Hare, Wynn, Newell & Newton - March 2020

March 2020

How 2 Emerging Attorneys Are Providing Knowledge & Expertise to Their Clients


Q: What would you say is the best part about being an attorney? Devan: Definitely the work I do. I feel I have the opportunity to tell people a story and work with them to find a solution. It’s a lot of hard work; not very many people focus on medical malpractice, but I find it extremely rewarding. Advocating for people who need my help and having the chance to change lives, find solutions, and make a difference are things I thoroughly enjoy doing.

n celebration of Women’s History Month, we are highlighting the invaluable work our female attorneys provide to our clients and the dynamic contributions they make to our firm, beginning with our newest lawyers: Devan Byrd and Randi McCoy. These two women are remarkable individuals who deeply care about their work, clients, and the communities in which they live and practice law. Q: Have you always been passionate about becoming an attorney? Devan: My passion for becoming a lawyer started in junior high school. For career day, I shadowed a lawyer who took me to court and started talking to me about everything an attorney does. That’s where my interest really sparked. Randi: Yes, I have. I’ve always had a heart to serve and help people in the community, and I knew if I became an attorney, then I would have that opportunity. Q: What brought you to HWNN? Devan: When I was in law school in Alabama, I clerked here for a few summers and really enjoyed everything about it. In the weeks I worked at the firm during those summers, I got to know everyone, and they supported me so much. And with my focus in medical malpractice, I knew I could bring value to the firm and the people who need our help. Randi: Hare Wynn has an amazing reputation in the legal community. I wanted opportunities to learn and grow, and the people here gave me the chance to do that. This firm has been around for a very long time, and I felt drawn to that experience and the traditions rooted here. This firm has been a great place to work, grow, and develop as a person and as an attorney.



Randi: The biggest part of being an attorney is helping people, and knowing that I can means a lot to me. My practice area in law are in the False Claims Act and representing whistleblowers who come forward seeking justice. It can be complex, and I want to do my utmost to help my clients through that process as much as possible. Q: How are you involved with the community? Devan: I’m part of the Alabama Head Injury Foundation, which provides support to head injury survivors and their families once they’re out of treatment. In addition to this, I’m also part of the Birmingham Bar Association, Alabama Association for Justice, and the Alabama State Bar. I’m also an executive of the Alabama Young Lawyer State Bar Association, where we encourage young individuals who are interested in becoming involved with the law and court. Randi: I’m an active member of the Birmingham Bar Association’s Young Lawyer Section. We have a public service aspect to our section that gives a grant to an organization in the community. Last Year, we donated to the Firehouse Ministry, which allowed them to build a shelter covering their bus stop. We also donated to Mitchell’s Place to help them expand to make room for their classroom and therapy supplies. Q: Why is helping the community important to you? Devan: It goes back to my passion and the opportunities I have here. Giving people the chance to connect with what they’re passionate about means a lot to me. I want to help people in any way that I can, both in and outside of the firm. Randi: While being an attorney is great, it is the opportunity to get involved in the community that fills my soul. Hare Wynn and the Birmingham Bar Young Lawyers are involved in many philanthropic activities each year that allow me to get out of my office and make a difference in the community.

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6 Empowering Books About Girls to Read With Your Kids

This year, men and women around the world will celebrate International Women’s Day with lectures, panels, and marches on March 8, but have you thought about how you can bring the spirit of celebrating women’s rights into your home? If you haven’t planned a family activity around girl power yet, consider adding some inspiring tales of real-life women to your bedtime story routine. A few years ago for Women’s History Month, HuffPost rounded up 17 such books, and we’ve picked some of our favorites! If you’re on the hunt for reading material, head to the library and check one of these stories out. ‘Rad AmericanWomen A-Z: Rebels, Trailblazers, andVisionariesWho Shaped Our History…and Our Future!’ by Kate Schatz. This book explores 26 women of different backgrounds, one for each letter of the alphabet. Snag a copy to share the stories of Billie Jean King, Rachel Carson, Sonia Sotomayor, and more with your kids ages 8 and up! For a similar read focused on incredible

girls rather than women, check out “Shaking Things Up: 14 Young Women Who Changed the World” by Susan Hood. ‘Who SaysWomen Can’t Be Doctors?: The Story of Elizabeth Blackwell’ by Tanya Lee Stone The title of this book says it all! In it, the author tells the story of Elizabeth Blackwell, the first American woman to don the white doctor’s coat at a time when most girls were expected to stay home. This book

women in STEM“from the ancient to the modern world.” There’s no better way to share the stories of brilliant ladies like Jane Goodall, Katia Krafft, and Marjory Stoneman Douglas with your kids. Check out the companion books about women in art and sports, too! ‘Dolores Huerta: A Hero to Migrant Workers’ by SarahWarren

is recommended for kids ages 5 and up, as is its sequel, “Who Says Women Can’t Be Computer Programmers?: The Story of Ada Lovelace.” ‘Women in Science: 50 Fearless PioneersWho Changed theWorld’ by Rachel Ignotofsky This beautifully illustrated book reads almost like a collection of folktales, following the careers of

This short book for 6–8-year-olds tells the story of Dolores Huerta, an often-overlooked American activist who helped lead the charge for the rights of immigrant workers. A teacher by trade, Dolores was inspired to become “a warrior, an organizer, and a peacemaker” by her students. Don’t miss this chance to share her tale with your little ones!

Being diagnosed with cancer is a terrifying experience. It is even more upsetting when you realize the medication you’ve been prescribed is the cause. On Sept. 13, 2019, the Food and Drug Administration announced that the drug ranitidine, also known as Zantac, was to be removed from stores throughout the U.S. Zantac, used to treat heartburn and stomach ulcers, contains a potentially cancer-causing contaminant called N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA). The Environmental Protection Agency states that NDMA is a potential human carcinogen “based on the induction of tumors in both rodents and nonrodent mammals exposed to NDMA by various routes.”

