Global Advisory Board
The ACEDS Advisory Board plays a crucial role in guiding the ACEDS leadership team. Its members are driving change in their respective organizations and throughout the community. They create content, share perspective, and fuel innovation. Consistent with the mission and purpose of ACEDS, the board assesses current trends, makes recommendations on the direction of the association, and helps to establish the policies and practices that provide the greatest value to the organization's members. We are grateful for their generous contributions and lasting dedication.
Chairperson of the Board
Ari Kaplan Advisors | Principal, CEDS
Ari Kaplan is a CEDS certified attorney and legal industry analyst, is an inaugural Fastcase 50 honoree, a fellow of the College of Law Practice Management, and a finalist for the International Legal Technology Association’s Thought Leader of the Year award. He is the author of Reinventing Professional Services: Building Your Business in the Digital Marketplace (Wiley, 2011) and The Opportunity Maker: Strategies for Inspiring Your Legal Career Through Creative Networking and Business Development (West Academic, 2nd Ed. 2016). Kaplan serves as the principal researcher for a variety of widely distributed benchmarking reports, has been the keynote speaker for events worldwide, and is the founder of the Lawcountability® business development platform. He is also a two-time Ironman triathlon finisher.
Ankura Consulting | Managing Director, CEDS
James Bickley is a Managing Director at Ankura Consulting. He brings more than two decades of experience working with in-house legal counsel, corporate risk officers, and law firms helping them navigate discovery challenges associated with all forms of electronically stored information. James serves as a strategic advisor and relationship executive assisting clients in developing and leveraging innovative technology solutions to solve challenges across a diverse portfolio of corporate risk concerns and their most critical legal needs as it relates to intense data and discovery requirements. He is CEDS certified since 2011. James is based out of Ankura’s Washington, DC office and lives with his family in Alexandria, Virginia.
Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP | Director of Practice Technology, CEDS
Julie is the director of practice technology at Vorys. She has worked in legal technology for more than 30 years. She has a paralegal degree and has worked in law firms and in-house litigation departments. Her experience includes managing large scale e-discovery and document productions, records management, litigation technology training and development of numerous litigation technology databases. She manages Vorys' litigation technology department, which provides in-house support, training, processing, and production of e-discovery. Julie is active in coordinating litigation technology education opportunities for the International Legal Technology Association (ILTA), serves as the Conference Co-Chair for ILTACon 2019-2020 and currently serves on the ACEDs International Advisory Board. In 2011 Julie received ILTA’s Distinguished Peer Award for Litigation and Practice Support. She is a Certified E-Discovery Specialist (CEDS) and is certified in ViewPoint, Summation, Sanction, Law 5.0, the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) and Lean Six Sigma.
Winston & Strawn | Managing Director, eDiscovery & Information Governance/Practice & Client Services, CEDS
Scott M. Cohen is the Managing Director of E-Discovery & Information Governance for Winston & Strawn LLP. He oversees all aspects of the Firm's litigation technology, practice and client services, electronic discovery operations and document review. Throughout his career, Mr. Cohen has worked in a consultative capacity with law firms and corporate legal departments enabling them to effectively leverage technology in all legal practice areas. With a focus on electronic discovery, complex data analytics, and litigation readiness, he advises lawyers and clients on a range of topics relating to discovery. He is a frequent writer and speaker on subjects ranging from electronic discovery best practices and legal cost control to leadership development, performance management and staff mentoring. Prior to joining Winston & Strawn, Mr. Cohen was the Practice Support Director for Proskauer Rose, and he served as the Director of Information Technology for MetLife. He is CEDS certified.
