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28th Annual National Expert Witness Conference, April 27-28, 2019, Clearwater Beach, FL


Product Description

SEAK, Inc. is pleased to present its 28th Annual National Expert Witness Conference. Experts from all disciplines and with all levels of experience will benefit from multi-disciplinary advanced techniques. Nationally recognized presenters will discuss all aspects of expert witness testimony, ethics, and trial techniques. Conference participants will be presented with practical suggestions for succeeding as expert witnesses. This highly acclaimed two-day program will include intensive breakout sessions.

Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach, FL, Saturday–Sunday, April 27-28, 2019  

Click here for the full conference brochure and details (pdf)

Location/Hotel Accommodations: The 2019 SEAK Expert Witness Conference will be held at the Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater Beach, FL. The Opal Sands Resort is currently sold out.  See below for alternative hotel accommodations near the conference hotel. 

Alternative Hotel Options
There are a number of options within a close distance to the
Opal Sands Resort: 

Edge Hotel
505 S Gulfview Blvd.
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
From $286+ per night
.1 miles from conference hotel (next door from conference hotel)

Clearwater Beach Hotel
504 S Gulfview Blvd
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
727- 400-6980
From $159+ per night
.1 mile from conference hotel

Holiday Inn Clearwater Beach
521 S Gulfview Blvd
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
727- 447-6461
From $162+ per night
.2 mile from conference hotel

Hampton Inn & Suites Clearwater Beach
635 South Gulfview Boulevard
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
From $263+ per night
.2 mile from conference hotel

Springhill Suites Clearwater Beach

309 Coronado Drive
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
From $229+per night
.3 miles from conference hotel
Contact Jamil Cherman to book, call or email: jamilc@lbaproperties.com

 Pier House 60
101 Coronado Dr.
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
From $266+ per night
.5 miles from conference hotel 

Fairfield Inn & Suites Clearwater Beach
650 Bay Esplanade
Clearwater Beach, FL 33767
From $281+ per night
1.5 miles from conference hotel

Special Early Registration Savings: Tuition for each course is $1,295 on or before February 28, 2019; $1,395 March 1, 2019 – April 2, 2019; $1,495 after April 2, 2019. 

Group Discounts: Group discounts are available for two or more persons registering together from the same company. Discount prices depend on the size of the group. Our programs can also be brought onsite to your organization. Please call 508-457-1111. 

Attendee Discount - SEAK Directory: A special 50% Conference discount is available on all new and renewal standard listings in the SEAK Expert Witness Directory placed by attendees while at the seminar. 

Conference Cancellations: Conference cancellations received in writing on or before April 2, 2019 will receive a full refund. Conference cancellations received after April 2, 2019 will receive a full tuition credit. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. I am new to expert witnessing. Will this conference be appropriate for me?

A. Yes, although we also highly recommend that you sign up for our How to Start, Build, and Run a Successful Expert Witness Practice preconference if your schedule permits. 

Q. What types of experts is your training conference appropriate for?

A. All disciplines and all levels of experience. Each year we have experts who have testified hundreds of times attend as well as brand new experts. The level of diversity in terms of disciplines who attend the conference is breathtaking and includes accountants, engineers, physicians, attorneys, psychologists, life care planners, chiropractors, fire investigators, arborists, nurses, computer specialists, patent experts, damages experts, security, investments, etc. 

Q. Are there continuing education credits for my discipline?

A. If we reasonably can obtain your credits, we will. Please see page 4 for more details and if you have any additional questions please contact Karen Cerbarano at 781-826-4974 or Karen@seak.com. 

Q. How many expert witnesses have attended this training conference?

A. Over 4,000 since 1990. SEAK has trained many thousands more experts through seminars, on-site training, and 1-1 training. 

Q. Are there any discounts available?

A. Yes. You can save up to $400 by registering early ($200 for the main conference and $200 for a preconference). Group discounts are also available. Call 508-457-1111. A special 50% Conference discount is available on all new and renewal standard listings in the SEAK Expert Witness Directory placed by attendees while at the seminar. 

Q. I can’t make it to the conference, what are my other options?

A. SEAK Expert witness training is offered 3–4 times a year. For a complete upcoming seminar schedule please visit www.seak.com. We also offer 1-1 training. Call 508-457-1111. 

