Meet Our Asbestos Leadership

As one of the nation’s leading mesothelioma law firms, we have seen firsthand the pain a mesothelioma diagnosis can cause. As a result, every mesothelioma and asbestos lawyer at our firm is committed to helping patients and their families secure the compensation they deserve.

Since 1999, our lawyers have represented thousands of mesothelioma victims and their families from all areas of the United States. If you need a mesothelioma lawyer who clearly understands your case and can help you get the compensation you deserve, turn to our experienced team.

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John Simmons | Founder, Chairman

John Simmons has overseen some of the biggest verdicts and settlements in the history of asbestos litigation. The firm’s first trial involved a roofer and former Shell Oil employee diagnosed with mesothelioma. John helped secure a $34.1 million jury verdict, then considered one of the largest jury verdicts in the history of litigation. That record stood for only a short while before the firm obtained a $250 million verdict on behalf of an Indiana steelworker.

John founded the firm because he wanted to offer more personalized legal support to families dealing with a mesothelioma diagnosis. Under his leadership, Simmons Hanly Conroy has become one of the leading national mesothelioma law firms for several reasons, including its trial team structure, extensive document libraries and expertise in dealing with Medicare liens and other archives.

“Not many firms have the legal resources dedicated to the mesothelioma and asbestos litigation process we do. We have amassed an extensive library since 1999,” he said.

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Laurence V. Nassif | Managing Partner  background image

Laurence V. Nassif | Managing Partner

Larry joined Simmons Hanly Conroy in 2015, and since then, he has helped secure over $1 billion for our clients. His impressive results have supported those impacted by life-changing illnesses and injuries from defective medical devices, pharmaceuticals and asbestos-related diseases.

“Our clients are real people with real problems — and that’s at the forefront of everything we do,” Larry explains. “People come to us in crisis, facing the worst thing that’s ever happened to them. They can expect us to be there for them, get them the best results we can in the case and support them in the process.”

Prior to working at Simmons Hanly Conroy, Larry was a partner at Seeger Weiss LLP. There, he oversaw the firm’s daily asbestos practice in New York and New Jersey.

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Nick Angelides | Chair of Asbestos Department

Nick joined Simmons Hanly Conroy in 2003. He became the director of legal strategy for all of the firm’s asbestos and mesothelioma cases in 2011, and he was promoted to chair of the asbestos department in 2022.

With over 20 years of litigation experience, Nick has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars from asbestos companies on behalf of individuals and families across the country.

“I became a lawyer in the asbestos field to hold companies accountable for their decisions to poison workers,” says Nick. “Chances are we’ve represented a client with a similar job and similar asbestos exposure. It reassures our clients to know we have prior experience handling cases with the same product that caused their illness.”

Nick has served as a presenter at HarrisMartin’s Midwest Asbestos Litigation Conference, and he has been recognized as one of the “Best Lawyers in America” in both the fields of mass tort litigation and personal injury litigation

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Perry Browder | Senior Partner background image

Perry Browder | Senior Partner

Perry Browder is a senior partner at Simmons Hanly Conroy. He has worked with Simmons Hanly Conroy for over 20 years and previously served as the head of the Asbestos Department.

During his work at the firm, Perry has played a key role in some of the largest asbestos lawsuits in the country — including setting the record with a $250 million verdict against U.S. Steel.

“People hire the firm for our expertise and our compassion,” says Perry. “Even though we’re one of the largest firms in the country, we treat our clients like family. We are sensitive to their needs and at the same time we have a proven track record of getting results.”

A veteran of more than 500 mesothelioma cases, Perry has dedicated his career to providing financial security for people diagnosed with mesothelioma and their families. He is also president of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association and active on the Illinois Bar Foundation’s board, supporting charitable legal work for low-income families.

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Amy Garrett | Assistant Managing Partner

Amy brings over 22 years of experience to her role of assistant Managing Partner at Simmons Hanly Conroy. Her passion for seeking justice and helping others is what drives the work she does each and every day.

“Even though we are a large firm, I pride myself on the personal attention we give to each and every client,” Amy says. “Our size is an advantage for our clients because we have vast collective legal experience helping people harmed by asbestos exposure and other corporate wrongdoing.”

Amy is dedicated to using her experience as a lawyer to give back to others. She founded and coordinates the firm’s pro-bono program, and she was previously the director of the firm’s employee foundation, which has donated more than $1 million to charities in the St. Louis area.

Her commitment to service has been recognized with several awards, including the “Women’s Justice Award” and the title of “Pro Bono Firm of the Year” from the Third Judicial Circuit Pro Bono Committee.

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John Barnerd | Partner

Since 2002, John Barnerd has dedicated his practice to representing victims of mesothelioma. He has a thorough understanding of the personal, legal and financial challenges faced by victims exposed to asbestos and has recovered millions of dollars in mesothelioma compensation on behalf of hundreds of clients throughout the United States.

“As an everyday blue collar worker, going up against a multi-national, billion-dollar company can seem a daunting prospect,” says John. “But with Simmons Hanly Conroy, they get a team of experienced mesothelioma lawyers who give them compassionate personalized service, and they get access to resources that have leveled the playing field against these big companies time and time again.”

John has been invited to speak on several legal panels as an asbestos expert, including the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation’s first ever Legal Panel during the 2011 International Symposium on Malignant Mesothelioma.

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Michael Angelides | Senior Partner

Michael J. Angelides is a senior partner at Simmons Hanly Conroy and focuses his practice on asbestos litigation. He previously served as the firm’s Managing Partner.

Under Mike’s leadership, the firm has grown extensively and has been recognized as one of the nation’s top law firms by U.S. News & World Report and The National Law Journal. In addition, the firm now handles more asbestos cases on an annual basis than any other firm in the country. However, each case receives dedicated individual care that is unavailable at most firms.

“I am proud of the fact that no one helps as many mesothelioma victims as the firm does on an annual basis,” Mike says.

Before becoming a leader at the firm, Mike worked on the front lines, litigating hundreds of mesothelioma claims and securing millions of dollars for his clients. His legal results have been spotlighted in several prominent national publications including the Los Angeles Times and the National Law Journal. In addition, he has been an invited speaker at asbestos conferences hosted by two of the leading asbestos legal organizations, Mealey’s and PALS.

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Ted Gianaris | Of Counsel background image

Ted Gianaris | Of Counsel

Ted Gianaris dedicates his practice to helping people with personal injuries and insidious diseases, such as mesothelioma, caused by corporate and big-business wrongdoing.

“It’s my firm belief that legal justice should be available to everyone,” Ted says. “This is why I became a trial lawyer who helps individuals and families injured by catastrophic personal injuries, and also why I help communities wrecked by environmental disasters.”

Ted has spent much of his practice discovering and exposing what big businesses knew and did about the dangers of chemicals and asbestos. He has presented this information at trial on behalf of workers and their families. In one case, he won a $5.1 million jury verdict for a mesothelioma victim who was exposed as a child through her father’s work clothes.

Ted is an active participant in Access to Justice, which provides legal aid to those who cannot afford it. He also offers free legal assistance to residents seeking to expunge minor offenses, misdemeanors and other nonviolent crimes from their records in Madison County, Ill.

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Editorial Team

The Simmons Hanly Conroy Editorial Team consists of journalists, writers and editors who strive to deliver accurate and useful information to families needing legal help. Our team works alongside the firm's attorneys and partners, as well as with medical professionals and other specialists, to keep all information relevant and helpful.