Empire Technologies Risk Management Group | General Counsel and Chief Operating Officer, CEDS
Kenya Parrish-Dixon is a CEDS certified attorney and formerly the Director of White House Information Governance for the Executive Office of the President. She oversaw the e-Discovery and FOIA Unit, Digital Forensics Unit, Digital Forensics Lab, Records Management Unit, and Information Assurance. Kenya rebuilt the digital forensics lab and modernized its capabilities. Currently, she is the General Counsel and Director of Information Governance at TechCentrics, Inc. a consulting company charged with the cyber and information governance responsibilities the for the Republican presidential campaign. Previously, Kenya was a supervisory attorney and Assistant Director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection’s Department of Litigation Technology & Analysis at the Federal Trade Commission, and she practiced as a litigator for Epstein Becker & Green and McDermott Will & Emery. She also worked at Lockheed Martin, supporting the Department of Justice and later joined the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation to participate in rolling out the first end-to-end Information Governance program in the Federal government. A graduate of The College of William & Mary Law School, Kenya is admitted in the District of Columbia, she holds the NARA Certificate of Federal Records Management, and she became CEDS certified in 2012.
University of Waterloo, Ontario| Research Professor and Director of Women in Computer Science, School of Computer Science, CEDS
Maura R. Grossman, J.D., Ph.D., is a CEDS certified attorney and a Research Professor and Director of Women in Computer Science at the University of Waterloo, as well as an Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School. She is also the Principal at Maura Grossman Law, an e-discovery law and consulting firm in Buffalo, New York. Previously, Maura was Of Counsel at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, where, for 17 years, she advised the firm’s lawyers and clients on legal, technical, and strategic issues involving e-discovery and information governance, both domestically and abroad. Maura’s scholarly work on TAR, most notably, Technology-Assisted Review in E-Discovery Can Be More Effective and More Efficient Than Exhaustive Manual Review, published in the Richmond Journal of Law and Technology in 2011, has been widely cited in the case law. Her longstanding contributions to e-discovery technology and process were featured in the February 2016 issue of The American Lawyer and the September 2016 issue of the ABA Journal, where she was recognized as a “Legal Rebel.” Maura has served as a court-appointed special master, mediator, and eDiscovery expert to the court in many high-profile cases and has also taught courses in e-discovery at Columbia, Georgetown, Pace, and Rutgers–Newark law schools. In addition to her J.D. from Georgetown, Maura also holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Psychology from the Derner Institute at Adelphi University.
University of Florida Levin College of Law | Senior Legal Skills Professor, CEDS
William Hamilton is the Senior Legal Skills Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches electronic discovery, complex litigation and civil procedure. He helped develop the original CEDS exam in 2010 and was the chairperson of the original ACEDS Advisory Board. He has taught electronic discovery for the past 10 years and is an author of the LexisNexis Practice Guide Florida e-Discovery and Evidence and A Student Electronic Discovery Primer: An Essential Companion for Civil Procedure Courses. He is also the General Editor of the LexisNexis Practice Guide: Florida Contract Litigation. Hamilton is a neutral arbitrator and mediator for the World Intellectual Property Organization and the author of more than 100 domain name dispute decisions. Prior to academia, Hamilton served as the electronic discovery partner for a national law firm. During his 30-year litigation career, he has been recognized in Chambers USA, Florida Legal Elite, Best Lawyers in America, and Florida Super Lawyers.
Relativity | Discovery Counsel and Legal Education Director
David Horrigan is discovery counsel and legal education director at Relativity. An attorney, award-winning journalist, and former legal technology industry analyst, he has served as counsel at the Entertainment Software Association, reporter and assistant editor at The National Law Journal, and analyst and counsel at 451 Research. A law school guest lecturer and legal media contributor, David has been cited in The American Lawyer, American Public Media, Bloomberg BNA, Corporate Counsel, JUVE (Germany), Legaltech News, The Wall Street Journal CIO Journal, and The Washington Examiner, and he has been cited in law reviews and journals of Emory University, Northwestern University, Yale University, and others. He is the author of the annual Data Discovery Legal Year in Review. He holds a juris doctor from the University of Florida, studied international law at Universiteit Leiden in the Netherlands, and is licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia.
Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP | Partner, CEDS
Jeffrey Jacobson is a CEDS certified attorney and a litigation partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP and a former Chief Counsel to the New Jersey Attorney General, in which role he oversaw all civil enforcement investigations and represented the State in many high-profile lawsuits and appeals. With his public-sector experience as well as more than 20 years defending clients in class actions and other large stakes claims, Jeff provides a multifaceted and strategic perspective. He has designed and implemented electronic discovery strategies for massive international investigations and law enforcement inquiries, and this experience helps him manage electronic discovery costs in matters of all sizes.
Novelis Corporation | Legal Counsel, Commercial, Trade & Information Governance, CEDS
Susan Jackson is Legal Counsel Commercial, Trade & Information Governance at Novelis Corporation. Jackson is a certified computer forensic examiner and has worked for the company for the past 18 years. Her focus is on corporate governance, international trade, commercial contracts, information governance and e-discovery. Among her responsibilities, she works on U.S. anti-dumping/counter-veiling duties cases, responding to government investigations. She is also responsible for both the global records retention and e-discovery programs. Jackson operates a forensic lab for all human resources and information systems cybersecurity investigations, e-discovery requests, compliance with electronic information internal policies, and international data privacy regulations. Jackson works with the FBI, Secret Service, and the Department of Homeland security on a variety of electronic crimes, cyber security incidents and insider threat programs. She is also an adjunct professor at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School teaching e-discovery and computer forensics, cyber security, and data privacy.
T-Mobile | Manager, Legal Discovery and Compliance, CEDS
Sonya Judkins is Manager of Legal Discovery and Compliance in T-Mobile's Legal Department in Reston, Virginia. Mrs. Judkins is responsible for e-discovery management and coordination for the Litigation Department. Sonya specializes in the areas of in-house legal/litigation practices and procedures, management of core-team efforts to implement policies, procedures and tools helping to mitigate risks associated with the preservation and production of electronically stored information thereby ensuring compliance with Federal and State laws and regulations. She is also responsible for coordination and assistance to the Records Retention and Compliance and IT functional areas. Mrs. Judkins joined Nextel Communications in September 1999 as an executive assistant for the commercial contracts group and was promoted to Legal Analyst in November 2002. Mrs. Judkins assumed her current responsibilities in March 2008 after the merger of Nextel and Sprint. Prior to joining Nextel, Mrs. Judkins was a Branch Office Administrator and Account Verification Coordinator at Edward Jones Investments for several years. Mrs. Judkins received her undergraduate degree magna cum laude in Business Administration with an emphasis for contracts and acquisitions from Strayer University in Alexandria, Virginia.
Pullman & Comley, LLC | Litigation Paralegal and Litigation Support, CEDS
Patricia LeBel-Lasse is a paralegal in the firm’s Litigation Department with more than thirty years of legal and business experience. She assists counsel with complex commercial and business disputes in a variety of areas in both federal and state courts. She has extensive trial and litigation support experience. In addition, as a member of the firm’s Internal Investigations practice, she conducts fact gathering interviews with clients and relevant parties and helps to manage the fact gathering process. In her role, Patricia implements new business processes in the areas of electronic data discovery, litigation support and trial technology. Patricia served as a public member of the State of Connecticut's Judicial Review Council for a term of four years (2013-2017). She currently serves as a member of the firm's Technology Committee and is a Certified E-Discovery Specialist (CEDS).
