Members in the News

Members in the News

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ABI's Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee, which examines innovative uses of alternative dispute resolution mechanisms to assist courts in handling disputes, is co-chaired by Hon. Barbara J. Houser and Lester J. Levy.

Hon. Barbara J. Houser is a U.S. Bankruptcy Judge in the Northern District of Texas. Judge Houser first joined Locke Purnell Boren & Neeley in Dallas and became a shareholder there in 1985. She joined Sheinfeld & Kay PC in 1988 as the shareholder in charge of the Dallas office and remained there until she was sworn in as a judge on Jan. 20, 2000. While at Sheinfeld, she led the firm's representation of clients in a variety of significant chapter 11 cases. The National Law Journal named her as one of the 50 most influential women lawyers in America in 1998. She is a member of the National Bankruptcy Conference and currently serves as a member of its executive committee. She is also a member of the American College of Bankruptcy and currently serves as a member of its board of regents. Judge Houser lectures and publishes frequently on corporate restructuring and insolvency law and is a visiting professor of law at the Dedman School of Law at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, where she teaches creditors' rights. She is a past chairman of the Dallas Bar Association's committee on bankruptcy and corporate reorganization and is a member and fellow of the Texas Bar Association and Foundation and the American Bar Association and Foundation. Judge Houser is a contributing author to Collier on Bankruptcy (15th Ed.) and the Collier Bankruptcy Manual (3rd Ed.).

She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska with high distinction and her J.D. from Southern Methodist University School of Law, where she was a member of its Law Review.

Lester J. Levy is the managing director of JAMS bankruptcy practice in San Francisco, where he has mediated bankruptcy matters and founded JAMS's Class Action Settlement Program. He has settled, adjudicated and managed thousands of complex cases in a broad array of subject-matter areas, and travels nationwide and internationally to assist parties with cases. Mr. Levy is a member of the International Bar Association and the ADR panels for the Northern California Federal District Court, as well as the Superior Courts of San Francisco, Marin, Sonoma and San Mateo Counties. Previously, Mr. Levy practiced as a trial lawyer with Munger, Tolles & Olson in San Francisco and Los Angeles, and as a law clerk for Hon. Irving R. Kaufman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He trained in mediation/ negotiation at Harvard Law School and spoke at the International Bar Association in Durban, South Africa, on the "Innovative Use of ADR in Class Action and Mass Torts." He is a frequent lecturer and is an adjunct professor of law at the University of San Francisco Law School. Mr. Levy received his B.Mus. from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and his J.D. magna cum laude from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, where he was chief articles editor of the Cardozo Law Review.

More Members in the News

James Wannamaker (Bankruptcy Judges Division, Administrative Office of U.S. Courts, Baltimore), Frank J. Santoro (Marcus, Santoro & Kozak PC, Virginia Beach, Va., and standing chapter 13 trustee in Norfolk and Newport News, Va.) and Hon. Stephen S. Mitchell (U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia) visited with Sarjit Singh, the Official Assignee and Public Trustee of Singapore in July. Singapore is considering changes to its bankruptcy system. Mr. Wannamaker, Mr. Santoro and Judge Mitchell were invited to provide insights with respect to chapter 11 and 13 and to meet with public and private stakeholders.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge David W. Houston III hosted a dedication ceremony in his courtroom inside the new Sen. Thad Cochran U.S. Bankruptcy Courthouse in Abedeen, Miss., in August. The bankruptcy court was previously housed in Aberdeen's Federal Building and also occupied a small building downtown. The building houses the U.S. Trustee offices, U.S. Marshal/Court Security office, judge's chambers, secretary's office, staff attorney's office, clerk of the court and deputy clerks.

The Garden City Group Inc. (GCG) recently announced the promotion of Jennifer M. Keough to senior vice president and managing director of the company's west coast operations in Seattle. Ms. Keough previously held the title of vice president and managing director, west coast operations. As a former GCG client and class action business analyst, Ms. Keough was responsible for managing the settlement implementation and administration process for large class action settlements at the Perkins Coie law firm, and prior to that, she gained her legal expertise while working for a highly regarded civil litigation firm in Seattle. Ms. Keough earned her B.A. cum laude at Seattle University Albers School of Business, where she also earned a Masters in Finance and Valuation. She received her J.D. from Seattle University.

Stuart J. Lissner, CPA, formerly of PPM America Inc., has joined CBM Capital Inc. in Glencoe, Ill., as managing director to expand their distressed debt and special-situations effort. Mr. Lissner has more than 10 years of investment experience managing distressed and special-situation assets. He will target undervalued situations caused by market inefficiencies, excess leverage and cyclical industry downturns where he can add value through his active management experience and long-term investment horizon. He has significant experience managing troubled situations and has worked side by side with lenders, other secured and unsecured creditors, equity sponsors, management and their professionals to develop and implement appropriate restructuring and financing solutions.

Alex Moglia, president of Moglia Associates in Schaumburg, Ill., was a guest speaker for the second year at the 35th Annual Iowa Bankruptcy Seminar, where his presentation was entitled, "The Roles of the Corporate Turnaround Professional and Chapter 11 Trustee and the New Act: Have the Roles Really Changed?" Moglia Associates has offices in Chicago, Los Angeles and Phoenix.

Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek S.C., announced that attorney Daniel McGarry has joined the firm's Madison, Wis., office's bankruptcy and reorganization practice, where he focuses on advising and consulting financially troubled enterprises, including state and federal insolvency proceedings, chapter 11 and 7 bankruptcies, workouts and restructurings. Mr. McGarry has represented lenders, creditors, committees, suppliers, lessors, purchasers, equity-holders, corporate and individual creditors and debtors.

BMC Group announced that in September it moved its Chicago office to 77 West Wacker Drive, 14th floor, in Chicago. In New York, BMC Group now resides in midtown, on the 5th floor at 875 Third Avenue. These two new larger offices allow the company to expand its presence in Chicago and New York. BMC Group also has offices in Atlanta, Kansas City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. ABI members include Sean Allen, Susan Burnett, Tinamarie Feil, Steve Kotarba, Michelle Patterson, Sean Reid, Rich Reilly, Michelle Salazar, Julie Skidmore and Tauheed Williams.

Journal Date: 
Saturday, October 1, 2005