In The News
The latest happenings at the law firm of Butt Thornton & Baehr, PC
JAMES H. JOHANSEN PRESENTS AT THE NEW MEXICO STATE BAR CENTER
On February 2, Mr. Johansen presented “Ethical Problems Faced By Insurance Defense Lawyers” to a large group of attorneys whose regular practice involves insurance defense. Mr. Johansen’s presentation entailed a lively discussion of current ethical issues and offered participants to critically think and respond to ethical questions presented during the discussion. Many of Mr. Johansen’s ethical topics and questions were based on situations he has experienced during his thirty years in practice.
Mr. Johansen is a shareholder at Butt Thornton & Baehr, PC, and regularly practices in the areas of general liability, complex litigation, construction law, professional liability, and insurance coverage matters.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATE ATTORNEYS KATHARINE F. GRIFFING AND JOSHUA D. SCHWARTZ
Butt Thornton and Baehr welcomes two new associates, Katharine F. Griffing and Joshua D. Schwartz.
Katharine Griffing attending the University of Texas and University of Texas School of Law where she obtained her juris doctorate in 2001. Prior to joining Butt Thornton & Baehr PC, Ms. Griffing resided in New York City where she worked at two international law firms and focused on complex civil litigation. Ms. Griffing is a career litigator and looks forward to expanding that practice at Butt Thornton & Baehr PC.
Joshua Schwartz attended Harvard University and the University of New Mexico School of Law where he obtained his juris doctorate in 2013. Prior to joining Butt Thornton & Baehr PC, Mr. Schwartz served as a judicial law clerk at the New Mexico Court of Appeals and later worked as an executive director of a non-profit in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Mr. Schwartz looks forward to focusing his practice of law in the areas of complex civil litigation and appeals.
NEYSA E. LUJAN AND RYAN T. SANDERS NAMED SHAREHOLDERS OF BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC
Congratulations to Neysa E. Lujan and Ryan T. Sanders who were elected as shareholders of Butt Thornton & Baehr PC!
Ms. Lujan is an alumnus of the University of New Mexico and graduated from St. Mary’s University School of Law in 2010. She has been selected as a Southwest Super Lawyer Rising Star in 2014, 2015, and 2016, and focuses her practice of law primarily on the defense of employers in workers compensation matters.
Mr. Sanders is an alumnus of the University of New Mexico and graduated from the University of New Mexico School of Law in 2008. He has been selected as a Southwest Super Lawyer Rising Star in 2014, 2015, and 2016. Mr. Sanders represents clients in the areas of trucking and transportation, construction law, professional liability, and complex civil litigation.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR, PC PARTICIPATES IN MAKING STRIDES OF ALBUQUERQUE IN SUPPORT OF THE AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY
On October 22, 2016, Butt Thornton & Baehr attorneys, staff, friends, and family participated in Making Strides of Albuquerque, an annual five mile fundraising walk and celebration that supports Making Strides Against Breast Cancer, a division of the American Cancer Society. Participants celebrated the strides made in the fight against breast cancer, expressed a shared determination to continue that fight, and raised over $164,000.00 among the 360 teams of participants.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATE ATTORNEYS ALLISON M. BEAULIEU AND JASON J. PATTON
Butt Thornton and Baehr welcomes two new associates, Allison M. Beaulieu and Jason J. Patton.
Allison Beaulieu attended the University of Kansas School of Law for one year before transferring to the UNLV’s William S. Boyd School of Law, where she obtained her juris doctorate in 2014. Prior to joining Butt Thornton & Baehr, Mrs. Beaulieu served as an Assistant District Attorney with the Office of the District Attorney for the Second Judicial District and later served as an Assistant City Attorney for the City of Albuquerque in the Litigation Division.
Jason Patton attended the University of New Mexico School of Law where he obtained his juris doctorate in 2016. Although born and raised in Albuquerque, Mr. Patton attended to University of Denver for his undergraduate degree where he graduated with honors. Prior to attending law school, Mr. Patton spent approximately fifteen years in the construction business, having extensive experience in both commercial and residential construction.
