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May 10, 2021 Section News

FLS Nominating Committee Posts Slate

Section members will elect Section of Family Law Officers and Council Members for the 2021–2022 bar year at the 2021 ABA Family Law Section’s Annual Business Meeting this summer. To be eligible to vote, an individual must be registered for the meeting and be a nonstudent member of the Section whose good standing can be certified by official Association records for thirty days prior to the day of the voting. Here are the Officer and Council nominees:


one position, one-year term

Thad F. Woody, Atlanta, GA

Thad Woody is the executive partner with the law firm of Kessler & Solomiany, LLC in Atlanta, where his practice focuses exclusively on family law matters. He also serves as an adjunct professor at Georgia State College of Law, where he teaches family law and domestic litigation. Thad has extensive experience representing clients in matters relating to divorce, child support, child custody, prenuptial agreements, legitimation and paternity actions. He has successfully represented a variety of clients including notable entertainers, athletes, and high-profile executives. Thad is trained as a Guardian ad Litem and has performed pro bono services on behalf of the Atlanta Lawyers Foundation.

Thad has been an active member of the American Bar Association Family Law Section for over a decade and currently serves as the vice chair of the Section. Additionally, he served for three years as the co-chair of the Continuing Legal Education Committee, where he was responsible for planning legal education opportunities for members of the Section throughout the country. He has served on various Section Committees, including Strategic Planning, Nominating, and Finance. He also takes a special interest in expanding the reach of the Section and has worked as both a chair of the Diversity Committee and the Fellowship program to further promote diversity and inclusion initiatives within the Section.

Thad received a bachelor of arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he also served as senior class president.He earned his juris doctor from the University of North Carolina School of Law. Following law school, he served as a law clerk to Chief Justice Sarah E. Parker of the North Carolina Supreme Court. Thad is a member of the United States Supreme Court, Georgia State Bar, North Carolina State Bar, and the Supreme Court of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and is frequently listed as both a Super Lawyer by Atlanta Magazine and a Legal Elite by Georgia Trend.


one position, one-year term

Brian M. Karpf, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Brian M. Karpf is a partner with Young, Berman, Karpf, and Karpf, P.A., in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He is a Florida Bar Board-Certified Family Law Attorney and Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator. Brian is a fellow in both the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) and international Academy of Family Lawyers (IAFL). He focuses his law practice exclusively in the areas of family and divorce law, including litigation, appeals, mediation, prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, surrogacy and assisted reproductive technology matters, and Hague Convention international child-abduction cases.

Brian is presently the secretary of the ABA Family Law Section. He has served on the Executive Council of the ABA Family Law Section since 2010 and has chaired and/or served on nearly every substantive Section Committee. He continues to chair committees while serving as the Section’s secretary.

Brian was appointed by the president of the Florida Bar to serve on its Family Law Rules Committee until 2017, and he was elected to the Board of Governors of the Florida Bar’s Young Lawyer’s Division, a role he held until he aged out. He now focuses his efforts almost exclusively on the ABA Family Law Section, attending every Conference and nearly every committee meeting, including those he no longer officially sits on. He served on the Board of Directors of KidSide, whose mission is to provide funding to ensure that Family Court Services serve the needs of children and parents suffering from family conflict. He now sits on the Board of Directors of LEV Traveling Children’s Museum. He is also a fellow of the Florida Bar’s Leadership Academy.

Brian is a frequent author and presenter on a variety of family law and social media topics. He was named by Super Lawyers as a Rising Star in Family Law for every year since 2013. In 2014 he was honored by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation as one of South Florida’s Top 40 Lawyers Under Age 40. He also received the Rising Star Award in South Florida Business and Wealth’s Leaders in Law awards. He is also recognized as one of the Best Lawyers in America in the field of Family Law.


one position, one-year term

Lyne Ranson, Charleston, WV

Lyne Ranson is located in Charleston, West Virginia. She has been an attorney for thirty-eight years, now exclusively practicing and mediating family law matters. She is the founding member of one of the largest law firms in the state devoted solely to family law matters. For the last several years she has served as chair of the West Virginia State Bar family law committee. Lyne has been very active in the ABA Family Law Section with broad experience as CLE co-chair, serving on Council, the Long Range Planning committee, chairing the alimony and marital property committees as well as being appointed to the Nominating and Finance committees. Lyne was selected as a fellow in the AAML and serves on their Board of Governors. She has been a state, local, and national family law speaker, presenting topics on alimony, valuing marital property, client management, dividing family businesses, and prenuptial agreements. Lyne was previously a Trial Advocacy Skills instructor for many years at WVU College of Law and at the U.S. Department of Justice, when she was a federal Asst. U.S. Attorney. She was elected as the Second Circuit Court judge in the state. She enjoys traveling, family, and spending time in Florida at her second home.

House of Delegates

one position, three-year term

Anita M. Ventrelli, Chicago, IL

Anita M. Ventrelli is a senior partner of Schiller DuCanto and Fleck LLP, a firm that practices family law exclusively. Apart from her firm life, Anita serves on the Board and Faculty of the ABA Family Law Section/NITA Trial Advocacy Institute and as a Delegate in the ABA House of Delegates. Anita also serves on the Board of the Schiller DuCanto and Fleck Family Law Center at DePaul University College of Law, where she also teaches Family Law Legal Writing. Anita’s peers respect her courtroom results and have recommended her for inclusion amongst a group of elite family law practitioners. Since 1997, she has been a fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. In 2019 DePaul University College of Law honored Anita with the Distinguished Alumna Award, In 2003, the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin named her one of “40 Attorneys Under 40 Illinois Attorneys to Watch” and in 2014 named her to the “40 Under 40 Hall of Fame.” Since 2005, she has been recognized as an Illinois Super Lawyer named a Top 100 Super Lawyer and a Top 50 Woman Super Lawyer in 2021. Anita has also been included in the Leading Lawyers Network and the Best Lawyers in America.

