By RITA DUCKWORTH
Beth Bauer has spent most of her career at HeplerBroom, LLC. She spent her first year after law school as a law clerk for a judge at the Missouri Court of Appeals, then joined the firm in 2001. Today, she is a partner.
In her time at HeplerBroom, she has been involved in defending some of the highest profile class action and consumer fraud cases in the region. One of her earliest assignments was on the trial team for a major class action suit against AT&T and Lucent Technologies.
“As a brand-new lawyer it was exciting to work with Mr. (Larry) Hepler on such an important case,” says Bauer. “My main focus was on bringing issues to the Illinois Supreme Court for emergency intervention. That fit nicely with my experience with the Missouri Court of Appeals.”
Since then, Bauer has litigated many notable cases. “I was on the team for the light cigarettes class action suit against Phillip Morris in Madison County and worked on the appeals that sprung from its outcome. I’ve defended many cases against pharmaceutical and medical device companies. Most recently, I’ve been representing Johnson & Johnson entities as their local counsel in trials regarding talcum powder.”
Bauer lives in Maryville with her husband and three daughters, but grew up on a farm near Raymond, Ill. Her interest in law was sparked in high school by her Sunday School teacher.
“John Coady was a judge in Christian County,” she says. “He’d propose fact patterns to the class and we would discuss our thoughts about the issues and how we would decide them. Those discussions intrigued me and steered me toward an interest in the law.”
Bauer attended Washington University in St. Louis, earning a dual-major degree in English literature and secondary education. Upon graduation, she applied to and was accepted by Saint Louis University School of Law, where she obtained a J.D., cum laude.
HeplerBroom traces its roots back to 1894. The firm’s main office is in Edwardsville, but it maintains locations in Chicago, Springfield and Crystal Lake, Ill., St. Louis, Mo., and Hammond, Ind. It has more than 100 attorneys on staff. “Our people are top-notch — great to work with and socialize with outside of work.”
“I’m blessed to practice law in a part of the country where really interesting, complex litigation gets filed,” says Bauer. “These cases allow me to meet and work with incredibly intelligent and talented people. I love collaborating with clients and other attorneys on issues requiring complex thinking and developing strategies to resolve the issues. Bringing all the planning, research, and strategy together into a persuasive presentation to argue in front of a judge or jury is highly satisfying.”