RYAN SANDERS PARTICIPATES IN CONSTITUTION DAY AT APACHE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
An event that Ryan T. Sanders participates in on a yearly basis, Constitution Day is an opportunity for members of the legal community to present and teach the U.S. Constitution to fifth grade students around New Mexico. This year, Mr. Sanders presented and taught constitutional law to all fifth grade students at Apache Elementary School, here in Albuquerque. Along with a presentation conducted by Mr. Sanders, students are given opportunities to ask questions, engage in the presentation, and are provided with their very own pocket-sized U.S. Constitution.
S. CAROLYN RAMOS AND AGNES FUENTEVILLA PADILLA ARE FEATURED PRESENTERS AT WOMEN IN THE COURTROOM: UNITING FOR SUCCESS
On August 5, 2016, Butt Thornton & Baehr Shareholders S. Carolyn Ramos and Agnes Fuentevilla Padilla presented during the New Mexico Defense Lawyer’s Association’s sixth installment of Women in the Courtroom: Uniting for Success. Ms. Ramos, who additionally serves as the Program Chair for the event, presented “Defending the Unpopular Client: Effective Ways to Humanize the ‘Bad Guy’.” Ms. Fuentevilla presented “Problem-Solving From the Second Chair: Getting Heard and Getting Results.”
Ms. Ramos is the program chair for all six Women in the Courtroom Seminars. She is a shareholder and director at Butt Thornton & Baehr PC where her litigation and trial practice focuses on the defense of personal injury cases.
Ms. Padilla is the Vice-President and Shareholder at Butt Thornton & Baehr PC where her practice is focused on complex civil litigation, employment litigation, general liability and government entities and civil rights litigation.
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR “BEST LAWYERS IN AMERICA ©” SELECTIONS
Congratulations to Neil Blake, Michael Clemens, Al Green, and James Johansen who have been recognized in the 2017 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America ©. Best Lawyers is a peer-reviewed publication which uses confidential peer-review surveys to recognize outstanding attorneys.
GALE JOHNSON VOLUNTEERS AT THE NEW MEXICO ASSOCIATION OF LEGAL ADMINISTRATORS’ COMMUNITY CONNECTION EVENT
On June 18, 2016, Butt Thornton and Baehr Office Manager, Gale Johnson, volunteered at the New Mexico Association of Legal Administrators’ Community Connection annual family barbecue for Crossroads for Women.
Crossroads for Women is a local non-profit organization that provides comprehensive, integrated services to support women working to break the cycle of homelessness and incarceration. The organization helps women achieve healthy, stable, and self-sufficient lives in the community for themselves and their children.
The annual barbeque was a huge success and included field day games, toys for the kids, great food, and wonderful company!
BUTT THORNTON AND BAEHR CELEBRATES THIRTEENTH ANNUAL LAW CLERK LUNCH
Thank you to the 2016 Butt Thornton and Baehr’ law clerks, Felicia Cantwell (2L), Ellie Perkins (1L), and Michelle Timm (2L) for hosting the thirteenth annual BTB Law Clerk Lunch. This year’s lunch brought Brazil and the spirit of Olympic Games to the plaza. The lunch included a hand-made Olympic ring sign, waterfall, great food, and wonderful company!
Thank you to our terrific summer law clerks and office manager, Gale Johnson, for continuing this great Butt Thornton and Baehr’ tradition!
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATE JAY J. ATHEY
Butt Thornton and Baehr welcomes new associate Jay J. Athey.
Jay Athey was born and raised in northern Virginia. He graduated from Flagler College in St. Augustine, Florida with a degree in Communication, in 2007. In 2011, he graduated cum laude from Florida State University College of Law in 2011.
Before joining Butt Thornton and Baehr, Mr. Athey practiced civil litigation defense in Florida and Colorado. In his free time, he enjoys golf, biking, live music and spending time with his family.
LINDA MURPHY ASSISTS AT YOUNG LAWYERS DIVISION WILLS FOR HEROES EVENT
On April 23, 2016, Butt Thornton and Baehr, paralegal, Linda Murphy helped serve thirty-five first responders at the Wills for Heroes, hosted by the New Mexico Young Lawyers Division, at the Santa Fe County Station. The YLD Wills for Heroes Program provides simple wills, powers of attorney, and advanced health care directives for first responders. Ms. Murphy served as a volunteer witness and notary.
CONGRATULATIONS TO SCOTT OWEN
Congratulations to Scott Owen for finishing The Milkman Triathlon June 4, 2016 in Roswell, New Mexico!
