Mary defends manufacturing and other companies against complex individual and class product liability actions in courts throughout the country. She has substantial experience in high-stakes litigation, and has served on over 15 trial teams in multi-week jury trials. A partner within the firm’s Appellate and Legal Issues groups, Mary has enjoyed success briefing novel and complex issues spanning from initial motion practice through appeal. She closely monitors evolving case law in her specialty jurisdictions (Massachusetts and Florida), and capitalizes on new legal theories and defenses in developing and executing creative strategies for her clients.

Mary leverages her considerable litigation experience in overseeing pretrial briefing in all product liability cases filed against one of her manufacturing clients in Massachusetts. She has identified and briefed legal arguments resulting in cases being dismissed or truncated through motion practice. Mary also manages the discovery and trial preparation of a book of product liability cases, through which she shapes defenses and themes for effective presentation at trial. When a trial begins, Mary collaborates with her teammates to execute trial strategy, with an eye towards preserving important legal issues for appeal. Mary’s perspective as a litigator with appellate experience allows her to provide her clients with continuity, as after serving on the trial team, Mary is ideally positioned to brief issues post-trial and on appeal.

Mary is an active ally and leads the firm’s Project Affirmation, a pro bono name change and gender marker amendment clinic serving the transgender community in and around Kansas City. She has represented and counseled hundreds of adult and minor trans clients in obtaining accurate government-issued identification documents, including litigating before hostile judges and negotiating with counsel for state vital records offices throughout the country. Mary is a well-known advocate for the trans community, and her pro bono practice entails navigating undefined and at times non-existent state law schemes that discriminate against trans people. Advocating for the trans community is Mary’s greatest honor and favorite thing to do as a lawyer.

Mary graduated from the University of Kansas School of Law, a member of the Order of the Coif (highest honor), the Kansas Law Review, and Moot Court Council, and recipient of six CALI Excellence Awards. In the years between receiving her B.A. in English and enrolling in law school, Mary managed an assisted living facility in her hometown of Manhattan, Kansas.

Presentations and Publications

How to Not Lose Your Appeal Before It Begins, Update of the Law CLE webinar, June 2, 2022. 

Cultural Competency: Assisting Transgender Clients With Name Changes & Gender Marker Corrections, Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, Kansas City, Missouri, November 15, 2018.

Pin the Tail on . . . Somebody: The Kansas Supreme Court’s Decision to Expose Firearms Dealers to Unwarranted Liability, 62 U. Kan. L. Rev. 1401 (2014).