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Adams and Reese Boosts Products Liability Practice with Addition of Three Laterals in Jackson Office

4/13/2015

Adams and Reese is pleased to announce the addition of three products liability attorneys to our Jackson office, including Special Counsel Charles R. Wilbanks, Jr. and Matthew R. Dowd, and Associate G. Austin Stewart, who are laterals from Brunini, Grantham, Grower & Hewes.

Chip Wilbanks has close to 30 years of experience practicing law in Mississippi and concentrating his practice in product liability litigation, including silica defense, medical device litigation and pharmaceutical litigation. Wilbanks also represents clients in church law and litigation, insurance defense, real estate and property litigation and construction litigation. He has been recognized by Mid-South Super Lawyers© in Class Action/Mass Torts, Insurance Coverage, General Litigation, and by Best Lawyers in America© in Mass Tort Litigation/ Class Actions- Defendants.

Matt Dowd has been practicing law in Mississippi for 10 years, and he currently focuses his practice on product liability defense, in particular, silica defense, and also commercial and insurance litigation, personal injury, mass torts and premises liability. Matt has been recognized by Mid-South Super Lawyers© Rising Stars (by Thomson Reuters) in General Litigation.

Austin Stewart has been practicing law in Mississippi for 8 years, and he was the former lead associate for the Brunini silica defense litigation team. He also practices in product liability, personal injury and mass torts. Austin has been recognized by Mid-South Super Lawyers© Rising Stars (by Thomson Reuters) in Civil Litigation Defense.

“Chip, Matt and Austin’s experience in and knowledge of the wide spectrum of products liability litigation precedes them, and they are recognized leaders in the practice area,” said Phil Buffington, Partner in Charge of the Adams and Reese Jackson office. “Their addition will greatly benefit our Firm and strengthen Adams and Reese’s well-established credentials in our products liability practice.”

Wilbanks was formerly the President of the Mississippi Bar Young Lawyers Division, recognized as Mississippi's Outstanding Young Lawyer in 2000, and was formerly on the Board of Bar Commissioners and Board of the Mississippi Bar Foundation. He is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America. In the community, he currently serves as the President of the Board of Trustees of the Clinton Public School District. He has served on the Board for Brillo Soccer Ministry, on the Board of National Leigh’s Disease Foundation, as President of the Board of the Mississippi Children’s Legal Clinic, on the Mississippi College School of Business Administration Alumni Advisory Board and on the Mississippi College Child Advocacy Program Advisory Board. Wilbanks received his J.D. from the University of Mississippi, in 1986, and he earned his B.S. from Mississippi College, in 1984.

Dowd is an active member of the Mississippi Bar and Capital Area Bar associations, and in the community, he is an active member of Madison Heights Church. Dowd earned his J.D. from University of Mississippi, in 2005, and he received his B.S.B.A. from Millsaps College, in 2001.

Stewart was formerly active in the Hattiesburg Area Young Lawyers Association capping off his service as President. He also served his Community as Vice-Chair of First Presbyterian Church of Hattiesburg’s Mercy Committee and served as the attorney coach for Sacred Heart High School’s Mock Trial team, which were State Champions for 2009-11. Stewart received his J.D. from the University of Mississippi, in 2007, and he earned his B.S., cum laude, from Mississippi College, in 2004.

Adams and Reese is a multidisciplinary law firm with 300 attorneys and advisors strategically located in 16 offices in 15 markets throughout the southern United States and Washington, D.C. American Lawyer includes Adams and Reese on its distinguished list of the nation's top law firms - "The Am Law 200". The National Law Journal also includes the firm on the "NLJ 350" list of the nation's largest law firms.