Class Notes

Recent Class Notes

Alicia M. Johnson (’04) is Legal Aid&'s new Executive Director. Alicia first joined Legal Aid in 2010 and has served as the Deputy Executive Director for the past seven years. In the Deputy Executive Director role, Alicia oversaw the central office move from the downtown Kansas City area into a more accessible client community. The move ensured that the organization continues to remain client-centered and client-driven.

Jin Liu (’05) was listed among Best Lawyers in Real Estate Law. She is the Chair of Development Industry Group at Carlton Fields; Real Estate and Finance.

Lara Krigel Pabst (’09) has been named one of the new leadership shareholders as she helps take over from the original founders Erlene Krigel (’09) and Sanford Krigel of Krigel and Krigel, P.C.

Keegan Tinney (’17) was selected as the Young Lawyers' Section delegate of the Missouri Bar to the American Bar Association House of Delegates. Tinney serves as the District 10 YLS Council representative.

Laura Van Note (’13) is a partner and shareholder of the firm as well as a change of the firm's name to Cole & Van Note. Scott Cole has been the sole owner of the firm since its inception in 1992. Laura joined the firm in 2019 as an associate and quickly became an asset to the firm inside and out of the courtroom. Laura is a skilled advocate for her clients, providing keen guidance and insight on a variety of matters including class action labor and employment, product liability, personal injury and civil rights matters. She has extensive courtroom experience, and her clients benefit from her varied background representing plaintiffs and defendants.

 

In Memoriam

James L. Fahrenholtz (’92) passed away on August 20, 2021. He represented District 3 on Orleans Parish School Board 2000-2008 and was active and well known in political, legal and nonprofit circles. His most recent work was as a background actor for local television and film.

Class Notes Archive

Fluffy Kilburn ('20), Leaders of Tomorrow Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Cameron Roark ('19) joined the firm of Behr, McCarter & Potter, P.C. He will practice in the areas of employment law, federal civil rights, class actions, construction law and litigation.

Noah Nash ('19) joined the law firm of Lathrop Gage. Noah is part of the Insurance and Recovery and Counselling team. He will handling a variety insurance recovery matters, mass tor claims, environmental litigation, campaign finance and class action lawsuits Prior to his legal career, Nash worked as a catastrophe claims adjuster for a large insurance carrier, where he worked to provide aid to victims of natural disasters.

Garrett Pratt ('19), LL.M., has joined the law firm of Lathrop Gage. Garrett is part of the Tax and Employment Benefits team. He will be advising clients regarding federal income tax and employee benefits matters and the tax ramifications of various business transactions. He also assists clients with forming and dissolving legal entities, corporate reorganizations and advises on tax issues arising from the operation of partnerships and limited liability companies.

Lischen Reeves ('18) joined Cerner as Corporate Counsel working with Privacy and Cybersecurity

Darrell Smith ('18) was crowned King at Operation Breakthrough's Mardi Gras luncheon. See Michelle Marvel ('07).

Keegan Tinney (’17) was selected as the Young Lawyers' Section delegate of the Missouri Bar to the American Bar Association House of Delegates. Tinney serves as the District 10 YLS Council representative.

Erica Frank ('17) has joined the Jackson County Prosecutor's Office in Independence as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney. Erica previously served as Law Clerk to the Honorable Jennifer M. Phillips in Division 12 of the 16thCircuit Court and is honored to continue her career with and for citizens of Jackson County.

Nirisi Angulo (’17) has joined Raytheon Technologies Corporate as a Specialist in the State Income Tax Division. She will be engaged in helping the company with various state income tax and compliance issues and audit support.

Taryn Nash (’17) who was named to Ingram’s 20 in Their Twenties She is a business-litigation associate at Lathrop GPM.

Bianca Finney (‘17) - she works full-time as an Assistant District Attorney at Unified Government of Kansas City.

Tara Moreland '16) has joined the firm of Guin Mundorf, LLC She previously was a Deputy County Counselor for Jackson County, Missouri. At Guin Mundorf, Tara practices education law, specifically focusing on general counsel for the firm's public education clients.

Joshua J. Cervantes (’16) has joined the law firm of Jackson Lewis P.C., where he focuses his practice on a variety of employment litigation issues. Joshua manages an active litigation docket and zealously represents his clients in all aspects of litigation, including at the commission level.

Sam Barfoot ('16) received the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award for his outstanding dedication to the mission of the Adopt-A- Neighborhood (AAN)

JoEllen Englebart ('15) passed away on January 2, 2021. She served as an Assistant Jackson County Prosecutor in the special victim’s unit of the prosecutor's office, which included working with victims of child abuse and sex crimes.