Hogan Lovells | Partner, CEDS
Al Lindsay is a CEDS certified attorney and a partner in the Miami office of Hogan Lovells US LLP, where he focuses his practice on resolving complex international disputes. He is board certified in international law as well as international litigation and arbitration. For two decades, Mr. Lindsay has been a thought leader in issues relating to technology in litigation. The Associated Press has called him "an expert in technology and litigation," and The Wall Street Journal relied on him to explain the ground-breaking revisions to the Federal Rule of Civil Procedure to encompass electronic evidence. He is a certified e-discovery specialist and former chair of the Association of Certified E-Discovery Specialists (ACEDS) advisory board. He has taught on the faculty of the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA) at its prestigious National Trial Skills Session in Colorado as well as its Deposition Skills program in New York and Washington, D.C. For fifteen years, he has taught litigation and arbitration skills at the University of Miami School of Law, and he teaches at other Florida law schools. He authored the book and three-hour DVD titled Technology in Litigation, published by NITA, and has written numerous articles on technology-related issues published in periodicals including: the Yale Journal of Law and Technology, Inside Counsel, The National Law Journal, Legal Times, the University of Miami Law Review, and the International Law Quarterly. In law school, Mr. Lindsay was articles and comments editor of the University of Miami Law Review, a Dean's Scholar, and winner of the moot court competition.
Microsoft | Senior Program Manager, CEDS
Rachi Messing is a Senior Program Manager at Microsoft in the Corporate, External, & Legal Affairs department based out of their Israel office. In his current role he works to promote and manage the usage of advanced technology solutions allowing the eDiscovery team to be efficient and effective in handling their active docket. Formerly part of the Equivio management team, he joined Microsoft through the acquisition in January 2015 where he spent three years working in the Office 365 Information Protection product group managing their eDiscovery, Data Governance and Compliance features. His 20 years in the global Compliance industry have seen him develop technology strategy for both the Service Provider and Software development space. He is CEDS certified since 2019.
Practice Aligned Resources | Founder and CEO
Joy is a recognized industry-wide leader in the litigation support industry. Since its inception in 2013, PAR has excelled at providing legal technology training, eDiscovery consulting, legal staffing, project management, and law practice technology development. Before embarking on her journey as an entrepreneur, Joy’s twenty-four years of Big Law & In-house Corporate legal department experience has given her ample opportunity to develop new strategies, technologies, and services in various practice areas for some of the largest global clients and projects in the world. Joy continues to share her knowledge and experiences as the founder of the ACEDS Los Angeles Chapter, her appointment to the executive committee of the California Lawyers Association Law Practice Management and Technology Section, and her previous role as the Southwest regional director of Women in eDiscovery.
Blackstone Group | Data Policy and Strategy Officer
Dera Nevin is a Senior Vice President and Data Policy and Strategy Officer in the Legal & Compliance Group. Ms. Nevin provides guidance and support for Blackstone’s privacy, data security, information governance and data services functions. Before joining Blackstone in 2019, Ms. Nevin was a lawyer at Baker & McKenzie LLP in the Information Governance and Data Privacy Group, and at Proskauer Rose LLP, where she also served as eDiscovery Counsel and Director of eDiscovery and Information Governance Services. Prior to that, she has worked as Managing Counsel, eDiscovery at TD Bank Group and in private practice at law firms in Ontario, Canada. Ms. Nevin received a BA (Hons) and an MA from Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada, and a JD from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, where she was elected Valedictorian and served as the co-Editor in Chief of the Law Review. She is licensed to practice in New York and in Ontario (Canada).
Gulf Coast Legal Technology Center | Independent Consultant
Tom O’Connor is a nationally known consultant, speaker, and writer in the field of computerized litigation support systems. A New England native who graduated from The Johns Hopkins University in 1972 with a BA in Political Science Tom attended law school for one year at The University of Notre Dame before returning to Baltimore and undertaking a career as a paralegal specializing in complex litigation. Many years later he earned a J.D. at an evening law school program. Tom’s consulting experience is with both small firms and complex litigation matters including the BP litigation in New Orleans and several current opioid MDL matters. He has also been appointed as a technical consultant by various federal and state courts on cases dealing with large amounts of electronic evidence and specializes in negotiating ESI exchange protocols. A frequent lecturer about legal technology, Tom teaches CLE courses nationwide and is also a prolific writer. He was a co-author of the 2006 award winning article, “In Katrina’s Wake”, which covered recovery efforts in the legal community of post Katrina New Orleans, in which he participated. He was also the author of the Second, Third and Fourth Editions of The Automated Law Firm: A Guide to Computer Systems and Software published by Aspen Law & Business as well as The Lawyers Guide to Summation and E-Discovery for Small Cases, both published by the ABA.
Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz, P.C. | Shareholder and Legal Project Management Officer
David A. Rueff Jr. is a shareholder in the Jackson office of Baker Donelson and is the Firm's Chief Client Solutions Group Officer. He is responsible for oversight of an innovation team at Baker Donelson which includes responsibilities for knowledge management, legal project management, pricing, and legal research. David regularly works with lawyers and clients to develop unique pricing and technology solutions. Prior to law school, David worked in the technology industry for a hardware and software manufacturer where he was first exposed to project management, agile and the development software applications for the engineering industry. David has been a practicing lawyer for over 20 years, is PMP certified through the Project Management Institute and is certified in the Toyota Manufacturing Production System (Lean). David's practice included both litigation and transactional matters, but in later years, was primarily focused on the distribution of federal grants to victims of hurricane and flood disasters. David has staffed and managed project teams in Mississippi, New York, Texas, New Jersey, and Louisiana. His experience includes the management and oversight of a program legal department for 2 years that included a team of 11 attorneys and 20 paralegals. David was also responsible for the development of the Firm's patent pending legal project management model - BakerManage®, the Firm's Lean model - BakerLeanTM and the Firm's proprietary budgeting tool - Budget Designer. In 2018, David was the architect of a new team at Baker Donelson that included knowledge management, data, machine learning and artificial intelligence applications, automation, and legal research. David is a regular speaker on the topics of legal project management, pricing, process improvement and legal technology.
Cardinal Health | Associate General Counsel & Director of Discovery Center of Excellence, CEDS
Amy Sellars is Associate General Counsel of Cardinal Health’s Discovery Center of Excellence and director of that organization. Previously, she led Walmart Legal's Discovery Operations Group, she worked for the country's largest midstream oil and gas company and was an associate at the law firm of Crowe & Dunlevy. Sellars focuses exclusively on electronic discovery across a large docket of litigation and investigations. She serves as Secretary for the ACEDS Ohio Chapter Board and is a Steering Committee member for The Sedona Conference’s Working Group 1 on Electronic Document Retention and Production. Sellars has taught electronic discovery and legal operations at the University of Tulsa College of Law, the University of Arkansas School of Law, and Ohio State University Moritz College of Law.
Reveal | Senior Vice President of Brand Awareness, CEDS
George Socha is a CEDS certified attorney and a senior vice president for Reveal responsible for increasing market awareness and adoption of Reveal’s platform globally. Additionally, George is tasked with guiding the product roadmap and consulting with Reveal customers on effective deployment of legal technology. In 2005, he co-founded the Electronic Discovery Reference Model (EDRM) whose frameworks and content have empowered a generation of legal professionals. George has worked for over three decades as a lawyer, advisor, and court-approved expert. He received a JD from Cornell Law School and a BA in political science from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. From 1981 to 1983, George served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Burkina Faso where his colleagues referred to him as the “noose naaba.”
In April of 2021, the e-discovery community lost an influential pioneer and one of our greatest entrepreneurs. Robert Childress is widely known as the founder and leader of The Master’s Conference, but many do not know of his storied, more than 25-year career in legal technology that clearly prepared him as an industry organization leader, influencer and all-around good soul. He had a heart of gold, a quick wit, and was so generous and helpful to so many people throughout the industry. He gives meaning to the adage that if you give, you will get. Robert sat on the ACEDS Advisory Board for many years and made significant and meaningful contributions to the growth of ACEDS. We are blessed to have known Robert and to have him serve as an advisory board member. Rest in peace, friend.