Q. Should I sign up for a preconference or is that information already covered in the main conference?

A. We highly recommend that you take advantage of the small group format preconferences and sign up for one if your schedule permits. The preconferences go into far more depth than what is covered at the main conference and allow you to drill down and perfect your skills. For example, we spend 14 hours teaching report writing in the How to Write a Bulletproof Expert Witness Report preconference, whereas report writing is covered in 1 hour at the main conference. A large percentage of attendees historically also attend a preconference. 

Q. I am having trouble deciding on which preconference to attend. Can you offer any guidance?

A. Yes, please feel free to call Seminar Leader Attorney Steven Babitsky (508-548-9443) and he will evaluate your situation and make recommendations.

Main Conference Continuing Education Credit Information

Note: If your specialty does not appear below and you desire credits, please contact Karen Cerbarano (Karen@seak.com or 781-826-4974). We can often obtain desired credits upon request, but unfortunately, obtaining some types of credits are not feasible. Please register early, as we can only apply for credits after your registration form has been received and it can take time to get the requested approvals back from the accrediting agencies. 

Accident Reconstructionists: SEAK will apply for credits through ACTAR upon written request at the time of registration. Accountants: Earn 16.5 CPE credits in the field of study of Specialized Knowledge and Applications. SEAK, Inc. is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be addressed to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website: www.nasbaregistry.org. For SEAK, Inc.’s complaint and program cancellation policies please call SEAK, Inc. at 508-457-1111. All attendees should have the education and experience that would qualify them as an expert witness. This is an intermediate group live program. Advanced Preparation: None. This program was created in July 2018. To register, please follow the instructions on page 2. Appraisers: Credits from The American Society of Appraisers will be applied for on written request at the time of registration. Arborists:S EAK will apply for Continuing Education hours through The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) on written request at time of registration. Attorneys: Credit varies by state. Continuing legal education credits for attorneys will be applied for if requested in writing at the time of registration. Engineers:14 PDHs. The acceptance of this course is dependent upon your state(s) of registration. The vast majority of states do not require preapproval of either courses or course sponsors. Life Care Planners: SEAK will apply for credits through The Commission on Health Care Certification (CHCC) upon written request at the time of registration. Physicians: SEAK, Inc. is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. SEAK, Inc. designates this live activity for a maximum of 14 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 

For questions or more information call 508.457.1111 or email mail@seak.com. NOTE: SEAK does not accept commercial support for its programs and does not use faculty members with conflicts of interest. 


DAY ONE: Saturday, April 27, 2019


8:00am – 9:00am A View from the Bench

The Honorable Jeffrey Locke Judge Locke will explain the characteristics that effective, credible, and persuasive expert witnesses have in common. He will discuss the common mistakes some experts make when testifying at trial. Judge Locke will offer practical suggestions and advice for experts preparing for trial testimony.   

locke.jpgThe Honorable Jeffrey Locke is an associate justice of the Massachusetts Superior Court. He was nominated to the bench by former Governor Jane Swift in 2001. He received his BA from Georgetown University and his JD from Boston University. Prior to his appointment to the bench he served as Commissioner for the Department of Children and Family Services. Judge Locke served as both, a district attorney and an assistant US attorney. He has taught trial advocacy at the Northeastern University School of Law and is adjunct faculty, trial practice, for Boston College Law School. 

9:00am – 10:00am How Expert Witnesses Can Deliver More Effective and Persuasive Testimony 

Merrie Jo Pitera, PhD
Dr. Pitera will explain and demonstrate, with video of jurors’ focus group feedback, how experts can use storytelling, graphics, visuals, and straight talk to increase their credibility, effectiveness, and persuasiveness. She will discuss and demonstrate the common mistakes such as jargon, getting in the weeds, and speaking over jurors, that turn off jurors. Dr. Pitera will offer testifying best practices for expert witnesses. 

pitera.jpgMerrie Jo Pitera, PhD is the CEO of Litigation Insights, Inc. and is a psychology and communications expert who specializes in complex litigation and trial consulting and has more than 28 years of experience in the field. Her areas of expertise include intellectual property, product liability/personal injury, employment, securities, commercial, and environmental litigation. Dr. Pitera is a perceptive listener and observer of jury dynamics and sentiments and provides clear insights into how they are likely to impact a case. In addition to 30(b)(6) and fact witnesses, Merrie Jo has extensive experience preparing CEOs and expert witnesses for depositions, trials, arbitrations, and congressional hearings. Dr. Pitera is a frequent national and international speaker on jury behavior and witness prep methods, including a communication training seminar for the Lloyds of London Syndicates. She routinely publishes articles in a variety of law journals on jury selection and trial preparation. 