Hon Sarah Castle ('15) was appointed by Governor Mike Parson as Circuit Judge. She is filling the vacancy created by the retirement of as Hon Sandra C. Midkiff ('75)

Justin Whitney (’15) has joined Lathrop GPM as an associate. Whitney is well-versed in assisting clients with basic and complex estate planning documents, implementing sophisticated planning techniques. He focuses on estate planning, probate and trust administration, trust and estate litigation, tax planning and the drafting of trusts, wills and corporate documents.

Sara Hofeditz Christensen (’14) has joined the firm Lathrop GPM LLP as Pro Bono Counsel. She will serve as the firm’s designated attorney for all Jackson County, Missouri, indigent family court appointments and support the firm's commitment to pro bono and community service. Sara has experience representing clients in the criminal defense process, ranging from extensive pretrial preparation, bond reduction and evidentiary hearings, to bench and jury trials, and when necessary, probation violation and revocation hearings.

Jennifer Oswald Brown (’14) selected by Missouri Lawyers Media for 2021 Diversity & Inclusion Awards for her work to support and advance those initiatives

Corey Kilburn (’14) was selected as 40 under 40 2021 by the Springfield Business Journal (SBJ)

Nicholas Draper (’14) joined the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of General Counsel in August 2020 at the regional office in Kansas City, Kansas. He is a trial attorney where his practice is focused on the Fair Housing Act, the Freedom of Information Act, ethics, and litigation involving the agency. Nick was previously in private practice for four years and clerked for one and a half years for the Honorable Judge Cynthia L. Martin at the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District.

Sara Christensen ('14) Thomas J. Conway Award, KCMBA Bench Bar and Boardroom 2020 Award.

Ashley Grace, ('14) has joined the Missouri Attorney General's Office in Kansas City in February 2020. She is in the labor unit where her practice is focused on worker's compensation. Ashley was previously in private practice for four years and clerked for one year in Jackson County Circuit Court for the Honorable Janette K. Rodecap.

Laura Van Note (’13) is a partner and shareholder of the firm as well as a change of the firm's name to Cole & Van Note. Scott Cole has been the sole owner of the firm since its inception in 1992. Laura joined the firm in 2019 as an associate and quickly became an asset to the firm inside and out of the courtroom. Laura is a skilled advocate for her clients, providing keen guidance and insight on a variety of matters including class action labor and employment, product liability, personal injury and civil rights matters. She has extensive courtroom experience, and her clients benefit from her varied background representing plaintiffs and defendants.

Crissy Del Percio ('13) recognized as an early-career professional in the public or non-profit sector

Michelle L. Cocayne ('13) recognized as an early-career professional in the public or non-profit sector

Matt Sparks ('13) recognized as an early-career professional in the public or non-profit sector

John Francis Baty (’13) passed away on Oct. 19, 2019. He practiced at the law firm of Baty Otto Coronado, PC. Alongside his father Lee Baty and his sister Laura Kaufman.

Jennifer Cascio (‘12) joined Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. She focuses her legal practice on catastrophic personal injury, medical negligence, product liability and mass torts. Cascio was selected for the Rising Star 2020 award.

Sarah Castle (’12) was appointed to be the new associate circuit judge of Division 27. She will fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Gregory B. Gillis.

Carl Scarborough (’12) retired as Chief of the Sni Valley Fire Protection District in Oak Grove, Missouri. After three decades as a paramedic, firefighter, training officer and leader, Chief Scarborough will now focus his full-time attention practicing law.

Andrew “Drew” Goodwin (’12) has joined the law firm of Joseph, Hollander, & Craft LLC. Drew is a litigator who represents individuals and business in the transportation, financial, utility and manufacturing industries. He provides general business counsel to small business clients, particularly in the areas of risk management and insurance coverage

David McCain (’11) selected by Missouri Lawyers Media for 2021 Diversity & Inclusion Awards for her work to support and advance those initiatives

Melissa Spearman (’11 LLM) has joined the law firm of  Chamberlin Hrdlicka. She represents individuals and businesses in all aspects of state and federal controversy. She has many years of experience representing clients in a wide range of tax matters; tax audits, tax appeals, employment tax, tax collection defense, penalty abatement request, lien withdrawal and release, installment agreements, offers-in-compromise, offshore voluntary disclosure program and streamlined domestic offshore program.

Brent Dwerlkotte (’10) – Hon. Matt J. Whitworth Trial Excellence Award, KCMBA Bench and Bar and Board Room Conference 2021


JoEllen Flanagan Engelbart ( ’10) -Young Lawyer of the Year Award (posthumously), KCMBA Bench and Bar and Board Room Conference 2021   

Lara Krigel Pabst (’09) has been named one of the new leadership shareholders as she helps take over from the original founders Erlene Krigel (’09) and Sanford Krigel of Krigel and Krigel, P.C.

Katie Woods ('09) has been sworn in as the President-Elect of the Utah State Bar Association.

Adam L. Caine ('09) was appointed by Governor Mike Parsons appointed to the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit for Division 11. Adam was previously serving as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri.

Michael Meyer (’09) – Thomas J. Conway Award, KCMBA Bench and Bar and Board Room Conference 2021

Amanda Smith Sodomka (’08) was recently named Chief Juvenile Officer and Assistant Court Administrator for the City of St. Louis. She currently serves as director of legal services for the Jefferson County, Mo., Juvenile Office. As St. Louis' Chief Juvenile Officer, she will direct all juvenile justice and child welfare programs under the Court’s jurisdiction.

Tricia Campbell ('08) was named partner at Langdon and Emison. She focuses her practice on mass torts litigation and representing clients in personal injury and product liability cases nationwide. She provides day-to-day oversight of the firm's mass torts litigation department and has played a lead role in expanding the firm's mass torts docket and growing the overall department.

Brennan Delaney ('08) was named partner at Langdon and Emison. He focuses his personal injury practice on cases involving product liability, premises liability, dram shop liability and other areas. He has played a critical role in a substantial number of cases that have yielded more than $40 million in verdicts and settlements for his clients.

Lisa M. Dube ('08) was selected by the judges as the new Jackson County Family Court Commissioner of Division 43. She will assume the position presently held by Commissioner David P. Kimminau.

Kendall Seal ('08) has joined the ACLU of Kansas as the Legislative and Policy Director. He previously served as Vice President and General Counsel of the Women's Foundation.

Shaun Stallworth ('08) Distinguished Counselor Award, KCMBA Bench Bar and Boardroom 2020 Award

Tiffany D. Gregg '('07) was appointed as the treatment court commissioner of Division 50 by the judges of the 16th Judicial Circuit at a meeting of the Court en Banc. At the time of her appointment, Gregg was serving as an attorney with the Missouri State Public Defender's Office. Gregg was appointed to fill the judicial vacancy that will occur when Commissioner David J. Fry ('85) who retired on December 31, 2020 after serving 13 years on the bench.

Hon. Kea S. Bird ('07) appointed by Missouri Governor Mike Parson to associate circuit judge of Division 27. She formerly served as Family Court Commissioner for Division 41.

Michelle Marvel ('07) was crowned Queen at Operation Breakthrough's Mardi Gras luncheon. See Darrell Smith ('18).

Hon. Cory L. Atkins ('’'07) was appointed as Circuit Judge for the 16th Judical Court in Division 17. He has filled the vacancy of the Hon. Jack R. Grate.

Gizie D. Hirsh (’06) has been promoted to partnership at Lathrop GPM. Hirsh leads the firm’s business immigration practice ande focuses her practice on representing businesses and individuals before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the Department of Labor, the Department of State and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Jin Liu (’05) was listed among Best Lawyers in Real Estate Law. She is the Chair of Development Industry Group at Carlton Fields; Real Estate and Finance.

Christopher H. Pickett ('05) LLM passed away on July 25, 2021, He spent his career as in-house counsel specializing in fintech companies.

Danielle Lee Elam-Jobe (’05) passed away on March 17, 2021. She found her first career employment with a corporate law firm, working in family law, where she embarked on her career. Later in her career, Danielle switched her focus from family law and went to work for Legal Aid of Western Missouri.

 Lisa Marie Demaree ('05) passed away on December 23, 2020. While in law school she was a strong advocate for the Innocence Project and after graduating she worked full time for the Innocence Project for a year and a half before taking a job with Pixis where she worked as a legislative auditor finding jobs for out of work and displaced Kansans.

Charles C. “Chuck” Curry (’05) passed away November 27th, 2020. He was a solo practitioner and in 1984, Belton, MO appointed him as Municipal Court Judge where he remained until he retired in July 2020. He served on the Missouri Municipal Judges Association in many positions including president Association in many positions including president. He was a United States Navy Veteran

Jessica Agnelly Krawczyk ('05), Litigation Practitioner Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Jessica Agnelly Krawczyk ('05) was appointed by Governor Parsons as Associate Circuit Judge for the 16th Judicial Circuit. She is filling the judicial vacancy of Honorable Richard T. Standridge ('80) who retired June 1. 2020 after serving almost 27 years with the Jackson County Court.

Lucy McShane Davis ('05) is a partner at McShane and Brady LLC, having experience in court being both defense attorney and a prosecutor. She currently represents her clients who have been injured in vehicle accidents, slips and falls, nursing home neglects, and private medical record violations. She has also been involved with Infant Toddler Services of Johnson County, Cure of Ars School and St. Teresa’s Academy.

Desarae Harrah ('05) has founded Harrah Law. She practices in real estate, construction, business disputes, creditors rights, arbitration and mediation.

