Alton, Ill. – Simmons Hanly Conroy, one of the nation’s largest mass torts and asbestos firms, is pleased to announce The National Black Lawyers and The National Trial Lawyers have named retired Illinois Circuit Court Judge Luther W. Simmons, Jr. (Ret) a shareholder in the firm’s national headquarters in Alton, Ill., to the following leadership positions:
- The National Black Lawyers: Top 100 Executive Committee
- The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Civil Plaintiff Executive Committee
- The National Trial Lawyers’ National Asbestos/Mesothelioma Trial Lawyers: 2020 President
“We applaud the Judge on being selected for these prestigious honors by The National Black Lawyers and The National Trial Lawyers,” said Simmons Hanly Conroy Chairman John Simmons. “His tireless work on behalf of clients and the community as a whole continue to serve as an example for all of us.”
Comprising the top 100 black lawyers from each state or region, membership in the National Black Lawyers: Top 100 is offered to attorneys who perform exceptionally within the profession and/or advocate for diversity. The organization both promotes the country’s top black attorneys and provides professional development to members.
A professional organization limited to the top 100 trial lawyers from each state or region, the National Trial Lawyers recognizes exceptional criminal defense and civil plaintiff attorneys. In addition, NTL disseminates legal news and education to trial lawyers nationwide. Judge Simmons previously was named to the Top 100 Civil Plaintiff Executive Committee in 2018. A specialty association within the NTL, the Asbestos/Mesothelioma Trial Lawyers Association: Top 10 seeks members by invitation only and is limited to the top 10 attorneys from each state or region representing clients in asbestos/mesothelioma cases.
“Judge Simmons has shown that he exemplifies superior qualifications, leadership skills, performance in his areas of legal practice and trial results as a civil plaintiff trial lawyer,” the organizations said jointly in a news release. “The National Trial Lawyers would also like to thank Judge Simmons for holding the position as 2020 president of Asbestos/Mesothelioma Trial Lawyers Association: Top 10.”
With more than 40 years of experience, Judge Simmons joined Simmons Hanly Conroy in 2018 after retiring as an associate circuit judge of the Third Judicial Circuit Court of Madison County, Ill. As a shareholder in the Complex Litigation Department, he focuses on cases involving catastrophic injury, wrongful death, the environment and class actions. In addition, Judge Simmons assists in the Asbestos Department, helping manage the Madison County trial docket motion practice. Prior to serving as a judge, he was a partner in the first integrated law firm in Madison County, Ill. He also worked as an assistant state’s attorney, a special assistant attorney general for the state of Illinois and an assistant public defender.
An active community member, Judge Simmons has received Alton NAACP’s Community Service Award, 100 Black Men of Alton’s Presidential Award, and the New Shining Light (NSL) Venice Township Martin Luther King Humanitarian Award.
Judge Simmons received his J.D. from St. Louis University School of Law and his B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania.