by Missouri Bar’s ESQ magazine for her contribution to lawyer education.

Mary Lou Martin
Mary Lou Martin, Esq.

Ms. Mary Lou Martin is serving the legal profession as a solo practitioner, emphasizing her practice in the areas of estate planning, immigration and naturalization, and probate, including guardianship/ conservatorship estates. The practice of law is Mary Lou’s fourth career, having graduated from the University of Missouri - Kansas City, School of Law in 1988. She has served and chaired several Committees of The Missouri Bar and other organizations. She is an active member of Rotary International - Springfield SouthEast, Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, and Greene County Estate Planning Council. Mary Lou enjoys serving the Springfield Community through church and charitable organizations, golfing, international travel, and spending quality time with friends and family members.

Richard Maseles
Jefferson City

Richard Maseles has had a well-traveled and varied career in the law since his admission to the Texas bar in 1987. He's practiced real estate law and civil litigation in Houston, written and edited professional legal practice materials for the State Bar of Texas and the Missouri Office of State Courts Administrator, practiced bankruptcy law for the Missouri Department of Revenue, and advised the Administrative Hearing Commission as a staff attorney. He's spoken on debtor-creditor law, bankruptcy, and since November 2012, has provided the semiannual case law update for MoBar's administrative law section, where he also serves as vice-chair. He graduated from the University of Houston Law Center while working full-time as an acreage title examiner, and before that he worked in offshore construction in the North Sea, South China Sea, and Persian Gulf.

d As

Kelly McCambridge
McCambridge Law LLC
Lee's Summit

“The two most important things that we have to give are our love and our labor.”

Kelly McCambridge is a passionate advocate committed to clients and results. She has dedicated her practice to serving women and leveling the playing field for women in the workplace. As a working mother, Kelly has a deep understanding of the challenges confronting women. Kelly McCambridge’s practice spans the areas of sexual harassment, gender discrimination, pregnancy discrimination, wrongful death, and catastrophic injury.

Kelly McCambridge was named one of the Top Ten Winningest Plaintiffs Lawyers by Missouri Lawyers Weekly and has a proven track record including a $2 million judgment in a wrongful death case and a $600,000+ verdict in an employment discrimination case. Kelly fights for her clients because she believes that workplace equality is an essential right. Kelly shares her clients’ passion for standing up against employers because they want to eliminate injustice in the workplace and pave the way for the women who come after them.

Kelly McCambridge graduated from the University of Missouri - Kansas City School of Law. While in law school, she clerked for the Hon. Scott O. Wright of the United States District Court and for the Hon. Robert Beaird of Jackson County.

Charles C. McCloskey

An Eagle Scout and Army brat, Chuck has lived in St. Louis for over fifteen years. After earning a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering degree from Notre Dame in 1990, Chuck served in Germany with the US Army engineers. Working as an engineer in Kansas City, he earned the professional engineer license in MO and three other states. Drawn east, he graduated from St. Louis University law school in 2001 with a Juris Doctor degree. Chuck has had a private law practice for over twelve years. The practice includes patents, trademarks and related matters. Chuck ran for office in 2002, 2010 and has served as treasurer for three political committees. Chuck is also an active Rotarian and past president of the Clayton Ladue club. Chuck has been a Pachyderm Club member for at least eleven years, club president, and board member. Chuck is treasurer for the local inventors’ association. Chuck holds memberships in the Missouri Venture Forum and Chesterfield Chamber of Commerce. Chuck is married to Ann.

Mira Mdivani
Kansas City

Mira Mdivani of MDIVANI CORPORATE IMMIGRATION LAW FIRM practices in the area of corporate immigration compliance and visas for international personnel. Her pro bono practice is assisting immigrant women and children who are survivors of domestic violence and other violent crimes with obtaining legal immigration status based on VAWA and U visa regulations. Mira’s books include Corporate Immigration Compliance Plans, Policies and Procedures; I-9 Self-Audits; and Ray of Light: Violence Against Women Act for Immigration Women and Children. She has served as the Chair of the Missouri Bar Association's Immigration Law Committee and President of the Kansas Bar Association’s Immigration Law Section. She is current President of Kansas Women Lawyers Association and past President of Association for Women Lawyers of Greater Kansas City. Ms. Mdivani serves on the Board of Governors of the Missouri Bar. Mira was named Best of the Bar for ten years in a row by the Kansas City Business Journal, received the Kansas Bar Association Outstanding Service Award, President’s Award from the Missouri Bar and Association for Women Lawyers of Greater Kansas City, the Business Practitioner of the Year award from the Missouri Lawyers Media, and pro bono recognition for her work from the Kansas Bar Association and the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

Sara G. Neill
Capes, Sokol, Goodman & Sarachan, P.C.
St. Louis

Sara G. Neill is the Chair of the Civil and Criminal Tax Controversy practice group at Capes Sokol Goodman & Sarachan, P.C. in St. Louis, Missouri. She focuses her practice on defending individuals and businesses under investigation for or charged with tax and other white collar crimes. Ms. Neill also litigates cases in the U.S. Tax Court and handles IRS administrative matters including audits, appeals, and preparer penalty investigations. She is the Chair of the Taxation Section of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis and the Co-Chair of the ABA Tax Section's Civil and Criminal Penalties Committee's Sub-Committee on Important Civil Developments. Ms. Neill is a graduate of the University of Missouri--Columbia School of Law and will receive her LL.M. in Taxation from Washington University in 2015.

Robert G. Pennell
Robert G. Pennell, LLC

Mr. Robert G. Pennell holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration from Washington University, Olin School of Business and earned his Juris Doctor from St. Louis University School of Law while working as an engineering planner then McDonnell Aircraft Company. Mr. Pennell began his legal career as an insurance defense attorney, first with Moser and Marsalek and then with Landau, Omahana & Kopka before switching to plaintiff's work representing the injured in personal injury and medical malpractice matters. He has practiced in a solo practice since 2001 where he primarily represents businesses with: contractual negotiations and/or disputes; developing/enforcing employment policies/procedures; commercial litigation; and business start-up. A significant aspect of his practice involves representing employers, both large and small, before the Appeals Tribunal of the Missouri Division of Employment Security.

Alan D. Pratzel
Chief Disciplinary Counsel
Jefferson City

Mr. Alan Pratzel was appointed as the Chief Disciplinary Counsel by the Supreme Court of Missouri in April 2007. In his position with the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel, Mr. Pratzel oversees the investigation and disposition of all complaints against lawyers in the State of Missouri. Prior to his appointment, Mr. Pratzel served for twenty-two years as a Special Representative for the Region X and XI Disciplinary Committees in St. Louis. Mr. Pratzel is also an adjunct professor of ethics at Washington University School of Law in St. Louis.

Gordon Rea
The Roach Law Firm
Kansas City

Father of 4, and grandfather of 4, Gordon Rea obtained all of his college education at night while supporting his family full time. Gordon holds bachelors degrees in electrical engineering from SIUE Edwardsville and organizational behavior from the University of San Francisco, and he completed a Juris Doctorate from Saint Louis University School of Law. Gordon practices in the areas of family law, general civil, workers compensation, criminal law, and is an associate with The Roach Law Firm.

Bret M. Rich
Attorney at Law
St. Louis

Mr. Bret Rich is an attorney who has been engaged in the practice of law for over twenty-five (25) years. His practice is focused on criminal defense. He also is a trial attorney and serves as a municipal prosecutor in a local municipality. He is a former prosecuting attorney with the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. He practices in the courts of Missouri, Illinois and the Federal District courts of Missouri and Southern Illinois. He has been a guest lecturer at Missouri Bar Seminars and has assisted his clients with their legal needs. Bret Rich can be reached at 314-721-4472 or through his website at

Susan Ford Robertson
The Robertson Law Group
Kansas City

Ms. Susan Ford Robertson serves as appellate counsel assisting trial counsel in all phases of litigation in complex civil cases and handling all aspects of appeals in state and federal courts. She has over 115 published appeals. She is an elected Fellow in the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers and an elected Member of the Litigation Counsel of America. She currently serves as Secretary and Board Member of the Kansas City Streetcar Authority, Chair of the Appellate Judicial Retention Committee and Member of the Missouri Supreme Court Advisory Committee. She is past President of the Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers and the Missouri Board of Law Examiners. In 2013 Susan was named Top 100 Missouri Lawyers and Top 50 Kansas City Lawyers and Top 50 Missouri and Kansas Women Lawyers by Super Lawyers and Best of the Bar in Appellate Practice by the Kansas City Business Journal. She has received the following recognitions: 2011 Women’ s Justice Awards Litigation Practitioner of the year; 2009 KC Legal Leader Civil Justice Award; 2009 and 2005 The Missouri Bar President’s Award, 2005 Defense Research Institute’s Excellence Award and 1996 David A. Dixon Appellate Advocacy Award. She is a graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law and School of Journalism.

Richard L. Rollings, Jr.
Attorney at Law

Richard L. Rollings, Jr. is a solo practitioner in Camdenton, Missouri, providing contract legal work to other attorneys. He received Bachelor of Science Degrees in both math and computer science from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1989. He then attended the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law, graduating cum laude and being elected to the Order of the Coif in 1992. He was a 2002 recipient of the David J. Dixon Appellate Advocacy Award. Since 1998, Mr. Rollings has been providing research and writing services to other attorneys throughout Missouri on a contract basis. His practice includes appellate work as well as research and drafting services related to civil litigation.