Alicia M. Johnson (’04) is Legal Aid&'s new Executive Director. Alicia first joined Legal Aid in 2010 and has served as the Deputy Executive Director for the past seven years. In the Deputy Executive Director role, Alicia oversaw the central office move from the downtown Kansas City area into a more accessible client community. The move ensured that the organization continues to remain client-centered and client-driven.

R. Travis Willingham (’04) was appointed by Governor Mike Parson as Associate Circuit Judge for the 16th Judicial Circuit.

Athena Dickson ('03), Litigation Practitioner Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Daniel Thomas (’02) – Legal Champions Award, Missouri Lawyers Awards 2021 by Missouri Lawyers Media.

Athena Dickson (’03) – Legal Champions Award, Missouri Lawyers Awards 2021 by Missouri Lawyers Media.

Christopher Pickett (’05) – Law Firm Leaders Award, Missouri Lawyers Awards 2021 by Missouri Lawyers Media.

 

Mara Cohara ('01), selected by The Kansas City Business Journal 2020 Women who Mean Business

Mira Mdivani (’99) selected by Missouri Lawyers Media for 2021 Diversity & Inclusion Awards for her work to support and advance those initiatives

Ann Schiavone ('99) selected by The Kansas City Business Journal 2020 Women who Mean Business

Hon. Rebecca L. Spencer ('99) Public Service Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Jill Presley ('97), Litigation Practitioner Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Ruth J. Brackney (‘97) is currently a partner and attorney at Lathrop GPM. She practices entrepreneurial services, family-owned business, trusts, estates, and legacy planning, trust and estate litigation. She is currently a board member with Big Brothers and Big Sisters. She was selected to the 32nd Class of the Civic Council of Greater Kansas City’s Kansas City Tomorrow Program, she was identified as the community leader.

Michael Textor (’96) was named named president of the Construction Lawyers Society of America (CLSA) an invitation–only international honorary association consisting of preeminent lawyers specializing in construction law and related fields.

Michael Kilgore (’95) – Legal Champions Award, Missouri Lawyers Awards 2021 by Missouri Lawyers Media.

Taylor Rickard (’95) – Legal Champions Award, Missouri Lawyers Awards 2021 by Missouri Lawyers Media.

Brian Gaddy ('94) was selected as the Western District of Missouri's newest U.S. Magistrate Judge. He is filling the judicial vacancy of Honorable John T. Maughmer ('80)

Hon. Melissa Taylor Standridge ('93) appointed by Governor Laura Kelly to the Kansas Supreme Court. Judge Standridge served on the Kansas Court of Appeals.

James L. Fahrenholtz (’92) passed away on August 20, 2021. He represented District 3 on Orleans Parish School Board 2000-2008 and was active and well known in political, legal and nonprofit circles. His most recent work was as a background actor for local television and film.

Teresa A. Moore (’92) was appointed as the Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri. She will serve in this capacity until there is a Presidentially appointed, Senate-confirmed U.S. Attorney in place.

Phil C. Appenzeller, Jr. ('92) recently named to the 27th edition of The Best Lawyers in America: was selected as the Western District of Missouri's newest U.S. Magistrate Judge.

John Anderson Tackes Baty (’92) passed away on Oct. 15, 2019. During his career he served as an Administrative Law Judge and Appeals Referee with the State of Missouri

Phil Appenzeller (’92) was included in the D-CEO Magazines Dallas 500 is a special edition that celebrates the most influential business leaders in Dallas-Fort Worth Texas.

Judge David M. Byrn ('81) retired from the Jackson County Circuit Court July 29, 2021, after serving almost 13 years in office. He was appointed as circuit judge of Division 3 in September 2008 by Governor Matt Blunt. He came to the bench after 27 years as an attorney with the law firm of Jeter Rains & Byrn. He leaves to take a position with CGL Companies which is a criminal justice consulting company. He will assist local, state and federal entities with the planning of courthouses and detention centers, and with issues related to court operations, court management and continuity of operations.

Hon. David Bryn (’81) Influential Lawyers Award, Missouri Lawyers Awards 2021 by Missouri Lawyers Media.

Nancy Pinkham (’86) passed away on May 6, 2021. Her legal career included time at the law firms Gage and Tucker, and Shook, Hardy and Bacon. She practiced corporate law at Western Auto, Sprint, and Applebee’s, before accepting a position with Darden Restaurants.

Hon J. Dale Youngs ('89) was named the presiding judge as January 1, 2021 for a two-year term.

Hon, Judge David M. Byrn ('81) term as presiding judge concluded on December 31, 2020.

Cecilia Abbott ('89), Public Service Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Hon. W. Douglas Thomson ('89) was appointed by Governor Mike Parsons appointed to the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District. Judge Thomson previously associate circuit judge for the 4th Judicial Circuit in Maryville. Judge Thomson will succeed Judge Victor C. Howard ('76), who retired in November of 2019.