10:10am – 11:10am How Attorneys Go About Selecting and Preparing Expert Witnesses
Chris Messerly, Esq.
Attorney Messerly will discuss the process trial attorneys use to locate, interview, and select expert witnesses. He will offer suggestions that experts can use to make themselves more attractive to attorneys. Attorney Messerly will explain and demonstrate, with examples, how experienced trial attorneys prepare expert witnesses for their depositions and trials. 

Cmesserly.jpghris Messerly, Esq. has more than 30 years of experience and represents clients in medical malpractice and other injury cases. He has built a notable career advocating for those injured and killed by wrongdoers. He created and led a 17 law firm consortium which provided pro bono legal services to more than 100 people who were injured and who lost loved ones on August 1, 2007 when the I-35W Bridge in downtown Minneapolis collapsed into the Mississippi River. Mr. Messerly is a member of the American College of Trial Lawyers, Past President of the Minnesota Association for Justice, Past President of the American Board of Trial Advocates (Minnesota Chapter), Wisconsin Academy of Trial Lawyers, Public Justice, and member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Minnesota Million Dollar Roundtable. 

11:10am – 12:10pm How Lawyers Attack Expert Witnesses

David J. Galluzzo, Esq.
Attorney Galluzzo will explain and demonstrate, with examples, how counsel digs deep for information to disqualify, impeach, and cross-examine expert witnesses. He will discuss pre-trial attacks, discovery, deposition, cross-examination, and trial, Attorney Galluzzo will offer practical advice and suggestions on how experts can avoid and deal with serious attacks on their credibility, reputation, and testimony. 

galluzzo.jpgDavid J. Galluzzo, Esq. is a partner and trial attorney at the New York law firm of Lucas & Mercanti. He represents pharmaceutical companies, arts and entertainment manufacturing, insurance, famous artists, and television and movie producers. Prior to his legal career, David was a research scientist at Pfizer, where he synthesized pharmaceutical compounds for the treatment of metabolic diseases. David in the author of the book, Qualifying and Attacking Expert Witnesses, which teaches attorneys how to win the battle of the experts. 


1:10pm – 2:10pm Breakout Session: Choose One

How to Destroy Your Expert Witness Career: The 7 Deadly Sins

Steven Babitsky, Esq.
Attorney Babitsky will discuss how experts, through their actions/inactions, can quickly and easily destroy their expert witness career. The seven deadly sins for expert witnesses explained and demonstrated with examples include: greed, sloth, wrath, pride, arrogance, envy, and dishonesty. Attorney Babitsky will offer practical advice and suggestions on how to make the right choices in the face of difficult situations and avoid these potential career killers. 

babitsky-circle.jpgSteven Babitsky, Esq. is the President and founder of SEAK, Inc., the Expert Witness Training Company. He was a personal injury trial attorney for twenty years and is the former managing partner of the firm Kistin, Babitsky, Latimer & Beitman. Steve has helped expert witnesses and their attorneys prepare for deposition in a broad range of cases, including antitrust, patent, medical malpractice, wrongful death, computer forensics, and many others. He has trained the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Aviation Administration, and he has worked with numerous forensic and financial companies including Fortune 500 companies and has worked with numerous experts to help them expand and grow their practices. Mr. Babitsky is the co-author of the texts How to Market Your Expert Witness Practice: Evidence-Based Best Practices; How to Become a Dangerous Expert Witness: Advanced Techniques and Strategies; Writing and Defending Your Expert Report: The Step-by-Step Guide with Models; How to Excel During Cross-Examination: Techniques for Experts That Work; The A–Z Guide to Expert Witnessing; How to Write an Expert Witness Report; and How to Excel During Depositions: Techniques for Experts That Work. Attorney Babitsky is the co-developer and trainer for the “How to Be an Effective Expert Witness” seminar and has been the seminar leader since 1990 for the Annual National Expert Witness and Litigation Conference. Mr. Babitsky trains hundreds of experts every year. He may be contacted at 508-548-9443 or stevenbabitsky@seak.com. 


