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New Era as Shook Designates Women Partner Pair to Lead Product Liability Practice

New Era as Shook Designates Women Partner Pair to Lead Product Liability Practice

PR Newswire

MIAMI and SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Premier trial firm Shook, Hardy & Bacon has selected a second woman partner to co-lead its powerhouse Product Liability Litigation Practice. Following the retirement of longtime Partner Walt Cofer, Shook has selected Partner Hildy Sastre to join current Co-Chair Alicia Donahue. Sastre is a highly sought-after winning trial attorney, while Donahue brings more than 30 years as a trusted advisor leading and managing MDL cases. Both serve as national counsel for some of the largest pharmaceutical and medical device companies in the world.  

"Hildy and Alicia each bring great strengths to their roles," said Shook Chair Madeleine McDonough, who led Shook's pharmaceutical and medical device division prior to beginning her role as chair in 2017. "We are excited about this next chapter for Shook."

Shook is the most active defense firm in the country when it comes to product litigation. Since 2015, Shook has handled more product liability cases in federal court than any other firm according to Lex Machina's search of federal court records, and tried more than 100 cases to verdict as first-chair counsel. The firm lead the defense in four of the 10 largest drug and medical device MDLs in the country, while playing a defense role—from national to local counsel—in more than 20% of the active MDL docket.

Sastre is among an elite group of women trial lawyers with experience defending Fortune 100 corporations—including pharmaceutical and medical device companies and a variety of other manufacturers—in national multidistrict litigation, consolidated proceedings and mass tort claims, many of which involve tens of thousands of plaintiffs. Sastre acts as trial counsel in bellwether cases—those that courts and parties select to test their arguments, with the goal of moving the overall mass tort litigation toward resolution. She is on the short list of women trial lawyers asked to work on some of the most complex and challenging cases in the country. Her clients include GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Sanofi and Stryker Corporation.

"Alicia is a highly respected for her deep relationships with clients. I'm grateful for this opportunity to serve with her, as we advocate for industry leaders in very complex product liability litigation, mass torts and MDLs," said Sastre.

Donahue has represented drug and device manufacturers in complex litigations and coordinated proceedings and MDLs throughout the country for more than thirty years. Donahue currently serves as the firm's relationship partner for Pfizer, Inc., Roche and Genentech. Donahue represents these companies in mass tort litigation throughout the country. She also represents Bayer in various California litigations.

"Hildy is not only an effective courtroom advocate for her clients, she's a genuinely nice person. We will complement each other as we elevate our practice to the next level," said Donahue.

The promotion of Sastre is indicative of Shook's commitment to promoting women in the workplace. Both Donahue and Sastre serve on Shook's Executive Committee which is composed of 45% women lawyers. Women make up 50% of office leadership, and 32% of practice group leadership are women at Shook.

On Tuesday, January 19, Shook announced the addition of a New York office with Partners Tom Sheehan and Kimberly Penner to help serve the firm's pharmaceutical and medical device clients.

About Shook, Hardy & Bacon

Founded in 1889, Shook, Hardy & Bacon L.L.P. has 16 offices in the United States and London, with attorneys and professional staff serving clients in the health, science and technology sectors in areas ranging from product liability defense and commercial litigation to intellectual property prosecution and litigation, environmental and toxic tort, privacy and data security and regulatory counseling.


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SOURCE Shook, Hardy & Bacon L.L.P.

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