Jazz Fest Seminar | The American Association For Justice

Jazz Fest Seminar

May 3, 2018 to May 4, 2018
Program Information:

The Roosevelt New Orleans - A Waldorf Astoria Hotel | New Orleans, LA

Sponsored by HMR Funding and Physician Life Care Planning
Sponsored by Lisa Blue and Williams Kherkher

​About the Seminar:

AAJ Education's Jazz Fest Seminar is back! With an agenda tailored for the motor vehicle attorney, Jazz Fest returns with top-notch education. Learn about the future of the auto practice, hear from seasoned plaintiff attorneys on how to best communicate with jurors and use demonstratives, prepare for settlement with negotiation techniques and lien resolution strategies, and much more. Enjoy New Orleans during its best time of year! From local jazz and zydeco to the biggest headliners in rock, pop, and R&B, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival offers something for every taste in music. This seminar is designed for you to make the most out of your time in the Big Easy. Check out www.nojazzfest.com for the latest performer lineup.

Additional information about the agenda and speakers will be posted soon, please check back!

Registration Fees:

$875 for AAJ and LAJ Members

Members of AAJ's Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section save $50 on registration for this seminar. Please use Promo Code: MVJAZZ to take advantage of this special offer.

If you are an AAJ member and have been admitted to the bar for five years or less, you can attend this seminar for 50% off. (Does not apply if you have previously attended an AAJ Education seminar or college). 
AAJ Paralegal Affiliates may attend this seminar and receive 50% off the registration fee if they are employed by, and attending with, an AAJ plaintiff attorney from the same firm with the same firm address.
Discounts not available online, please call AAJ Education at 800-622-1791 to take advantage of special savings.

Contact AAJ Education: 800-622-1791 | 202-965-3500, ext. 8612 | education@justice.org


Thursday, May 3

Registration and Welcome Networking Breakfast
8:00 - 9:00am

Morning Session: Car Crash Trial Skills - Investigation, Proving Causation, Damages, and Liability
9:00am - 12:45pm
• Investigating the Major Car Crash
• Proving Causation in Car Crash Cases
• Communicating the Case Story to the Jury: Proving Damages and Liability in Today’s Polarized Political Climate, with David Ball

Networking Lunch (provided)
12:45 - 1:45pm

Afternoon Session: Getting the Damages Your Clients Deserve - Communicating Injuries to the Jury
1:45 - 5:00pm
• Proving Traumatic Brain Injuries in your Auto Cases
• Using Neuroradiologists to Maximize Damages in Disc Herniation Cases
• Jury Selection: Asking the Right Questions
• The End Game: Getting the Settlement and Closure your Clients Deserve

Networking Reception
5:00 - 6:00pm

Friday, May 4

Welcome Back Networking Breakfast
8:00 - 8:30am

Morning Session: The Future of the Auto Practice
8:30am - 12:00pm
• How the Rise of Driverless Cars will Impact the Auto Practice
• Identification of Auto Product Defect Cases
• Resolving Common Agency Issues and Proposed Legislative Updates in Rideshare Cases
• Navigating Lien Resolution

Lunch Break
12:00 - 1:30pm

Afternoon Session: Making the Defense Work for You and Your Clients
1:30 - 4:00pm
• Anticipating and Overcoming Common Defenses
• Cross-Examining the Crash Reconstruction Expert
• Cross-Examining the Defense Medical Examiner

Ethics Session: Ethical Considerations for Representing Individuals with Diminished Cognitive Capacity
4:00 - 5:00pm


Invited Faculty:

David Ball

David Ball President of North Carolina’s JuryWatch, Inc., and author of three best-selling trial advocacy books, is a nationally recognized consultant on damages, focus groups, jury selection, and case strategy and presentation.  Dr. Ball, a longtime member of the American Society of Trial Consultants, holds the North Carolina Academy of Trial Lawyers’ 2002 Charles L. Becton award for excellence in teaching trial advocacy.  His newest book, David Ball on Damages, provides step-by-step practical guidance for plaintiff personal injury and wrongful death practice.

Edward P. Capozzi

Edward P. Capozzi exclusively handles auto, trucking, New Jersey Transit, elevator and other catastrophic personal injury cases only. He is certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as a civil trial attorney. He is a published author and lectures nationally on trial techniques and cross-examination of defense medical experts. He is a vice president of the New Jersey Association for Justice (NJAJ), a Leader’s Forum member of the American Association for Justice (AAJ), an advocate member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), a member of the Association of Plaintiff’s Interstate Trucking America (APITLA), a lifetime member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum and a fellow of the Melvin Belli Society. Mr. Capozzi exclusively handles auto, trucking, NJ Transit, elevator and other catastrophic personal injury cases only. Mr. Capozzi is an attorney with Brach | Eichler, LLC, located in Roseland, New Jersey.

