Conference Speaker Biographies
The Tulane Entertainment & Sports Law Conference is proud to annually host some of the nation’s top entertainment and sports attorneys and other industry leaders to share their insights.
We’re thrilled to welcome the following speakers to the 2023 Conference.
Click on each image for professional bio:
Kevin Yorn (L '90)
Kevin is an entertainment lawyer, entrepreneur, investor, and philanthropist, and founder of leading entertainment law firm Yorn Levine, Through his law firm, investment firm, and ownership in category-defining companies including Spotify, Warby Parker, Impossible Foods, Lyft, Public.com, Thrive Market, and others, and in leading funds and vehicles including Plus Capital, SV Angel, Valor, Collaborative and The Helena Brain Trust, he embodies a true multi-hyphenate of the highest order. Kevin’s philanthropic affiliations include Stand Up 2 Cancer, Cedars-Sinai Hospital, and Tulane University.
In 2018, Yorn negotiated a record-breaking deal for his long-term client, Scarlett Johansson, making her the highest-earning actress in the history of cinema. Yorn also negotiated Zoe Saldaña’s deals in the Avatar and Marvel franchises. Johansson and Saldaña are the highest and second-highest grossing actresses of all time.
Yorn’s firm also represents globally-celebrated entertainment luminaries such as Alicia Keys, Anna Kendrick, CSI creator Anthony Zuiker, Black-ish creator Kenya Barris, TikTok influencers Charli and Dixie D’Amelio, Chris Rock, “the Dans”—Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert—who directed Everything Everywhere All At Once, Ellen DeGeneres, Eva Longoria, Gisele Bündchen, Jason Sudeikis, Jonah Hill, Jordan Peele, Matthew McConaughey, Mike Judge, Scarlett Johansson, Squid Game creator Hwang Dong-hyuk, Steph Curry, Taika Waititi, South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, Zach Galifianakis, and Zoe Saldaña, among many others.
In addition to brokering legacy deals on their behalf, Yorn also works alongside his clients to launch new ventures and seek to realize their most ambitious charitable endeavors. In 2014, Yorn co-created and led financing for his partnership with Ellen DeGeneres in Ellen Digital Ventures and her lifestyle brand, ED Ellen DeGeneres, and since its inception, Yorn has been instrumental in the work of the Ellen DeGeneres Campus of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund in Rwanda.
Yorn proudly serves as a founding member on a number of corporate Boards including Common Sense Media, Language Media, LBI Entertainment, Zoe Saldaña’s BeSe, Ellen Digital Ventures, and Portia de Rossi’s General Public, which has an exclusive art partnership with Restoration Hardware.
He also plays a role in multiple non-profit organizations including serving on the Board of Governors of Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, as Co-Chairman of the Tulane Fund, and as Chairperson, Founder, and Chief Benefactor of Tulane’s annual sports and entertainment symposium. In addition, the Yorn Family Fund proudly supports the life-saving efforts of Stand up to Cancer through large scale donations and in funding the development of high-impact content such as the upcoming documentary, Life, Unexpected, that will air on PBS and is projected to raise millions for pediatric cancer research.
Yorn graduated from Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Business Administration, and earned his J.D. at Tulane University in New Orleans, LA. After graduating from law school, Yorn began his career working for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office as a Homicide Prosecutor in the Hardcore Gang Division.
Alongside his brothers Rick, a leading talent manager, and Pete, an acclaimed musician and singer/songwriter, Yorn is a part of a Hollywood royalty triumvirate. He is a passionate art creator and collector and alongside fellow artist, Leslie Nix, he Founded Studio 68, where the two create artisan furniture, lighting, and fine art.
Yorn splits his time between California, NYC, and New Orleans, where his daughter, Samantha, recently graduated from Tulane University.
About Yorn Levine Barnes Krintzman Rubenstein Kohner Endlich & Gellman
Yorn Levine is a leading, LA-based entertainment law firm serving a client roster of premiere talent and institutions in the industry. The firm also supports the fundraising efforts of venture and growth companies in all areas of consumer and tech, as well as assisting clients in the media ecosystem with their business investments and partnerships.
The firm’s clients include talent such as Scarlett Johansson, Mike Judge, Matthew McConaughey, Jordan Peele, and Jason Sudeikis. They also work with comedians such as Chris Rock and Sebastian Maniscalco, athletes like Steph Curry, and famed musicians such as Snoop Dogg and Alicia Keys. They represent creators behind Emmy-winning series like Hwang Dong-hyuk and Kim Ji-Yeon, executive producers of “Squid Game’’ on Netflix, Bill Lawrence, co-creator behind “Ted Lasso’’ on Apple TV+, the Duffer Brothers who created “Stranger Things’’ on Netflix, Dan Levy, the writer, executive producer, and actor for “Schitt’s Creek,” and Loren Bouchard, creator and animator behind “Bob’s Burgers.” They’re also proud to work with the celebrated duo “the Dans”—Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert—who directed “Everything Everywhere All At Once” among many others.
Tim Francis (L '84)
Tim Francis is a writer, producer, and practicing lawyer. He was born and raised on a Black college campus in New Orleans where his father, a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, was the longest serving college president in U.S. history. From there, Tim went on to work for a U.S. Cabinet Secretary and a U.S. Senator before moving to Los Angeles to work for Stevie Wonder. Since then, Tim and Stevie worked closely with the Secretary General of the United Nations to pass a global treaty that impacts the visually impaired. As a writer-producer, Tim has had a first look deal at Sony Pictures, a television project at Fremantle Media, and has a feature in development with Gary Ross and Matt Jackson, and a feature in development with Steven Pearl and Adam Kolbrenner at Lit Entertainment. Tim serves on the Board of Administrators of Tulane University, the Trombone Shorty Foundation, and the Murphy Institute- a political economy think-tank.
Jeff Frost (L '89)
Jeff Frost enjoys over 25 years of experience in the entertainment industry, having worked at the highest levels of some of the most prominent television enterprises in the business. Frost most recently served as President of Sony Pictures Television Studios (“SPTS”), overseeing the studio’s rise to become the leading independent television studio. Frost is currently President of Bristol Circle Entertainment (“BCE”), a boutique production company focused on developing and producing premium and scripted dramas and comedies from some of the most preeminent writers and creators.
Representative Significant Accomplishments
• Frost orchestrated and successfully conducted the renegotiation with AMC for Breaking Bad that unlocked the rights for Sony to sell library episodes to Netflix, which exposed the iconic, yet then sparsely viewed series to new and broader audiences. This development helped to ultimately cement the iconic series as one of the greatest television projects of all time.
• Frost devised and implemented the strategy to move Norman Lear’s One Day at a Time from Netflix to CBS and Pop TV, marking it as the first major television series to move from Netflix to linear television.
• Frost devised and negotiated some of the earliest license agreements with the leading streamers, including Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, helping to usher in the era of original content at streaming platforms and achieved some of the highest license premiums paid to an independent studio by those streamers to date.
• Frost was instrumental in the rise of Sony Pictures Television Studios to its dominant position in the industry, overseeing the remarkable increase in the licensing of television series from less than a dozen to more than 50, including some of the most critically acclaimed and widely viewed programs on their respective platforms. Frost formulated and managed the business, licensing and creative strategy that resulted in the studio’s dramatic ascension.
• Under his newly formed production company, Bristol Circle Entertainment, Frost choreographed the development and licensing of the latest Vince Gilligan series, culminating in a two season straight to series order from Apple+ and significant premium license fee.
Bristol Circle Entertainment
Frost currently serves as President of Bristol Circle Entertainment, a premium production company dedicated to creating exceptional and distinctive television projects for digital, cable and broadcast platforms. Frost oversees all creative, business and production facets of the company, including devising and implementing the overall strategic focus of the venture. Shortly after the launch of the company, BCE’s first production, the Untitled Vince Gilligan Project, was licensed to Apple+ in the most significant and prominent television sale of the year. BCE is currently developing several premium properties based on underlying works of Stephen King, John Grisham and Stan Lee.
