Magistrate Judge, USDC EDTX
- Sept. ’21 – present: U.S. Magistrate Judge, Eastern District of Texas, Beaumont and Lufkin Divisions.
- Aug. ’11 – Sept. ’21 : The Bernsen Law Firm. Primary areas of practice include commercial litigation, contract disputes, civil rights litigation, consumer litigation and general personal injury litigation.
- July ’00 – Feb. ’06: Germer Gertz, LLP, Beaumont, Texas. Partner with primary areas of practice in commercial litigation including securities litigation; legal malpractice; defense of other professionals such as insurance agents; 20065construction litigation; general business disputes, and lease disputes. At this time, practice also evolved into some personal injury work involving primarily railroads and some mass tort work in pharmaceuticals.
- Mar. ’99 – July ’00: Gardere & Wynne, L.L.P, Dallas, Texas. Primary area of practice was broad range commercial litigation including securities litigation; legal malpractice; defense of other professionals such as insurance agents; construction litigation; general business disputes, and lease disputes.
- Nov. ’93 – Mar. ’99: Vial, Hamilton, Koch & Knox, L.L.P., Dallas, Texas. Primary area of practice was a broad range commercial litigation involving the defense of professionals such as broker/dealers, insurance agents and adjusters, accountants, agents, contractors, and real estate agents; insurance coverage, environmental litigation, securities fraud; lease disputes; commercial and consumer collections; breach of contract actions; bad faith cases; oil and gas litigation, and declaratory judgment actions.
- Sept. ’92 – Nov. ’93: Bickel & Brewer, Dallas, Texas. Primary area of practice was general commercial litigation including involvement in complex litigation between national hospital corporation and a university.
- May ’92: Albany Law School of Union University, Albany, New York. Juris doctorate, cum laude; Associate Editor Albany Law Review; Member of Moot Court team specializing in corporate law and participant in Widener University National Competition; Semifinalist Albany Law School Senior Prize Trials.
- May ’89: State University of New York at Binghamton, Binghamton, New York. Bachelor of Arts, magna cum laude.
Professional activities and associations:
- State Bar of Texas, 1992
- New York State Bar, 1993
- United States District Courts for the Northern, Southern, Western and Eastern Districts of Texas
- Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals
- U.S. Court of Federal Claims
- U.S. Supreme Court
- Jefferson County Bar Association
- Litigation Council, Litigation Section of State Bar of Texas
Articles and Presentations:
- “Elements of Police Excessive Force Cases,” Advanced Personal Injury, Texas Bar CLE, July, 2021.
- “This is What Trial Lawyers Do,” Jefferson County Bar Association, February 26, 2021;
- “Premises Liability Update,” Litigation Update, Litigation Section of State Bar of Texas, January 22, 2021;
- “Trial Tactics that Should Go the Way of the Dinosaurs,” Litigation Section CLE, Annual Meeting State Bar of Texas, June 25, 2020; moderator;
- “Prisoner’s Rights and Wrongful Death: Montano v. Orange County,” Current Appellate Issues CLE, Jefferson County Bar Association, March 31, 2017;
- “Sanctions in Texas Courts,” delivered to the Vial, Hamilton, Koch, and Knox, L.L.P. Insurance Symposium, August 20, 1998;
- “Bad Faith Update,” delivered to the Vial, Hamilton, Koch, and Knox, L.L.P. Insurance Symposium, August 22, 1996
- “Duty to Defend and Reservation of Rights,” delivered to the University of Houston School of Law’s Advance d DTPA/Insurance/Consumer Law Course, San Antonio, Texas May 31, 1996; “DTPA Basics”, presented to Vial, Hamilton, Koch, and Knox, L.L.P. Associate Training March 7, 1995; co-author;
- “The Modern Stowers Doctrine in Light of APIE v. Garcia,” delivered to the fourth Annual Vial, Hamilton, Koch, and Knox, L.L.P. Insurance Symposium, August 18, 1994; co-author
- “Construction Claims under the DTPA and Residential Construction Liability Act,” delivered to the Seventh Annual Construction Law Conference at the University of Texas School of Law, February, 1994; co-author.