Russ Herman

Russ M. Herman is a Senior Partner of Herman, Herman & Katz, L.L.C. He graduated from Tulane University with a B.A. Degree and L.L.B. in 1966. In 1977, he was chosen “Outstanding Trial Lawyer” by the Louisiana Trial Lawyers Association, and was LTLA President in 1980-81.

He has authored over 200 articles, papers and books in various aspects of Civil Trial Practice and has been published in various works including Am Jur; Trials; Shepard’s/McGraw Hill; The National Business Institute; Trial Magazine; The Forum; and Personal Injury Annual by Matthew Bender.

Mr. Herman is a principal faculty member of The Professional Education Group (P.E.G. ~ Minnesota, MN) and has served on the faculties of the Practicing Law Institute and The National College of Trial Advocacy. He has lectured at Tulane, L.S.U., Loyola, Georgetown, Hastings and other law schools.

Mr. Herman served as President of the (ATLA) Association of Trial Lawyers of America (1989-1990); President of the Civil Justice Foundation (1987-1988); and President of the Roscoe Pound Foundation (1991-1993). He is a Diplomate of the American Board of Professional Liability attorneys; a Diplomate of the National College of Advocacy, a Fellow and Director of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers, a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA),a Fellow of the International Society of Barristers, and a Barrister of the American College of Barristers. In July of 2001, Mr. Herman was selected for The Leonard M. Ring Champion of Justice Award, which is the highest honor bestowed by ATLA. He has also received the ATLA Lifetime Achievement Award (1999) and the Joe Tonahill Award (1998); Pursuit of Justice Award (American Bar Association Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section (TIPS) 2005); and City Business’ Top 100 Leaders in Law for 2005 and 2006.

Mr. Herman has been selected by Naifeh and Smith for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America in Personal Injury, Maritime, Complex Litigation and Appellate Trial Practice areas. He is AV rated in Martindale-Hubbell.

He is the author and performer of ATLA’s best selling, 6-Volume Video Trial Practice Series, “Courtroom Persuasion: Art, Drama & Science” and a 443-page book by the same title published by West Group, Clark Boardman Thomson and ATLA Press and is the author for West Group’s two-volume series Louisiana Personal Injury. Current CLE programs by Mr. Herman: The Cutting Edge in Courtroom Persuasion and Storytelling and the Model for Winning at Trial are produced by The Professional Education Group (P.E.G.).

The National Law Journal named Mr. Herman as one of Louisiana’s top ten litigators, and the American Law Journal highlighted Mr. Herman in its June 1999 issue. Fortune Magazine featured his litigation accomplishments in the July 3, 2000 issue.

In April 2003, the Third Edition of Chamber’s USA “America’s Leading Business Lawyers” (2003-2004) listed Mr. Herman as the leading individual trial lawyer in Louisiana in General and Commercial Litigation.

In 2004, a jury returned a $591,000,000 verdict in Scott v American Tobacco, et al. (96-8461, Orleans Parish, Civil District Court). Mr. Herman was lead trial counsel in this case. Mr. Herman was the Court Appointed Liaison and Lead Counsel in In Re Propulsid: MDL 1355 case. He is the Liaison Counsel and Member of PSC Executive Committee In Re Vioxx: MDL1657.

In 2005, Mr. Herman was selected from over 15,000 nation-wide nominees as one of American’s 500 Leading Lawyers and Jurists by Lawdragon publications and in 2006, as one of America’s Top 500 Litigators. The Legal 500 has selected him as one of the 500 Top Litigators in the country from 2007 to present.

Russ Herman was named 2007 Lawyer of the Year by Lawyers USA on December 19, 2007, citing his role as the lead negotiator for Plaintiffs in reaching the recent $4.85 Billion Settlement with Merck in the Vioxx Litigation.

Russ Herman and the Firm have been retained in 2008 as Special Counsel to the Council of the City of New Orleans. From 2009 to date, Russ Herman has been designated in Louisiana Super Lawyers. In 2010, he was admitted to the trial lawyers Hall of Fame by the American Trial Lawyers with President John Adams, Clarence Darrow, Fred Levin, Morris Dees and others.

Russ Herman serves as Plaintiffs’ Liaison Counsel in MDL 2047, In Re Chinese-Manufactured Drywall Products Liability Litigation.