Sony Pictures Television Studios
Frost served as President of Sony Pictures Television Studios, managing all production, creative, business, marketing, research and programming divisions of the studio. Under his tenure, SPTS produced more than 50 television programs, distributed on more than 20 different platforms from broadcast to cable to streaming, including some of the most highly regarded and prominent programs on those platforms. SPTS’ productions encompassed all aspects of television, including scripted dramas and comedies, unscripted series, animation, game shows, soap operas, syndicated talk shows and television movies and limited series. As the largest and most prolific independent television studio, SPTS produced programming for virtually every major distribution platform, including Netflix, Apple+, Amazon, HBO, Showtime, Starz, FX, AMC, ABC, NBC and CBS. Productions included The Boys, Cobra Kai, Better Call Saul, The Good Doctor, Shark Tank, Wheel of Time, Crossing Swords, The Afterparty, S.W.A.T., The Blacklist and Outlander.
Frost was instrumental in recruiting and retaining some of SPTS’ premier talent for the studio, including Phil Lord & Chris Miller, Howard Gordon & Alex Gansa, Amy Lippman, Vince Gilligan, Carla Kettner, Neil Moritz, Norman Lear, Michele Fazekas & Tara Butters, Nick Stoller and Tyler the Creator. Frost also orchestrated the move of numerous series from one platform to another, following cancellation on the initial platform, including Cobra Kai from You Tube to Netflix, One Day at A Time from Netflix to Pop and LA’s Finest from NBC to Spectrum. Frost was actively involved in the creation of numerous new business templates and license agreements with broadcasters, streamers and cable networks as the industry evolved and the business needs of studios and distributors transformed. Frost also established Gemstone Studios, the innovative sub-studio within SPTS focused on creating and producing cost-efficient, quality “indie” style programming.
Formerly, as Executive Vice-President, U.S. Business Affairs for SPT, Frost played a lead role in SPT’s overall strategy and negotiations with the studio’s broadcast and production partners and talent, overseeing the studio’s U.S. Business Affairs Department, including day to day operations as well as strategic counsel on the company’s network, cable and syndicated television productions. Frost managed SPT’s negotiations between the studio and its partners at networks, production companies, talent, and other outside companies. In this role, Frost was one of the key architects of the initial licensing templates for emerging platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu.
Frost joined SPT in 2008 from ABC Studios, where he served as Senior Vice-President, Business Affairs for the studio’s traditional production arm, as well as their digital media group. Frost joined ABC in 1997 as an attorney in the litigation department and, beginning in 1999, held posts in the legal affairs and business affairs departments for the production company, Touchstone Television, through 2003, when he segued into ABC Cable Networks as Senior Vice-President and Head of Legal Affairs. He rejoined Touchstone Television in 2005 as Senior Vice-President, leading the legal department before taking on his role at SPT in Business Affairs. Series in which Frost was involved include Lost, Grey’s Anatomy and Desperate Housewives.
Prof. Gabe Feldman is the Sher Garner Professor of Sports Law and Paul and Abram B. Barron Professor of Law, as well as Director of the Tulane Sports Law Program at Tulane University Law School; the Co-Director of the Tulane Center for Sport; and Associate Provost for NCAA Compliance at Tulane University. Prof. Feldman is one of the leading voices in sports law in the U.S. Feldman’s extensive experience in sports law includes representing a variety of sports entities while he was in private practice, and he continues to act as a consultant for a number of clients in the sports industry. He is regularly quoted in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today and other newspapers, and he has made numerous appearances on national television and radio programs. He currently serves as the on-air legal analyst for the NFL Network.
Feldman is the editor of The Sports Lawyers Journal, a law journal devoted to the study of sports law, and The Sports Lawyer, a monthly online newsletter. He also served as a sports law contributor to the now-defunct Grantland.com and the Sports Law Blog. He is director of publications for the Sports Lawyers Association; co-authored of one of the leading sports law casebooks in the country, Sports Law: Cases and Materials; is on the Articles Review Board for the Journal of Legal Aspects of Sport; and has been published in a variety of journals and periodicals. Much of his writing focuses on the intersection of antitrust, labor, intellectual property law and the sports industry. He also serves as a mediator and arbitrator.
Feldman serves on the board of directors of the Sports Lawyers Association and Athletes for Hope, a nonprofit organization created to harness the power of sports to impact social change. He also is the director of Special Olympics in New Orleans, serves on the board of directors for the regional Anti-Defamation League office and the New Orleans Jewish Community Center, and is a member of the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports. He joined Tulane in 2005 and teaches Antitrust, Sports Law, Negotiation and Mediation and Contracts. He has been appointed Reporter for the Uniform Law Commission Study on College Athlete Name, Image, and Likeness. In 2019, Feldman was awarded the Sher Garner Professorship in Sports Law, the nation’s first fully-endowed professorship dedicated to sports law, funded by alumni and longtime supporters Leopold and Karen Sher and James and Tracie Garner.
Actress and producer Lizze Broadway is a fast-rising talent on both the big and small screen and will next star as “Emma Meyer” in GEN V, the upcoming spin-off of Amazon’s hit franchise THE BOYS.
Born in Toledo, Ohio to school teacher parents, Broadway relocated to Los Angeles with her family at 9 years old. She began acting as a hobby in her early years and quickly found success in television, booking guest star roles on series such as SHAMELESS (Showtime), NCIS (CBS), CHICAGO P.D (NBC) and BONES (Fox). She landed a recurring arc on Alan Ball’s HBO dramedy HERE AND NOW and starred in AMERICAN PIE: GIRLS RULES, of the iconic film franchise, as well as the independent horror-thriller THE INHABITANT.
Broadway will next star opposite Chris Evans, Ana de Armas and Adrien Brody in Dexter Fletcher’s feature film GHOSTED for Apple TV+ and will also be seen in the comedy series BASED ON A TRUE STORY for Peacock opposite Kaley Cuoco and Chris Messina.
Broadway resides in Los Angeles, California and enjoys spending time with her friends and her puppy, Charlie.
Taryn Brown (L '09)
Taryn Brown is a member of Baker McKenzie’s North America Corporate & Securities Practice Group in its Washington, DC office. Taryn has extensive experience in mergers & acquisitions, transactional, corporate governance, financial restructuring, and securities law matters. She advices and counsels public and private clients on a wide variety of legal matters.
Prior to joining Baker McKenzie, Taryn worked as a Vice President at Legends — a sports and entertainment company owned by the New York Yankees and Dallas Cowboys. Prior to Legends, Taryn was a mergers & acquisitions associate in New York City at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, where she focused on private equity merger and acquisition transactions, including leveraged buy-outs, dispositions, carve-outs and asset manager transactions.
Before practicing law, she worked in New York City as a Division I basketball coach as well as a fundraiser for political campaigns and non-profit organizations that focused on creating educational opportunities for underrepresented groups.
Taryn holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas, where she was a member and captain of the women’s basketball team. To contribute to the rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Katrina, Taryn chose to attend Tulane University Law School, where she earned her J.D., was the Editor-in-Chief of The Sports Lawyers Journal, and worked for the General Counsels at ESPN and the New Orleans Hornets.
Brian Burkin (L '89)
Brian Burkin is executive vice president of business affairs for Columbia-TriStar Motion Picture Group, Sony Pictures Entertainment. Burkin first joined Sony Pictures in 2007 in New York City and later moved to Sony’s headquarters in Culver City, Calif. Currently, he serves as head of business affairs at TriStar Pictures, where he is responsible for managing the business operations, including negotiating deals for talent, rights and financing, as well as for sales and acquisitions.
Prior to serving at TriStar, Burkin was head of business affairs and operations at Sony’s International Motion Picture Production unit, which produces theatrical features in local languages around the world, including in China, Russia, India and Germany. Previously, Burkin worked for nearly 10 years at Miramax Films, where he was senior vice president of business affairs.
Burkin started his career in New York City, where he practiced corporate law, commercial litigation and transactional entertainment law. Burkin earned his BA from Penn State University and his JD from Tulane University Law School.
Marsha Cooke currently serves as vice president & executive producer for ESPN Films and 30 for 30. She is responsible for overseeing development, production, distribution, branding and strategy of all projects under the ESPN Films umbrella, including the 30 for 30 series.