Steve Sanders
The Law Offices of Steve Sanders LLC
Kansas City

Steve Sanders has operated his own small firm since 2003. His legal practices focuses on catastrophic injury cases and insurance bad faith litigation. His avocation is teaching people effective financial management skills. Sanders has made the mistakes most of us make and was nearly forced to shutter his firm in 2009. Determined to succeed, he fully committed to implementing the changes he knew he needed to make to keep his firm going. Now, five years later, Sanders is ready to help all of us be better lawyers and be better at the business & financial side of our law practices.

Rekha Sharma-Crawford
Sharma-Crawford, Attorneys at Law
Overland Park, KS

Rekha Sharma-Crawford, is a passionate advocate for immigration rights as it applies to the fair application of the law. With broad experiences as an assistant district attorney and practicing attorney, Rekha is a frequent speaker and lecturer on matters of immigration law. Representing clients whose cases garnered high-profile media attention, Rekha has the ability to articulate the law and its implications to all audiences.

Rekha received her Juris Doctorate from Michigan State University College of Law in 1993. She has been an assistant district attorney in Sedgwick County, Ks. and in Douglas County, Ks. Rekha is licensed to practice law in the states of Kansas, Texas, and Michigan, and has been practicing in the immigration litigation field since 2000. She is admitted to the U.S. Supreme Court, District of Kansas, Western District of Missouri, and the Federal Appeals Court for the Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, Tenth and Eleventh Circuits. Rekha is also a member of the American Immigration Lawyer’s Association, Texas Bar Association, Kansas Bar Association, and Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association.

Rekha is a frequent instructor at the American Immigration Law Foundation Litigation Institute. She has also lectured about immigration law to the Johnson County Bar Association, Kansas Bar Association, and Kansas and Missouri Public Defenders.

Rekha has been involved with cases in municipal, state and federal courts, the Circuit Courts of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court. She has been successful in appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals and has successfully argued before the Circuit Court of Appeals. Rekha has also been successful in litigation against a law enforcement agency that was detaining immigrants beyond their statutory authority.

W. Michael Sharma-Crawford
Sharma-Crawford, Attorneys at Law
Overland Park, KS

W. Michael Sharma-Crawford is an aggressive litigator and compassionate advocate of fairness in immigration law. As a former law enforcement officer, Michael has a deeper understanding of the challenges of immigration law enforcement, detainment issues and litigation. Michael frequently handles complex immigration proceedings where current statutes require greater experience and understanding.

Michael received his Juris Doctorate from Washburn University in 2002. The practice of law, while a second career, was not far from his beginnings as a law enforcement officer. Michael “served and protected” the citizens of Sedgwick County for 15 years before he went on to fulfill his dream of becoming a member of the Bar. He is admitted to the District of Kansas, and the Federal Appeals Court for the Fifth, Seventh, Eighth and Tenth Circuits. He is admitted to the District of Kansas, and the Federal Appeals Court for the Second, Seventh, Eighth and Tenth Circuits. He is also a member of the American Immigration Lawyer’s Association, Kansas Bar Association, Missouri Bar Association, Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association and Johnson County Bar Association. Michael also served on the Advisory Committee for the ABA Commission on Immigration and currently serves on the Board of Directors for Kansas Legal Services.

Michael has successfully argued before the 7th and 10th Circuit Courts of Appeal. He has also been successful before the Board of Immigration Appeals.

Michael has instructed at the American Immigration Law Foundation Litigation Institute. He has also lectured about immigration law to the Johnson County Bar Association, Kansas Bar Association, and Kansas and Missouri Public Defenders.

Bill Shull
Legal Aid of Western Missouri

Bill Shull received his BA at Missouri University in 1975, and graduated from Missouri University Law School in 1979, joining the Missouri Bar that year. He has been employed his entire career by Legal Aid of Western Missouri, managing their Warrensburg Office, which covers thirteen counties in mid-Western Missouri, plus Cole and Jackson counties. He has handled many landlord-tenant controversies over the past thirty four years, and has discovered every possible way to lose a case.

Dara M. Strickland
The Strickland Law Firm
St. Louis

Ms. Dara M. Strickland graduated from Washington University in St. Louis School of Law in 2007 and credits Professor David Becker's philosophical approach to property with sparking her professional interest in trusts and estates. Dara is a solo practitioner with an office in Chesterfield, Missouri. She takes particular interest in helping non-traditional families grow and change with the right access to the legal system and the documents that can protect them. She is also the President of the Board of Directors of The LGBT Community Center of St. Louis.