NEYSA LUJAN TRIES SEVENTH WORKERS’ COMPENSATION TRIAL
On June 2, 2016, Neysa Lujan tried her seventh Workers’ Compensation case in Dona Ana County testing the definition of a seasonal employee and the correct calculation of the Worker’s average weekly wage and compensation rate.
Ms. Lujan specializes in Workers’ Compensation law and assists employers, carriers, and self-insured groups in defending workers’ disability compensation claims.
Congratulations to Ms. Lujan on yet another successful trial!
BUTT THORNTON AND BAEHR PARTICIPATES IN SECOND JUDICIAL DISTRICT PRO BONO CLINIC
On June 1, 2016, Butt Thornton and Baehr participated in the annual Second Judicial District Pro Bono Legal Clinic. The Clinic, organized by New Mexico Legal Aid, is held on the first Wednesday of every month at the Second Judicial District Courthouse in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Thanks to the assistance of seven attorneys and one paralegal from Butt Thornton and Baehr, more than twenty individuals received assistance at the June Clinic.
Many thanks to Sherrill Filter, Amy Headrick, Charles Kraft, Quiana Salazar-King, Rod Schlagel, Scott Stromberg, and Arslan Umarov for volunteering their time and expertise for this important event! Special thanks to Delight Rylance, Butt Thornton and Baehr paralegal, for assisting with the screening of clients and conflict checks!
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATES CHARLES B. KRAFT AND ARSLAN S. UMAROV
Butt Thornton and Baehr welcomes two new associates, Charles B. Kraft and Arslan S. Umarov.
Charles Kraft graduated from the University of New Mexico School of Law in 2013. While at UNM School of Law, he served as a Professional Articles Editor, on the New Mexico Law Review, and received Clinical Honors and the Dean’s Award for Significant Contribution to the Law School Community.
Before joining Butt Thornton and Baehr, Mr. Kraft worked as an Assistant Attorney General in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he practiced open government/transparency law and worked as general counsel to various governmental entities, aiding them in litigation, administrative rule making, and licensure matters. Thereafter, Mr. Kraft joined the Public Defender’s office, where he represented clients from arraignment through trial with a particular emphasis in DWI. Outside of work, Mr. Kraft is a husband, father, and avid Yankees fan!
Arslan Umarov graduated from Texas Tech University School of Law in 2011. Mr. Umarov is originally from Uzbekistan and immigrated to the United States as a teenager, following the collapse of the Soviet Union. He attended the University of Memphis located in Memphis, Tennessee, where he graduated cum laude in 2004. Thereafter, Mr. Umarov worked for for-profit, as well as non-profit, companies before going to law school.
Following law school, Mr. Umarov accepted a position at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services where he worked on reforms to the Affordable Care Act. Later he worked as an associate for John D. Wheeler in Alamogordo, New Mexico, where he had a well-rounded practice including personal injury, medical malpractice, and Indian law. Outside of the office, Mr. Umarov enjoys hiking, cross-country skiing, and spending time with his wife and two children.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR CELEBRATES JANE A. LAFLIN’S THIRTIETH ANNIVERSARY
On Tuesday, May 17, 2016 Butt Thornton & Baehr honored Jane Laflin for over thirty years of service and dedication to the firm at a luncheon hosted at Hotel Albuquerque.
Ms. Laflin joined Butt Thornton & Baehr as a law clerk on December 20, 1985. After graduation from the University of New Mexico School of Law, she joined the firm as an associate on October 5, 1987. Ms. Laflin became a shareholder of Butt Thornton & Baehr in December of 1993.
Ms. Laflin’s practice focuses primarily on complex civil litigation and general liability. She has successfully tried several cases throughout New Mexico and has litigated cases at both the Appellate and Supreme Court levels.
Ms. Laflin continues to enjoy the practice of law and is grateful for her continued friendships at Butt Thornton & Baehr.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATE JONATHAN A. ELMS
Mr. Elms received a bachelor of arts and a master’s of art in business management from Texas Tech University in 201 and 2002. He graduated from the University of Houston Law Center in 2006, In 2014, he finished a master’s certification in wind energy management.
Mr. Elms’ practice focuses primarily on Workers’ Compensation defense, business and commercial transactions, estate planning and probate. When not practicing law, Mr. Elms enjoys spending time with his family, golfing, skiing, and serving on both church and government boards.
