Media Items

Kevin E. Myers Joins Law Firm of Danna McKitrick, P.C.


St. Louis, MO – Local law firm Danna McKitrick, P.C., announces that Kevin E. Myers is the newest associate in the firm’s litigation department. Myers focuses on both commercial and civil litigation matters—primarily insurance defense—resolving complex coverage issues from claims made on casualty and liability insurance policies, and defending transportation companies in accidents and negligence matters.

“Over the years, I have seen Kevin consistently draft excellent appellate briefs and perform solidly for many corporate clients,” says John Cooney, a principal of the firm. “I’m very happy he has come to join Danna McKitrick’s litigation department.”

During law school, Myers interned as a prosecutor for the Madison County, Illinois State’s Attorney’s office and following graduation in 2002, he practiced for over five years with a private litigation firm in St. Louis. He earned his J.D. from Saint Louis University School of Law and his B.A., in Russian studies and political science, summa cum laude, from Saint Louis University.

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Mo., Danna McKitrick, P.C., delivers legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest. To supplement its local resources, the firm is a member of MSI Global Alliance—an international association of over 250 independent law and accounting firms in 100 countries.

Law Firm Danna McKitrick, P.C. Chooses Clayton


GROWTH CITED AS REASON FOR NEW LOCATION

 

Clayton, MO – Danna McKitrick, P.C. has chosen to remain in Clayton and will relocate its offices in 2009 to the Pierre Laclede Center at Forsyth Blvd. and Hanley Road. The firm will expand its space from 17,700 square feet at its present location to 23,000 square feet at Pierre Laclede.

The decision to remain in Clayton followed an extensive search, which included other spaces in Clayton, as well as locations in downtown St. Louis and in the Highway 40 corridor. Clayton is convenient for the firm’s existing clients and staff. Having been located in Clayton for over 20 years, it is also deeply involved as a firm with the vibrant Clayton business community and legal community.

The firm added more attorneys in the last several years and plan to add attorneys and staff in the coming year to meet its clients’ needs, and the move enables the firm to better serve new clients.

Ruth Binger, a member of the firm’s executive committee, said the new location is essential to its growth.

“In the past two years, we have added four additional shareholders and will promote an associate to shareholder status at the end of the year, as well as having added associates. We are also looking to expand certain practice areas with lateral hiring or mergers. This move is critical to our firm’s continued expansion and will help accommodate our needs, as we continue to add resources to support our existing clients and provide more depth for new clients coming on board,” she said.

Since 2004 Danna McKitrick, P.C., has grown by 20 percent to 25 attorneys, along with an additional 25 staff members. Revenues and profitability also have grown during 2008, despite turmoil in the economy.

“In a time when the economy is faltering and many other law firms are cutting back, we are pleased to be able to make a move driven by stability and real prospects for growth,” said Dan Tobben, the head of the firm’s strategic planning committee.

“Danna McKitrick’s continued growth and its economic impact are important assets to our community. We are pleased they chose to remain in Clayton and wish them continued success. Their attorneys have also been major contributors and leaders in the Chamber in recent years”, said Ellen Gale, Executive Director, Clayton Chamber of Commerce.”

The Pierre Laclede Center is owned by BPG Properties of Pennsylvania. The property was represented by leasing agent Piers Pritchard of Colliers Turley Martin Tucker. Danna McKitrick was represented by Kevin Gallagher and Dennis DeSantis of Gateway Commercial as brokers.

“It’s a great addition to Pierre Laclede Center. We are very excited that an established, growing business like Danna McKitrick will be added to our outstanding tenant roster,” said Piers Pritchard, Senior Associate with Colliers Turley Martin Tucker. He also noted that with this addition Pierre Laclede Center is now 98 percent leased.

About Danna McKitrick, P.C.: Located in Clayton, Mo., Danna McKitrick, P.C. Delivers legal representation to businesses, (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Bi-State area and in adjoining states as well. To supplement its local resources, the firm is a member of MSI Global Alliance – one of the world’s most established international networks, MSI is an international association of over 250 member firms in 100 countries.

Brian Weinstock, Attorney, is Adjunct Professor at Fontbonne University


WEINSTOCK TO TEACH FINANCE AND BUSINESS ETHICS

St. Louis, MO – Fontbonne University has added Danna McKitrick principal Brian S. Weinstock to their adjunct faculty to teach finance management and business ethics courses. August 20, Weinstock kicks off his financial management course, a core requirement for students pursuing a Bachelor of Business Administration degree.

Weinstock’s course focuses on understanding financial statements, learning the components of both capital structure and financial risk, and calculating the cost of capital. A class project involves creating an investment portfolio, purchasing public equities, and analyzing them by performing a risk assessment.