Michael R. Cowen

Michael R. Cowen is the founding partner of Cowen Mask Blanchard.  Mr. Cowen has spent his legal career handling a wide variety of injury cases. As a Board-Certified attorney in personal injury trial law, he has spoken at numerous CLE courses on a range of topics, which include pre-trial motions, roof crush litigation, trucking accidents, trial skills, oil field accidents, product liability and the preservation of evidence. In 2016, Mr. Cowen celebrated 20 years of practicing law and is devoted to passing on his years of experience and lessons learned along the way, to his peers in the legal community. Mr. Cowen is a member of the American Association for Justice (AAJ). He is also a member of the San Antonio Trial Lawyers Association and Vice Chair for the AAJ CLE for Trucking Litigation Group. He has been awarded Texas Super Lawyers, “Best Lawyers” 2015 and 2016 Scene in SA Magazine. Mr. Cowen is a generous donor to AAJ PAC. Cowen Mask Blanchard is located in San Antonio, Texas.

Nicholas W. D'Aquilla

Nicholas W. D’Aquilla is a leader on Garretson Resolution Group’s complex settlement development team, providing settlement advisory and consulting services. He received his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and his J.D. from the Southern University Law Center. In 2016, he received his LLM in Health Law from Loyola University of Chicago’s School of Law. He is a member of the American Association for Justice (AAJ). Mr. D’Aquilla has extensive experience driving success in multiple operational and commercial business units of Garretson, including in-depth work on the Deepwater Horizon Medical Benefits Class Action Settlement. Mr. D’Aquilla previously served as an Assistant Attorney General for the Louisiana Department of Justice. Mr. D’Aquilla is Vice President at Garretson Resolution Group. His office is located in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Lauren D. Fraser

Lauren D. Fraser is a partner at the law firm of The Fraser Firm, LLC where she heads the Personal Injury Practice Group.  She is also a consultant for Full Court Trial Strategies.  Ms. Fraser serves on the Board of Trustees of the New Jersey State Bar Association (NJSBA) and is co-chair of its Amicus Committee. She is the director and a founding member of the Women’s Entrepreneurial Network, is a member of the New Jersey Association of Justice, and is a past-president of the Sussex County Bar Association.  Ms. Fraser served as a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Karen D. Russell, J.S.C. in the Superior Court of New Jersey.  She was selected as the New Jersey Law Journal’s 2012 New Leader of the Bar, has been listed as a New Jersey Monthly Magazine “Super Lawyer for Personal Injury Law” since 2008, and was ranked as “Top 20 Under 40 Business Leaders” in 2009 by the New Jersey Herald.  Ms. Fraser is the author of two young adult fantasy novels, Trinity and Queen Makers. Her first, Trinity, was published in 2012 and was a best-seller on Amazon.  Ms. Fraser is a member of the American Association for Justice’s (AAJ) Personal Jurisdiction Litigation Group and speaks nationally on trial preparation and presentation. Fraser Cerra is located in Sparta, New Jersey. 

Betsy K. Greene

Betsy K. Greene focuses her practice on representing those injured or killed by negligence. Ms. Greene has been a member of the Indiana Trial Lawyers since 1989 and a director since 1992. Ms. Greene is a frequent speaker at Indiana Trial Lawyers Association seminars. Ms. Greene has written for and spoken at several Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum seminars. Ms. Greene is also Past President of the Indiana American Board of Trial Advocates, Indiana Chapter (2005), and past president of the Monroe County Bar Association (2005). Ms. Greene has been inducted into the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association' College of Fellows and is an Emeritus Director of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Board of Directors. Ms. Greene is “AV-rated” by Martindale-Hubbell and has been repeatedly selected as an Indiana Super Lawyer by Law and Politics Magazine. In March 2017, Ms. Greene was appointed to the Board of Visitors of the Indiana University Maurer School of Law. Ms. Greene is a member of the American Association for Justice’s (AAJ) Women Trial Lawyers Caucus (WTLC); Voter Protection Committee; AAJ PAC Board of Trustees; PAC Task Force. She is also a member of AAJ’s Board of Governors and vice chair of the Public Education Committee. Ms. Greene generously donates to AAJ PAC. Greene & Schultz, an AAJ Leaders Forum members, has offices in Bloomington and Indianapolis, Indiana.