Cecilia Abbott (‘89) After 30 years of service,  is retiring April 30, 2020. She was hired as City Attorney of Kansas City in 1990, since then she has been promoted five times during her career. She served as Deputy City Attorney in 2017.

Richard Dale “Jake” Jacoby ('88) passed away on May 22, 2020. Jake had his own criminal defense practice in Independence, MO.

Allison Murdock ('88) has been elected as the new managing partner of Stinson LLP. She will take the helm in July 2021. She's a 32-year veteran, spending her entire career at Stinson, including the past 10 years as deputy managing partner.

The Honorable Cindy Martin ('84) became Chief Judge of the Missouri Court of Appeals for the Western District as of July 1, 2020

Comm. David Kimminau ('85) Hon. Kelly J. Moorhouse Dedication to Children, KCMBA Bench Bar and Boardroom 2020 Award

James P. Frickelton ('83) Dean of the Trial BarKCMBA Bench Bar and Boardroom 2020 Award

Kirk Presley (’83) was elected to the 16th Circuit Judicial Commission. He is the founder and principal of Presley & Presley LLC. He has served as the UMKC Law Foundation as a trustee and vice president of development. He has received the Law Foundation’s President’s Award and the Pat Kelly Service Award.

David White (’82) was chosen to receive the 2019 Excellence Award of the National Conference of Bar Foundation for his work and leadership of the KC Metro Bar Foundation’s Military Matters project. The award recognizes philanthropic work and leadership on behalf of bar foundations. Military Matters provides pro bono legal services to veterans and those on active duty in the KC metro arrear foundations. Military Matters provides pro bono legal services to veterans and those on active duty in the KC metro area.

David W. White ('82) Baron of the Boardroom Award, KCMBA Bench Bar and Boardroom 2020 Award

Kevin E. Phillips (’81) passed away on March 13, 2021. He was the owner of Kevin E. Phillips Attorney at Law.

Janelle Jennings-Drummond ('81) recognized for her volunteer work in the self-help clinic at the Leon Bloch Library with the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award.

Aimee Riederer Gromowsky ('79), Pro Bono Award, 2020 Missouri Lawyers Weekly for the Women's Justice Award

Susan M. Kephart ('79) recognized for her volunteer work in the self-help clinic at the Leon Bloch Library with the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award.

John R. Shank (’78) passed away on Oct. 7, 2019. John initially worked in private practice and served as an assistant public defender in Clay Co. He then practiced law with Michael Gunn and many other esteemed colleagues for 38 years.

Jim R. Petrie ('77) recognized for his volunteer work in the self-help clinic at the Leon Bloch Library with the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award.

Hon. W.Stephen Nixon (’75) passed away on April 11, 2021. He was appointed to the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit Court on March 2, 1998.  After 12 years on the bench he set aside his robe and was appointed as the Jackson County Counselor for Jackson County.  Earlier, he was a solo practitioner for 22 years, His law partner was his wife Betsy Ann Stewart (’67).  He was elected as Mayor of Lake Lotawana in 1995.

Bart Strother ('75) passed away on October 19, 2020. He began his law career at the law firm of Foust, Strother and Frickleton for more than 15 years before going out on his own.

John P. Hastings ('74) recognized for his volunteer work in the self-help clinic at the Leon Bloch Library with the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award.

Hon. Ronald Holliger ('74) recognized for his volunteer work in the self-help clinic at the Leon Bloch Library with the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award. 

Anita B. Johnson Butler ('72) passed away on August 8, 2020. Anita worked as a trust officer at First National Bank of Kansas City, eventually earning the title of Senior Vice President.  Upon leaving the bank she became a partner with the law firm of Slagle, Bernard and Gorman. She was a named partner in Berman, DeLeve, Kuchan & Chapman, LLC. and worked with the law firm of Krigel and Krigel PC.

Stephen Carl Caruso (’72) passed away on August 16, 2019. He practiced law in the Kansas City area for over 30 years. Steve served in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War and was awarded the Bronze Starr.

Ronald Wiesenthal (’72) of the St. Louis Mediation and Arbitration Center was named Missouri’s Best Independent Mediator in a poll of lawyers conducted by Missouri Lawyers Weekly.

Taylor Fields ('71) passed away on July 28, 2021. After graduating from law school, He worked as in-house counsel at Bendix Corporation. In 1974 he started his own law practice, which developed into the largest minority-owned law firm in the Kansas City area. Although lauded by many organizations, including the Kansans City Metropolitan Bar Association, the Jackson County Bar Association, and the National Bar Association, for his contributions to the legal profession, perhaps one of his proudest moments occurred when he successfully argued before the Missouri Supreme Court to establish a livable minimum wage of $15.00 per hour. Taylor served on various boards and served in numerous other community service organizations. He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

Hon. Lloyd C Loomis ('71) passed away on July 31, 2020.Judge Loomis served on the Los Angeles Superior Court, first as a Commissioner, and then as a Judge. Lloyd retired from the Bench in 2018. He was formerly a partner at Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard and Smith from 2006-09, previously working at Sonnerschein Nath and Rosenthal and serving as senior corporate labor counsel at Arco.