Testifying at Trial: Clear, Concise, and Compelling Testimony

Steve Roberts, CPA/CFF, CFE
Steve Roberts will explain and demonstrate, with examples, how to use preparation, compelling demonstratives, and a micro/macro approach to excelling at your trial testimony. He will discuss making the complex simple, dealing with retaining and opposing counsel, and keeping your message simple, direct, and compelling even in the face of cross-examination. Mr. Roberts will offer practical advice and suggestions for excelling at your trial testimony.  

roberts.jpgSteve Roberts, CPA/CFF, CFE is a principal at Veritas, a forensic accounting and economics firm, and an experienced expert witness. His assignments regularly include expert report and exhibit preparation, and deposition and courtroom testimony. Mr. Roberts has also been retained directly by the court as a Special Master relative to economic loss measurement and forensic accounting issues. He is a certified public accountant, and a certified fraud examiner. Mr. Roberts is also certified by the AICPA in financial forensics, is a certified criminal investigator, and is a member of the academy of court appointed special masters. Over the past 29 years, Mr. Roberts has been directly responsible for designing, implementing, and managing more than 2,000 engagements involving billions of dollars.  



How Expert Witnesses Can Excel at Direct Examination

Jeffrey A. Danziger, MD 
Dr. Danziger will explain and demonstrate using examples how, with proper preparation with counsel and the use of demonstratives, experts can excel during their direct examination. He will discuss: dealing with problem areas, humanizing the expert, and demonstrating the expert’s knowledge, credibility, personality, likeability, and fairness. Jeffrey will provide practical suggestions for achieving effective, memorable, powerful, and persuasive direct testimony.  

danziger-circle.jpgJeffrey A. Danziger, MD is a forensic psychiatrist practicing in the Orlando, Florida area, and have been retained in numerous criminal cases over the years, and well as civil cases in the areas of personal injury, malpractice, employment litigation, and family law. I have been involved as an expert in various probate cases, including guardianship issues and testamentary capacity cases. I have been retained by attorneys for both the plaintiff and defense in civil cases over my years of practice, and by the state and defense in criminal cases. I am board certified by the ABPN in psychiatry, addiction psychiatry, forensic psychiatry, and geriatric psychiatry. 


Practice Management for Expert Witnesses: What Works

Maria A. Babinetz, MS, CRC, ABVE/D, CCM, CDMS
Ms. Babinetz will explain best practices for expert witness practice management, including: intake; protocols; obtaining records; document management; fees and billing; dealing with retaining counsel; scheduling; report writing; use of staff; dealing with unexpected developments and emergencies; marketing strategies; ethical conundrums; building one’s brand; how to avoid mistakes as an expert witness that can be costly; and office procedures and practices. She will offer practical suggestions for developing and running a successful and efficient expert witness practice.  

babinetz.jpgMaria A. Babinetz, MS, CRC, ABVE/D, CCM, CDMS is a vocational rehabilitation and employment expert from Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, which is located in suburban Philadelphia. Ms. Babinetz has over 29 years of experience working with plaintiff attorneys and defense attorneys in civil matters and has vast testimony experience in Federal jurisdictions and various state jurisdictions. Ms. Babinetz has a bachelor’s degree in Individual and Family Studies from the Pennsylvania State University, a master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from the University of Scranton, and is presently completing her doctoral degree in General Psychology with an emphasis in Industrial and Organizational (I/O) Psychology with Grand Canyon University. She has completed all doctoral coursework and is working on her dissertation, which explores attorneys hiring vocational experts in civil litigation matters. Ms. Babinetz offers expert services in vocational employability evaluations, earning capacity assessments, transferable skills analysis, labor market surveys, vocational testing, job development, job placement, resume preparation and career counseling.  