Always interested in teaching, Weinstock explored the idea with his former Washington University accounting professor who directed him to Fontbonne. Originally seeking to fill business ethics courses, Fontbonne invited Weinstock to teach financial management because of his finance background.

“In both our professional and personal lives, financial issues govern life on a daily basis. I aim to give students a broad perspective on business finance complexities and how a business uses finance when developing and implementing strategic plans,” says Weinstock. “I also want to impart to students financial fundamentals regarding how to generate and grow a personal portfolio of investments to increase their own net worth.”

Weinstock earned his M.B.A., with a concentration in finance and management, from Washington University John M. Olin School of Business. He attended Michigan State University College of Law earning a J.D., cum laude, and obtained his B.A., in political science, from the University of Kansas.

About Fontbonne University: Founded in 1923 by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Fontbonne University offers liberal arts, professional, and adult programs within 34 majors, 25 minors and 16 master’s degree programs. www.fontbonne.edu

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Mo., Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest. To supplement its local resources, the firm is a member of MSI Global Alliance—an international association of over 250 independent law and accounting firms in 100 countries.

Sophya N. Qureshi Graduates from Leadership Clayton


2008 CLASS PROJECT FOCUSED ON REDUCTION OF CONSUMER WASTE

St. Louis, MO – Danna McKitrick attorney Sophya N. Qureshi is one of ten people comprising the Clayton Chamber of Commerce Leadership Clayton graduating class of 2008. She is the sixth attorney of the firm to complete the exclusive program. Participants are selected based on both their leadership potential and demonstrated community involvement. Each class spends nine months expanding professional and social networks, refining leadership skills, examining issues that affect the City of Clayton, and selecting a particular issue to help resolve or improve.

The Leadership Clayton Class of 2008 is devoting their time to helping Clayton “go green.” The class is approaching local businesses, encouraging them to sponsor reusable shopping bags made out of recycled materials. The bags will be distributed to Clayton Farmer’s Market for their customers.

“Promoting environmental awareness and responsibility is important for community leaders because the steps that we all need to take are not always convenient or even plausible for individuals alone. We can really help our residents by giving them options and resources for making improvements in their lifestyles,” says Qureshi.

Qureshi concentrates her practice in family law matters, including pre-nuptial agreements, annulments, dissolution of marriage, valuation and division of assets, and child support and spousal support orders. Qureshi obtained her J.D. from Washington University School of Law and her B.A. from George Washington University and is a graduate of the ABA Family Law Trial Advocacy Institute.

About Leadership Clayton: Established in 1993 by the Clayton Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Clayton explores various qualities of leadership and helps participants identify and enhance their own leadership styles. It facilitates an environment where participants are motivated to develop an increased sense of community and are encouraged to assume leadership roles in community affairs.
http://www.claytoncommerce.com/Leadership%20Brochure.htm

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Mo., Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest.

James M. Heffner Named Treasurer of Young Lawyer Division of Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis


Clayton, MO – Danna McKitrick attorney James M. Heffner is the new treasurer of the Young Lawyers Division (YLD) of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis (BAMSL). With nearly 1,500 members, the YLD is the largest BAMSL network, comprising the association’s lawyers under the age of 36 and those with a practice of five years or less.

“BAMSL’s YLD is, and has been, a terrific resource for me in establishing and developing my practice and my network. I wish more emerging lawyers would tap into the leadership development and practice tools BAMSL and the YLD offer. It’s a pleasure for me to be able to give back to the organization now,” said Heffner.

In addition to continuing education programs and practice support for young lawyers, the YLD organizes public service programs in which members are encouraged to participate, allowing them to contribute to their community while simultaneously developing critical leadership skills.

As a lawyer with Danna McKitrick, Heffner concentrates in corporate and real estate law. He obtained his J.D. from Saint Louis University School of Law and his B.A., general honors, from the University of Missouri-Columbia. He also earned a German Proficiency Certificate from the Universität Tübingen. He is the co-founder and regional leader of the career networking program of his college fraternity, Delta Upsilon.

About BAMSL Young Lawyers Division: YLD is a network of qualifying BAMSL members interested in career advancement, public service, leadership training, and social interaction. The organization provides programs and services responsive to the needs of the Bar and the St. Louis Community. Visit BAMSL on the Web at http://www.bamsl.org/

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Mo, Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest.

Brian S. Weinstock Appointed to SSM Rehab Foundation Board


St. Louis, MO – Danna McKitrick attorney Brian S. Weinstock joins the SSM Rehabilitation Foundation Board, which provides resources and support to rehab patients and their families in the St. Louis area. Weinstock was invited to apply for a board member position after meeting with Foundation Director Teri Champion, and Board President Chuck Neff.

