Mass Torts Litigation

About the Committee


This Committee was created to address both current and emerging issues that arise in a broad spectrum of substantive areas, where the common denominators are the large number of plaintiffs asserting the claims, and the type of claims being a tort in the broadest sense of the word. Thus, this Committee focuses on the substantive and procedural developments in the case law, proposed reforms, and best practice techniques in cases that may involve environmental, toxic torts, pharmaceutical, various types of products liability litigation, aviation, antitrust, securities litigation, and employment claims.

The Committee is also dealing with the management aspects of mass tort litigation, including class action issues, joinder of multiple parties, and the use of ADR in such a context. Every effort is made to have an ecumenical membership that includes demographic diversity as well as representation among the plaintiff’s bar, the defense bar, academia, and in-house counsel. The Committee has established subcommittees to provide a variety of benefits to its members, which includes programming at the Litigation Section’s Annual Conference and the ABA’s Annual Meeting, as well as co-sponsorship of an annual two-day joint CLE seminar with the Products Liability and Environmental Litigation Committees.

Join this committee


Message from the Chairs

To our Mass Torts members,

Welcome to the 2020–2021 bar year for the ABA Mass Torts Committee! These are unprecedented times for the world and certainly the legal industry, and we are greatly heartened by the unwavering camaraderie and community of this Committee. We hope you will join our programming in 2020–2021 and stay engaged with us, be it through publications, Roundtables, CLE programs and conferences, or a virtual mixer. Our premier Joint CLE, held each January with the Products Liability and Environmental & Energy Committees, will be held virtually in 2021. The Joint CLE is always a great opportunity for networking and CLE credit, and we will circulate more information soon on registration for this exciting event.

We invite you to make plans to join us in Houston, Texas for the Section Annual Conference at the Marriott Marquis in downtown Houston on May 5–7, 2021. Our committee is currently planning a breakfast and dine-around for the meeting—details will be provided by Litigation Connect at a later date. This conference is sure to be another great opportunity for CLE and to build relationships within the committee and Section of Litigation.

We expect that 2021 will be an active year for the Mass Torts Committee in the new normal—Member benefits will continue to include CLEs, networking events, Webinars, Roundtables (via audio and/or Zoom), and Audio content (allowing you to keep up with the state of the law and the profession at no additional charge), as well as, of course, our incredible content available to you through our award-winning Mass Torts Newsletter and website. 2020 has been transformative, especially in the areas of equality, access to justice, diversity, and attorney wellness. To embrace the important dialogue that is already happening in the legal industry, in addition to our substantive Mass Torts CLEs and programs, our Committee plans to also include programming on issues such as diversity in the legal profession, and advice on achieving and maintaining attorney wellness during these challenging times.

We must acknowledge that these member benefits would not be possible without the hard work and commitment of our committee leaders and members. If you are not already serving the committee in some capacity, we invite you to reach out and consider joining us. It is true that you end up gaining the most by serving your fellow practitioners. Thank you to all the members of the Committee!

Lastly, you can keep up with our committee on social media by joining our LinkedIn group, or by following and using the hashtag #LitigationMassTorts on Twitter.

All the best,

David L. Schwan
Joe Winebrenner
Natassia Kwan

Our monthly committee call is held the second Tuesday of every month @ 2 p.m. ET (all members welcome):
888 475 4499 US Toll-free
Meeting ID: 988 8087 9345
One tap mobile +13126266799,,98880879345# US (Chicago)


Our active subcommittees include:

  • Aviation
  • Book Publications
  • Content
  • Experts and Evidence
  • MDL and Class Procedures Practice 
  • Membership & Diversity
  • Pharmaceutical & Medical Device
  • Toxic Torts Litigation
  • Trends and Developments
  • Young Lawyers

Subcommittee Roster

Committee Leadership


David Schwan
Concho Resources
Houston, TX


Natassia Kwan
City of San Francisco–City Attorney’s Office
San Francisco, CA

M. Joseph Winebrenner
Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP 
Minneapolis, MN

Vice Chair and Web Editor

Andrew Tharp
Butler Snow LLP
Nashville, TN



Social Media Editor

Courtney Ward-Reichard
Nilan Johnson Lewis
Minneapolis, MN

Newsletter Editor

James Beck
Reed Smith LLP
Philadelphia, PA

Ankura Partner

Tim Raab
Brad Drew