Women Expert Witnesses: How to Overcome Gender Barriers on the Path to Success

Nadine Nasser Donovan, Esq.
Women expert witnesses face unique gender challenges in the litigation setting, such as asserting confidence in their qualifications, being retained, and effectively defending their opinions. Attorney Donovan will lead a frank discussion of these leading challenges for women experts. The discussion will cover practical strategies for taking on and overcoming issues such as “imposter syndrome”, underbilling for valuable services, subtle (and sometimes overt) gender stereotyping, and how to firmly signal authority when expressing opinions. She will also discuss ways to create professional networks of mentoring and mutual support to excel and thrive as a female expert witness.  

donovan.jpgNadine Nasser Donovan, Esq., is a former trial lawyer with extensive litigation experience. She is a senior SEAK trainer and consultant, and has been on the SEAK Faculty since 2002, having trained hundreds of experts via SEAK’s scheduled courses, customized on site expert witness training programs, and one-on-one consulting. Nadine is the co-author of the SEAK texts, How to Be an Effective Expert Witness at Deposition and Trial: The SEAK Guide to Testifying as an Expert Witness; How to Write an Expert Witness Report and How to Be a Successful Expert Witness: SEAK’s A-Z Guide to Expert Witnessing. She is licensed to practice law in New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. In addition, Nadine is a Legal Writing Instructor at Boston University School of Law. Nadine also serves as a Dispute Resolution Arbitrator for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Nadine previously practiced litigation for 21 years. She spent 18 years in the defense of medical professionals in medical malpractice actions and before medical licensing boards. Nadine started off her legal career in New York City, first as a prosecutor in Queens, and then as counsel for the City of New York. Nadine received her J.D. cum laude from Boston College Law School. She graduated from Fordham University summa cum laude with a B.A. in French Literature. She can be contacted at 617-791-4282 or nadine@seak.com 


How to Excel at Expert Witness Report Writing: Essentials and Failures

Kevin Rider, PhD, PE, CPE
Dr. Rider will discuss and demonstrate, with examples, the essentials that need to be covered in your expert witness report, and what to avoid. He will explain how excellent reports are used and the difference in style and substance between reports and affidavits. Dr. Rider will review how to write an effective rebuttal report. He will demonstrate, with examples, how to explain your methodology and will offer practical suggestions for how to write an effective excellent report.  

rider.jpgKevin Rider, PhD, PE, CPE is a human factors expert and owner of Forensic Human Factors, LLC, providing investigations, reports and expert testimony for personal injury cases – plaintiff and defense. His expertise involves investigating how people interact with other people, products and environments in predictable ways, and applying this understanding to effective, efficient and safe products, services and systems. He has been retained as an expert in more than 30 states and territories. Dr. Rider is a Professional Engineer (PE), a Certified Professional Ergonomist (CPE), and has served as a human factors consultant since 1999, including five years as a professor at West Virginia University. Dr. Rider attended the University of Tennessee, which conferred his Bachelor and Master degrees in Industrial Engineering. Dr. Rider then received his Ph.D. in Industrial and Operations Engineering from the University of Michigan. Dr. Rider’s research includes driver behavior and distraction, the performance of in-vehicle tasks, and occupational safety. He has demonstrated abilities to explain complex scenarios in easily understood ways, both in the classroom and the courtroom.  

4:30pm – 6:00pm NETWORKING RECEPTION  

DAY TWO: Sunday, April 28, 2019


7:00am – 8:00am   So You Want to Be an Expert? A View from the Bench

The Honorable Jack Zouhary Judge Zouhary will offer insights gleaned from twelve years as a federal trial court judge. Using examples from real cases (including feedback from real juries), he will discuss how effective experts walk the line between authoritative and understandable as they communicate complex material in an adversarial setting. Judge Zouhary will also explain the concept of “hot tubbing,” or concurrent expert evidence -- how it works, when it is used, and what an involved expert witness needs to know.   

zouhary.jpgThe Honorable Jack Zouhary is a federal district court judge in Toledo, Ohio. He graduated cum laude from Dartmouth College (’73) and received his law degree from the University of Toledo (’76) where he was an Associate Editor of the Law Review. He was in private practice with RCO Law until January 2000 when he became Senior Vice President and General Counsel for S. E. Johnson Companies. He was appointed by the Ohio Governor to the State Court of Common Pleas in March 2005, and then nominated by the President to the federal District Court in December 2005, with unanimous Senate confirmation in March 2006. He has served as a visiting district court judge in Alabama, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Michigan, Tennessee, and Texas, and sits by designation on the Sixth and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeals. Judge Zouhary was inducted as a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers (ACTL) in 1995, and is a past Chair of its Judiciary Committee. He also served on the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS) and ACTL Task Force on Discovery and Civil Justice. He is a Master and past President of the Morrison Waite Chapter of the Inns of Court. He currently serves on the Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure of the Judicial Conference of the United States and on the IAALS Advisory Board. 