“I’m honored to be approved as a member of this board. Through the United Way, I learned about the foundation and gained an appreciation for the impact of their work. They have great programs, many of which help in crises that occur out of the blue-the kind of situations that could devastate any of us if we were ever so unlucky. I look forward to participating in the strategic planning that helps continually improve the way that patients, and their families, get care and support as they enhance their physical function and quality of life,” says Weinstock.

Weinstock earned his M.B.A. with finance and management concentration from Washington University John M. Olin School of Business. He attended Michigan State University College of Law earning a J.D., cum laude, and his B.A. in political science from the University of Kansas.

About SSM Rehabilitation Foundation: Established in 1990 by SSM Health Care-St. Louis as a non-profit organization, SSM Rehab Foundation provides funding and assistance for rehabilitation programs, services, equipment, and support to care and comfort SSM Rehab patients during their hospital stay, recovery and transition home (after an illness or injury). Learn more about SSM Rehab Foundation at www.ssmrehab.com.

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Mo., Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest.

Jeff Schmitt Appointed to Clayton Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors


LEADERSHIP CLAYTON CO-CHAIR CONTINUES CHAMBER INVOLVEMENT

Clayton, MO – Danna McKitrick attorney Jeffrey Schmitt is appointed to a three-year term on the board of directors of the Clayton Chamber of Commerce, effective immediately. Schmitt also continues to serve as co-chair for Leadership Clayton, a Chamber of Commerce program dedicated to the training and development of outstanding leaders.

“I’m honored to have the opportunity to serve on the board and look forward to becoming more involved in the Clayton community. In the three years since I applied to participate in the Leadership Clayton program, I’ve met many fantastic people and thoroughly enjoy the experience of learning about them and gaining a deeper understanding of their different roles in the business community. I look forward to serving them through an active role on the Chamber’s board.” says Schmitt.

A member of Danna McKitrick’s litigation team since he joined the firm in 2003, Schmitt’s commercial and general civil litigation practice includes bankruptcy, construction, and real estate law, as well as providing general legal consultation for small- to mid-size businesses. Schmitt earned his J.D. from the University of Missouri-Columbia and his B.A., magna cum laude, from Saint Louis University.

About Clayton Chamber of Commerce: Since its founding in 1952, the Chamber has been an integral part of the Clayton community, helping area businesses uncover new opportunities in St. Louis and beyond. Members benefit from networking opportunities, legislative support, health insurance alternatives and a variety of other resources that will increase your effectiveness in today’s competitive market. Visit on the Web at www.claytoncommerce.com

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Mo., Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest.

Dan Tobben Addressing Missouri Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (MAPERS)


DANNA MCKITRICK ATTORNEY DISCUSSES PENSION PLAN UNDERFUNDING

Clayton, MO – Dan Tobben, a litigation principal at local law firm Danna McKitrick, is scheduled to present “Pension Plan Funding—A Case Study” at the annual Missouri Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (MAPERS) conference on July 16, 2008 at Tan-Tar-A Resort in Osage Beach, Mo.

In his session, Tobben will address the recent case Neske, et al. v. City of St. Louis, et al., which he argued and won before the Missouri Supreme Court on behalf of the Firemen’s Retirement System (FRS) of St. Louis. The decision in Neske establishes the need for “actuarial soundness” as the principle at the heart of the public employee pension funding. Tobben believes the Neske case also affirms that public pension benefits in Missouri are contractually guaranteed.

“All employees, especially those who dedicate their lives to public service, deserve what they have been promised. If you are underfunded badly enough, don’t be afraid to sue the city,” says Dan Tobben. “Trustees have fiduciary responsibilities to see that pension plans are properly funded.”

His presentation will incorporate lessons learned and precautions to consider regarding public pension funding problems, based on Danna McKitrick’s recent experience with FRS of St. Louis, Joplin Police & Firemen’s Pension Fund, and Alton Firefighters Pension Fund (AFPF).

The conference also features speakers Jennifer Bass, executive director of the Joint Committee on Public Employee Retirement; Jake McMahon, chief legal counsel of MOSERS; Meredith Williams, executive director of the Colorado Public Employees’ Retirement Association; and Tripp Frohlichstein, president of MediaMasters, Inc.

Due to recent rise of awareness about public pension funding shortfalls, Tobben’s broader litigation practice is focused extensively on issues affecting public pensions, especially regarding failure to fund. Tobben assists several pension trustee boards, seeking to resolve underfunding issues before lawsuits become necessary. If negotiations are not successful, Tobben aggressively represents trustees in suits against municipalities, which have failed to properly contribute to public pensions. The City of Alton, Ill., recently settled litigation and is now fully funding its pensions after many years of serious underfunding. The significant victory in the Missouri Supreme Court, in Neske, led to an eight-figure judgment awarded to FRS. As a result of the victory, FRS received a payment of $49.4 million from St. Louis in September, 2007, and is scheduled to receive another large lump sum payment in June 2008.