Grover C. Wilcher ('66) passed away on July 15, 2021.  He retired from Truman Medical Center following a dedicated career as legal counsel.

William “Bill” Prugh ('69) recognized for his volunteer work in the self-help clinic at the Leon Bloch Library with the Robert C. Welch Volunteer Attorney Project Award.

Michael J. Albano (’68) passed away Jan. 22, 2020. Mike was partner at Welch, Martin and Albano LLC where he practiced law for 51 years. He was a noted family law author, lecturer and litigator. He served many charitable organizations, is universally respected and loved by his colleagues and peers for his knowledge, efforts to improve the practice, mentorship, unwavering ethics, and heart to protect the families’ ad children impacted by family law. His awards and recognitions were voluminous. Mike attended UMKC as an undergraduate and was an avid supporter of UMKC. Mike was a fixture in the fan stands at Roo athletic events. He received the UMKC Bill French Award, Law School Alumni Achievement Award and the Missouri Bar President’s Award. He served on numerous UMKC Committees. He and served as chairman of the UM System Alliance of Alumni .as trustee for the Law Foundation.

James Polsinelli (’67) will retire in January after an esteemed legal career and years of civic and community service in Kansas City. Almost 50 years ago, Jim opened an office above the Plaza Theatre as a 28-year-old lawyer with two other young partners, took out a $10,000 line of credit and started what would later become an Am Law 100 firm stretching coast-to-coast with 21 offices and more than 800 attorneys.

Clarence L. Roeder (’65) passed away on October 30 2019. During law school he joined the JC Nichols Company where his career spanned 30 years. He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

James H. Marsh Jr. (’65) passed away November 26, 2019. James graduated first in his law class and was the Co-Editor of the Law Review. He was a member of Order of the Bench and Robe. Few years after he graduated from Law School, James moved to the Washington DC area for nearly 30 years. Where he was partnered in several patent firms in DC and a longtime associate of the Licensing Executives Society. He previously worked for Staas & Halsey, Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP and Stinson LLP.

Joe Modrcin ('64) passed away on April 25, 2020. He worked at the Social Security Administration for 33 years.  He was an U.S. Army Veteran.

Clarence L. Roeder (’65) passed away on October 30 2019. During law school he joined the JC Nichols Company where his career spanned 30 years. He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

James H. Marsh Jr. (’65) passed away November 26, 2019. James graduated first in his law class and was the Co-Editor of the Law Review. He was a member of Order of the Bench and Robe. Few years after he graduated from Law School, James moved to the Washington DC area for nearly 30 years. Where he was partnered in several patent firms in DC and a longtime associate of the Licensing Executives Society. He previously worked for Staas & Halsey, Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP and Stinson LLP.

Hon, Thomas E. Sims, Sr. (’61) passed away on March 7, 2021. He was appointed to the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit Municipal Court in 1970. After 25 years, he retired in 1995.  Earlier in his career. he worked at the law firm of Rogers Field & Gentry Law for ten years. . During his career and after retirement he served on many boards and was involved in multiple organizations. He was a US. Navy Veteran.

Sheldon M. Crossette ('61) passed away on September 4, 2020. Sheldon’s career in public service began in 1965 when he became prosecutor for the City of Overland Park. In 1976, he was appointed as one of three part-time judges in the city. He became both the administrative judge and the first full-time judge for Overland Park in 1990, leading what at the time was the second largest municipal court in Kansas. He retired in 1996 but resumed full-time judicial status in 2002 as the interim municipal judge for the City of Olathe for 13 months and continued to be a judge pro tem for both Overland Park and Olathe, Kansas. In addition to his roles in city government, Sheldon practiced law from 1962-1990.  He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

 Anita B. Johnson Butler ('72) passed away on August 8, 2020. Anita worked as a trust officer at First National Bank of Kansas City, eventually earning the title of Senior Vice President.  Upon leaving the bank she became a partner with the law firm of Slagle, Bernard and Gorman. She was a named partner in Berman, DeLeve, Kuchan & Chapman, LLC. and worked with the law firm of Krigel and Krigel PC.

Hon, Thomas E. Sims, Sr. (’61) passed away on March 7, 2021. He was appointed to the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit Municipal Court in 1970. After 25 years, he retired in 1995.  Earlier in his career. he worked at the law firm of Rogers Field & Gentry Law for ten years. . During his career and after retirement he served on many boards and was involved in multiple organizations. He was a US. Navy Veteran.