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE 2016 BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR SUPER LAWYERS
Congratulations to the Butt Thornton & Baehr 2016 Southwest Super Lawyers!
Each year Super Lawyers recognizes attorneys who have distinguished themselves in their legal practice. The selection includes third-party validation of the lawyers’ professional accomplishments.
Butt Thornton and Baehr 2016 Southwest Super Lawyers include:
Monica R. Garcia: Personal Injury Products Defense
Alfred L. Green, Jr.: Environmental
W. Ann Maggiore: Medical Malpractice Defense
Agnes Fuentevilla Padilla: Employment & Labor
Butt Thornton and Baehr 2016 Southwest Rising Stars include:
Felicia C. Boyd: General Litigation
Neysa E. Lujan: Workers’ Compensation
M. Scott Owen: Workers’ Compensation
Ryan T. Sanders: Civil Litigation Defense
Scott Stromberg: Medical Malpractice Defense
Geoffrey White: Civil Litigation Defense
JANE A. LAFLIN LITIGATES SEMINAL CASE ON INDEMNIFICATION IN NEW MEXICO
Jane A. Laflin of Butt Thornton & Baehr and Emily Franke (retired from Butt Thornton & Baehr) represented Rooter 2000 Plumbing and Drain SSS in a seminal case on indemnification in New Mexico.
The New Mexico Supreme Court decided Safeway, Inc. v. Rooter 2000 Plumbing and Drain SSS, No. S-1-SC-33969, slip op. (N.M. Sup. Ct. February 18, 2016). The case arises out of a cross-claim for contractual and traditional indemnification. The complaint alleges that Plaintiffs, Briana Fierro and Jason Fierro, suffered injuries when a baby changing table collapsed in a Safeway store, and that the collapse was the result of negligence on the part of Safeway, Inc. (Safeway) and Rooter 2000 Plumbing and Drain SSS (Rooter).
The New Mexico Supreme Court in a detailed decision carefully reviewed whether the right to traditional indemnification is available notwithstanding New Mexico’s adoption of comparative fault where the jury compares and apportions fault among concurrent tortfeasors and whether the contract between Rooter and Safeway is void and unenforceable under NMSA 1978, Section 56-7-1 (1971, amended 2005, (Real property; indemnity agreements.)
The Supreme Court after reviewing the genesis of traditional indemnification and the adoption of contribution and comparative negligence, held that traditional indemnity does not apply when the jury finds a tortfeasor actively at fault and apportions liability using comparative fault principles. The Court also held that the duty to insure and defend provision of the Contract between Rooter and Safeway is void and unenforceable under NMSA 1978, Section 56-7-1 (1971, amended 2005).
W. ANN MAGGIORE PRESENTER AT NATIONAL EMS MEDICAL DRECTORS COURSE & PRACTICUM
W. Ann Maggiore will be a featured speaker at the 2016 National Emergency Medical Service (EMS) Medical Directors Course and Practicum in January. The annual meeting will be held at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego, California from January 11 through January 13, 2016. Ms. Maggiore will be discussing “Legal Issues in Medical Direction” and “Legal Cases and Medical Direction.”
Ms. Maggiore serves on the faculty of The National Association of EMS Physicians (NAEMSP). NAEMSP is a peer group organization which serves as a resource and advocate for EMS physicians and other EMS personnel. Since its inception in 1984, NAEMSP membership has grown to include over a thousand physicians, paramedics, nurses, administrators, educators, researchers, and EMS personnel from across the country.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATE MARC T. SHUTER
Mr. Shuter graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2008 where he graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English. In 2012 he graduated magna cum laude from the University of New Mexico School of Law. While in law school he earned the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for Constitutional Rights and the Faculty Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Law School Community.
Prior to joining Butt Thornton & Baehr, Mr. Shuter worked for a medical malpractice defense firm and as an Assistant District Attorney prosecuting white collar, violent, and property crime. He is admitted to practice law in New Mexico state and federal courts.
Mr. Shuter is also an accomplished independent filmmaker and has received recognition in many international film festivals and contests. In his spare time, he volunteers with the New Mexico Lawyers for the Arts, the Albuquerque Film Office, and for the New Mexico Film Foundation to provide legal assistance to independent filmmakers.