About MAPERS: The Missouri Association of Public Employee Retirement Systems (MAPERS) formed in 1987 to bring together individuals and organizations interested in expanding their knowledge of pension and investment issues. The association provides education, information, and ideas to strengthen and protect Missouri’s public employee retirement systems. For more information about the MAPERS and their July event, visit www.momapers.com.

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Missouri, Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), government-related entities, insurers, and individuals throughout the Midwest.

Alton Firefighters Settlement May Have Statewide Implications


Edwardsville, IL – Judge Dan Stack today signed an order approving the settlement agreement reached by the City of Alton and its firefighters. The order enforces the settlement reached by Alton and the trustees for its firefighters, which requires the city to follow guidelines set forth by state law. This court-ordered settlement agreement sets a precedent that sends a message to other municipalities concerning their public safety employees. That message is to pay now or pay more later when it comes to pension funding. The order enforces the settlement reached by Alton and its firefighters that requires the city to follow guidelines set forth by state law. A losing court battle may be the alternative.

Alton Firefighters Pension Fund and its trustees reached the agreement with the city last month after withdrawing a motion to dismiss the suit. The city eventually agreed to most issues in dispute between the parties.

Illinois law requires that annual contributions to a municipal pension fund be based on the recommendations of an impartial actuary from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulations of the state’s Department of Insurance, or an independent actuary chosen by the City and/or the Pension Trustees.

At the time of the settlement, Dan Tobben, attorney for the firefighters called the victory “significant for the municipal employees in the entire state of Illinois.”

The court order may represent the beginning of the end of discretionary funding for municipalities employees’ pension plans. It eliminates the city’s ability to determine its contribution to those pensions based on city budget constraints and requires the city to base its contributions on the state’s Pension Code, according to Tobben. “This removes an illusory sense of discretion that some cities thought they had.”

Several municipalities in the Metro East region of the St. Louis Metropolitan area could be considered troubled in that they are less than 60 percent funded by their respective city government. Anything below 80 percent is unacceptable and requires action, however a plan under 60 percent funding is truly in trouble and requires immediate and drastic action, according to Tobben.

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Missouri, Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest. The firm is on the Web at www.dannamckitrick.com.

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Media Contacts:
Jim Grandone, Public Relations
618.692.1892

Dan Tobben, Principal
314.726.1000

Danna McKitrick Joins International Association MSI Global Alliance


MSI SELECTS ST LOUIS LAW FIRM AS ONE OF THEIR 60 US MEMBERS

Clayton, MO – In a strategic move to increase their offerings to clients, Danna McKitrick joins MSI Global Alliance (MSI) as its Missouri law firm member. By joining MSI, the firm gains access to a global association of over 250 carefully selected, independent law and accounting firms in 100 countries throughout the Americas, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, and Africa.

With more clients broadening their operations and requiring geographically specific legal knowledge, the firm’s membership in MSI provides support from a strong, pre-qualified team to assist clients when help is needed outside of the Midwestern region or in areas of the law not practiced by the firm.

“As a growing, local firm, it’s important for us to build and maintain strong working relationships with more professionals in other cities and internationally, as well,” says Ruth Binger, member of the firm’s executive committee. “In addition to the collaborative aspect, MSI provides operational insights and advancements to help us ensure we evolve continuously alongside our most sophisticated clients.”

The scope of Danna McKitrick’s practice includes legal counsel and representation that businesses, insurers, government-related entities, and individuals need on a daily or occasional basis. The firm’s transactional lawyers and litigators collaborate, combining their experiences and skills, in order to develop service offerings that are proactive and cost-effective. However, because the firm comprises 26 attorneys, it is impossible for the firm to practice in each of the hundreds of focus areas of the law.

“Because our lawyers are particularly effective at working collaboratively, we look at this membership as a healthy broadening of our ‘collaborator’ pool,” says Jim Baalmann, firm administrator. “With a like philosophy, MSI is the right fit for us. This is a very positive move for Danna McKitrick.”

About MSI: MSI Global Alliance was formed in 1990 in response to the growing need for cross-border cooperation between professional service firms. MSI has become a leading global multidisciplinary network of over 250 independent legal and accounting firms in 100 countries throughout the Americas, Asia-Pacific and Europe, Middle East and Africa. For more information, visit www.msiglobal.org.

About Danna McKitrick: Located in Clayton, Missouri, Danna McKitrick, P.C. delivers outstanding legal representation to businesses (emerging to national), insurers, government-related entities, and individuals throughout the Midwest.