  • Tulane University School of Law, L.L.B. Degree (now J.D.) 1966
  • Tulane University, B.A. 1963


  • LTLA’s President’s Award “Presented to the Outstanding Louisiana Trial Lawyer” (1977)
  • LTLA’s Leadership Award (1981-1982). New Orleans Legal Secretaries Association’s Boss of the Year (1981-1982)
  • Listed in Best Lawyers in America, compiled by Naifeh and Smith, Seaview/Putnam Presses (1983 – present)
  • Best Lawyers’ 2010 New Orleans Personal Injury Litigator of the Year (2010)
  • Listed in Marquis Who’s Who in American Law (1985 – present)
  • Diplomat – American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys (1989 – present)
  • Fellow – International Academy of Trial Lawyers (1990 – present)
  • Wiedemann & Wysocki Award (1992-1994, 1996)
  • Diplomat – National College of Advocacy (1993 – present)
  • ATLA’s Joe Tonahill Award – New Lawyers Division (1997)
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (1998 – present)
  • Fellow – International Society of Barristers (1999 – present)
  • ATLA’s Lifetime Achievement Award (1999)
  • Named one of Louisiana’s Top Ten Litigators by the National Law Journal (June 1999 issue)
  • Featured in Fortune Magazine (July 3, 2000 issue)
  • Selected for the Leonard M. Ring Champion of Justice Award, the highest honor bestowed by ATLA (July 2001)
  • Pursuit of Justice Award (2005), American Bar Association Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (TIPS)
  • City Business’ Leadership in Law Award (2005-2006; 2014 Hall of Fame)
  • In 2005, Mr. Herman was selected from over 15,000 nationwide nominees as one of America’s 500 Leading Lawyers and Jurists by Lawdragon, and in 2005, as one of America’s Top 500 Litigators. Louisiana Association for Justice Stalwart Award (2009)
  • John R. “Jack” Martzell Professionalism Award (2009).
  • Chambers USA 2011 – Leader in the Fields of Litigation, General Commercial (Louisiana), Products Liability and Plaintiffs (Nationwide)
  • Lawdragon Top 500 Leading Lawyers in America (2004-2017)
  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers Guide (2020-2022)
  • Louisiana Life, Top Attorneys in Louisiana (2008-2011)
  • New Orleans Magazine Top Lawyers (2012 – 2016, 2018-2019)
  • Louisiana Super Lawyers (2007-2022)
  • Legal 500, Top 500 Litigators in the United States (2007-present)
  • Tulane Law School Inaugural Hall of Fame (2013)


Mr. Herman has authored more than 100 articles, papers and books in various aspects of civil trial practice and has been published in various works including Am Jur; Trials; Shepard’s/McGraw Hill; The National Business Institute; Trial Magazine; The Forum; Trial Talk; Successful Trial Techniques of Expert Practitioners; Personal Injury Annual by Matthew Bender. Mr. Herman frequently gives lectures both locally and nationally. He has lectured at Tulane University School of Law, Louisiana State University School of Law, Harvard Law School, Loyola University School of Law and Georgetown Law School. Mr. Herman continues to be a guest lecturer at seminars and conventions sponsored by the Louisiana Bar Association, the Louisiana Association for Justice, the American Association of for Justice, Practicing Law Institute and National Business Institute. He is a contributing editor of the Expert Witness Reporter and Trial Diplomacy Journal.

Representative Cases of National Note

In Re: Chinese Drywall, MDL 2047 – Plaintiffs’ Liaison Counsel.

In Re: Vioxx – Lead Negotiator and Liaison Counsel for Plaintiffs in the Vioxx MDL 1657 Litigation where plaintiff’s were awarded a $4.85 billion settlement with Merck for injuries relating to use of the prescription medicine Vioxx.

In Re: Propulsid – Lead Negotiator and Liaison Counsel for Plaintiffs in the Propulsid MDL 1355 Litigation where plaintiff’s reached a settlement agreement with Johnson & Johnson and Jansen Pharmacutica for injuries relating to use of the prescription medicine Propulsid.

Hart v. Wood Scales – Eliminated independent contractor defense in timber industry

Austin v. Otis Elevator – Early application of continuing duty to warn in Louisiana products cases.

Mark Essex Day & Steagall v. Howard Johnson – Parents’ jury awards for death of major children; recovery against hotel and hotel franchise for inadequate security even where deaths resulted from activity of trained terrorist. Changed hotel industry security practices.

Continental Grain Explosion: Whitney v. Continental Grain Co. – Legal Committee, eight- figure recovery for explosion resulting in multiple deaths at grain elevator; alternative tort relief where workers’ compensation claimed as exclusive remedy.

Hockfelder v. Lloyds of London – Trial Committee Chair, first seven-figure recovery in Louisiana against engineers, consultants and contractors for damages to historic buildings as a result of breaches of standards.

In Re: Baby (Brown) – $1.8 million recovery for medical malpractice infant brain damage case.

Landry v. Union Pacific – $28 million recovery, quadriplegic from railroad crossing casualty.