Cooke joined ESPN from VICE Media Group, where she served as senior vice president of global news and special projects. In her role at VICE, Cooke developed and produced special news and entertainment projects across VMG digital and broadcast platforms, leading the youth media company in pushing the limits of broadcast news formats and playing a key role in integrating VICE’s forward-thinking values with its award-winning content.
Cooke was instrumental in leading VICE News’ first-ever live coverage of the 2020 Iowa Brown and Black Forum, the nation’s oldest and only non-partisan presidential forum dedicated exclusively to addressing issues facing communities of color. With unprecedented candidate attendance and a groundbreaking, engaging format, the program won a national news Emmy. Cooke also previously led IMPACT at VICE, where she directed social good and community engagement in order to build and strengthen VICE’s culture, partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives, with a focus on ensuring the company’s work would affect long standing change in local and global communities.
Prior to VICE, Cooke spent 24 years at CBS. She was the first Black Asia Bureau Chief, responsible for coverage across the continent, producing stories for various CBS News shows and she served as VP of news services, in charge of the Newspath newsgathering group serving 200 CBS affiliates nationwide and broadcasters around the world. Before that, Cooke was executive editor of content at CBSN, the 24-hour digital streaming news network, where she led the unit’s push into original documentaries and helped guide breaking news coverage, and also was a senior broadcast producer for “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley.”
During her time at CBS, Cooke was the recipient of a News & Documentary Emmy Award and a Gracie Award. She is a graduate of Temple University, where she is also a recipient of the Lew Klein Media Award, an inductee of the Alumni Hall of Fame and the university’s Gallery of Success. She was featured in O Magazine in 2019. She is on the board of Solutions Journalism, Capital B, The City, an online, nonprofit newsroom, the Alliance of Women in Media and is a founding member of The Meteor.
Cooke lives in New York City where she is a voracious reader, ridiculous foodie, long-suffering NY sports fan and a proud first generation Jamaican-American.
Robert Fyvolent (A&S '84)
Robert Fyvolent was born in Tampa, Florida. He graduated with a degree in political science from Tulane University in New Orleans and thereafter attended law school at South Texas College of Law in Houston and Loyola University School of Law in Los Angeles, earning his JD degree. Robert spent five years working as an attorney for The Walt Disney Company and another five years at Sony Pictures Entertainment, where he acted as Assistant General Counsel in the Screen Gems and Home Entertainment divisions.
While at Sony, Robert worked as counsel for the studio on independently produced film acquisitions, which included titles such as Arlington Road, Black and White, and David Cronenberg’s Crash, as well as titles from the Jim Henson library. Robert worked for 11 years at Newmarket Films where, as the Head of Business and Legal Affairs, helped build a library of over 250 films. Newmarket Films was the independent production and theatrical distribution company responsible for such well known films as Memento, Donnie Darko, Whale Rider, Monster, The Prestige and Boondock Saints. His work with Newmarket on Passion of the Christ, led to the most successful independent theatrical film release in history. Prior to winning a Sundance Award Winner for his own produced film, Robert worked on a prior Sundance winning documentary, “God Grew Tired of Us” which was acquired during the festival for worldwide distribution by Newmarket.
Robert is currently a solo entertainment law practitioner with a broad range of entertainment industry clients; Production legal work has included such films as “Trumbo” “Cake”, “Cries from Syria” and “Captain Fantastic”. His work with Oscar nominated client and documentary filmmaker Evgeny Afineevsky, led to an Executive Producer credit on “Francesco”. For over 10 years, Robert has represented LatinX oriented Pantelion Films, producer of the Eugenio Derbez movies, “Instructions Not Included”, “How to Be A Latin Lover”, and “Overboard” and “Radical” which will open the 2023 Sundance Film Festival.
Robert was a PGA accredited producer on the documentary entitled Summer of Soul (Or…When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised) directed by Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson. The documentary has won numerous awards, including the prestigious Audience and Grand Jury Prizes at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival, as well as 6 New York Critics’ Choice Awards, a Peabody Award, The Independent Spirit Award, BAFTA, Best Documentary from the Producers Guild of America, an Oscar for Best Documentary from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, and a Grammy for Best Music Film.
Robert is also a WGA member and worked professionally as a screenwriter; He won first prize in an Atom Films screenwriting competition. He later collaborated and was a credited writer on the original screenplay, Untraceable, which was produced staring Diane Lane and directed by Gregory Hoblit. The film was released theatrically in February 2008 by Sony Screen Gems Pictures. He’s also written for Dreamworks and other independent producers.
Robert has regularly attended film markets around the world and has been invited to speak at industry invents including the Rio Film Festival and the Toronto Film Festival; his legal work has involved all aspects of film and television production, acquisition, financing and distribution as well as the representation of writers, producers and other talent. Currently, Robert is continuing to work as a producer on a documentary film slate through his company Mass Distraction Media.
Bruce Gellman is managing partner of Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush, Kaller, Gellman, Meigs & Fox, one of the preeminent entertainment law firms in the nation. His practice includes representing writers, directors, producers and actors in television, film and new media, with an emphasis on creators and showrunners. He has negotiated on behalf of clients in the creation of numerous television series, including This Is Us, Jane the Virgin, The Killing, The Goldbergs, Snowfall, Dirty John, Dr. Death and Wheel of Time. He earned a BA from UCLA cum laude and a JD from Berkeley Law, where he was Book Review Editor of the California Law Review. He was Law Clerk to the Hon. John G. Davies in the Central District of California and worked for Latham & Watkins and CBS prior to becoming a private practice talent lawyer.
For almost two decades, Ms. Gipson has represented both individuals and organizations in the professional sports field, with increasing crossover into entertainment and brand icon representation. Current and former clients include entertainment personalities, professional athletes in the National Basketball Association and the National Football League as well as Sports Franchises and Sports Leagues.
Ms. Gipson has worked on various transactions and representative matters, ranging from sports franchise ownership transfers, arbitration & contract dispute resolution, labor and employment issues to handling player marketing contracts and endorsement deals, business investments and philanthropic foundation endeavors.
Ms. Gipson earned a Bachelor of Science in Communication from Cornell University and a Doctor of Law degree from Cornell Law School with a concentration in Business Law and Regulation. Ms. Gipson is admitted to practice in New York and Louisiana. She first moved to New Orleans in 2004 for a one-year contract to serve as a Federal Law Clerk to the Honorable Ivan L.R. Lemelle in the Eastern District of Louisiana, United States District Court and has remained a resident of New Orleans ever since.
Lee Goldsmith serves as Senior Vice President and Senior Media Counsel at the National Football League, where he leads a team responsible for legal and business affairs in connection with all aspects of the NFL’s media businesses. His work focuses primarily on the NFL’s agreements with game telecast partners CBS, ESPN, FOX, NBC and Amazon and the distribution of NFL content through traditional and emerging platforms. Prior to joining the NFL in 2014, Lee served as a media/content attorney at MLB Advanced Media and then at Comcast. He began his career as an associate in the Sports Practice Group at Proskauer and is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and the NYU School of Law.
Renee Gomila (L '00)
Renee Gomila served as an NCAA Associate Director of Enforcement from 2002 to 2014, where she helped lead multiple investigations of NCAA rule violations and, among other things, liaised and coordinated with the NCAA Recruiting Cabinet and Football Issues Subcommittee and worked with the student-athlete reinstatement staff on eligibility issues. Renee coordinated the enforcement department’s football development plans for Florida and Texas, working directly with college and high school football coaches, student-athletes and administrators to provide rules interpretations and address recruiting and eligibility issues.
Prior to joining the NCAA, Renee worked in the athletics compliance office at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Renee received her law degree from Tulane University School of Law in 2000. She received her Master’s of Science from Florida International University in 1996, and her Bachelor’s of Science in 1994.
Renee currently operates RG Sports Consulting, where she provides legal and compliance management advice to college coaches and administrators and student-athletes. Gomila also works with insurance firm, James D. Edgeworth, to advocate for additional insurance and related benefits for student-athletes, and she consults with legal firms to assess legal and risk management issues within football and men’s basketball.
