On October 2, 2019, Chief Justice John Roberts of the Supreme Court will swear in Shook Partner Matthew Keenan as a member of the Board of Directors for the Legal Services Council (LSC). The LSC is the single largest provider of civil legal assistance for low-income people in the nation. Appointed by President Donald Trump and confirmed by the U.S Senate, Keenan’s more than 30 years practicing law, as one of the nation’s leading product liability lawyers, has prepared him for this prestigious role.
In 2019, Matt celebrated his 34th anniversary at Shook. Listed in The Best Lawyers in America and Who’s Who Legal: The International Who’s Who of Product Liability Defense Lawyers, Matt is identified in various other publications as a top lawyer in his field.
One of his areas of focus is the preparation and defense of a number of corporate witnesses in national product liability cases. Matt has prepared and defended 51 company witnesses for depositions in five MDL proceedings over the past 30 years. In addition to this work, Matt has published seven articles in national publications on this topic, and most recently organized a panel on the subject at the mid-year meeting of the International Association of Defense Counsel in La Quinta, California.
Matt has been an active member of various bar organizations over his career, including the Kansas Bar Association and International Association of Defense Counsel, and serves on the Board of Legal Aid of Western Missouri.
Matt served as chair of the firm's Pro Bono Committee for eight years, and his pro bono efforts have been featured in the Kansas City Star in two stories (January 2, 2010, and March 1, 2015), celebrating Shook's role in facilitating adoptions. Matt has also been quoted in Working Mother magazine.
Representative Jury Trials
Matt has tried 14 jury trials to verdict in state and federal courts, as either first or second chair, in the following states: Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.
Panelist, Company Perspective: Lessons Learned, BioBreakfast: Navigating the Life Science Regulatory Pathway, Colorado BioScience Association, December 5, 2018.
Roundtable, Product Liability Defence 2018: Roundtable, Who's Who Legal, July 2018.
Presenter, Preparing a Corporate Witness for Deposition – Perspectives from a Corporate Witness and from Defense Counsel, International Association of Defense Counsel Mid-Year Meeting, February 14, 2018.
Speaker, Strategies for Opposing Trials with Multiple Plaintiffs, 22nd Annual Conference on Drug & Medical Device Litigation, New York City, December 5, 2017.
Moderator, Vietnam: Three Who Served, Bob Dole Institute - University of Kansas, September 21, 2017.
Presenter, Enlisting the best and the brightest attorneys to fight for the poor: Shook, Hardy’s pro bono initiatives, International Association of Defense Counsel Mid-Year Meeting, February 22, 2016.
Panel Chair, Civility and Professionalism in State Bar, Kansas Bar Convention, June 19, 2015.
Presenter, Rambo vs. Atticus Finch: In private practice, do nice guys still finish first?, Catholic Foundation of Northeast Kansas CLE, June 7, 2013.
Panel Chair, Civility and Professionalism, June 2012. Panel composed entirely of military veterans, including two attorneys who served the country in WWII, one who served in Korea, and another who had distinguished service in Vietnam.
Panelist, Improving Partner Participation in Pro Bono, Pro Bono Institute Conference, March 28, 2012.
Presenter, Ethics and Professionalism, DRI’s 27th Annual Drug and Medical Device Seminar, May 2011.
Presenter, Navigating the Fall-Out from Preemption: Preserving the Defense in Your Device Cases and Developing Strategies for FDA Testimony in Drug Litigation, American Conference Institute’s 15th Anniversary Drug & Medical Device Litigation Program, December 7-9, 2010.
Roundtable Chair, The State of Civility in the Kansas Bar, Kansas Bar Convention, June 10-11, 2010. Panel included, among others, Federal Judge John Lungstrum, Federal Magistrate Karen Humphries, and Kansas Court of Appeals Judge Kim Schroeder.
Presenter, Preparing the Corporate Representative for Deposition, International Association of Defense Counsel Webinar, May 26, 2010.
Publications and Media
Defending Company Witnesses
Matthew D. Keenan, 7 Common Mistakes in Company Witness Prep, Law360, June 6, 2018. Law360 included this on its year-end list of "10 Most-Read Product Liability Law360 Guests of 2018."
Matthew D. Keenan, Preparing Your Company Witnesses For The Gotcha Question, ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section Newsletter, Spring 2018.
Matthew D. Keenan, Corporate Witness Preparation: The 411 , IDAC Law, March, 2018.
Matthew D. Keenan, Preparing Your Company Witnesses For The Gotcha Question, Law360, November 29, 2017.
Matthew D. Keenan, Five Tips for Preparing Sales Reps for Trial Examination, Law360, September 29, 2016.
Matthew D. Keenan, 8 Simple Rules for Successful Direct Exam, Law360, May 14, 2009.
Matthew D. Keenan, Preparing a Witness for a Successful Deposition, Law360, September 10, 2008.
Zimmer's Expert Takedown Poses Hurdles For Knee Patients, Law360, November 12, 2015.
Matthew D. Keenan, Co-author, When to Push for a Determination Under Riegel, Law360, February 2011.
Riegel Loophole Keeps PMA Device Cases Afloat, Law360, July 17, 2013.
Medical Device Litigation
Matt Keenan, What Curly From City Slickers Can Teach Us, Colorado Bioscience Newsletter, June 18, 2018.
Matthew D. Keenan, Sales Reps in the OR: Best Practices for Medical Device Manufacturers, Food and Drug Law Institute Update, July/August 2017.
Matthew D. Keenan, Co-author, New Healthcare Lien Recovery Theories by Third-Party Payors: Strategies and Tactics for the Defense, Defense Counsel Journal, April 2012, at 140.
Matthew D. Keenan, A More Potent Defense for Drug Manufacturers, For The Defense, May 2006, at 56.
Honoring Our Veterans
Matthew D. Keenan, Reflections on Vietnam and the West Point Class of 1966, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, July/August 2017, at 11.
Matthew D. Keenan, Vietnam Eight Who Served, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, December/November 2015, at 39.
Matthew D. Keenan, The KBA Convention, Civility, and Our Veterans, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, April 2012, at 11.
Matthew D. Keenan, The Greatest Generation of Kansas Lawyers – 19 Kansans who served in WW2 and then joined the Kansas bar, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, March 2011, at 17.
Civility and Professionalism
Matthew D. Keenan, Modesty, Humility, and What We Can Learn from Our Senior Attorneys, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, May 2012, at 11.
Matthew D. Keenan, Civility, Professionalism, and Good Deeds: The State of the Kansas Bar, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, May 2009, at 9.
Matthew D. Keenan, A Model of Professionalism: John Carpenter, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, January 2009, at 12.
Matthew D. Keenan, Ten Commandments of Civility, Kansas Bar Association Annual Meeting, June 2008.
Matthew D. Keenan, How Nice Guys Finish First, IADC Trial Techniques and Tactics Committee Newsletter, June 2009, at 2; reprinted in Defense Counsel Journal, July 2009.
Matthew D. Keenan, Greensburg, Kansas, and Charley Herd, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, March 2009, at 9.
Matthew D. Keenan, Lewis Walked into the Unknown and Made a Difference, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, November/December 2008, at 9.
Matthew D. Keenan, Mario Chalmers v. “Rope” Engleman: No Contest, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, June 2008, at 8.
Matthew D. Keenan, We Knew the Real Killer Before the First Commercial Break, The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, May 2006, at 9.