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Selected for Inclusion as indicated

Les Katona, Jr. 2011-2016
William E. Leighner “Rising Star” 2006-2010
Laura A. Cavaretta 2012-2016

Super Lawyers© selects attorneys using a rigorous, multiphase rating process. Peer nominations and evaluations are combined with third party research. Each candidate is evaluated on 12 indicators of peer recognition and professional achievement. Selections are made on an annual, state-by-state basis. The objective is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource for attorneys and consumers searching for legal counsel. Since Super Lawyers is intended to be used as an aid in selecting a lawyer, ratings are limited to those who can be hired and retained by the public, i.e., lawyers in private practice and Legal Aid attorneys.


AV Preeminent:

Laura A. Cavaretta
Les Katona, Jr.
Erin McNiece

The Martindale-Hubbell® PEER REVIEW RATINGS™ are an objective indicator of a lawyer's high ethical standards and professional ability, generated from evaluations of lawyers by other members of the bar and the judiciary in the United States and Canada. The first review to establish a lawyer's rating usually occurs three years after his/her first admission to the bar. LexisNexis facilitates secure online Martindale-Hubbell® PEER REVIEW RATINGS™ surveys of lawyers across multiple jurisdictions and geographic locations, in similar areas of practice as the lawyer being rated. Reviewers are asked to assess their colleagues' general ethical standards and legal ability in a specific area of practice.

The Ratings Explanation Martindale-Hubbell® PEER REVIEW RATINGS™ reflect a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating. A threshold number of responses is required to achieve a rating.

The General Ethical Standards rating denotes adherence to professional standards of conduct and ethics, reliability, diligence and other criteria relevant to the discharge of professional responsibilities. Those lawyers who meet the "Very High" criteria of General Ethical Standards can proceed to the next step in the ratings process - Legal Ability.

Legal Ability ratings are based on performance in five key areas, rated on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 1 being the lowest and 5 being the highest).

These areas are:

  • Legal Knowledge Lawyer's familiarity with the laws governing his/her specific area of practice(s)
  • Analytical Capabilities Lawyer's creativity in analyzing legal issues and applying technical knowledge
  • Judgment Lawyer's demonstration of the salient factors that drive the outcome of a given case or issue.
  • Communication Ability Lawyer's capability to communicate persuasively and credibly
  • Legal Experience Lawyer's degree of experience in his/her specific area of practice(s)

The numeric ratings range may coincide with the appropriate Certification Mark:

  • AV Preeminent (4.5-5.0) AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment - a testament to the fact that a lawyer's peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.
  • BV Distinguished (3.0-4.4) BV Distinguished is an excellent rating for a lawyer with some experience. A widely respected mark of achievement, it differentiates a lawyer from his or her competition.


Selected for inclusion in Scene in SA Magazine’s list of Best Lawyers as indicated:

Laura Cavaretta
Civil Appellate 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
Defense in Malpractice & Personal Injury Law 2006
Medical Malpractice Defense 2008, 2011, 2012

Les Katona, Jr.
Business Litigation 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
Insurance Defense: Commercial 2008, 2011, 2012
Civil Litigation Defense 2010
Defense Malpractice 2007

William E. Leighner
Estate Planning and Trusts 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
Estate Planning and Probate 2009
Trust and Estate Ligitation 2011, 2012

Erin McNiece
Personal Injury Defense: Product Liability 2012
Insurance Defense: Commercial 2012


Laura Cavaretta 2014-present

The American Board of Trial Advocates is a national association of experienced trial lawyers and judges dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the civil jury trial right provided by the Seventh Amendment to the US Constitution. Membership is by invitation only, and eligibility requirements include extensive civil jury trial experience as lead counsel, high personal character and honorable reputation, and membership in the Bar of the State, province, district, territory or country in which he or she practices.


Les Katona, Jr. 2007-present

Membership is by invitation only upon the recommendation of a member and is limited to 200 trial attorneys who devote a substantial portion of their practice to the defense of product liability litigation and to corporate counsel who work primarily in that area. This organization maintains, enhances and promotes the knowledge and skills of its members in the area of products liability litigation.