The award will be presented to Neeson Feb. 4 during the TIPS Joint Reception with the International Law Section and Judicial Division of the 2012 ABA Midyear Meeting.
“TIPS is honored to present Peter Neeson with its James K. Carroll Leadership Award,” said section chair Randy Aliment of Seattle. “Peter has shown outstanding leadership of and service to the section over many years. Peter served as chair of the section and developed several unique and top-notch programs for TIPS members including the National Trial Academy and Leadership Academy. These are just a few of the valuable contributions he’s made to TIPS.”
Neeson is a partner with Rawle & Henderson LLP in Philadelphia, where he serves as chair of its Environmental, Toxic and Mass Torts Department. As a practicing trial attorney for 33 years, Neeson has been involved in the defense of numerous toxic tort matters in multi-district and class action cases in both state and federal courts, including formaldehyde, multiple chemical sensitivity, sick building, latex glove, benzene, underground storage tank, orthopedic bone screw, pharmaceutical and asbestos litigation including the defense of over 3,000 such cases against a major manufacturer. He has also participated in the defense of several generators in CERCLA superfund cases. Neeson has been the national coordinating counsel for a major insurance carrier in the FRT litigation and has had national coordinator responsibilities in the asbestos, latex glove and the PPA pharmaceutical drug litigations.
Neeson has shown longtime support of and leadership within TIPS, having served as chair in 2006, chair-elect in 2005 and vice-chair in 2004. He also served as chair of the section’s Products, General Liability and Consumer Law Committee, served on the section’s council and spearheaded the development of the National Trial Academy in conjunction with the National Judicial College in Reno, Nev., which is widely recognized as the premier forum of its kind in which to train young lawyers how to try jury trials.
Neeson also founded the TIPS Leadership Academy, a diversity program designed to develop and train future community and bar leaders.
In addition to his ABA involvement, Neeson is a member of the Defense Research Institute, the Pennsylvania Defense Institute and a past member of the executive committee of the Philadelphia Association of the Defense Counsel.
Neeson earned his B.S. in Aero Space Mechanical Engineering from the University of Notre Dame in 1970 and his J.D. from the University of Miami (cum laude) in 1978. He is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania and New York.
Neeson has been rated AV by Martindale-Hubbell and was individually honored when he was selected by his peers in an extensive nomination and polling process conducted by Law & Politics as one of Pennsylvania’s Super Lawyers from 2004 through 2011.
He has also authored/edited various publications including his efforts as the editor and co-author of a 1995 ABA-TIPS book entitled the Reference Handbook on the Comprehensive General Liability Policy.
Neeson has served in other various leadership roles including vice chairman of the U.S. Olympic Committee for Eastern Pennsylvania, current member of the board of directors of the Philadelphia Sports Congress, the city’s civic/business facilitator for the promotion and development of sporting events in the city, past president of the Philadelphia Amateur Sports Corporation, general counsel and a member of the Executive Committee for Philadelphia Women’s Basketball 2000, the local organizing committee for the NCAA Women’s Final Four basketball tournament and an Executive Committee Member for the 2003 U.S.G.A. Women’s Amateur Golf Championship held in Philadelphia.
More recently, he has been asked to serve as general counsel and chair of the board of the Biotech Foundation, an innovator of new vaccine and biofuels technology and as general counsel and a member of the board of trustees of Philadelphia 2016, Philadelphia’s effort to bid for the summer 2016 Olympics.
The ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section unites plaintiff, defense, insurance, and corporate counsel to advance the civil justice system. TIPS is a national source of expertise in tort, trial and insurance practice and brings lawyers together to share information and speak out on issues of importance. The section has about 25,000 members and 32 general committees that focus on substantive and procedural matters in areas across the broad spectrum of civil law and practice. For more information about the Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section visit the TIPS website, www.americanbar.org/tips.
With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the world’s largest voluntary professional membership organization. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.