Madere, Lacque v. Mopac – $3.5 million recovery in railroad train crossing death case on behalf of minor children.

Goodyear v. Williams – Louisiana Supreme Court affirmed, Jury awards owners of project counterclaim damages. Recognizing new national theory of recovery for professional negligence and contract liability against architect and engineers.

Lane v. Plimsoil Marine – Federal Court Judgment, expanded avenues of liability against towing vessels and barge owners in favor of longshoremen and other shore-based maritime employees.

Benson v. Louisiana Motor Vehicle Commission – Successful challenge of Governmental Regulatory Authority on constitutional grounds. Leading to the origination of a substantial automobile dealership and the subsequent negotiation and acquisition of 21 auto dealerships, three banks and an NFL franchise football team.

Young v. Yamaha – $1.58 million – ATV personal injury case, mild closed head injury.

First Federal Bank v. Buris – $37 million – banking, civil Rico, breach of sale and mortgage contract.

Burnham v. Schuler Drilling Co. – $8 million – personal injury for unsafe drilling practices.

Mote v. Diamond Drilling – $16 million recovery for personal injury for unsafe drilling practices.

Brodie v. PMIC – $47 million class action final judgment for exclusive agents versus insurer for wrongful termination.

Ieyoub, Attorney General, State of Louisiana v. American Tobacco Company – $4.5 billion recovered in medical benefits against major tobacco companies.

Ellis v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, representing the State of California, resulting in $25 billion recovery in tobacco litigation.

Scott v. American Tobacco Company, lead counsel on behalf of class of Louisiana smokers who were awarded a landmark jury verdict of more than $591,000,000.00.

Personal Injury, Brain Injury, Burn Injury, Car Accidents, Dangerous Products, Electrocutions, Industrial Accidents, Offshore Maritime, Contamination, Wrongful Death, 18 Wheeler Trucking, Class Actions, Commercial Litigation, HMO Managed Care Litigation, Railroad Crossing and Derailment Litigation, HMO Managed Care Litigation, Professional Liability, Construction Litigation, Tobacco Litigation, Antitrust, Civil Rico, Security, ERISA Litigation, Bankruptcy, Appellate Practice