Karl Timmerman
Law Office of Karl Timmerman

Mr. Karl H. Timmerman immigrated from Germany in 1960. He became a citizen of the United States of America in 1965 and attended Capital University Seminary in Columbus, Ohio in 1966-1967. He was drafted in 1967. After an Honorable Discharge, Karl hitchhiked across the United States from 1970 to through 1973, winding up in Kansas City. He went back to school in August of 1974 and has earned an AAS from Penn Valley Community College, a B.A. and an M.A. in Psychology from the University of Missouri at Kansas City and he has earned a Juris Doctorate from U.M.K.C. School of Law in 1982.

He is the former Vice-Chairman of the Solo and Small Firm Committee of the Missouri Bar Association and is the recipient of a Distinguished Service Award, Awarded by the Missouri Bar Association Solo and Small Firm Committee in 2001. He is the recipient of the 2004 Distinguished Alumni Award, Awarded by the Missouri Community College Association and Missouri Lawyer’s Weekly, 2008 Missouri Lawyer of the Year.

Karl his home office in Holden, Missouri. He is the author of the “Friday Night Ramblings”, (an on-line column posted every Friday Night to the Solo and Small Firm Internet Group, (and also posted on his Website and is currently writing a book, “The Puppy Shark Chronicles”, common mistakes made by young lawyers. Karl is a Court approved Family Conflict Mediator and Past Chairman of the Jackson County Mediation Advisory Committee. He can be reached at and at Karl is also an award winning Digital Artist: his work can be seen at

Morris E. Turek
St. Louis

Morris Turek is a trademark and copyright attorney located in St. Louis, Missouri. He helps entrepreneurs, businesses, organizations, and educational institutions avoid the high costs and devastating effects of being sued for intellectual property infringement. Morris focuses his practice of law almost exclusively on trademark and copyright clearance, federal trademark and copyright registration, intellectual property litigation, and intellectual property licensing. He is a 2005 graduate of St. Louis University School of Law and is the owner and founder of Morris has served as Chair of the BAMSL Patent, Trademark & Copyright Section, and he periodically teaches a continuing education course on trademark and copyright law at a local community college.

Rachel Jane White
Law Office of Rachel J. White, LLC

Rachel Jane White is a December 2000 graduate of Texas Tech University School of Law and was admitted to the Texas Bar in the spring of 2001. Rachel began her career in Dallas, Texas in a small firm where she concentrated solely on domestic and probate law.

Born and raised in Rolla, Missouri, Rachel earned her B.A. in History and Political Science from the University of Missouri-Rolla. After three years of practice in Dallas, Rachel returned to Rolla, and was admitted to the Missouri Bar in the Spring of 2004.

Rachel is the owner of the Law Office of Rachel J. White, LLC located in Rolla, Missouri. Her practice is limited to Adoption Law, Assisted Reproductive Technology Law and Guardian Ad Litem work. Rachel is a fellow of the American Academy of Adoption Attorneys.

Ron Wiesenthal
St. Louis Mediation Center, LLC
St. Louis

Mr. is a fulltime mediator and owner of the St. Louis Mediation Center. He has been a mediator since 1991 and has mediated around two thousand cases. Wiesenthal is a member of the Association of Attorney Mediators and the National Association of Distinguished Neutrals and is a Super Lawyer in ADR. He is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin (1969) and the University of Missouri-Kansas City Law School (1972) and is licensed to practice law in Missouri and Texas.

Robert J. Wise
Wise & Anderson, LLC
Kansas City

Robert J. Wise is a partner of Wise & Anderson, LLC in Kansas City. He graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia Law School in 1975 and has been a member of The Missouri Bar since that time. He primarily represents property owners and managers. He has been the speaker at continuing legal education classes sponsored by the Missouri Bar, the Kansas City Metro Bar, and on television and radio. He is a frequent speaker to property owners and attorneys on landlord-tenant law, collections, Fair Housing, and related areas.

In 1997, he authored legislation which contained the first major changes in Missouri landlord-tenant law since 1939. The bill included new provisions for expediting evictions involving illegal drug activities. Wise was directly involved in negotiating and promoting the bill through the legislature.

From 1999 to 2002, he was the full-time executive vice president and general counsel of the Missouri Apartment Association where his duties included legal, educational, and legislative activities. He was editor of the Missouri Apartment Association’s “Redbook” and drafted the MAA standard Missouri lease and other related forms.

He is presently a member of the National Federation of Independent Business, the Creditor Rights Asset Protection organization, and the Executive Director of Mid-America Crime Free, Inc.

Find Missouri Bar Solo and Small Firm Conference on Twitter!Follow the Missouri Bar Solo & Small Firm Conference on Twitter
Join the Conversation on @mobarnews and @mobarcle using #MOSOLO14