Lewis Brisbois Expands Products Liability Capabilities in Midwest with Experienced Litigation Team in St. Louis
St. Louis, Mo. (February 16, 2023) – Lewis Brisbois is pleased to welcome Rick Mueller and Heather F. Counts to its St. Louis office as partners in the firm’s Products Liability and Toxic Tort & Environmental Litigation Practices. Mr. Mueller and Ms. Counts join Lewis Brisbois from Thompson Coburn LLP, where they practiced in the products liability arena for 41 years and 20 years, respectively. They currently serve as national counsel for manufacturers throughout the United States.
Mr. Mueller explained that maintaining a strong book of litigation was a central factor in his decision to join Lewis Brisbois. “Particularly concerning my national counsel role, Lewis Brisbois was a good fit. The firm has a lot of strong products lawyers,” he stated.
Ms. Counts agreed, noting, “Lewis Brisbois’ lawyers have a great reputation as litigators. Because we are national counsel for clients across the country, it helps to have the firm’s national reach. Our clients already have benefitted from Lewis Brisbois’ national footprint.”
Similarly, St. Louis Managing Partner Tracy Cowan expressed enthusiasm about the team’s arrival. “We are thrilled that Rick and Heather have brought their combined 60+ years of products liability experience to the firm,” Mr. Cowan said. “We know that their contributions will enhance the already high level of service that we provide to our clients in St. Louis and across the country. We look forward to working with them and learning from them.”
Mr. Mueller, who regularly serves as national counsel for major Japanese manufacturers, has earned defense verdicts in courts across the country. He has taken more than 100 jury trials to verdict in venues ranging from Guam to New York City, and from Seattle to Miami. As a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) and drawing on his four decades of litigation experience, Mr. Mueller focuses his practice on products liability matters and also represents clients in dealings with the Consumer Product Safety Commission. At his previous firm, Mr. Mueller served for many years on the management committee and as chair of the Products Liability Department. In 2022, he was recognized by Best Lawyers as a "Lawyer of the Year" in the St. Louis area for products liability litigation defense.
Ms. Counts has extensive experience defending clients against consumer products claims and serving as national counsel for manufacturers in state and federal courts. She has managed litigation and obtained defense verdicts in courts throughout the country on behalf of manufacturers facing design defect and failure to warn claims, including those related to recreational and automotive products. At her previous firm, Ms. Counts was a long-time member of the Tobacco Group, defending many mass tort cases across the country involving complex epidemiology and statistics issues, including one of the largest civil trials in U.S. history. She also has extensive appellate experience.
Mr. Mueller and Ms. Counts are both members of the Product Liability Advisory Council (PLAC), with Ms. Counts participating in the organization's Future Leaders Program. They are also both graduates of the Washington University School of Law and are admitted to practice in state and federal courts in Illinois and Missouri, as well as several circuits of the U.S. Court of Appeals.
Tracy CowanManaging Partner
St. Louis, MO
Madison County, IL
St. Louis, MO
St. Louis, MO