Harry T. Widmann of New Orleans Sworn in as ABOTA National President

Jan 21, 2011, 16:50 ET from American Board of Trial Advocates

DALLAS, Jan. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Harry T. Widmann of the New Orleans law firm of Harry T. Widmann and Associates was sworn in as National President of the American Board of Trial Advocates at the association's National Board Meeting in New Orleans on Jan. 15.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110121/DC34264 )  

The Hon. Pascal F. Calogero, Jr., the former Chief Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court, swore in Widmann at the National World War II Museum. Widmann remarked that the historical backdrop of the museum held special meaning for him. He was born on Nov. 5, 1952, the same day Dwight D. Eisenhower was elected president; his father took part in the Allied landings in North Africa, Italy and Normandy; and his mother served in the Office of Strategic Services, the wartime intelligence agency and the predecessor of the CIA.

Widmann said the National World War II Museum is a place to remember those who fought for freedoms that Americans often take for granted.

"We are American advocates," Widmann said. We advocate that judges should be independent from private or partisan interests. We advocate for civility in the courtroom. And we advocate that the right to trial by jury is a fundamental right set forth by the founders. We support the intentions of the Founding Fathers."

"ABOTA demands of its leaders a deep commitment to serving a national membership with diverse interests and perspectives united in a common purpose," Widmann added. "I will commit my full energies and talents to ABOTA's mission and ideals. Acting with a solid consensus, we must persevere in preserving the civil jury trial, safeguarding judicial independence and fostering civility and professionalism."

The Hon. Wendell Mortimer, a retired judge from the Los Angeles Superior Court, swore in the 2011 officers: Robert N. Stone, President-Elect of the Los Angeles firm of Stone, Dolginer & Wenzel; Michael T Callahan, Vice President, of the St. Petersburg, Fla., firm of Callahan Martinez, LLC; Mark P. Robinson, Jr., Treasurer, of the Newport Beach, Calif., firm of Robinson, Calcagnie & Robinson; and F. Dulin Kelly, Secretary, of the Hendersonville, Tenn., firm of Kelly, Kelly and Allman.


Born and raised in Philadelphia, the third of five children, Widmann graduated from LaSalle University and Loyola Law School, New Orleans. Since age 12 he has always held at least one job. Thirty years ago, he met his future wife, Mary. They were adversaries as she was the chief child protection attorney for Southeast Louisiana. They have two daughters, Michelle and Julia. He has practiced law over 30 years, the last 25 solo in medical malpractice. He has 20 years of business experience from owning a cold storage company. From 2005-2009 he chaired the Board for Le Petit Theatre, America's oldest community theater.

ABOTA Background:

  • National Treasurer, 2005-2006
  • President, Southeast ABOTA Chapters (SEABOTA), 2007-08
  • National Executive Committee, 2005-2006
  • Member of the National Board of Directors since 2002
  • Editorial Board since 2004
  • Louisiana Chapter President, 2003
  • Co-chair of 7th Amendment/Jury Innovation Committee, 2008
  • Legacy Fellow of ABOTA Foundation
  • K Club, ABOTA Legislative Analysis Fund

Professional Information:

  • Board Certified Medical Malpractice Attorney, American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys (ABPLA) since 1990
  • Member of the Board of Governors of ABPLA since 2003
  • ABPLA Convention Chair 2004 and 2006
  • Chair of Medical Malpractice Section of Louisiana Trial Lawyers Association, (LTLA) 2001-2002
  • Member of the Board of Governors of LTLA, 2002-2005
  • Counselor of LTLA Hall of Fame since 2000
  • Member of ATLA/AAJ since 1979
  • Instructor, Trial Advocacy, Loyola University-New Orleans School of Law, 1998-2000
  • Instructor, Medical Malpractice and Torts, University of New Orleans Paralegal Institute, 1983-1985, 1996-1997
  • Instructor, Criminal Law and Procedure, Tulane University Paralegal Institute, 1981
  • Masters in Trial Faculty in California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Washington and Lisbon, Portugal
  • International Masters in Trial Faculty in Seoul, South Korea, and Tokyo, Japan, Nov. 2010
  • Chairman of the Board of Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre, 2005-2009

ABOTA and its members are dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the civil jury trial right provided by the 7th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Foundation of ABOTA is an affiliated charitable entity, the mission of which is to support the purposes of ABOTA through education and research. ABOTA publishes Voir Dire magazine, which features in-depth articles on current and historical issues related to constitutional rights, in particular the 7th Amendment right to trial by jury.

CONTACT:  Brian Tyson, +1-800-932-2682, briant@abota.org

SOURCE American Board of Trial Advocates