|By PR Newswire||
|April 18, 2014 03:10 AM EDT||
SAN FRANCISCO, April 18, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Mary Alexander, San Francisco victims' rights attorney, co-lead counsel of a case that has won a $1.15 billion verdict against the world's largest paint companies to pay for the effects of lead paint on thousands of California children, has just been named San Francisco Trial Lawyer of the Year, together with her other co-counsels and legal team in the case. The honor was bestowed by the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association and its Public Justice Case Evaluation Committee. The dinner honoring Alexander and her colleagues was held Thursday night at the Nikko Hotel. Members of the winning legal team also honored were Joseph Cotchett, Nancy Fineman and Brian Schnarr. The criteria selection for the award emphasized a case's impact and size, establishment of precedent, and time involved in litigating.
On April 4, Alexander announced that a state Judge in Santa Clara County, California, has issued a final amended judgment, denying a new trial in a historic lead paint case affecting California children, and ordering top lead paint companies including Sherwin-Williams, NL Industries, and ConAgra to pay $1.15 billion into a fund to be used to remove the lead potentially dangerous to children in hundreds of thousands of homes in ten cities and counties in California. Alexander stated that the verdict came after 14 years of litigation and 5 weeks of trial. The final judgment comes after two appeals, one of which was a ruling by the California Supreme Court.
Judge James P. Kleinberg said that lead in paint, for which there is no safe level of exposure for children, results in "thousands of children presently and potentially victimized by this chemical." The counties are San Francisco, Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Los Angeles, Monterey, Solano, Ventura, and the cities are Oakland and San Diego.
Mary Alexander, an attorney who tried the case for the cities and counties said, "This verdict will prevent lead poisoning of children from paint in their homes. It is a great victory for the people of California." She added, "This decision holds the companies accountable for promoting and selling lead paint for use in homes despite knowing, as far back as the 1890's, that it was highly toxic, especially to young children. This landmark decision establishes important legal precedents and recognizes the manufacturers must be held responsible and pay to clean up the hazard they created in homes," she said.
The Judge ordered Sherwin-Williams, ConAgra and NL Industries, formerly known as the National Lead Co., to pay $1.15 billion to establish a fund that the state will administer to remove lead paint from the homes in the 10 cities and counties. There are 4.7 million homes built before 1978 when lead paint was banned, of which 52% still contain lead paint. Other attorneys for the Plaintiffs were Cotchett, Pitre and McCarthy; Motley Rice; and the Law Offices of Peter Earle.
Alexander explained that "each year, thousands of children under six years of age, are lead poisoned, most of them exposed to lead through lead paint in their homes. Lead paint deteriorates over time leaving paint chips and dust that gets on floors, window sills and toys to which young children are exposed. Lead poisoning causes damage to the brain and nervous systems of children and it is permanent and irreversible. The impact is particularly great in minorities and children living in poor housing."
Alexander cited an internal industry document by Sherwin Williams in 1900 which described the paint ingredient white lead as a "deadly cumulative poison." In 1909, a California Supreme case held that ConAgra was responsible for lead poisoning employees in its own lead plant. "Despite this knowledge the companies continued to promote the sale of lead paint in the California cities and counties," Alexander stated.
The case now goes to the Court of Appeal of the State of California, Sixth Appellate Court, in San Jose, where the companies are expected to file over the next three months. Alexander is "confident" the judgment will remain in place.
(Alexander was hired by County of San Francisco in early 2001 to represent them to join the lawsuit. Later other counties came in and the attorneys had a joint agreement to represent all of the entities. Alexander was also involved in the appeals and litigation including 40 depositions. At the trial, she put on key expert medical witnesses on lead health effects. She also put on county employees including a county medical officer. She cross examined Sherwin Williams' expert and obtained admissions. She was one of the lead trial lawyers and noted that "It was a team effort.")
Alexander, who resides in Atherton with her office in San Francisco, is former National President of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America.
A copy of Judge Kleinberg's Order may be found in the following court links:
Final Amended Judgment March 26, 2014:
Final statement of decision:
The Judge was Judge James Kleinberg, Santa Clara Superior Court. Verdict was issued on December 16; the final order was January 7.
The case was The People of the State of California vs. Atlantic Richfield Company, Conagra Grocery Products Company, E.I. Du Pont de Nemours and Company, NL Industries Inc., and the Sherwin-Williams Company.
For more information:
Mary Alexander & Associates
44 Montgomery St., suite 1303
San Francisco, CA 94104
Media wishing more information or to speak with Ms Alexander may contact: Bob Weiner 301-283-0821, cell 202-306-1200; [email protected]
SOURCE Robert Weiner Associates and Mary Alexander & Associates, P.C.
DevOps Summit, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 17th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development...