Sheldon M. Crossette ('61) passed away on September 4, 2020. Sheldon’s career in public service began in 1965 when he became prosecutor for the City of Overland Park. In 1976, he was appointed as one of three part-time judges in the city. He became both the administrative judge and the first full-time judge for Overland Park in 1990, leading what at the time was the second largest municipal court in Kansas. He retired in 1996 but resumed full-time judicial status in 2002 as the interim municipal judge for the City of Olathe for 13 months and continued to be a judge pro tem for both Overland Park and Olathe, Kansas. In addition to his roles in city government, Sheldon practiced law from 1962-1990.  He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

 

Thomas Daly (’59) passed away on June 1, 2021. His legal career included time at the law firms of Craft Fridkin and Rhyne and Linde Thomson.

James Greenfield Trimble (56) passed away on January 13, 2021. He had a general practice in Real Estate and Land Use litigation. He practiced law for 50 years. He served in the Missouri House of Representatives. He was a United States Marine Corps Veteran

Hon. Timothy D. O'Leary ('56) passed away on October 6, 2020. He began his law career in the Kansas City Attorney's Office and then private practice. He was appointed in 1969 as a Judge in the Sixteenth Circuit Court in Jackson County, serving for 20 years before joining the Law Firm of Shughart Thomson and Kilroy, now Polsinelli. He served in the United States Army Air Corps., as World War II was coming to an end, stationed in Korea.

Donald Lee Chapman ('57) passed away on August 8, 2020. Donald was a named partner in Berman, DeLeve, Kuchan & Chapman, LLC. and later was of counsel with Lathrop & Gage, LLP. He was a member of the U.S. Army Reserves.

James L. Fahrenholtz (’92) passed away on August 20, 2021. He represented District 3 on Orleans Parish School Board 2000-2008 and was active and well known in political, legal and nonprofit circles. His most recent work was as a background actor for local television and film.

Taylor Fields ('71) passed away on July 28, 2021. After graduating from law school, He worked as in-house counsel at Bendix Corporation. In 1974 he started his own law practice, which developed into the largest minority-owned law firm in the Kansas City area. Although lauded by many organizations, including the Kansans City Metropolitan Bar Association, the Jackson County Bar Association, and the National Bar Association, for his contributions to the legal profession, perhaps one of his proudest moments occurred when he successfully argued before the Missouri Supreme Court to establish a livable minimum wage of $15.00 per hour. Taylor served on various boards and served in numerous other community service organizations. He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

Christopher H. Pickett ('05) LLM passed away on July 25, 2021, He spent his career as in-house counsel specializing in fintech companies.

Grover C. Wilcher ('66) passed away on July 15, 2021. He retired from Truman Medical Center following a dedicated career as legal counsel.

Thomas Daly (’59) passed away on June 1, 2021. His legal career included time at the law firms of Craft Fridkin and Rhyne and Linde Thomson.

Nancy Pinkham (’86) passed away on May 6, 2021. Her legal career included time at the law firms Gage and Tucker, and Shook, Hardy and Bacon. She practiced corporate law at Western Auto, Sprint, and Applebee’s, before accepting a position with Darden Restaurants.

Hon. W.Stephen Nixon (’75) passed away on April 11, 2021. He was appointed to the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit Court on March 2, 1998.  After 12 years on the bench he set aside his robe and was appointed as the Jackson County Counselor for Jackson County.  Earlier, he was a solo practitioner for 22 years, His law partner was his wife Betsy Ann Stewart (’67).  He was elected as Mayor of Lake Lotawana in 1995.

Danielle Lee Elam-Jobe (’05) passed away on March 17, 2021. She found her first career employment with a corporate law firm, working in family law, where she embarked on her career. Later in her career, Danielle switched her focus from family law and went to work for Legal Aid of Western Missouri.

Kevin E. Phillips (’81) passed away on March 13, 2021. He was the owner of Kevin E. Phillips Attorney at Law.

Hon, Thomas E. Sims, Sr. (’61) passed away on March 7, 2021. He was appointed to the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit Municipal Court in 1970. After 25 years, he retired in 1995.  Earlier in his career. he worked at the law firm of Rogers Field & Gentry Law for ten years. . During his career and after retirement he served on many boards and was involved in multiple organizations. He was a US. Navy Veteran.

James Greenfield Trimble ('56) passed away on January 13, 2021. He had a general practice in Real Estate and Land Use litigation. He practiced law for 50 years. He served in the Missouri House of Representatives. He was a United States Marine Corps Veteran.

Charles C. "Chuck" Curry ('05) passed away November 27th, 2020. He was a solo practitioner and in 1984, Belton, MO appointed him as Municipal Court Judge where he remained until he retired in July 2020. He served on the Missouri Municipal Judges Association in many positions including president Association in many positions including president. He was a United States Navy Veteran.