Steven M. Gursten

Steven M. Gursten is a nationally recognized leader in assisting victims of serious car accident and truck accident injury and wrongful death cases. He is the owner of Michigan Auto Law, Michigan’s largest law firm helping accident victims of car, truck, and motorcycle injury cases. He has been listed as Lawyer of the Year by Michigan Lawyers Weekly and is “AV” rated by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating for legal ability and ethics. Mr. Gursten is a member of the American Association for Justice’s (AAJ) Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section. He also generously donates to AAJ’s PAC. Michigan Auto Law, an AAJ Leaders Forum Member, is located in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Daniel Hinkle

Daniel Hinkle is State Affairs Counsel for the American Association for Justice (AAJ) providing legal, legislative, and policy research and analysis of state legislation. He works collaboratively with state associates, assists with complex multistate legislative projects, and support AAJ’s federal advocacy efforts.

Peter J. Kestner

Peter J. Kestner concentrates his practice in truck and motor vehicle collision, personal injury, wrongful death, and business and corporate litigation.  He is a cofounder of the law firm of McEwen & Kestner, LLP, located in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota.  He is a member of the executive committee of the Association of Interstate Trucking Lawyers of America and was named a Rising Star by Minnesota Law & Politics Magazine for his work in personal injury law.  He is a member of AAJ’s Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section, Bus Litigation Group, Trucking Litigation Group, Insurance Law Section, and the Minnesota Association for Justice.  McEwen & Kestner, LLP is a member of AAJ Leaders Forum.

Kenneth H. Levinson, course advisor

Kenneth H. Levinson is a passionate advocate for accident survivors and child safety. For more than 20 years, he has dedicated his practice to helping disenfranchised clients against corporate giants with unlimited resources. Mr. Levinson was named by Illinois Super Lawyers magazine as one of the top attorneys in Illinois for 2010–2016; and made the list of the Illinois Super Lawyers Top 100 Lawyers. Mr. Levinson was appointed chair of the Education Committee of the American Association for Justice’s (AAJ) Interstate Trucking Litigation Group. He was also elected vice chair of AAJ’s Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway, and Premises Liability Section and is a member of the Sole Practitioner and Small Firm Section. He is the co- author of the latest edition of Litigating Major Automobile Injury and Death Cases, published by AAJ Press/Thomson Reuters, and he generously donates to AAJ PAC. Levinson & Stefani, an AAJ Leaders Forum member, is located in Chicago, Illinois. 

Artemis H. Malekpour

Artemis H. Malekpour specializes in focus groups, case strategy, and jury selection.  As a lawyer with a background in psychology and psychiatric research, Ms. Malekpour holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master’s in Healthcare Administration with a concentration in mental health issues from UNC’s School of Public Health.  Before earning her degree with honors from Duke Law School, she worked in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina Hospitals with children and adolescents coping with psychiatric disorders and legal issues.  She began her path to litigation consulting while still in law school, conducting extensive post-trial jury interviews in death penalty cases through an independent study she developed under the direction of Duke Law’s Death Penalty Clinic advisors, as well as interviewing jurors in civil cases as part of an internship with her mentor, David Ball. Ms. Malekpour is a partner with Malekpour & Ball, located in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Keith R. Mitnik

Keith R. Mitnik is a Senior Trial Lawyer for Morgan & Morgan. He has handled many high-profile cases and has been interviewed by Mike Wallace on 60 Minutes. Over the years, his list of clients included judges, elected officials, law firms, and world-famous musicians.  He has been honored as a member of the Florida Legal Elite, Florida’s “Super Lawyers”, Best Lawyers in America (2013 Lawyers of the Year), and Martindale’s Bar Registry of Preeminent Lawyers. Mr. Mitnik is a member of the American Association for Justice (AAJ), The Florida Bar, Florida Justice Association (FAJ) and Florida Legal Elite. He is a frequent seminar presenter for plaintiff’s lawyers in Florida and across the country sharing his cutting-edge lawsuit strategies. Morgan & Morgan is located in Orlando, Florida.

Daniel W. Munley

Daniel W. Munley concentrates his practice in personal injury litigation, with a special focus on tractor-trailer and transportation litigation.  He was recognized by The National Trial Lawyers Association as one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers for Pennsylvania, is listed in Best Lawyers in America, is Board Certified as a Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, and is a past chair of the American Association for Justice’s Trucking Litigation Group.  He was named a Super Lawyer by the Pennsylvania Magazine every year since 2011.  Mr. Munley speaks at continuing legal education programs nationwide on topics relating to personal injury, trucking, and tractor-trailer litigation.  He is a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Trial Lawyers Care and donates to AAJ’s PAC.  He is also a member of AAJ’s Public Relationship Committee, Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section, Bus Litigation Group, and serves on AAJ’s PAC Board of Trustees.  Munley Law, a member of AAJ’s Leaders Forum, has offices in Philadelphia, Wilkes Barre, Carbondale, and Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Matthew A. Nace, course advisor