8:00am – 9:00am Breaking into the Big Leagues: How to Obtain and Excel at Large Cases

Andrew Calman, MD, PhD Dr. Calman will explain and demonstrate, with examples, how to obtain and transition into large and complex expert witness assignments. He will discuss dealing with: large amounts of data and records, time commitments and deadline pressure, higher caliber attorneys, intense deposition and trial preparation, and the intellectual challenges these cases offer. Dr. Calman will offer best practices for excelling at these large and high profile cases.  

calman.jpgAndrew Calman, MD, PhD is an ophthalmologist, associate clinical professor at UC-San Francisco and an experienced expert witness. Dr. Calman has 20 years of experience as an expert witness, including eye injuries, medical malpractice, class-action suits, and patent infringement and antitrust disputes involving ophthalmic pharmaceuticals with billions of dollars in annual sales. He has been qualified as an expert in state and Federal courts, and in the Oberlandesgericht (Higher Regional Court), Frankfurt, Germany.    


9:10am – 10:10am How Lawyers Use the Weaknesses of Expert Witnesses

Douglas Burrell, Esq.
Douglas will explain and demonstrate, with examples, how lawyers research experts, their background, and testimonial history. He will discuss the areas where experts are most vulnerable and how lawyers utilize these weaknesses to neutralize the experts. He will also offer practical advice for experts on how they can avoid problematic actions and inactions.   

burrell.jpgDouglas Burrell is a partner at Drew Eckl & Farnham in Atlanta, GA.  His practice consists of civil defense litigation with an emphasis on wrongful death and catastrophic injury, construction law, premises liability, transportation and trucking law and product liability. Mr. Burrell has been a practicing trial lawyer for over 24 years. He developed comprehensive experience while serving as first chair on more than 40 jury trials and more than 100 bench trials. Mr. Burrell uses his substantial trial experience to counsel companies in evaluating the options and strategies for trial, including the use of pre-trial mediation. He has developed particular experience with national retailers, manufacturers, companies in the food & beverage industry, commercial trucking and transportation companies, furniture and construction companies. 

10:10am – 11:10am Excelling at Your Deposition

Serina Hoover, PsyD, ABPP
Dr. Hoover will explain and demonstrate with examples an effective protocol for preparing to excel at your deposition. She will discuss identifying key issues, analyzing likely areas of inquiry, how and what to practice, working with counsel and by yourself, dealing with intrusive questions, and “difficult” issues and attorneys. Dr. Hoover will provide practical suggestions for excelling at even the most challenging depositions.  

hoover.jpgSerina Hoover, PsyD, ABPP is an award winning psychologist who received her doctoral degree from Pepperdine University. She specializes in neuropsychology of brain injury and has evaluated hundreds of brain injury patients over the course of her career. She is Board Certified by the American Board of Professional Psychology in Rehabilitation Psychology and holds administrative positions on the Board of Directors. She is on staff at the nationally recognized Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center and is the President of Psychological Assessment Center in Orange County. Dr. Hoover is an experienced expert witness and has testified in hundreds of depositions.  


11:20am – 12:20pm How to Avoid Being Disqualified as an Expert Witness

Stephen McConnell, Esq.
Attorney McConnell will discuss what experts need to know about challenges to their disqualifications and methodologies. He will demonstrate, with examples, how experts can best protect themselves against successful challenges. Attorney McConnell will offer practical suggestions for working with counsel to responding to and avoiding disqualification.  

mcconnell.jpgStephen McConnell, Esq. is a partner and trial attorney in the international law firm ReedSmith. Attorney McConnell litigates antitrust, securities, white collar criminal, and mass tort cases throughout the United States. He has tried dozens of cases before juries in federal and state trial courts, with first-chair wins in both government and private practice cases. Attorney McConnell has successfully argued significant matters before federal and state appellate courts. The private practice clients include major consumer products, energy, and real estate companies, among others. Attorney McConnell is an instructor in litigation class at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.  

