Press Releases

Lewis Brisbois Expands Midwest Practice with St. Louis Office, Five New Attorneys

St. Louis, Mo. (January 23, 2019) – Lewis Brisbois is pleased to announce the opening of a new office in downtown St. Louis, Missouri. Located in the Deloitte Building just across from the famous Gateway Arch, the office is headed up by Managing Partner Tracy Cowan.

Mr. Cowan is joined by Partners Melissa Vaughn and Karen Volkman, along with Associates Alejandro Frank and Andrew Kriegshauser, all previously from the St. Louis office of Hawkins Parnell & Young, LLP, where Mr. Cowan was managing partner. The new location adds to Lewis Brisbois’ already formidable Midwest practice and brings the national, full-service law firm up to 47 offices across 26 states.

“Lewis Brisbois has had a presence in the St. Louis metro area for over six years,” said Madison County Managing Partner Jeffrey Bash, whose office operates less than a 30-minute drive from the new St. Louis location. “Having a sister office downtown on the Missouri side of the river has been a long-anticipated addition to the resources we can provide for our clients in the region. Many of our Madison County attorneys are also licensed to practice in Missouri, including John F. Cooney who has tried over 130 jury trials in Metro St. Louis, and we look forward to continuing to serve clients in Missouri and Illinois.”

“My team and I are looking forward to opening this new office, to work together with our new colleagues and serve our current clients,” said Mr. Cowan. “We’re also very excited to partner with the combined experience of Lewis Brisbois’ over 1,300 lawyers nationwide, and to help grow new clients and attract other practice groups to the region.”

The new group will join Lewis Brisbois’ General Liability, Toxic Tort & Environmental Litigation, and Asbestos Litigation Practices. While a focus of the new St. Louis office will be to further expand those practices into Missouri, as with all of Lewis Brisbois’ locations, it will also provide the firm’s complete range of legal services to all of its clients.

“One of the things that drew me to [Lewis Brisbois] was the opportunity to work from a much larger platform,” said Mr. Cowan. “We have a lot of great and exceptional experience in the toxic tort arena, but joining Lewis Brisbois gives my team the chance to branch out and continue to expand our practices outside that arena.”

The new St. Louis team has a wealth of knowledge and expertise in areas such as medical malpractice, trucking and transportation, insurance coverage, products liability, and commercial litigation, both locally and at a national level. Mr. Cowan and Ms. Volkman also have deep roots in the area, having worked together in St. Louis since 2000.

Attorney overviews

Tracy Cowan

Mr. Cowan has extensive experience managing national mass tort litigation for corporate clients. He has litigated asbestos, toxic tort, products liability and environmental matters in trial courts around the United States, including a four month long environmental trial which resulted in a favorable verdict in Alameda County, California. A graduate of the University of Missouri School of Law, Mr. Cowan has significant trial experience in the St. Louis Metro area and nationwide. Mr. Cowan has recently tried cases to verdict both in Madison County, Illinois and the City of St. Louis, Missouri, two prominent “Judicial Hellholes” as identified by the American Tort Reform Association. The City of St. Louis matter was a living mesothelioma lawsuit which resulted in a successful defense verdict on behalf of an automotive manufacturer. Mr. Cowan also has significant experience in defending personal injury and wrongful death claims against trucking, rail, and aviation transportation clients on a national level, and regionally defending professional liability lawsuits.

Melissa Vaughn

Ms. Vaughn focuses her practice on the representation of commercial entities in catastrophic personal injury and wrongful death actions, products liability and premises liability actions, and toxic tort and environmental litigation. She also represents insurers in insurance coverage disputes, and healthcare facilities and professionals in medical malpractice actions. A graduate of The John Marshall Law School, she has defended clients in federal and state courts in Missouri, Illinois, and several other jurisdictions across the country.

Karen Volkman

Ms. Volkman litigates toxic tort, transportation, products liability, and business litigation matters for corporate defendants in Missouri, Illinois, Arkansas, and numerous jurisdictions throughout the United States. She participates in all phases of litigation, including pre-suit investigation, discovery, depositions, vigorous motion practice, trials, and appeals. Ms. Volkman received a dual Bachelor’s Degree in History and Political Science from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and obtained her law degree from Saint Louis University School of Law.

Alejandro Frank

Mr. Frank’s practice focuses on litigating asbestos and other products liability claims in Missouri and Illinois. He has experience in all stages of litigation and regularly pursues a wide range of defenses to achieve his clients’ goals. A graduate of Saint Louis University School of Law, Mr. Frank also handles premises liability issues. He is licensed in both Missouri and Illinois.

Andrew Kriegshauser

Mr. Kriegshauser primarily represents corporations in complex litigation matters involving premises and products liability. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Tulsa and his law degree from University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law.

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