In the antitrust arena, David has litigated cases involving alleged cartels, monopoly and monopsony conduct, predatory pricing, price fixing, group boycotts, bid rigging, and other restraints of trade. His practice is balanced between litigation defense, litigation prosecution, and counseling. Representative defense work includes defending alleged cartel activities in multidistrict class actions, defending alleged monopolization under various federal and state antitrust laws, and defending companies in criminal and administrative proceedings brought by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and international competition authorities. On the plaintiff’s side, David has prosecuted group boycotts and other restraints of trade in the sports and entertainment industries, among others. David regularly counsels clients on antitrust matters, including implementing antitrust compliance policies, conducting antitrust trainings, and advising on day-to-day business issues.
David also Co-Chairs Winston’s top-ranked Sports Law Practice. One of the nation’s leading sports law litigators, David has litigated sports-industry cases involving antitrust law, labor law, licensing, agent regulation, active and retired player rights, and collegiate athlete rights. David has represented all four major U.S. professional sports players associations, myriad professional athletes and agents, and teams and owners in disputes with their respective leagues. He was trial and appellate counsel in the landmark Alston v. NCAA antitrust litigation, wherein the team prevailed at trial and that culminated in a widely reported unanimous Supreme Court victory. Both the stunning trial and Supreme Court wins were recognized by The American Lawyer (Am Law) via prestigious “Litigator of the Week” wins. David routinely represents the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) and NFL players, including in matters involving Tom Brady, Colin Kaepernick, Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson, Ezekiel Elliott, Eric Reid, Terrell Owens, and Michael Vick.
David is part of the group recognized with GCR’s 2022 “Litigation of the Year: Cartel Prosecution” award for Winston’s historic unanimous Supreme Court victory for college athletes in Alston v. NCAA.
Julie Haffner (L '99)
Julie Haffner is Director of Business and Legal Affairs at Netflix. She negotiates high-level deals for the Original Studio Film group’s slate of motion pictures, and has been responsible for projects including “The Hillbilly Elegy”, “Yes Day”, “The Christmas Chronicles”, and “Me Time”. She also negotiates and manages overall deals for producers including 21 Laps (Shawn Levy) and Hartbeat (Kevin Hart).
Prior to Netflix, Haffner was Senior Vice President of Business and Legal Affairs at Entertainment One, where she negotiated motion picture development, production, financing, and distribution deals for eOne and its partner companies, including Makeready and The Mark Gordon Company.
Before eOne, Haffner spent six-and-a-half years in the Motion Picture Group at Paramount Pictures negotiating agreements for films including “Flight,” “Nebraska,” “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” and “GI Joe 2.” Prior to joining Paramount, Haffner was Vice President of Business Affairs at The Weinstein Company, and negotiated deals for “August: Osage County,” “Halloween” and numerous other productions.
Haffner started her in-house studio career at Warner Bros. Pictures working on “The Departed” and “Superman Returns.” Prior to becoming an in-house studio lawyer, she spent several years in private practice representing talent in their negotiations with studios.
Haffner teaches a Fall semester Entertainment Law class at USC Gould School of Law. She received her JD, cum laude, from Tulane University School of Law. While at Tulane, Julie was the Senior Managing Editor of the Tulane Environmental Law Journal, and published her case note. She was also a Senior Fellow/Teaching Assistant for the Law School’s Legal Research and Writing Program, as well as a student attorney in Tulane’s Environmental Law Clinic. She received her BA cum laude, with departmental honors in Political Science, from Barnard College of Columbia University. At Barnard, she was awarded the coveted Bear Pin for student leadership, and was the Editor in Chief of the Barnard College yearbook as well as a charter class member of the Columbia University chapter of Alpha Chi Omega.
Brandon Harrell (L '11)
Brandon Harrell serves as Vice President, Deputy General Counsel for the 2028 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games (“LA28”) which will take place in Los Angeles, CA. In his role with LA28, he is responsible for overseeing legal matters related to the delivery of the Games, including venues, infrastructure, sport programming, accommodations, hospitality, transportation, security, municipal services and related-events.
Prior to joining LA28, Harrell served as Vice President, Legal & Business Affairs for the Philadelphia 76ers National Basketball Association franchise and Director of Legal Affairs for the Seattle Seahawks National Football League franchise. He represented both teams in a range of matters, including transactions related to media rights, sponsorships, merchandising, licensing, technology, IP, employment, real estate and other commercial arrangements; stadium/venue development, use and lease agreements; business process outsourcing arrangements; and numerous additional key transactions. He also managed litigation, including media rights, employment, breach of contract, bankruptcy, insurance and other litigation matters; criminal, civil and league investigations; and arbitrations and mediations, including collective bargaining agreement grievances.
Harrell began his legal career as a litigation associate in the Washington, DC office of Beveridge & Diamond, PC where he served as counsel to former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue during his service as the hearing officer for an arbitration between the NFL and NFL Players Association.
He has served on the Board of Directors for the Public Interest Law Center and the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle. In addition, Harrell has provided pro bono representation to domestic violence victims and underrepresented tenants.
He was an awardee of the National Bar Association’s Nation’s Best Advocates 40 Lawyers Under 40 Award. A graduate of Tulane University Law School, he obtained his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Hampton University. Harrell is a native of New Orleans, LA and currently resides in Los Angeles, CA.
Jed started His career on Wall Street in 1986 at Lehman Brothers, and with such successful track record, was hired to run JP Morgan’s CMO Derivative Desk where he managed a 2.5 Billion Dollar position for the Bank. As an expert in his field, is consulted by many notable institutions in the world regarding Government Bonds and has been a consultant for the FBI, SEC and FINRA.
As CEO of Shearson, a Wall Street Firm, He leads 30 professionals with over 2,000 clients.
He has Extensive Sports management experience both as a Majority and Minority Owner. As a Founding Member of the NBADL Leadership Committee, he helped build the league from 12 teams to 28.
Jed is also the Managing Partner of Shearson Sports Opportunity Fund, a Private Equity Fund which will invest in Multiple Major and Minor League Sports Teams
Minority Owner, Memphis Grizzlies, NBA, 2012-Present
Board Member, Memphis Grizzlies, NBA, 2012-Present
Minority Owner, Orlando City, MLS, 2020-2021
Managing Partner, Iowa Energy, NBADL, 2014-2017
Minority Owner, Erie Bayhawks, NBADL, 2008-2014
Co-Managing Partner, Loudoun United, USL 2017-2020
CEO, Simplicity Esports, 2017-2021
Owner, Florida Sharks, USBL, 1994-1996
Owner, Long Island Surf, USBL, 1991-1993
Ashlye Keaton (L '03)
Ashlye Keaton practices intellectual property and entertainment law, and she also works in cultural advocacy and policy. Ashlye is the Co-Founder of The Ella Project, a nonprofit based in New Orleans that serves Louisiana artists, musicians and culture bearers with direct legal, business and advocacy services. Ashlye is an adjunct professor at Tulane Law School and the University of New Orleans Graduate School in Arts Administration. She received the distinguished teaching award by Tulane Law class of 2015. Along with other legal successes, Ashlye helped the Mardi Gras Indians by arguing that their elaborate suits qualified for copyright protection as works of sculpture.
She is also noted for her work around the New Orleans municipal noise ordinance and other arts-related policies and regulations. Ashlye co-founded and serves on the board of Music Policy Forum, a North American organization dedicated to providing resources and strengthening networks within the music sector, and she is part of the national leadership team for Reopen Every Venue Safely (REVS). Ashlye served the creative industries sub-committee for Mayor Cantrell’s transition team; she is the Chair of the community advisory board for WWOZ 90.7FM; she has served on numerous boards for arts and culture related organizations, including the Recording Academy.
Beyond New Orleans, Ashlye has convened stakeholders and presented at conferences at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Georgetown University, Canadian Music Week, the NoncomMusic Alliance, National Endowment for the Arts, South Arts, and other organizations steeped in conversations around developing best practices and facilitating fairness and equity in promoting thriving creative industries and cultural ecosystems.