12:20pm – 1:20pm LUNCH (PROVIDED WITH FACULTY)  


How to Run a More Profitable Expert Witness Practice

James J. Mangraviti, Jr., Esq.
Attorney Mangraviti will provide numerous practical tips for building a more financially successful expert witness practice. He will explain why an expert witness is most often best served by thinking long term and taking a holistic approach to business development and marketing. Such an approach includes addressing areas such as: client service, case selection, subspecialty (niche) positioning, quality, time management, marketing/business development, and fees/billings/collections.  

mangraviti-larger-circle.jpgJames J. Mangraviti, Jr., Esq., has vast experience assisting experts to grow and expand their practices. He has trained thousands of expert witnesses through seminars, conferences, corporate training, training for professional societies and one-on-one training/mentoring. He is also frequently retained by experts as a 1-1 consultant to draft personalized marketing plans and assist with business development. Atty. Mangraviti is a former litigator with experience in defense and plaintiff personal injury law and insurance law. He currently serves as Principal of the expert witness training company SEAK, Inc. (www.testifyingtraining.com). Atty. Mangraviti received his BA degree in mathematics summa cum laude from Boston College and his JD degree cum laude from Boston College Law School. He is the co-author of thirty-one books, including: How to Be a Successful Expert Witness: SEAK’s A-Z Guide to Expert Witnessing and How to Market Your Expert Witness Practice: Evidence-Based Best Practices. He can be reached at 978-276-1234 or jim@seak.com


How to be an Effective Teaching Expert

Randall Bell, PhD, MAI
Extensive research has shown that experts who teach the judge/jury/fact finder are the most effective expert witnesses. In this session Dr. Bell will explain and demonstrate with examples, how experts can excel at teaching. He will discuss using demonstratives, including graphs, charts, timelines, etc., make the complex understandable and memorable, showing passion for the subject, and empathy for the fact finder. Dr. Bell will provide best practices for becoming an excellent teaching expert.  

bell-randall.jpgRandall Bell, PhD, MAI is a real estate damages expert and a highly experienced teacher and expert witness. Dr. Bell leads the Landmark Research Group, LLC. He served as the CEO of Bell Anderson and Sanders, LLC for 15 years and led the Real Estate Damages practice of Price Waterhouse, which later merged to become PricewaterhouseCoopers. Dr. Bell consulted on the World Trade Center, the Flight 93 Crash Site, Hurricane Katrina, the BP Oil Spill, the Bikini Atoll Nuclear Test Sites, the Sargent Yokoi Cave in Guam, the San Bruno Pipeline Explosion, the Anniston Alabama spill, the Heaven’s Gate Mansion, the Canadian Government UXO site, the OJ Simpson Crime Scene, the Tulum Mexico Resort, the Sandy Hook School Shooting and many others. Dr. Bell is an instructor for the Appraisal Institute.  



Attracting Clients to Your Website: Blog Post and Search Engine Optimization

Homer R. Peterson II, PE, CSP
Mr. Peterson will explain and demonstrate with examples how experts can effectively drive traffic to their websites. He will discuss: blog posts, above the fold content, do’s and don’ts, keywords, headers, and header tags, long and short tailed, and tracking your SEO google rankings. Mr. Peterson will provide practical suggestions for the use of search engine optimization and blog posts to increase traffic to your website.  

peterson.jpgHomer R. Peterson II, PE, CSP is president of Peterson Construction Consulting, Inc. and is an experienced expert witness. He specializes in occupational health and safety management systems, standards of care, wrongful death, personal injury, negligence, construction, safety, falls from height, fall protection, high-rise construction, OSHA matters, and steel erection. He provides consulting services, including expert witness services, to attorneys, insurance carriers, and companies engaged in both construction and general industry. Mr. Peterson successfully uses blogging and search engine optimization to increase his website traffic.  