Matthew A. Nace works in all his firm’s practice areas, including medical malpractice, drug and product liability, premises liability, trip and fall, trucking litigation, motor vehicle accidents, employment discrimination, wrongful death, and other negligence and personal injury matters. He is currently admitted to practice in Maryland, The District of Columbia, and both the United States District Courts of Maryland and D.C. Mr. Nace has been honored as a 2014 Rising Star from the SuperLawyers organization. He is a member of the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, D.C. He is also a member of the Maryland Association for Justice and the American Association for Justice (AAJ). As a member of the American Association for Justice, Mr. Nace is currently the Newsletter Editor for the Association’s Motor Vehicle Collisions, Highway and Premises Liability Section. He also generously donates to AAJ PAC. Mr. Nace is an attorney with Paulson & Nace, PLLC, located in Washington, DC.

Christopher J. O'Brien

Christopher J. O’Brien has been a personal injury lawyer for 25 years and concentrates his practice in representing seriously injured people. He is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, has a 10.0 Avvo.com rating, and was listed in the Buffalo Law Journal’s Legal Elite’s Top 10: Best of the Best. He is a past president of the Western Affiliate of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association (NYSTLA), is a member of the National College of Advocacy (NCA) Board of Trustees, and is a Diplomate of the NCA. Mr. O’Brien is a frequent speaker at AAJ and NYSTLA continuing legal education programs, including AAJ’s Ultimate Trial Advocacy College, held annually at Harvard University, and is codirector of Trial Advocacy at SUNY Buffalo Law School. He is the founder of The O’Brien Firm, P.C., located in Buffalo, New York.

Antonio M. Romanucci

Antonio M. Romanucci focuses his practice on catastrophic personal injuries arising from medical malpractice, workplace accidents, nursing home negligence, police misconduct and aviation disasters.  He was named the “Best Lawyer in Chicago” in 2013 to 2014 by U.S. News and World Report, has been rated “AV” by Martindale Hubble from 2005 to 2013, and has been named as a Top 100 Super Lawyer in IllinoisHe is a founding chairman of the Midwest Brain Injury Clubhouse (MBIC), which is devoted to optimizing the lives and recovery of people affected by brain injuries or strokes.  Mr. Romanucci was former chair of the American Association for Justice’s (AAJ) Police Misconduct Litigation Group; former chair of the Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Litigation Group; former chair of the Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway, and Premises Liability Section; member of the Spinal Cord Injury Litigation Group; and member of the Civil Rights Section.  He is a member of AAJ’s National Finance Council; AAJ’s Exchange Advisory Committee; AAJ PAC Task Force; AAJ PAC Board of Trustees; and a former member of AAJ’s Board of Governors. Mr. Romanucci generously donates to AAJ PAC.  Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, an AAJ Leaders Forum member, located in Chicago, Illinois.

Lawrence M. Simon

Lawrence M. Simon is an active member of the New Jersey Association for Justice, Bergen County Bar Association, and New York State Trial Lawyers Association. He is also an affiliated attorney for the Truck Accident Attorneys Roundtable and was named Top 100 New Jersey Super Lawyer from 2010 to 2013. Mr. Simon is a member of the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice (AAJ), chair of the AAJ Trucking Litigation Group, and an officer in the Bus Litigation Group. He has previously served as the chair of the AAJ Sole Practitioner and Small Firm Section; Motor Vehicle, Highways, and Premises Liability Section; and Section Leaders Council. Mr. Simon generously donates to AAJ PAC. Javerbaum Wurgaft Hicks Kahn Wikstrom & Sinins, PC, an AAJ Leaders Forum member, is located in New York, New York.

Karonnie R. Truzy

Karonnie R. Truzy is a litigation attorney at the Greensboro, North Carolina, office of Crumley Roberts. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of South Carolina at Spartanburg. He went on to receive his Juris Doctor from Wake Forest University School of Law. While in law school, he was a member of the ATLA Trial Team as Captain, was active in the Black Law Students Association, was a member of the Order of Barristers and was named a 2001 Outstanding Advocate. Mr. Truzy was recognized by the National Trial Lawyers as a “Top 40 Under 40” lawyer. Mr. Truzy is a member of the American Association for Justice (AAJ). He is also a member of the North Carolina State Bar; North Carolina Bar Association and he has been admitted to the U.S. District Court-Eastern District of North Carolina.


