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Biographies

ABI Consumer Committee Judicial Co-chair Hon. Dennis R. Dow

Dennis R. Dow was appointed a U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the Western District of Missouri Circuit Court of Appeals in Kansas City, Mo. on November 10, 2003. Prior to joining the bench, Mr. Dow was a partner with the firm of Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP. He has been continuously listed in The Best Lawyers in America in the area of bankruptcy law since 1995. Judge Dow participated in a broad range of cases representing many different types of clients with a wide variety of claims and interests, including trustees in chapter 7 cases involving significant assets, individual and corporate debtors in proceedings under chapter 7 and 11, and secured, unsecured and priority creditors and lessors in chapter 7, 11, 12 and 13 cases. He also participated in and tried numerous adversary proceedings and contested matters, including preference actions, objections to discharge, dischargeability, complaints and objections to confirmation of chapter 11 plans. His practice also included representing purchasers of assets from chapter 11 estates. Judge Dow is a member of ABI, the American Bar Association, The Missouri Bar and the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association. He is a judicial co-chair of ABI’s Consumer Bankruptcy Committee and has authored and co-authored several articles, including “Related Claims in Bankruptcy” Journal of Bankruptcy Law and Practice, Vol. 3, No. 1 (Nov./Dec. 1993); “Agreements in Bankruptcy: Sales or Leases?” ABI Law Review, Vol. 2, No. 1 (Spring 1994); and “Gramm-Leach-Bliley and the Bankruptcy/Collection” Attorney Norton Bankruptcy Law Advisor (Feb. 2002). He received his B.A. with honors from the University of Wyoming in 1975 and his J.D. in 1978 from Washburn University School of Law, where he was notes editor of the Washburn Law Journal. (Back)

ABI Executive Director Samuel J. Gerdano

Samuel J. Gerdano is the executive director of the American Bankruptcy Institute in Alexandria, Va. He joined ABI in May 1991. From June 1985 until May 1991, he was the chief legal counsel to Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa) on the Subcommittee on Courts and Administrative Practice of the Senate Judiciary Committee, serving as minority chief counsel and staff director from October 1987. He was responsible for a variety of legal policy areas, including administrative law, antitrust, judicial nominations, intellectual property, criminal and constitutional law. The subcommittee also has jurisdiction over the U.S. Bankruptcy Code; Mr. Gerdano has thus far been involved in all major bankruptcy policy changes since 1985. Prior to serving the Senate Judiciary Committee, he was an Assistant Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration in Washington, D.C. Mr. Gerdano graduated with honors from Syracuse University College of Law and received his B.A. in journalism magna cum laude from Syracuse University. He is the author and co-author of numerous articles on the judicial nominations process, alternative dispute resolution and litigation with the federal government, and is a frequent lecturer on bankruptcy and other legal issues.(Back)

ABI Consumer Committee Co-chair Dennis J. LeVine

Dennis J. LeVine is the founder of Dennis LeVine & Associates PA in Tampa, Fla., where he represents creditors in all bankruptcy courts in the state of Florida. The firm also represents creditors in commercial and consumer collection litigation throughout Florida. Prior to forming his own firm in March 1996, Mr. LeVine was named partner in the firm of Cramer, Haber, McDonald & LeVine PA in Tampa. He is Board Certified in Consumer Bankruptcy Law and Business Bankruptcy Law by the American Board of Certification, for which he also served on the Board of Directors. Mr. LeVine served as president of the Tampa Bay Bankruptcy Bar Association and is a member of The Florida Bar’s Business Law Section. He has published various articles in the ABI Journal, the Florida Bar Journal and the Cramdown, the quarterly publication of the Tampa Bay Bankruptcy Bar Association. He has been a speaker at many conferences throughout the United States. Mr. LeVine graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Tulane University and received his J.D. from George Washington University’s National Law Center.(Back)

ABI Resident Scholar Jeffrey W. Morris

Prof. Jeffrey W. Morris is the current ABI Robert M. Zinman Resident Scholar for the spring 2005 semester. Prof. Morris is one of the most distinguished academics in the bankruptcy field, earning his reputation for teaching, scholarship and service to leading bankruptcy organizations. He is a professor at the University of Dayton School of Law in Dayton, Ohio, and a member of the National Bankruptcy Conference (NBC), serving as its secretary and as a co-reporter of the NBC’s Individual Debtor Committee. He also serves on the Advisory Committee on Bankruptcy Rules and is an elected Fellow in the American College of Bankruptcy. His publications include Problems & Materials on Debtor/Creditor Law, a casebook co-authored with Prof. Douglas Whaley and published by Aspen Law & Business. After graduating from Washington & Lee School of Law, where he served as editor of the Law Review, he went into private practice before starting his teaching career.(Back)

ABI Consumer Committee Judicial Co-chair Hon. Thomas F. Waldron

The Hon. Thomas F. Waldron was originally appointed to the bench in 1985, and has been reappointed as a United States Bankruptcy Judge for the Southern District of Ohio at Dayton. He is currently Chief Judge of the Southern District of Ohio Bankruptcy Court. He also served as Chief Judge of the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel of the Sixth Circuit. He is a member of the adjunct faculty at the University of Dayton Law School and a contributing editor to the Norton Bankruptcy Law Practice Treatise. Judge Waldron has been a speaker at educational programs of the Federal Judicial Center, the National Conference of Bankruptcy Judges, the American Bankruptcy Institute, the National Association of Chapter 13 Trustees, and other national, regional and local organizations. Judge Waldron received his law degree from the University of Cincinnati Law School.(Back)

ABI Consumer Committee Co-chair Thomas J. Yerbich

Thomas J. Yerbich Holds a JD (with distinction) and LL.M. (Business & Tax) from McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific. Admitted to practice in California and Alaska with over 30 years experience, including 24 years representing debtors, trustees, creditors' committees and creditors in business reorganizations and consumer cases. Mr. Yerbich is certified by the American Board of Certification in both Business and Consumer Bankruptcy Law. A frequent CLE panelist on bankruptcy and tax law, he has written numerous articles on the subject of bankruptcy law. Co-vice chair of the ABI Consumer Bankruptcy Law section, Mr. Yerbich is the author of Fundamentals of Consumer Bankruptcy Law: Chapters 7 & 13 of the Bankruptcy Code. Formerly a sole practitioner in Anchorage, Mr. Yerbich currently serves in the temporary position as the Rules Attorney for the U.S. District Court in Alaska.(Back)