Steve holds Martindale-Hubble’s highest distinction of AV-Preeminent and is consistently selected by other attorneys to be featured in The Best Lawyers in America© in product liability litigation-defendents and personal injury litigation-defendents, environmental law and litigation-environmental, condemnation and eminent domain law and real estate law and litigation-real estate. In 2018, Steve was named to the Alaska Super Lawyers list in the area of Personal Injury – Products: Defense, an honor reserved for those lawyers who exhibit excellence in practice. Steve was also recently designated as a 2019 “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers in the litigation–environmental in Anchorage.
With more than 35 years handling high-stakes cases, Steve has represented clients from Canada, Japan, Sweden, Ireland and throughout the United States, and has defended at least 20 Fortune 500 companies. He defends wrongful death, paralysis, brain injury and other high-risk matters for manufacturers in a wide array of industries including automotive, recreational vehicle, pharmaceutical, medical device, power tool, heavy equipment and processing equipment.
Steve has defended clients in CERCLA cost-recovery claims involving as much as $500 million and handled real estate transactions involving malls, office buildings and other large assets. He is considered a go-to attorney in Alaska for landowners facing high-value condemnation and eminent domain takings.
Steve has been dubbed by one in-house counsel as the “reasonable man” we studied in law school, but he is also fiercely loyal and takes attacks on his clients personally. His practice reflects those who have shaped his values. Like founding partner John Hughes, who Steve found on his hands and knees scrubbing the entryway floor when Steve arrived for his first day on the job. Or Dick Gantz, who always said if you have to ask whether it is ethical to do something, you have your answer.
Steve understands his clients have busy lives and busier days and strives to anticipate their needs before they are voiced. He also understands his clients have budgets, bosses, and shareholders. His goal is to deliver consistently good results, achieve pleasant surprises in difficult matters and to do so in a cost-efficient manner.