AAJ’s housing block at The Roosevelt Hotel has closed. Please contact the hotel directly to reserve a room.

The Roosevelt New Orleans | A Waldorf Astoria Hotel
130 Roosevelt Way
New Orleans, LA 70112
Phone: (504) 648-1200
Reservations: 1-800-WALDORF




Who should attend:

This seminar is open to AAJ Members (Regular, Life, Sustaining, President’s Club, and Leaders Forum) and members of the Louisiana Association for Justice. AAJ Paralegal Affiliates may attend this seminar if they are employed by an AAJ plaintiff attorney with the same firm address.

Program Location:

The Roosevelt New Orleans | A Waldorf Astoria Hotel
130 Roosevelt Way
New Orleans, LA 70112
Phone: (504) 648-1200
Reservations: 1-800-WALDORF


Call us. We'll provide you with names and phone numbers of previous attendees of AAJ Education programs who will be pleased to answer your questions. Or, if you prefer to speak with a course advisor or faculty member, we will arrange that as well. Call 800.622.1791 or 202.965.3500, ext. 8612.

If I cannot participate on the scheduled date are recordings available?:

Recordings of this seminar are available for purchase through our audio/video provider Playback Now.  Please call 800.241.7785 or click HERE to place your order. Fulfillment of orders will occur one week after the program date.

MCLE/NCA Requirements:

AAJ has filed for MCLE credit in the appropriate jurisdictions.  Registered participants can receive approximately 11* CLE credits depending on the jurisdiction and will be applied to your participation in AAJ’s professional recognition programs. AAJ Education programs are routinely accredited by states requiring continuing legal education. CLE questions may be addressed by reading our FAQ or calling the CLE Assistant at 800-622-1791.​

Click here to learn more about AAJ's Professional Recognition Programs, Achievement Recognition Program (ARP) and Advanced Studies in Trial Advocacy (ASTA), or call 800-622-1791 or 202-965-3500, ext. 9584. The Achievement Recognition Program (ARP) provides Advocate, Fellow, and Diplomate recognition to AAJ members. To gain ARP credits, submit a certificate of attendance for every seminar, college, and convention you attend.

* Number of credits may vary depending on calculation method used by individual state accreditation agencies. AAJ is a State Bar of California MCLE-approved provider.

Special Assistance:

AAJ Education will make every effort to ensure that its meetings are held in facilities that are fully accessible to persons with mobility disabilities. If you plan to attend our program and need special facilities or assistance relating to a disability, please call 800-622-1791 or 202-965-3500, ext. 8612.

Cancellation Policy:

Cancellations received in writing on or before April 25, 2018 will result in a refund less a 10% administrative charge. Cancellations received in writing April 26 - 30, 2018 will result in a voucher for the entire registration fee, which may be applied toward any AAJ Education college, seminar, or webinar held within one calendar year of the date of issue. Requests for refunds or vouchers received within 48 hours of a program will not be honored. AAJ is not responsible for any room cancellation fees or other travel fees which result from your cancellation. Cancellation requests must be made in writing. Fax or email your cancellation letter to the registrar at 202-625-7084 or education@justice.org.

Contribute to the AAJ Education Fund:

Please consider a donation to the AAJ Education Fund 501(c)(3). Contributions support educational programs and activities to preserve and protect the civil justice system. Learn more>>

Terms and Conditions:

The American Association for Justice reserves the right to, in its sole discretion, refuse entrance to the event and/or remove any individual from the event whose behavior is disruptive and/or is not consistent with the character and purpose of the event. All American Association for Justice badges are the property of the American Association for Justice and must be returned upon request.

By registering for this AAJ Education program, you agree to receive electronic, written, and telephonic communication from AAJ staff regarding the program and to have your name, firm, city, and state included on the participant and exhibitor/sponsor roster.  AAJ may also need to contact you to service your membership record or to provide you with information about your membership, products and services, and advocacy and legislative updates.  By providing your contact information, including phone number, fax number, and email address, you consent and give permission for AAJ to contact you by any of those means, which may include calls to your mobile phone, faxes, or emails. You may contact AAJ at any time to change your preferences.

Event Address:
The Roosevelt New Orleans
130 Roosevelt Way
New Orleans, LA 70112
United States

Order from Playback AAJ!

Selected seminars are available for purchase in high-quality audio or video through on-demand streaming. Build your resource library or share with your office. Recordings may be accepted for MCLE credit in your state. Visit AAJ's online audio and video provider
Playback AAJ »

For additional assistance
Please call 800.241.7785

Save Money on Car Rentals

As an AAJ member, you’ll receive special savings when you rent a car using your AAJ Extras benefits.


Get your discount code »