Ashlye has been recognized with numerous accolades for her commitment to arts and culture, including OffBeat Magazine’s Best Music Attorney for nine consecutive years, The Advocate’s Forty under 40, New Orleans CityBusiness Leadership in Law, and the Mardi Gras Indian Hall of Fame Legal Eagle Award for her work with Mardi Gras Indians.
Alex Kohner is a partner at the Century City entertainment law firm Yorn Levine Barnes Krintzman Rubenstein Kohner Endlich & Gellman. He joined the firm in 2001 and became a partner in 2005. Alex’s practice covers all aspects of representing high profile actors, screenwriters, directors, and authors in the film, television, and publishing businesses. Alex earned his BA from UC Berkeley, JD from Loyola Law School, and began his legal career in 1998 in the motion picture and television department of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips. He has been named to The Hollywood Reporter’s “Top 35 under 35,” Variety’s “Impact Report,” Variety’s “Dealmakers List,” The Hollywood Reporter’s “Hollywood’s Top 20 Dealmakers,” and The Hollywood Reporter’s “Top 100 Attorneys.”
Alex’s clients include the Duffer Brothers (STRANGER THINGS), Chris Weitz (STAR WARS: ROGUE ONE, CINDERELLA), Paul Weitz (AMERICAN PIE, ABOUT A BOY), Jonathan Franzen (FREEDOM), the David Foster Wallace Literary Trust (INFINITE JEST), Peter Chiarelli (CRAZY RICH ASIANS, THE PROPOSAL), Jonathan Krisel (PORTLANDIA, BASKETS), Pixar writers Jason Headley (LIGHTYEAR) and Julia Cho (TURNING RED), NASCAR, Jeanie Buss (Owner of the Los Angeles Lakers), John Cho (STAR TREK, HAROLD & KUMAR), Kate Bosworth (21, BLUE CRUSH), and Heather Graham (THE HANGOVER).
In addition to his work at the law firm, Alex has served on the board of Aspen Film, guest teaches at Loyola Law School, and is the Trustee of the David Foster Wallace Literary Trust. In his free time, he enjoys skiing, mountain biking, tennis, and reading. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Ali, and their twin daughters, Charlotte and Daisy.
Thomas P. Lane (L '91)
Thomas Patrick Lane, L91, is an EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony) winning producer and investor. His current productions are “I Wanna Dance with Somebody”, the Whitney Houston biopic, “The Collaboration” about Warhol and Basquiat, “Moulin Rouge” coming to the Saenger in April, and “Hadestown.”
He is also an entertainment litigator. He has worked with artists such as Prince, Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, James Taylor and Billy Porter. He has tried to verdict over 150 cases across the country and world, and has deposed the likes of Led Zeppelin and all living members of the Grateful Dead, as well as individual artists such as Dr. Dre and Snoop Dog.
At Tulane, Tom has established the Lane/Morrison Endowment for Equality to promote diversity and encourage the Tulane community to embrace acceptance of all that we are.
Ben Lauritsen is a Partner with the AmLaw 200 law firm Stoel Rives. Previously he served as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the Portland Trail Blazers.
Lauritsen joined the Trail Blazers in 2010 and rose to the General Counsel role in 2012, where he advised the organization’s senior management, board of directors and ownership in all legal matters, including strategy, contract negotiations, NBA player and league matters, business operations and compliance.
During his tenure with the Blazers, Lauritsen negotiated the team’s first arena naming rights agreement with Moda and negotiated multiple landmark media rights deals, and supported the company’s broad array of revenue, licensing, brand, marketing and technology initiatives. Additionally, he executed two major restructures of the Trail Blazers’ company, led sensitive internal investigations, and launched the team’s first comprehensive diversity, equity and inclusion program. As President of the Trail Blazers Foundation, he oversaw growth of annual foundation giving from $150,000 to $1.25 million.
As a corporate associate at Stoel Rives from 2008 to 2010, Lauritsen counseled clients on corporate financing, mergers and acquisitions, bankruptcy, restructuring, corporate governance, and general business matters. Prior to joining Stoel, Lauritsen was a corporate associate in the London office of Latham & Watkins LLP, where he advised issuers and underwriters in international equity and debt capital markets transactions, as well as conducted due diligence to validate transactions and support legal opinions.
Following his graduation from the University of Chicago Law School, Lauritsen clerked for The Hon. David G. Campbell in the U.S. District Court of Arizona, 2004–2005. He is a member of the Board of the Trail Blazers Foundation and the Lewis & Clark Law School Center for Innovation.
Jennifer Lewis (L '98)
Jennifer Lewis is the General Counsel of Redbud Brands. In that capacity, she leads all legal affairs matters and strategy for Redbud Brands and its portfolio of consumer products companies. Previously, she was the General Counsel of The SpringHill Company, and before SpringHill, the Managing Vice President of Business Affairs at Disney Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products with a specialty in complex business transactions and media rights acquisitions, talent and athlete sponsorship and promotion negotiations. She was a key synergy partner and thought leader with other studio business segments, coordinating on talent-related matters, ancillary rights negotiations, music licensing issues, trademark strategy and operations.
Earlier in her career, Jennifer worked as an executive at Live Nation, MGM, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Fox Family Worldwide.
Jennifer is a Tulane Law School alumni and holds a BBA from the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. Jennifer has a strong commitment to the diversity of representation and has served as a board member for multiple non-profit organizations.
Producer James F. Lopez is President of MACRO Film Studios. He is responsible for overseeing the company’s slate of projects in development, production and distribution.
He is a producer on the Macro/Confluential film Young. Wild. Free. directed by Thembi Banks and starring Algee Smith, Sanaa Lathan, Sierra Capri and Mike Epps. Mr. Lopez is also executive producer on the eOne/Macro production Freaky Tales, which is currently filming in Oakland, CA. The film stars Pedro Pascal, Ben Mendelsohn, and Jay Ellis and is being directed by Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden. Most recently President of Will Packer Productions, Lopez produced numerous films for Universal Pictures including the studio’s 2022 action thriller Beast directed by Baltasar Kormakur and starring Idris Elba and Sharlto Copley that was shot in South Africa. He also produced The Photograph starring Issa Rae and LaKeith Stanfield, Little starring Issa Rae, Regina Hall and Marsai Martin, What Men Want starring Taraji P. Henson and Breaking In starring Gabrielle Union.
Lopez was also an executive producer on the hit comedy Girls Trip starring Regina Hall, Jada Pinkett Smith, Queen Latifah and Tiffany Haddish. The film opened to critical acclaim and grossed over $140 million worldwide. He also executive produced Night School starring Kevin Hart and Tiffany Haddish, which grossed over $100 million worldwide, as well as Almost Christmas starring Gabrielle Union and Danny Glover and; Jacob’s Ladder starring Michael Ealy and Jesse Williams.
Prior to joining Will Packer Productions, Lopez was Senior Vice President of Production at Screen Gems, a division of Sony Pictures Entertainment. During his tenure, Lopez oversaw some of the company’s top grossing and most anticipated films including the box office hits Think Like A Man, About Last Night, Think Like A Man Too, The Wedding Ringer, The Perfect Guy and When The Bough Breaks.
Before Screen Gems, Lopez was Senior Vice President of Marketing for Atlantic Records, where he was instrumental in developing and managing the marketing campaigns for numerous multi-platinum artists.
Lopez holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Sam Houston State University where he played football for four years. He is a member of The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, is on the Board Council for the Producers Guild of America and has been included on Ebony Magazine’s Power 100 list and Imagen Foundation’s Most Powerful & Influential Latinos in Entertainment.
Oliver Luck is the new Executive Director of the ASUN-WAC football conference. Previously, Luck has had an extensive and distinguished career as an executive and player at both the professional and collegiate levels.
Luck is the former NCAA Executive Vice President of Regulatory Affairs & Strategic Partnerships. He also previously served as the Athletics Director at West Virginia University, where he also attended and starred at quarterback. Luck was selected in the second round of the 1982 NFL Draft by the Houston Oilers. After retiring, Luck earned his J.D. from the University of Texas.
Before his positions at the NCAA and WVU, Luck served as general manager of the Frankfurt Galaxy and the Rhein Fire of NFL Europe. He also served as an executive with the National Football League and the CEO of the Houston Sports Authority. He has also served on the College Football Playoff Management Committee.
