Anita’s clients and peers describe her as a "superb legal professional," a "terrific leader," "dependable to a fault," "one of the best team builders I have worked with," a "persuasive negotiator," a "tireless advocate" and "consummate professional."
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Biography – View PDF Bio

Narrative Bio

Anita focuses her practice on representing pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers in mass tort and individual cases pending across the country. She is currently responsible for national coordination of case specific work in mass tort actions involving pelvic mesh products. She is also an experienced appellate litigator, handling appeals on behalf of pharmaceutical and medical device industry clients, as well as clients in a variety of other industries.

Anita has tried over 100 cases in state and federal courts. Her recent experience includes trying a product liability action involving a pelvic mesh medical device in Arizona federal court. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Trial Attorneys of America and received its Worker Achievement Award in 2012. She is a Fellow of Litigation Counsel of America and served on its Trial Law Institute Advisory Board. She is also a graduate of International Association of Defense Counsel’s prestigious Trial Academy.

In addition to her product liability practice, Anita litigates copyright and trademark infringement cases. Her experience includes defending and prosecuting such claims.  She also represents established and upcoming authors, artists, musicians and entertainment and media businesses in a wide range of matters, including intellectual property matters involving copyrights and trademarks. She is experienced in representing entertainment industry clients on management and monetization of intellectual property assets and counseling and providing business services including negotiating and drafting production, distribution, literary option, franchise and other agreements.

She is a Grammy Member of The Recording Academy and is active in a number of other entertainment industry organizations, including the Tennessee Intellectual Property law Association (President, 2017-2018), Media Law Resource Center, Tennessee Bar Association’s Intellectual Property Law and Entertainment and Sports Law Sections, and Tennessee Volunteer Lawyers & Professionals for the Arts. She also served as the Co-Chair of Defense Research Institute’s Intellectual Property Litigation Committee’s Copyright Litigation Group.

She is recognized in Best Lawyers in America®, which selected her as Jackson, Mississippi’s Lawyer of the Year for Trademark Law (2019). She is also a Fellow of the American Bar Association, is listed in Mid-South Super Lawyers® and is AV®-Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell®. She served as an adjunct professor for University of Mississippi School of Law and as an instructor at Tulane University. She speaks and writes frequently on product liability and intellectual property topics.

Associations

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 1987
  • Mississippi, 1999
  • Tennessee, 2014
  • U.S. District Courts
    • Illinois: Northern
    • Mississippi: Northern, Southern
  • U.S. Court of Appeals
    • 5th Circuit
    • 7th Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians Tribal Court

Distinctions

  • Best Lawyers in America®
    • Lawyer of the Year, Trademark Law, (Jackson, MS), 2019
    • Entertainment Law – Motion Pictures and Television, 2018-2019
    • Trademark Law, 2018-2019
  • Super Lawyers®
    • Top 50 Women: Mid-South Super Lawyers, 2014-2015
    • Mid-South Super Lawyers, Entertainment & Sports, 2013-2018
  • Martindale-Hubbell®
    • AV®-Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated, 2011-2017
  • Adjunct Professor, University of Mississippi School of Law
    • Deal-Making Fundamentals in the Entertainment Industry, Winter Intersession 2015-2017
  • Nation's Top One Percent, National Association of Distinquished Counsel, 2015
  • Professional Skills Fellow, University of Mississippi School of Law
  • Adjunct Professor, Mississippi College School of Law
  • Instructor, Tulane University
  • Trial Attorneys of America, Worker Achievement Award, 2012
  • More...

Education & Honors

  • Loyola University, J.D., 1987
    • Dean’s List
    • Loyola Law Journal, Student Articles Editor
    • National Moot Court Team
    • Regional Champion, National Mock Trial Team
    • Lewis F. Powell Medal for Excellence in Advocacy, American College of Trial Lawyers
    • Leadership and Service Award
  • Gustavus Adolphus College, B.A., History, cum laude, 1984

Experience

  • Anita’s legal experience encompasses the representation of some of the world’s preeminent Fortune Global 500 corporations to established and upcoming entertainment businesses in film, television and music to cutting-edge start-up companies. Her work spans deal-making, national litigation management, trial work and appellate litigation. Highlights include:
  • Tried over 100 cases in state and federal courts including:
  • Tried product liability action involving pelvic mesh medical device in Arizona federal court.
  • Obtained defense verdict for chemical supplier in multi-million dollar litigation involving commercial and product liability claims by Canadian manufacturing company.
  • Obtained a multi-million dollar verdict for plaintiffs in wrongful death action involving railroad negligence.
  • Obtained defense verdict on design and construction claims concerning Chicago's former State Street Mall.
  • Tried high-profile matter involving First Amendment and national security issues concerning the 1996 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.  
  • Tried Commerce Clause challenge to Chicago spray paint ban, which was upheld by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in National Spray Paint & Coatings Assn. v. City of Chicago, 45 F.3d 1124 (7th Cir. 1995).
  • ​Obtained defense verdict in negligent police pursuit action.
  • More...

Papers, Presentations, & Publications

  • Speaker, “A Close Up on Legal Ethics and Professionalism Through a Movie Lens,” Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel’s 15th Annual Corporate Counsel Symposium, Philadelphia, Pa., September 18, 2018.
  • Author, “Injunctive Relief in Copyright Litigation,” Remedies In Intellectual Property Cases, DRI Defense Library Series, 113-139, 2018.
  • Author, “Regulating the Proliferation of Fake News on Social Media”, For the Defense, 58-63, August 2018.
  • Author, “When the Band Splits Up: A Trademark Study of the Commodores,” In-House Defense Quarterly, 6-7, Spring 2018.
  • Speaker, “’Getting Real’ on Dr. Phil, Fair Use and Noteworthy Copyright Battles of 2017,” Tennessee Intellectual Property Association, Fall Conference, Nashville, Tenn., November 2017.
  • Speaker, "The Dr. Phil Clash Between Fair Use and Confidentiality,” DRI Intellectual Property Section, Quarterly Meeting, September 18, 2017.
  • Author, “Pep Apparel Leads the Way: Strengthening Copyright Protection Against Knock Offs,” For the Defense, 67-71, August 2017.
  • Author, “When Does Inspiration turn into Copyright Theft,” DRI The Voice, Vol. 15, Issue 31, August 3, 2016.
  • Speaker, “Blurred Lines:  When Does Inspiration Turn Into Copyright Theft,” DRI Intellectual Property Litigation Annual Conference, Nashville, Tenn., May 6, 2016.
  • More...