Program Schedule

  Thursday, October 28

5:00 pm–7:00 pm


5:30 pm–7:00 pm

Opening Reception

7:30 pm

Dine Around (Optional)

  Friday, October 29

7:30 am–3:00 pm


7:30 am–9:00 am

Continental Breakfast

7:45 am–8:45 am

New Fellow Orientation

8:50 am–9:00 am

Welcome Remarks

Kevin Dubose, AAAL President
Alexander Dubose & Jefferson LLP
Houston, Texas

9:00 am–10:15 am

The Effect of the Pandemic on Appellate Practice

Appellate practitioners discuss the changes in appellate and trial practice made during the time of COVID as they relate to aspects of appellate practice that will or will not survive through the reopening of our courts. Examples include Zoom oral arguments and hearings, new rules, and impact on dockets and caseloads.


Donald N. Capparella, AAAL Fellow
Dodson Parker Behm & Capparella PC
Nashville, Tennessee

Harvey J. Sepler, Ph.D., AAAL Fellow
Alvarez, Gonzalez & Menezes LLP
Coral Gables, Florida

Kathleen M. Stoughton
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina


Michael B. Terry, AAAL Fellow
Bondurant Mixson & Elmore LLP
Atlanta, Georgia

10:15 am–10:30 am


10:30 am–Noon

The Effect of the Pandemic on Appellate Courts

Appellate judges and court personnel discuss the changes in appellate and trial court procedures made during the time of COVID as they relate to the court procedures will or will not survive through the reopening of appellate and trial courts.


The Hon. Julianna Michelle Childs
Judge, U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina

Blake Hawthorne
Supreme Court of Texas
Austin, Texas

The Hon. Nathan L. Hecht
Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Texas
Austin, Texas

Nora Sydow
National Center of State Courts
Williamsburg, Virginia


Nancy W. Gregoire, AAAL Fellow
Birnbaum, Lippman & Gregoire, PLLC
Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Noon–12:15 pm


12:15 am–1:30 pm

Luncheon: A Short History of Charleston—Focus on the Law.
Robert Rosen, author of A Short History of Charleston, will take us on a journey through the complicated history of the port city’s development from an outpost of the British Empire to a bustling, modern city. With special focus on Charleston’s legal history, Mr. Rosen contemplates how the city’s challenges and triumphs have shaped its present and will continue to shape its future.


Robert Rosen
Rosen Law Firm, LLC
Charleston, South Carolina


Virginia Hamilton Snell, AAAL Fellow
Wyatt Tarrant & Combs LLP
Louisville, Kentucky

1:30 pm-1:45 pm


1:45 pm–3:00 pm

Using Appellate Lawyers to Win at Trial Post- Pandemic

Appellate attorneys at trial, a trial lawyer, and a trial judge discuss the use of appellate lawyers on trial teams as a sword to win at trial, and not just as a shield to preserve error for appeal. Examples include winning contract interpretation issues, expert exclusion issues, offensive jury charge issues, and pre-trial interlocutory appeals.


John Kim
The Kim Law Firm
Houston, Texas

Robert Dubose, AAAL Fellow
Alexander Dubose & Jefferson LLP
Houston, Texas

The Hon. R.K. Sandil
Judge, Harris County Civil Courthouse
Houston, Texas


Robert M. (Randy) Roach Jr., AAAL Fellow
Roach Newton LLP
Houston, Texas

3:00 pm

Free Time

5:30 pm–6:00 pm

New Fellow Induction Ceremony
Charleston County Courthouse
84 Broad Street (0.4-mile walk from the hotel)

6:45 pm–7:30 pm


7:30 pm


  Saturday, October 30

7:30 am


7:30 am–8:30 am

Continental Breakfast

8:30 am–10:00 am

Appellate 360: A View of Three South Carolina Appellate Decisions as Seen From All Sides

A panel comprising the former chief justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court and South Carolina appellate practitioners will discuss three important appellate decisions from the divergent perspectives of the appellate practitioner and the judiciary. Cases at issue involve the estate of James Brown (the Godfather of Soul), the adoption of a Native American child by a non-Native American couple, and the constitutionality of a statute prohibiting the sale of urine for the purpose of defrauding a drug screening test.


C. Mitchell Brown, AAAL Fellow
Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP
Columbia, South Carolina

The Hon. Jean Hoefer Toal, (retired)
Chief Justice, Supreme Court of South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina

Wallace K. Lightsey, AAAL Fellow
Wyche, P.A.
Greenville, South Carolina


Stephen P. Groves Sr., AAAL Fellow
Butler Snow LLP
Charleston, South Carolina

10:00 am–11:00 am

Fellows Meeting and Forum

11:00 am–11:15 am


11:15 am–12:30 pm

Law Firm Culture Post-Pandemic

Attorneys from big, medium, and small law firms discuss the changes in law firm culture as a result of the pandemic. Examples include remote practice and telecommuting, belt-tightening, and staffing changes.


Laurie Webb Daniel, AAAL Fellow
Holland & Knight LLP
Atlanta, Georgia

Lauri Waldman Ross, AAAL Fellow
Ross & Girten
Miami, Florida

Matt Sawchak, AAAL Fellow
Robinson Bradshaw & Hinson, P.A.
Raleigh, North Carolina


Tillman J. Breckenridge, AAAL Fellow
Stris & Maher
Washington, D.C.

12:30 pm

Closing Remarks

Kevin Dubose, AAAL President
Alexander Dubose & Jefferson LLP
Houston, Texas

2:00 pm–4:00 pm

Historic Walking Tour (Optional)
Meet in the Belmond Charleston Place Lobby

Participate in an entertaining walking tour of the historic district with a licensed tour guide. During the tour, you will experience the lifestyle of 18th & 19th century America. Commentary on 300+ years of tradition and history includes Charleston’s role in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, both of which were fought in and around this city. Landmarks include The High Battery, Rainbow Row, and the Four Corners of Law. Experiencing downtown Charleston is a step back in time. (Tour encompasses 15–20 blocks, walking or standing the entire time.)

The cost is $40 per person. Must sign up by Tuesday, September 28, 2021.