PHILLIP W. CHEVES AND SCOTT F. STROMBERG NAMED SHAREHOLDERS OF BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC
Congratulations to Phillip W. Cheves and Scott F. Stromberg who were named shareholders of Butt Thornton & Baehr PC in 2016!
Mr. Cheves is an alumnus of Abilene Christian University and graduated from Pepperdine University School of Law in 1991. He is admitted to practice law in New Mexico, Texas, and federal courts. Mr. Cheves has represented clients in a variety of areas including complex civil litigation, premises liability, domestic relations, criminal matters, and general liability.
Mr. Stromberg is an alumnus of the University of New Mexico and graduated from the University of New Mexico School of Law in 2010. He is admitted to practice law in New Mexico state and federal courts. Mr. Stromberg has represented clients in a variety of civil matters including complex civil litigation, trucking and transportation, and products liability. His practice now primarily focuses on medical and health care liability defense.
JANE A. LAFLIN AND SHAWN CUMMINGS PRESENTERS AT NATIONAL BUSINESS INSTITUTE SEMINAR
On December 18, 2014 Jane A. Laflin and Shawn Cummings presented at the National Business Institute (NBI) Continued Legal Education (CLE) seminar regarding Advanced Issues in Personal Injury Litigation.
Ms. Laflin’s presentation included a Legislative and Case Law Update regarding federal and state rules and procedures, insurance law, case law, trends in personal injury, and advanced case assessment.
Mr. Cumming’s presentation focused on Advanced Coverage Analysis. Mr. Cummings discussed the collateral source rule, advanced policy and coverage analysis for UM/UIM and premises liability cases, stacking, and offsets.
MICHAEL CLEMENS, EMILY FRANKE, AND JAMES JOHANSEN SELECTED AS 2016 BEST LAWYERS
Congratulations to Michael Clemens, Emily Franke, and James Johansen who were listed in the 2016 Best Lawyers for their expertise in insurance law. Best Lawyers is an annual publication meant to recognize leading lawyers for their professional abilities. These lawyers are nominated and voted on by their colleagues within the same geographical area and legal practice.
THE NEW MEXICO DEFENSE LAWYERS ASSOCIATION HONORS PAST PRESIDENTS INCLUDING JAMES H. JOHANSEN AND S. CAROLYN RAMOS
On September 25, 2015 the New Mexico Defense Lawyers Association (“NMDLA”) celebrated the 30th anniversary of its founding by honoring the Association’s past presidents who have successfully lead the organization in its service to New Mexico civil defense lawyers. Among the esteemed honorees, the NMDLA recognized James H. Johansen, NMDLA President 1995, and S. Carolyn Ramos, NMDLA President 2009. Ms. Ramos continues her service as a member of the NMDLA’s Board of the Directors.
CONGRATULATIONS TO MARIA S. DUDLEY WHO PASSED THE NEW MEXICO BAR EXAM!
Congratulations to Maria S. Dudley who passed the New Mexico Bar Exam on September 10, 2015! Ms. Dudley clerked for Butt Thornton and Baehr in the summer of 2014 and will join the firm as an associate at the end of September.
BUTT THORNTON & BAEHR PC WELCOMES NEW ASSOCIATE AMY E. HEADRICK
Ms. Headrick graduated from The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in 1991 where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. After graduation, she spent two years in Japan, where she studied Japanese language, history, and culture while working for Biwako-Kisen. In 1998 she graduated magna cum laude from Tulane University School of Law receiving the distinction of Order of the Coif and the Lemle Kelleher award for the top graduate in the Admiralty Program. While at Tulane Ms. Headrick served on the Maritime Law Journal and was on the Appellate Law Clinic.
Ms. Headrick practiced at an insurance defense firm and practiced special education law at a non-profit organization in Alaska, before relocating to New Mexico. She worked as an attorney editor for West Publishing for many years, before becoming licensed in New Mexico in 2014. She is admitted to practice law in New Mexico state courts, the New Mexico Federal District Court, and the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.
MONICA R. GARCIA ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE NEW MEXICO FEDERAL BAR ASSOCIATION
Congratulations to Monica Garcia who was elected President of the New Mexico Chapter of the Federal Bar Association. The Federal Bar Association is the premier bar association serving the federal practitioner and judiciary. The mission of the Association is to strengthen the federal legal system and administration of justice by serving the interests and the needs of the federal practitioner, both public and private, the federal judiciary and the public they serve.