Fritz Metzinger (L '17)
Fritz Metzinger is an alumnus of Tulane Law School, where he was a member of the Sports Law Society. He wrote his comment for Tulane Law Review on NCAA regulations pertaining to
As an associate at Stone Pigman Walther Wittmann, LLC, he now concentrates his practice on
general business litigation and has represented a number of clients, including sports teams, in a broad range of commercial disputes. He also has a developing gaming regulatory practice, in which he focuses on sports wagering laws and regulations.
Fritz serves as the Co-Chairman of the ABA Business Law Section’s Sports-Related Disputes
subcommittee and spoke about recent developments in sports-related disputes at a panel at the 2022 ABA Business Law Section Spring Annual Meeting. Fritz has also made several media appearances in which he has discussed NCAA player compensation limits and other related issues.
Vicky Neumeyer (L '98)
Vicky Neumeyer was named Senior Vice President/General Counsel of the New Orleans Pelicans, in addition to serving in the same position for the New Orleans Saints, in June, 2012, overseeing all legal aspects of both teams.
Providing comprehensive legal consultation and services to the two clubs’ executive staff and assuring compliance in all of the organizations’ business endeavors, Neumeyer has been a key member of the Saints front office since joining the club in 2000 and was promoted to vice president/general counsel in 2006.
Her responsibilities include drafting key documents – including leases, sponsorship agreements and broadcast contracts – identifying and analyzing legal issues and presenting comprehensive recommendations.
A member of the Louisiana and federal bar associations, prior to joining the Saints, Neumeyer spent over five years as an in-house corporate litigation attorney for Exxon. Previously she served as a judicial clerk for the Supreme Court of Louisiana and was in private practice as a consultant to major corporate clients and law firms.
Neumeyer possesses extensive experience in Sports Law, including antitrust, labor and organizational matters. She also has a comprehensive background in CAD engineering, software development firm drafting, negotiating contracts worldwide, copyrighting and in handling legal business issues.
In 2004, Neumeyer was selected by the Saints to attend the Stanford Business School’s Executive Education NFL-Stanford Program for Managers, an educational program and honor known league-wide as an important training ground for promising executives. She has also been invited to speak at several venues, including Harvard Law School, The Sports Lawyer’s Association annual conferences, American Bar Association programs, Tulane Law School, and Loyola University New Orleans Law School. She sits on the boards of The NOCCA Institute, the INFINITY Science Center, the Arizona State University Sports Law Program as well as the Sports Lawyers’ Association, and is actively involved with the Girl Scouts of Southeast Louisiana.
After completing her undergraduate work Summa Cum Laude at the University of Wisconsin, Neumeyer earned a Master of Science Degree in Audiology at the school. She graduated with honors from Loyola Law School and attained a Master of Law with Distinction with a dual emphasis in Intellectual Property Law and Sports Law from Tulane School of Law.
Jon Phelps (L '12)
Jon Phelps is in his ninth year with the Detroit Pistons where he serves as the Senior Director of Basketball Strategy. He previously was the General Manager for the Pistons’ G League affiliate, the Grand Rapids Drive.
Phelps graduated from Siena College with a bachelor’s degree in English. While at Siena he was a manager for the men’s basketball team. He graduated from Tulane University School of Law in 2012 with a certificate in Sports Law, and was a member of the Tulane Law Review.
Betsy Philpott joined the Nationals legal department in April 2014 and was promoted to General Counsel in February 2020 and Senior Vice President in 2022. In her role, she oversees the legal department and the human resources department, handles baseball and business transactions, and provides strategic legal and business advice to her colleagues.
In 2022, she was named Outstanding Chief Legal Officer by the Association of Corporate Counsel National Capitol Region. She has also been featured in Vanguard, Profile and Washington Lawyer magazines and on Polsinelli’s In-House Influence Podcast.
Prior to joining the Nationals, Philpott worked at the Major League Soccer Players Association and the international law firm, McDermott, Will & Emery, as an associate in the energy and commodities practice group. Philpott earned a bachelor’s degree with distinction in Psychology with a minor in Biology from the University of Virginia, a doctorate of juris prudence from Vanderbilt University Law School and a masters of professional studies in sports industry management from Georgetown University. She resides in Alexandria, Va., with her wife, Rachel, daughter, Piper, son, Rhys, dog, Benson, and cat, Dax.
Marc Reeves (L '00)
Marc Reeves is an investor and advisor across various sports properties including Leeds United, CD Leganes, Cancun FC and Blue Crow Analytics. Marc is also the Head of Global Strategic Partnerships at Fever. He was previously Head of Brand, Football, for Nike. In this role, he was the consumer and marketplace lead for the company’s business across NFL, NCAA, High School, Grassroots and Performance. Previous to this role, Marc was GM, Nike+, responsible for the company’s connected membership ecosystem including vision, brand and connecting all consumers through digital (apps, Nike.com), physical (DTC, wholesale, events) and related products (e.g. Apple Watch Nike+).
Prior to joining Nike, Marc was the NFL’s first ever International Commercial Director, where he led partnerships and marketing for the league outside of the US. He added on the responsibilities of Managing Director of NFL Canada during his tenure. His prior experiences include various roles at IMG (now Endeavor), including Vice President, Consulting where he led the agency’s global relationships with Visa, Electronic Arts, Wells Fargo, and he worked in the Athlete Management division at ProServ. In addition, he co-founded a sports-based social gaming company, Lionside, which was acquired by Japanese mobile company, ngmoco:). Marc is on the Board of Directors of Relo Metrics. He is also a Board Advisor to Cloud9 esports, Sportable, Web3 Pro, Screen Skinz, a Techstars Sports Mentor and on the Advisory Board of the Tulane Sports Law Program.
Marc has been a featured speaker at numerous venues including Stanford Graduate School of Business, Kellogg School of Management, University of Michigan, Tulane Law School, Leaders (UK), Sports Lawyers Association and Ivy League Sports Symposium. He has been interviewed and quoted in various media outlets including The New York Times, CNN, ESPN, Reuters, Irish Times, The Nikkei and the Sports Business Journal. Marc has been an adjunct professor of Sports Marketing at University of San Francisco. He earned a JD/MBA from Tulane University, with a specialty in Sports Law, and a BA from Kalamazoo College, where he was a member of two NCAA Division III National Championship Tennis teams.
Prior to her retirement in January 2022, Ms. Roberts had since 2014 served as the Executive Director of the National Basketball Players Association [“NBPA”]. In that role she was tasked with working on behalf of NBA players to ensure their rights are protected and they were fairly compensated for the value they bring to the sport and their impact on the community. Prior to joining the NBPA, she was an esteemed trial lawyer with Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. Her practice focused on complex civil and white-collar criminal litigation before state and federal courts and in administrative proceedings. Ms. Roberts has tried more than 150 cases to jury verdicts, representing clients in a wide variety of areas, including products liability, white collar, racketeering, securities regulation violations, Title VII issues and premises liability. She is a top-ranked attorney who has received numerous accolades from Chambers Global, Chambers USA and Benchmark Litigation, among other notable publications.
Ms. Roberts is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. She worked for eight years in the office of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, where she was named Chief of the Trial Division. Ms. Roberts is a frequent lecturer and presenter to both the bench and bar on a variety of topics related to litigation and trial practice. She taught trial advocacy as an adjunct member of the faculty at Harvard Law School and as an instructor with the National Institute of Trial Advocacy.
Ms. Roberts currently serves on the boards of Cresco Labs, The Marshall Project, The Bronx Defenders and Wesleyan University, her alma mater.