Sep. 4, 2015 07:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,656
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Sep. 4, 2015 06:45 PM EDT Reads: 450
Whether you like it or not, DevOps is on track for a remarkable alliance with security. The SEC didn’t approve the merger. And your boss hasn’t heard anything about it. Yet, this unruly triumvirate will soon dominate and deliver DevSecOps faster, cheaper, better, and on an unprecedented scale. In his session at DevOps Summit, Frank Bunger, VP of Customer Success at ScriptRock, will discuss how this cathartic moment will propel the DevOps movement from such stuff as dreams are made on to a prac...
Sep. 4, 2015 06:00 PM EDT Reads: 281
SYS-CON Events announced today that DataClear Inc. will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The DataClear ‘BlackBox’ is the only solution that moves your PC, browsing and data out of the United States and away from prying (and spying) eyes. Its solution automatically builds you a clean, on-demand, virus free, new virtual cloud based PC outside of the United States, and wipes it clean...
Sep. 4, 2015 05:30 PM EDT Reads: 504
With the proliferation of connected devices underpinning new Internet of Things systems, Brandon Schulz, Director of Luxoft IoT – Retail, will be looking at the transformation of the retail customer experience in brick and mortar stores in his session at @ThingsExpo. Questions he will address include: Will beacons drop to the wayside like QR codes, or be a proximity-based profit driver? How will the customer experience change in stores of all types when everything can be instrumented and a...
Sep. 4, 2015 04:15 PM EDT Reads: 532
Contrary to mainstream media attention, the multiple possibilities of how consumer IoT will transform our everyday lives aren’t the only angle of this headline-gaining trend. There’s a huge opportunity for “industrial IoT” and “Smart Cities” to impact the world in the same capacity – especially during critical situations. For example, a community water dam that needs to release water can leverage embedded critical communications logic to alert the appropriate individuals, on the right device, as...
Sep. 4, 2015 04:00 PM EDT
Manufacturing connected IoT versions of traditional products requires more than multiple deep technology skills. It also requires a shift in mindset, to realize that connected, sensor-enabled “things” act more like services than what we usually think of as products. In his session at @ThingsExpo, David Friedman, CEO and co-founder of Ayla Networks, will discuss how when sensors start generating detailed real-world data about products and how they’re being used, smart manufacturers can use the ...
Sep. 4, 2015 04:00 PM EDT
WebRTC services have already permeated corporate communications in the form of videoconferencing solutions. However, WebRTC has the potential of going beyond and catalyzing a new class of services providing more than calls with capabilities such as mass-scale real-time media broadcasting, enriched and augmented video, person-to-machine and machine-to-machine communications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Luis Lopez, CEO of Kurento, will introduce the technologies required for implementing thes...
Sep. 4, 2015 03:45 PM EDT Reads: 147
Any Ops team trying to support a company in today’s cloud-connected world knows that a new way of thinking is required – one just as dramatic than the shift from Ops to DevOps. The diversity of modern operations requires teams to focus their impact on breadth vs. depth. In his session at DevOps Summit, Adam Serediuk, Director of Operations at xMatters, Inc., will discuss the strategic requirements of evolving from Ops to DevOps, and why modern Operations has begun leveraging the “NoOps” approa...
Sep. 4, 2015 03:30 PM EDT Reads: 469
Organizations from small to large are increasingly adopting cloud solutions to deliver essential business services at a much lower cost. According to cyber security experts, the frequency and severity of cyber-attacks are on the rise, causing alarm to businesses and customers across a variety of industries. To defend against exploits like these, a company must adopt a comprehensive security defense strategy that is designed for their business. In 2015, organizations such as United Airlines, Sony...
Sep. 4, 2015 03:30 PM EDT Reads: 545
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Sep. 4, 2015 03:30 PM EDT Reads: 979
While many app developers are comfortable building apps for the smartphone, there is a whole new world out there. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Narayan Sainaney, Co-founder and CTO of Mojio, will discuss how the business case for connected car apps is growing and, with open platform companies having already done the heavy lifting, there really is no barrier to entry.
Sep. 4, 2015 03:00 PM EDT Reads: 227
To assist customers with legacy Windows Server 2003 that is no longer supported by Microsoft, Racemi has introduced fixed price packages for upgrading and migrating Windows Server 2003 servers to either Windows 2008 R2 or Windows 2012 R2 and the choice of Amazon Web Services (AWS) or SoftLayer cloud. "We're extending a lifeline by upgrading the legacy servers to more modern Windows Server platforms while taking advantage of cloud computing," said James Strayer, vice president of product managem...
Sep. 4, 2015 02:12 PM EDT
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo, November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and e...
Sep. 4, 2015 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 237
As more intelligent IoT applications shift into gear, they’re merging into the ever-increasing traffic flow of the Internet. It won’t be long before we experience bottlenecks, as IoT traffic peaks during rush hours. Organizations that are unprepared will find themselves by the side of the road unable to cross back into the fast lane. As billions of new devices begin to communicate and exchange data – will your infrastructure be scalable enough to handle this new interconnected world?
Sep. 4, 2015 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 272