Council, At-Large

two positions, three-year terms

Rebecca A. Simpson, Bowling Green, KY

Rebecca Simpson is a partner with English, Lucas, Priest & Owsley, LLP in her hometown of Bowling Green, Kentucky, where she serves as both the Family Law Practice Group Chair and the Diversity & Inclusion Chair for her firm. Extensively trained in both mediation and collaborative process, Rebecca focuses her practice on family law and alternative dispute resolution, namely adoption, divorce, and mediation. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, and, using compassion, expertise, and a team approach, she guides clients through some of the most important decisions in their lives. Outside of her work as a partner, Rebecca is an active member of many local, state, national, and international professional associations and serves a leader within many of these organizations. Within the ABA Family Law Section, she currently serves on the CLE Committee and has served three terms as chair of the ADR Committee. By appointment of the Kentucky Supreme Court, Simpson currently serves as chair of the IOLTA Board of Trustees, and she is serving her second term as a KBA trial commissioner. In recent years, Rebecca has also served as chair of both the KBA Family Law and ADR Sections. Her work has been recognized through several awards, and she has held numerous leadership roles in her community. She is a frequent panelist for legal presentations and has taught pre-law courses at Western Kentucky University. Previously a legal services attorney, Rebecca remains dedicated to public service, serving as a Guardian ad Litem for children in her community and volunteering with a mediation program for low-income families that she helped to develop and implement. She is an honors graduate of the University of Louisville, Louis D. Brandeis School of Law and has been practicing law in Kentucky for more than twenty-one years.

Andy Wilson, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Andy Wilson joined Young, Berman, Karpf & Karpf as an associate in February 2017. He is now the senior associate at the firm working in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Palm Beach, and Naples. Andy is certified as a Family Trial Advocate by the National Institute of Trial Advocacy and has devoted nearly 100% of his practice to marital and family law litigation, including divorce, child custody, and Hague Convention issues from case intake through trial and appellate proceedings. Andy has been appointed as an Attorney ad Litem in family law proceedings and is trained in Collaborative Family Law. Andy is actively involved in the ABA Family Law Section, chairing or vice-chairing the Diversity, Custody, and Health and Wellness Committees.

While in law school, Andy was a finalist in the 1L Moot Court Competition and was subsequently elected as a Vice President of the University of Miami School of Law Moot Court Board. Andy received the Dean’s Certificate of Achievement in Family Law, a recognition given to the student with the top grade in the class. Outside of the office during non-COVID times, Andy enjoys boating and is the co-captain of an intramural sports team based in South Beach. During COVID, he has mostly been enjoying Netflix and UberEats.

Council, Region II

one position, three-year term

Adam J. Turbowitz, Hollywood, FL

Adam represents clients in all aspects of complex matrimonial and family law cases. While Adam makes every effort to resolve cases before litigation has even commenced, he is an able and skilled litigator, having litigated and tried a variety of cases and issues throughout his career. To enhance his practice, Adam holds an LL.M. in taxation, allowing him to thoughtfully analyze tax-related issues that arise in matrimonial disputes. Prior to joining the firm, Adam practiced at a boutique matrimonial law firm in Manhattan, advising high-net-worth individuals in family law disputes. Adam is a leader in the field. He has been a member of the Council of the American Bar Association’s Family Law Section since 2018 and currently serves that Section in a variety of leadership positions. He is also an active member of the Executive Committee of the New York State Bar Association’s Family Law Section, serving as co-chair of the Membership Committee. From 2014 to 2016, Adam served on that Section’s Executive Committee as the Young Lawyers’ Section Liaison. Adam is also a member of the New York City Bar Association’s Matrimonial Law Committee, and is a fellow of the American Bar Foundation. Adam has lectured on a variety of continuing legal education programs for the New York State Bar Association, and his article on the recent amendment to the New York Domestic Relations Law was recently published in the New York Law Journal. Adam has been recognized by Super Lawyers as a Rising Star since 2014.

Council, Region IV

one position, three-year term

Rachael K. Pirner, Wichita, KS

After graduating from law school at the University of Nebraska in 1989, Rachael K. Pirner began her practice with the law firm Triplett Woolf Garretson, LLC, in Wichita, Kansas, where she remains today.

Approximately 40% of Rachael’s practice involves the representation of parties in assisted reproductive technology (ART) and adoption. She has worked on many egg donor agreements, sperm donor agreements, embryo donation agreements, gestational carrier agreements, parentage actions, and adoptions. Due to her ART expertise, she has assisted the Kansas Family Law Judicial Council Advisory Committee in revisions to the Uniform Parentage Act. She also specializes in probate-related litigation including guardianships, conservatorships, trusts, and decedents’ estates. She has represented clients in numerous evidentiary hearings and bench trials, has tried cases at the district court level, and has argued cases before the Kansas Court of Appeals and Kansas Supreme Court.

Rachael served in all offices of the Kansas Bar Association, after serving as governor to the Kansas Bar Association Board of Governors. She has been active in the Wichita Women Attorneys Association and held all offices of Wichita Women Attorneys Association as well as serving on that board. She has served all offices in the Kansas Women Attorneys Association and served on that board. Rachael continued to serve on the Kansas Bar Association Board of Governors while serving two terms as Kansas Bar Association delegate to the American Bar Association House of Delegates and currently serves on the Kansas Bar Association Board of Governors in her new capacity as the Kansas State delegate to the American Bar Association House of Delegates. Rachael is the Kansas State chair for the American Bar Foundation.

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