Mathew Rosengart (A&S '84)
Mathew Rosengart, recognized as one of the nation’s preeminent litigators, described by Law360 as a “heavyweight attorney” and national “Media & Entertainment MVP” and by Variety as “Hollywood’s King of Litigators,” is a former federal prosecutor, previously serving as a Supervisory Assistant United States Attorney and Justice Department Trial Attorney. A Governor of the Beverly Hills Bar Association, Mathew has been recognized as a California Lawyer Attorney of the Year and one of the Top 100 lawyers in the State by the Daily Journal; a Sports & Entertainment Law Trailblazer by The National Law Journal; Lawyer of the Year by Above the Law; Litigator of the Week by The American Lawyer; Lawyer of the Week by Original Jurisdiction; a Top 100 Lawyer and LA500 Visionary Leader by the Los Angeles Business Journal; a “Litigation Star” by Benchmark Litigation; and a Leader of Influence and Top Litigator & Trial Attorney by the LA Business Journal, which honors “masters of their craft” who “go to the proverbial mat to fight for their clients.” The issue recognized Mathew as “one of the most influential litigators” in Los Angeles and a “go to litigator for Hollywood’s elite and Corporate America” who is “one of the nation’s preeminent litigators.”
Mathew has also been listed in The Best Lawyers in America, been named as a Law360 MVP, which recognizes “the elite slate of attorneys” who “have distinguished themselves from their peers by securing hard-earned successes in high-stakes litigation,” and been lauded as a “legal powerhouse,” a “powerful litigator,” a “legal warrior” who is “principled,” and a “heavyweight lawyer” by Yahoo News, Newsweek, The View, Good Morning America, and The Guardian. He has also been recognized by NPR as a lawyer with “a lot of star power,” by Los Angeles Magazine as a “heavy hitter” with “a long history of getting results for his big name clients,” and by The Wall Street Journal, The Hollywood Reporter, and NBC’s Today as a “high profile litigator,” a “Hollywood Power Lawyer,” and a “celebrity power attorney.”
Mathew was recently described by his client Sean Penn in a New York Times article as a “tough as nails streetfighter with a big brain and bigger principles.” Former Supreme Court Justice David Souter, for whom Mathew clerked on the New Hampshire Supreme Court, praised Mathew’s “intelligence,” “instinct,” and “personal integrity,” and his former Justice Department supervisor and now United States District Judge Robert J. Conrad called Mathew “one of the sharpest lawyers I’ve ever met at the Department of Justice,” whose “judgment is impeccable.”
Among many other cases, Mathew won a defamation lawsuit for Sean Penn; a $6 million “cutting rights” case for Academy Award winner Kenneth Lonergan regarding his film “Margaret” starring Matt Damon; a multi-year $20 million arbitration for his client Credit Suisse against billionaire Ronald Lauder and 11 other claimants; and a $14 million trial verdict in a New York trial (on a counterclaim) after extensive bi-coastal litigation for his hedge fund client Sandton Capital against a film production company. Mathew also recently served as lead counsel for Fortune 20 company Verizon in one of the largest False Claims Act cases in the country, involving more than $500 million in claims.
Mathew has recently twice been recognized in The American Lawyer’s “Litigator of the Week” column, for going from “defense-to-offense” for NBA superstar Jimmy Butler in a case involving Mathew’s innovative use of the California Talent Agency Act and after obtaining the suspension of Britney Spears’s father as conservator of her Estate. In addition to complex commercial litigation, Mathew has perennially been recognized as one of the nation’s leading entertainment litigators by both The Hollywood Reporter in its “Power Lawyer Report” (listing the industry’s Top-100 most influential attorneys) and Variety (in its “Legal Impact Report,” spotlighting the world’s leading attorneys in the entertainment industry).
Mathew has delivered Boston College Law School’s Dean’s Distinguished Lecture, spoken at Harvard Law School, and was a keynote speaker at the ABA’s Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries. He is a recipient of Trinity College of Dublin’s Praeses Elit Award, the highest honor bestowed by its Law Society, and the Beverly Hills Bar Association’s Excellence in Advocacy Award.
Media and entertainment litigation
White collar criminal defense
Dan is the COO at Amazon Studios, overseeing business affairs, physical production, operations, music and casting. In this role, Dan has oversight in these areas for all original content produced for the Amazon Prime Video platform, encompassing television and feature films in the US, as well as Local Originals produced for many countries globally. Recently, he has taken a lead role in integrating the MGM teams into the Amazon family. Among the shows he has worked on and helped bring in to Amazon are “Lord of the Rings”, “The Boys”, “Jack Ryan”, and many others. Previously, he was General Counsel & Head of Business Affairs at The Jim Henson Company, and has also held business affairs roles for Fox Television, Disney, and the Screen Actors Guild. Well before that, he was a Deputy Public Defender in Northern California.
FredAnthony Smith is a 2x Emmy and NAACP Image Award-winning director and producer. He is currently vice president and head of non-scripted developed at SMAC Productions, a division of SMAC Entertainment, the content creator, cultural connector, and business incubator founded by Constance Schwartz-Morini and Michael Strahan. In his role, FredAnthony is currently producing several projects, including “Coach Prime” (Prime Video), the highly-anticipated BS High documentary, set for release with HBO, and a new documentary series on the evolution of the black quarterback in America.
A graduate of the University of Southern California’s School of Cinema-Television, FredAnthony has won numerous awards for his work, including Emmys and NAACP Image Awards. He has also won a Webby Award for directing and producing the short documentary, “The L.A. Marathon” on Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson’s relationship with the late, great Nipsey Hussle. Among his credits, FredAnthony also produced “Breaking Ground,” an exploration of HBCU Football and the NFL, narrated by the late Chadwick Boseman.
Prior to joining SMAC, for nearly 17 years, FredAnthony was one of the primary creative forces for some of NFL Media’s most dynamic and impactful content. Overseeing original content for NFL Media’s Entertainment & Initiatives division, FredAnthony directed and produced features for the NFL Draft, the NFL Combine, the Democratic National Convention, and multiple Super Bowls, as well as NFL Network’s Sunday morning pre-game show, “NFL GameDay Morning.” He was also lead producer for NFL Network original content surrounding Super Bowl 50 and the “NFL 100” celebration, including “NFL 100 Generations,” a series that brought together current players and the legends they grew up idolizing for film sessions.
FredAnthony was the lead producer for NFL Media’s “Inspire Change” original content. In 2020, in the wake of the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, FredAnthony directed and produced the Emmy-nominated “Reality vs. Perception,” a visual poem written by Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett on the experience of being Black in America in 2020. Additionally, as the lead producer for NFL Media’s “Inspire Change” original content, he spearheaded the creative on “Say Their Stories,” a series of features highlighting the lives of victims of social injustice, as told by NFL players. FredAnthony also produced “Game Changer,” a short documentary on ‘The Black Quarterback’ and Black QBs’ role in the narrative of race in America in 2021. The film featured Patrick Mahomes, Lamar Jackson, Michael Vick, Anthony Anderson, John Legend, and Jemele Hill, among others.
Breard Snellings (L '18)
Breard Snellings currently serves as the Director of Regulatory Operations at DraftKings Inc. In this role Breard manages regulatory operations for an industry leading Sportsbook, iGaming, NFT, and DFS provider. His responsibilities include acting as a relationship manager for gaming regulators in eighteen jurisdictions, ensuring that products and operations meet with all applicable regulations, and serving as an internal subject matter expert in regards to all governing rules, regulations, and laws. Breard also acts as the head of DraftKings’ iGaming Regulatory Operations team, leading all iCasino product compliance, game submissions, and regulatory communications across jurisdictions. Most recently Breard successfully led DraftKings’ first multi-vertical international launch.
Prior to joining DraftKings Breard worked as the Legal and Governmental Affairs Manager at Sportradar, the global leader in sports data collection and dissemination. While at Sportradar Breard’s Governmental Affairs responsibilities included – overseeing local lobbying and policy efforts in sixteen U.S. jurisdictions, serving as a relationship manager with legislative and regulatory entities, and crafting Sportradar’s sports betting policy positions. Additionally, Breard’s Legal Affairs duties included – providing legal advice to various internal stakeholders, assisting in federal and state level compliance efforts, and conducting domestic and international legal research projects. Breard also acted as lead corporate counsel for Sportradar’s innovative tech start-up accelerator – Acceleradar.
Breard graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 2013 with a bachelor’s in political science, and received his JD/MBA from Tulane University in 2018. He is a member of the New York State Bar and a diehard Saints and Pelicans fan.