Lisa Marie Demaree ('05) passed away on December 23, 2020. While in law school she was a strong advocate for the Innocence Project and after graduating she worked full time for the Innocence Project for a year and a half before taking a job with Pixis where she worked as a legislative auditor finding jobs for out of work and displaced Kansans.

JoEllen Englebart ('15) passed away on January 2, 2021. She served as an Assistant Jackson County Prosecutor in the special victim's unit of the prosecutor's office, which included working with victims of child abuse and sex crimes.

Bart Strother ('75) passed away on October 19, 2020. He began his law career at the law firm of Foust, Strother and Frickleton for more than 15 years before going out on his own.

Hon. Timothy D. O'Leary ('56) passed away on October 6, 2020. He began his law career in the Kansas City Attorney's Office and then private practice. He was appointed in 1969 as a Judge in the Sixteenth Circuit Court in Jackson County, serving for 20 years before joining the Law Firm of Shughart Thomson and Kilroy, now Polsinelli. He served in the United States Army Air Corps., as World War II was coming to an end, stationed in Korea.

Sheldon M. Crossette ('61) passed away on September 4, 2020. Sheldon's career in public service began in 1965 when he became prosecutor for the City of Overland Park. In 1976, he was appointed as one of three part-time judges in the city. He became both the administrative judge and the first full-time judge for Overland Park in 1990, leading what at the time was the second largest municipal court in Kansas. He retired in 1996 but resumed full-time judicial status in 2002 as the interim municipal judge for the City of Olathe for 13 months and continued to be a judge pro tem for both Overland Park and Olathe, Kansas. In addition to his roles in city government, Sheldon practiced law from 1962-1990. He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

Anita B. Johnson Butler ('72) passed away on August 8, 2020. Anita worked as a trust officer at First National Bank of Kansas City, eventually earning the title of Senior Vice President. Upon leaving the bank she became a partner with the law firm of Slagle, Bernard and Gorman. She was a named partner in Berman, DeLeve, Kuchan & Chapman, LLC. and worked with the law firm of Krigel and Krigel PC.

Donald Lee Chapman ('57) passed away on August 8, 2020. Donald was a named partner in Berman, DeLeve, Kuchan & Chapman, LLC. and later was “of counsel” with Lathrop & Gage, LLP. He was a member of the U.S. Army Reserves.

Richard Dale “Jake” Jacoby ('88) passed away on May 22, 2020. April 25, 2020. Jake had his own criminal defense practice in Independence, MO.

Joe Modrcin ('64) passed away on April 25, 2020. He worked at the Social Security Administration for 33 years. He was an U.S. Army Veteran.

Michael J. Albano ('68) passed away Jan. 22, 2020. Mike was partner at Welch, Martin and Albano LLC where he practiced law for 51 years. He was a noted family law author, lecturer and litigator. He served many charitable organizations, is universally respected and loved by his colleagues and peers for his knowledge, efforts to improve the practice, mentorship, unwavering ethics, and heart to protect the families and children impacted by family law. His awards and recognitions were voluminous. Mike attended UMKC as an undergraduate and was an avid supporter of UMKC. Mike was a fixture in the fan stands at Roo athletic events. He received the UMKC Bill French Award, Law School Alumni Achievement Award and the Missouri Bar President’s Award. He served on numerous UMKC Committees. He and served as chairman of the UM System Alliance of Alumni .as trustee for the Law Foundation.

John Francis Baty (’13) passed away on Oct. 19, 2019. He practiced at the law firm of Baty Otto Coronado, PC. Alongside his father Lee Baty and his sister Laura Kaufman.

Stephen Carl Caruso (’72) passed away on August 16, 2019. He practiced law in the Kansas City area for over 30 years. Steve served in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War and was awarded the Bronze Starr.

James H. Marsh Jr. (’65) passed away November 26, 2019. James graduated first in his law class and was the Co-Editor of the Law Review. He was a member of Order of the Bench and Robe. Few years after he graduated from Law School, James moved to the Washington DC area for nearly 30 years. Where he was partnered in several patent firms in DC and a longtime associate of the Licensing Executives Society. He previously worked for Staas & Halsey, Shook Hardy & Bacon LLP and Stinson LLP.

Clarence L. Roeder (’65) passed away on October 30 2019. During law school he joined the JC Nichols Company where his career spanned 30 years. He was a U.S. Army Veteran.

John R. Shank (’78) passed away on Oct. 7, 2019. John initially worked in private practice and served as an assistant public defender in Clay Co. He then practiced law with Michael Gunn and many other esteemed colleagues for 38 years.

John Anderson Tackes Baty (’92) passed away on Oct. 15, 2019. During his career he served as an Administrative Law Judge and Appeals Referee with the State of Missouri.