Zuckerman Spaeder LLP is pleased to announce that Cy Smith, a partner in the Baltimore office, was named to the National Law Journal’s “Trailblazers” list. In recognizing Mr. Smith in its plaintiff’s lawyer category, National Law Journal highlighted his pioneer spirit and profiled what makes him a trailblazer in the field.
Mr. Smith moved to the plaintiffs’ side after beginning his career as a white-collar criminal defense lawyer. An important part of his recent work has been to seek justice for former NFL players suffering from brain injuries. His work on behalf of former football great Mike Webster led to a groundbreaking legal win against the NFL’s pension plan that paved the way for today’s national focus on head injuries in sports. Mr. Smith told the National Law Journal:
“’The evidence [in the Webster case] was overwhelming, so we filed a lawsuit. Defense counsel told us they never lost a case—that was basically their defense—but the judge ruled in our favor.’ After their wins at trial and before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, the issue of brain injuries for former NFL players became a high profile matter, and Smith testified before Congress. He also recently won a case for former NFL player Jesse Solomon. ‘Someone added it up, and he had been hit more than 69,000 times. People realized it was happening right in front of them.’”
Mr. Smith’s NFL work is changing the nature of football and of sports in general. “The NFL has done a savvy job of delaying [recognition of] a problem that is inherent to the sport,” says Mr. Smith in his Trailblazer profile. “We will see how society feels about that 10 years from now.”
Mr. Smith attended the University of Virginia School of Law and Dartmouth College, where he was ranked first in the country for intercollegiate debate. In addition to his demanding legal practice, he has served as President of Beth Am Synagogue and co-chairs the synagogue’s capital campaign. Mr. Smith has also led several nonprofit organizations that serve the youth of Baltimore, including current service as the President of the Gil Sandler Fund, Inc.; chairing the board of the Lawyers’ Campaign for the College Bound Foundation; and serving as vice-chair of the board of the Baltimore Urban Debate League.
D. Brian Hufford, a partner in the New York office was also named to the plaintiff’s lawyer category of the “Trailblazers” list. National Law Journal notes that Mr. Hufford’s plaintiffs’ work, which focuses on representing health care providers and patients in battles with insurance companies, began in part because he admired his parents, whose “perspectives were always on helping people and providing a safety net.”
About Zuckerman Spaeder LLP
Founded in 1975, Zuckerman Spaeder LLP is a national litigation boutique that represents individual and institutional clients in high-stakes civil and criminal cases. Zuckerman Spaeder counts among its ranks many of the nation’s leading lawyers, who include former federal prosecutors and public defenders, as well as attorneys who have served in congressional offices and federal agencies. The firm is frequently named to The National Law Journal's "Midsize Hot List,” and was recognized by The American Lawyer as a finalist for its "Litigation Boutique of the Year" each year it has selected firms for such distinction. Zuckerman Spaeder is also the top-listed firm for white collar criminal defense in Best Lawyers, with more attorneys recognized in that category than any other firm in the country, and in 2010 U.S. News and World Report ranked the firm in the top-tier nationally for commercial litigation. The firm’s attorneys have extensive experience in matters related to securities violations, tax controversy, political law, legal ethics, food and drug law, and health care fraud. For more information about Zuckerman Spaeder, visit www.zuckerman.com.