Zach St. Martin (L '01)
Zachary St. Martin is the Head of the US Commercial and Intellectual Property Legal team for ByteDance, supporting TikTok and other ByteDance products and services, such as SoundOn, Pico, CapCut, Lemon8, Resso, and Lark. He manages a team of business and legal affairs counsel who handle ByteDance’s legal commercial activity with US and global scope in content, distribution and product partnerships, marketing, and enterprise and functional services; and subject matter function in intellectual property managing ByteDance’s copyright, trademark, anti-counterfeiting, brand management, and identity legal functions. He is a member of the ByteDance Americas legal leadership team.
Practicing law for 22 years, Zach has extensive in house legal experience in media and content, intellectual property, privacy, and product counseling, and has advised large, medium and startup stage tech, media and ad tech companies. In addition to ByteDance, Zach has worked for MySpace (social networking); Sony Pictures (global media networks & global content distribution); Fox Interactive Media (digital services); 8i (AR & VR production and tech startup where he was general counsel); and Viant Technology (Ad Tech/DSP/DMP). Zach spent the first five years of his career in Latham & Watkins’ Los Angeles office as an associate in the firm’s corporate department.
Zach is a native of Houma, Louisiana from the Cajun coast of the Gulf of Mexico, who returns often for visits to New Orleans, where he earned a BSE in biomedical engineering from Tulane’s School of Science & Engineering and a JD (Summa Cum Laude & Order of the Coif) from Tulane Law School.
Zach’s non legal interests include photography, travel with his wife, hiking and bike riding, live music, and playing with his Brussels Griffon, Boudreaux.
Dorian Slater Thomas (L '13)
Dorian Slater Thomas practices in the firm’s Interactive Entertainment Group and Advertising,
Marketing & Public Relations Group, where he handles a wide range of transactional work for
prominent agencies, brands, platforms, developers, publishers and individual creative talent. The National Law Journal’s 2022 Trailblazers list included him for Sports/Gaming/Entertainment Law and Variety included him as an “Up Next” honoree in their 2022 Legal Impact Report. The Legal 500 listed him as a “Rising Star” in advertising and marketing for 2021.
Mr. Thomas has experience advising some of the world’s best-known gaming and technology
companies, including developers and publishers, in the interactive entertainment industry. He
has negotiated and drafted development/publishing agreements, licensing agreements, software (SasS) agreements, and operational agreements across various digital media platforms. Mr. Thomas also negotiates and drafts advertising and marketing services agreements, whether in the interactive entertainment industry or otherwise. He regularly handles creative services agreements, talent, spokesperson, endorsement and influencer agreements, sponsorship and promotion agreements, branded entertainment agreements, agency and management agreements, production agreements, license agreements and releases.
Mr. Thomas also advises clients on a variety of development, advertising, marketing and
intellectual property law matters — including copy and content review, network clearance, social media guidelines, copyright issues, and right of publicity issues. In addition, he has experience with privacy and data security matters, including negotiating and drafting privacy and data security practices and policies.
Mr. Thomas is an active member of the Frankfurt Kurnit Diversity Committee. He is admitted to
practice in California and New York. Mr. Thomas is a graduate of Tulane University Law School (J.D., 2013), and the University of Colorado at Boulder (B.A., 2008).
Tyrone Thomas (L '01)
Tyrone “Ty” Thomas is an executive compensation and employment attorney in Holland & Knight’s Washington, D.C., office and serves as Co-Chair of the firm’s Sports Industry Team. Mr. Thomas focuses on matters concerning C-suite executives across for profit and non-profit employers including educational institutions, trade associations, and sports organizations. He has handled high profile investigations involving allegations of workplace misconduct, fiscal impropriety, and violations of NCAA and professional league rules for over 20 years.
Mr. Thomas represents clients on complex legal issues in athletics. In intercollegiate athletic matters, his experience includes laws and athletic regulations for name/image/likeness deals and programs, enforcement investigations, and appeals of penalties assessed to institutions, athletics staff and student-athletes. He advises colleges on Title IX, privacy issues, employment contracts and policies for athletics personnel. In professional sports matters, he has experience advising teams on league compliance issues and other legal matters.
Mr. Thomas advises boards, presidents and other senior executives on employment, consulting and separation agreements. In providing compliance assessments on governance issues, he advises boards and compensation committees on Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulations governing intermediate sanctions, incentive programs and Form 990 reporting. In the scope of his practice, he has advised on executive employment arrangements and transitions involving over 250 academic institutions.
In addition to his legal practice, Mr. Thomas is a frequent speaker for various associations in higher education on presidential compensation and executive searches, including the American Council on Education (ACE), National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA), American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) and Council of Independent Colleges (CIC). He is nationally recognized for his experience in sports matters and has served as a legal analyst for The New York Times, ESPN, Forbes, Bloomberg, Sports Illustrated, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Sports Business Journal, and University Business. He was recognized by Sports Business Journal with the distinction of “Power Players: Outside Counsel” in 2021. In 2022, he received the Chambers North America award for “Diversity and Inclusion: Outstanding Contribution.”
Mercedes Townsend (L '19)
Mercedes Townsend (L ’19) is an Associate Attorney at Casey Denson Law where she represents employees in labor and employment matters, with particular focus on workplace discrimination and harassment, and represents litigants in civil rights matters against the State. Ms. Townsend is also the Founder of Friend of the Court, a global, online platform dedicated to developments in Women’s Sports Law. She has presented on Title IX developments to bar associations across the region and was named a 2023 Rising Star in Labor & Employment Law by Super Lawyers. In addition to her professional endeavors, Ms. Townsend serves on the Leadership Council for Laureus Sport for Good New Orleans, which seeks to address barriers to access affecting youth athletes across the City.
Before law school, Ms. Townsend earned her Master’s in Women’s History from Sarah Lawrence College. She is dedicated to navigating the complexities of equity issues across industries, and is passionate about ensuring meaningful access for all.
Ross Zapin is the SVP, General Manager at Sirius XM where he oversees the West coast operations, 19 state-of-the-art studios, and supervises the West coast talent department who produces 100s of annual broadcasts from the world’s biggest artists and events including Drake, Taylor Swift, Kenny Chesney, Lady Gaga, Ed Sheeran, Bruce Springsteen, Coldplay, and the Super Bowl Radio Row, to name a few. Zapin began his career in NYC concert promotion at Ron Delsener Enterprises where he produced the first major Andrew Dice Clay concert and Howard Stern’s legendary tennis event at Nassau Coliseum. Zapin then moved to the label side of the industry as a radio promotion executive, first at Geffen Records (working with Nirvana, Aerosmith, Guns N’ Roses, Counting Crows) and later at DreamWorks SKG (Nelly Furtado, Papa Roach, Chris Rock) before joining fledgling Sirius Satellite Radio in 2005. If you’re ever at a concert (or a restaurant, for that matter) and hear Zapin’s trademark ‘HOW ARE YA!!!,’ please come up and say hi!
Warren Zola (L '92)
Warren K. Zola serves as the Executive Director of the Boston College Chief Executives Club, a program of the Carroll School of Management at Boston College. Long recognized as one of the world’s premier business forums, the Boston College Chief Executives Club gathers keynote speakers to address Boston’s business leaders. The speakers are the world’s most influential CEOs drawn from the top echelons of their fields—thought leaders who welcome the opportunity to address an audience of their peers.
Prior to his promotion to the Boston College Chief Executives Club, Zola served as Assistant Dean for Graduate Programs in the Carroll School of Management at Boston College for 10 years. In addition, Zola is an adjunct faculty member in the Carroll School’s departments of Business Law and Business Analytics teaching two graduate courses—Sports Law and the Business of Sports. As an attorney and key opinion leader in the business of sports and sports law, Zola is frequently relied upon by the national media for his insight and perspective. In addition, he has provided scholarly articles for legal textbooks, books, law reviews, and newspapers.
Zola earned a B.A. with Honors from Hobart & William Smith Colleges, a J.D. from Tulane University, and an M.B.A. from Boston College. He has been an active member of the Sports Lawyers Association and Massachusetts Bar since 1993. Zola serves on the Board of Directors of three non-profit organizations: Mass Mentoring Partnership, You Can Play, and his alma mater, Hobart & William Smith Colleges.