Jon Campisi Jan. 28, 2014, 6:36am


Gary D. McConnell, former vice president and general counsel of Bayer Corp., has joined the national law firm of Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, and will be working as a partner in the firm’s Pittsburgh office.

McConnell will focus his practice in the areas of products liability, mass tort and commercial litigation, the firm announced Monday.

“Gary embodies our firm’s unique approach to assisting clients with complex, high-stakes disputes,” Eckert Seamans CEO Timothy P. Ryan said in a statement. “Many of us have known and worked with Gary for years. He is an outstanding and zealous advocate for his clients, who will bring his many years of diverse business counseling experience to the firm.

“We are very fortunate to have him among our ranks, where we and our clients can benefit from his experience and sound judgment.”

McConnell played a major role in the management of mass tort cases against Bayer during his 15-plus years at the company as a senior-level attorney, according to Eckert Seamans.

“He had direct responsibility for the development and implementation of defense and settlement programs for mass tort and product liability litigation involving a large number of lawsuits, government investigations and insurance issues,” reads a firm news release. “McConnell also participated in the mediation of numerous cases and supervised the handling of U.S. employment litigation.”

In a statement provided by Eckert Seamans, McConnell said he is excited about his new position, and looks forward to “growing the product liability and mass tort practice.

“The move to Eckert Seamans presents an excellent opportunity to collaborate with some of the best litigators in the country and to sustain and expand the firm’s nationally recognized practice,” he stated.

McConnell, his professional biography shows, worked in private practice in St. Louis, Mo. prior to joining Bayer.

He had concentrated primarily on product liability defense work, as well as medical malpractice and admiralty cases.

Before becoming a lawyer, McConnell worked as a police officer in Missouri for more than a half-decade.

During his time in law enforcement, McConnell, while serving as detective, was involved in several high profile cases, including two that resulted in the successful prosecution of corrupt public officials, his bio states.

Eckert Seamans is a 375-attorney-plus firm with offices in 14 locations throughout the country, including Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Southpointe in Pennsylvania.

The firm provides legal services ranging from mass tort and products liability litigation to corporate and business law, labor and employment relations issues and bankruptcy and creditors’ rights matters.

Clients include Fortune 500 companies, financial institutions, newspapers and other media, healthcare organizations, railroads and airlines, and governmental and educational entities.

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