  • Louisiana; U.S.D.C. for the Eastern,
  • Middle and Western Districts of Louisiana,
  • Louisiana Supreme Court,
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth,
  • Second and Eleventh Circuits; United States Supreme Court
  • Louisiana Association for Justice
  • Member (1966 – present)
  • Legislative Committee (1966 – present, Chair for 5 years)
  • Amicus Curiae-Medical Malpractice Liability Section (1973 – present)
  • Building Committee (1976 – present)
  • Key-Person Committee (1976 – present)
  • President (1980-1981)
  • Long Range Planning Committee (1984 – present)
  • Past President’s Council (1984 – present)
  • Life Member (1984 – present)
  • Tort Reform Committee (1985 – present)
  • American Association for Justice
  • Member (1966 – present)
  • M Club (1980 – present)
  • Sustaining Member (1984 – present)
  • Key-Person Committee Chairman (1985 – present)
  • Public Relations Committee (1985 – present)
  • Public Affairs Committee (1985 – present)
  • Elections Committee (1985 – present)
  • National College of Advocacy
  • Faculty – Basic and Advance Course (1986 – present)
  • Lambert Chair (1987 – present)
  • Organization Review Committee Chairman (1988 – present)
  • PAC Trustee (1988 – present), President (1989-1990)
  • American Bar Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Federal Fifth Circuit Bar Association
  • Alabama Trial Lawyers Association
  • Arizona Trial Lawyers Association
  • California Trial Lawyers Association
  • Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers
  • Kentucky Association of Trial Attorneys
  • Mississippi Trial Lawyers Association
  • New Hampshire Trial Lawyers Association
  • Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association
  • Civil Justice Foundation, President (1988-1989), Trustee (1988 – present)
  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers, Director (1997 – present)
  • Trial Diplomacy Journa, Member Board of Editors (1991 – present)
  • Roscoe Pound Foundation, Vice-President (1989-1992), President (1992-1994)
  • Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, Founder; National College of Advocacy
  • Advisory Council of the National Judicial Council.
  • Member – Board of Zoning Appeals of the City of New Orleans (1974-1980);
  • Special Trial Counsel – New Orleans Aviation Board (1974-1976, 1988-1989);
  • Advisory Council – Construction Industry Rules and Procedures of American Arbitration Association (1976-1986);
  • Member – Civil District Court Commission on Local Rules and Forms (1979-1980);
  • Member – U. S. District Court Committee on Disciplinary Rule and Revision of Local Rules (1979-1980);
  • Member – Disciplinary Committee USDC, Eastern District of Louisiana (1980 – present);
  • Delegate – States’ Supreme Courts’ National Conference on Court Delay (1980-1981);
  • Member – Louisiana Worker’s Compensation Advisory Board (1985-1987);
  • Member – Louisiana Judicial College: Judges’ Civil Benchbook Committee (1985); Member – Louisiana Bar Association Commission to Review Disciplinary Rules and Procedures (1988 – present);
  • Member – Louisiana Supreme Court Committee on Television in The Courts (1993);
  • Member – Louisiana Supreme Court Committee on Louisiana Manual for Complex Litigation (1995 – present);
  • Advisor to New Orleans Health Authority (2011 – present); Advisory Board of Super Lawyers (2012 – present)
    • Lawyer’s Alert – “When a Worker is Injured by a Machine, Whom Do You Sue” (March 10, 1986);
    • Trial – “Pre-Suit Discovery for Product Cases Arising at Work” (June 1986);
    • Trial – “Use of Videotape and Other Techniques in the Preparation and Settlement of Substantial Cases” (January 1987);
    • The Trial Practice Newsletter – “Settlement Negotiations and the Use of Videotape Settlement Brochures” (Volume 2, Number 3 – December 1987 and Volume 2, Number 4 – January 1988);
    • Trial – “Direct Examination of Lay Witnesses” (February 1988);
    • The National Law Journal – “Secrecy, Discovery Abuse Breed Unethical Conduct” (August 1, 1988);
    • Trial – “Jury Selection in Civil Litigation: Using Voir Dire as a Foundation to Win Your Case” (January 1989);
    • The National Law Journal – “Rule 11 is Prejudicial to Plaintiff” (July 24, 1989);
    • Trial – “The Trial Lawyer and the Next 25 Years” (July 1989);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “An Open Letter to President Bush” (August 1989);
    • Litigation – “The Trial Lawyer and the Next 25 Years” (August 1989);
    • Trial – “The Opening Statement – Using It to Maximum Advantage” (August 1989);
    • Voir Dire – “Portrait of a Trial Lawyer”(Summer 1989);
    • U.S.A. Today – “Stop Blaming Lawyers” (September 14, 1989);
    • The Washington Post – “No More Dirty Little Secrets in The Courts” (September 15, 1989);
    • Trial – “A Voice for the Voiceless” (September 1989);
    • Liability Week – “Trial Lawyers Urged to Take the Lead on Toy Safety” (September 18, 1989);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “Portrait of a Trial Lawyer” (October 1989);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “Secrecy: More Than a Kid’s Game” (November 1989);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “Drug Industry Delusions,” (December 1989);
    • ATLA Law Reporter – “Tribute to Tom Lambert: A Voice of Passion and Compassion” (December 1989);
    • Trial – “Investors Draft ‘Valdez Principles’ To Guide Corporate Environmental Conduct” (December 1989);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “The Sign of Democracy” (January 1990); Trial, President’s Page – “In Memoriam” (February 1990);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “The Harvard Study Or Why the AMA Must Change Its Tune” (March 1990);
    • USA Today – “Keep Consumer Safety in the Front Seat”(March 1990);
    • USA Today, Face-Off: Consumers vs. Manufacturers – “Don’t Reform Away Consumer Protection” co-authored with Jerry Jasinowski (March 27, 1990);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “The True Measure of the American Jury” (April 1990);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “For The People” (May 1990);
    • The Washington Times – “Can No-Fault Hold Insurance Costs Down?” (May 24, 1990);
    • Trial, President’s Page – “Danger: Expediency and Elitism” (June 1990);
    • The National Law Journal – “Allowing the Jurors to Decide” (July 30, 1990);
    • The Brief – “No-Fault Auto Insurance: A Debate, All Innocent Victims Should Have the Right to Sue” (Fall 1990); Georgetown Law Weekly – “Trial Advocacy Program Big Success” (Vol. 26, No. 12 -November 19, 1990);
  • Trial – “Going By the Book: Direct and Cross-Examination of Medical Experts” (August 1991);
  • Texas Evidence Reporter – “Preparing the Difficult Medical Causation Case and the Cross-Examination of Physicians from Medical Texts” (Vol. 8, No. 6, 1992);
  • Courtroom Persuasion, Winning with Art, Drama & Science – 556 pp., published by Clark-Boardman Thompson and West Group (1997);
  • West Group Practice Series: Louisiana Personal Injury, Volume I & II – 17 chapters, published by West Group (1999);
  • Civil Trial Practice – 2000 and Beyond (contributing author), published by Lawyers & Judges Publishing Co., Inc. (March 2000);
  • Courtroom Persuasion II, 652 pages, published by West Group (April 2010).