This discovery has also led to a number of drug injury lawsuits. These lawsuits have been filed against the drug manufacturers Boehringer Ingelheim and Sanofi-Aventis U.S. LLC. Each case taken against these two manufacturers claims that they knew the quantities of NDMA in Zantac increased risks of cancer in those who took the drug. Anyone who has been diagnosed with cancer after being prescribed Zantac for 60 days or more or who took Zantac regularly may file a lawsuit. Our team has decided to take action and stand with the individuals who have suffered from the use of this drug. If you or anyone you know has been diagnosed with cancer after the use of Zantac, call us at 877-709-5512 as soon as possible.

Providing Resources and Services to Brain Injury Survivors Every March, people all across the nation join the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) in observing Brain Injury Awareness Month. This event was created by the BIAA to engage people by supporting survivors of head trauma and spreading awareness of brain injuries and the people they affect. Here at Hare Wynn, we know the impact brain and head injuries can have. We are honored to support the Alabama Head Injury Foundation (AHIF), which allows us to be a voice in the community and help where we can. The AHIF engages with the community by hosting educational events and developing supportive services for survivors and their families. Last year, our team was part of AHIF’s fifth annual Beer, Band, and BBQ event at Avondale Brewery, which had over 500 attendees. It was a great event where people could eat, drink, and socialize with people who had gone through similar experiences. The money raised during this event went toward the continued support of traumatic brain injury survivors. We’re proud to say that this year we are sponsoring the sixth annual Beer, Band, and BBQ event, and we look forward to supporting this cause for the sixth year in a row. However, this is not the only thing we’re doing to support the AHIF and its mission. We recently partnered with the foundation and visited second graders at Avondale Elementary to teach them about the dangers of head trauma. Our attorneys visited the classrooms and read “Elvin: The Elephant Who Forgets,” by Heather Snyder. This story is about a young elephant who sustains a brain injury when a fig tree branch falls on his head. The story gave the teachers and our attorneys an opportunity to educate the students on the importance of avoiding head trauma by wearing seat belts and bicycle helmets. Visiting educators and professionals break up the routine of a typical school day for kids, and as a result, the lessons conveyed are often better remembered because they stand out.

Solution on Page 4

This St. Paddy’s Day, try taking a festive spin on a classic staple. If you have red velvet lovers in your family, they’re sure to love this equally decadent treat.


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1 cup graham cracker crumbs 1 cup chocolate graham cracker crumbs

3 8-oz packages cream cheese, softened

• • • •

2/3 cup sugar

At Hare Wynn, we are proud to make positive impacts in the lives of our clients and in the communities we serve across all generations.

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1 stick butter, melted

3 eggs

1 oz green food coloring (gel works best)

1/2 tsp vanilla extract Green sprinkles, optional



Heat oven to 350 F, and line a 9x9-inch baking pan with parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine crumbs, butter, and food coloring. Press into the baking pan. In a separate bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar together. Add eggs one at a time and stir in vanilla.


Pour mixture over the packed crumbs. Bake for 40 minutes or until the center is set. Let cool completely before adding sprinkles and slicing.





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Introducing Devan Byrd and Randi McCoy

6 Empowering Books to ReadWithYour Kids for International Women’s Day

The Lawsuits Against the Manufacturers of Zantac


GreenVelvet Cheesecake Bars

The Significance of EngagingWith the Community


The Evolution of St. Patrick’s Day

CELEBRATING ST. PADDY’S DAY IN IRELAND VS. AMERICA From extravagant parades to green-dyed rivers,

York, and Chicago. Then, in the booming post-World War II economy, various businesses aggressively marketed the holiday to Americans of all heritages. Thus, it became a day when anyone could celebrate Irish American heritage, or at least it gave everyone an excuse to drink like they believe the Irish do. Ironically, imbibing was not a part of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in Ireland until recently. Due to the religious nature of the holiday, pubs and bars closed down on March 17 until 1961. Additionally, the traditional meal of corned beef and cabbage is another American addition. In Ireland, pork and cabbage was actually more common, but impoverished Irish immigrants substituted less expensive beef for pork, and the tradition stuck. Even though the most widely observed St. Patrick’s Day celebrations originated in America, many of them have found their way back to Ireland. Starting in 1996, the St. Patrick’s Day Festival in Dublin now attracts over 1 million attendees with all the drinks and revelry that Americans love. You’d be hard pressed to find a green beer, though. In the hallowed birthplace of Guinness and whiskey, some traditions may be better left across the pond.

something about St. Patrick’s Day feels quintessentially American—despite its Irish heritage. That’s because many common St. Patrick’s Day traditions actually originated in America, evolving beyond their roots in the Emerald Isle in a few key ways. On March 17, Irish folks commemorate the death of St. Patrick, who brought Christianity to pagan Ireland during the late fourth and early fifth centuries. Historically, these religious origins make for a more somber observance of St. Patrick’s Day. Many Irish families go to church and eat a modest feast as the extent of their celebration. However, St. Patrick’s Day in America is not so much about venerating Ireland’s patron saint as it is about celebrating Irish heritage in a foreign land. When Catholic Irish immigrants first came to the United States, they faced persecution from a largely Protestant population. In response, Irish Americans began using March 17 as a day to publicly declare and celebrate Irish heritage with parades and demonstrations.

The observation of St. Patrick’s Day grew in popularity in cities with large Irish populations, like Boston, New

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