How to Exceed the Expectations of Retaining Counsel

Brett Turnbull, Esq.
Attorney Turnbull will explain and demonstrate with examples, how experts can build a positive reputation for assisting retaining counsel effectively. He will discuss accessibility, communication, educating counsel, flexibility on scheduling, fees, report writing, and testifying. Attorney Turnbull will offer practical suggestions for exceeding the expectations of counsel.

turnbull.jpgBrett Turnbull, Esq. is a trial attorney and co-chair of complex litigation practice at Corey Watson. Attorney Turnbull has had more than a decade of successful courtroom experience in complex litigation including trucking cases, products liability, automobile defects, and nursing home malpractice. He received his BS from the University of Alabama and his JD from Cumberland School of Law, Stamford University. He has been honored by the National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40 and a SuperLawyer.  

                                                          Here's What Past Attendees Have to Say:  

“Excellent, excellent use of speakers content areas that were all relevant but diverse with the whole variety of presenters with different style and information to share. Relevant, informative, interesting, and timely.”

“ Great training. I could use several hundred more hours of it. I will be putting what I learned to work next week.”

“ The sessions were definitely worth the time and expense. I would recommend it to anyone in this field.”

“This was my first SEAK conference and it will not be my last. I was hesitant on attending since I was unsure of the quality of the program. I was very pleased and will certainly be recommending it to colleagues.”

“An eye-opening experience.”

“Excellent content”

“Excellent seminar with a very interesting and diverse attendance”

“Excellent speakers and lecture content”

“Excellent, as usual (I am a repeat visitor)”

“Excellent, every session had some relevant information that will help me be a better expert witness.”

“Excellent. One of the best I have attended”

“Fantastic as always!”

“Fantastic seminar, exceeded expectations”

“Fantastic, a plethora of knowledge on a wide variety of subjects relating to expert witness work.”

“Great speakers, very helpful”

“Incredibly valuable”

“It was a great seminar.  Thank you!”

“It was great, Steve! Thank you for asking. Every time to go to one of your programs, I incorporate new concepts into my expert practice.”

“Once again the seminar was amazing.  Thank you for providing this service to experts.”


“Really enjoyed the event.  Very good group of speakers and a high level audience.  Look forward to working with you in the future.”

“Thank y’all for a great experience!  It was fun and very, very helpful.  I hope to do it again in the future.”

“Thank you very much. I found the conference to be extremely informative and well work my time and money.”

“Thanks again for a wonderful conference. One of the best ever.”

“Thanks to all of you.  As always, the conference was outstanding.”

“The conference always re-energizes my batteries”

“The Conference was AWESOME, as always!! Thank you so much for all your effort and I'll see all of you in Clearwater, FLA!!”

“Very helpful”

“Very informative, great speakers”

“You have a great program. So glad to be a part of it. The training is invaluable.”

“This weekend, my first exposure to SEAK, was extremely positive.” 

“Superb speakers! Great course.” 

“Worth every penny of my money.” 

“This is must know information for anyone doing expert witness work.” 

“This is my 10th SEAK course, always meets my expectations.” 

“Very helpful, informative. Wonderful speakers” 

“Very good, lots of useful information” 

“Well-crafted for relevance and a stellar cast of presenters” 

“This is exactly what I needed” 

“Very good seminar — many excellent speakers” 

“First and foremost, as a first year attendee I have to tell you the conference was AMAZING! I walked away with more real-world, directly applicable information than I thought was possible in a weekend. SEAK is an amazing organization and a fantastic resource.” 

“Very smart presenters” 

“Very well organized. High level of professionalism” 

“Impressive-true leaders in the field” 

“Extremely beneficial” 

“The SEAK conference on a scale from 1-10 was an 11. Thank you to you and your team and the professionals who spoke!”  

“Phenomenal, game changer!”

“Tons of helpful information and strategies for expert witnesses”

“Awesome, I will be back”

“Informative and effective. I picked up a wealth of techniques that will change my business practices.”


“Excellent. Lots of great speakers with relevant content and valuable experience”

“Very informative-all presenters knew their stuff”

“Fabulous-I am new to the field and it has been a great foundation to use to build my skills”

“Well organized with a nice variety of topic areas and targeting various levels of experience.”

“High class and informative.”

“Fabulous, exciting”

“Engaging presenters who understood what was expected of them”

“I appreciated all of the preparedness of the professionals speaking.” 

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