A partner in the firm’s Morgantown, WV office, Greg focuses his practice on medical malpractice, product liability and catastrophic injury cases. Greg has over 20 years’ experience representing both plaintiffs and defendants in professional liability, complex litigation and business litigation in a variety of courts throughout West Virginia, as well as handling cases throughout the United States. Known as an aggressive and successful trial attorney, Greg has tried over 70 cases to verdict, most involving complicated medical issues. In addition to his success in the courtroom, Greg has resolved hundreds of cases for clients through settlement. Greg worked as a pharmacist through law school, and that experience contributed to his development as one of West Virginia’s preeminent medical malpractice lawyers.
In Re: Atrium Medical Corp. C-Qur Mesh Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 2753)
David Selby, II, serves on the Plaintiffs’ Executive Committee for the Atrium Medical Corp. C-Qur Mesh Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 2753). This MDL consolidates federal lawsuits from all across the country against Atrium Medical Corporation. The lawsuits allege that the C-Qur Mesh manufactured by Atrium is made of polypropylene with an outer coating derived from fish oil. The lawsuits claim the fish oil coating on C-Qur mesh produces an allergic or inflammatory reaction that has caused serious injuries, including, organ perforations and bowel obstructions.
West Virginia, 1991
Law Clerk, Hon. Larry V. Starcher, 17th Judicial District of West Virginia, 1989
MacCorkle, Lavender, Casey and Sweeney, Partner
Steptoe and Johnson, Partner
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
Q: Let’s start out with a general overview of your practice. How do you describe to recruits or family what it is you do?
A: I am a trial attorney who focuses his practice on medical malpractice, product liability and catastrophic injury cases
Q: What do you like about your practice? What is professionally satisfying?
A: I like the strategic challenges which are unique to each case and identifying a “story” that will resonate with a jury.
Q: What’s the most interesting thing you’ve done as a lawyer?
A: Represented a client who had 125 pending suits against him. The shear magnitude of the litigation was such that the complexion of the case changed almost daily.
Q: What cases are keeping you busy these days?
A: Medical malpractice, product liability and catastrophic injury cases have been my bread and butter since I started practicing.
Q: How were you hired for those matters?
A: At the outset of my career, it was largely the result of institutional clients of the firms I worked for. Later, it became more of referrals from clients I represented or attorneys who would refer cases to me because of the expertise necessary to manage complex litigation.
Q: Can you describe for us their current procedural posture, or resolution?
A: All stages of litigation from claim stage to trial ready.
Q: What were/are some of the challenges you face?
A: Biggest challenge is handling of plaintiff malpractice cases after coming from an exclusively defense practice for the first 15 years of my career. While the issues are the same, thinking in terms of representing a plaintiff versus a defendant was like being asked to write left-handed when you are right hand dominant.
Q: What is the impact on clients or the industry from this case?
A: No particular case I am handling has industry impact. The Impact on clients from any case I am handling is extraordinary. We handle many cases, but to each client, their case is often the most important thing happening in their life. You have to appreciate that to give each client the attention they deserve.
Q: Are there any trends you are seeing that stand out?
A: The main trends we see is a swing toward tort reform and the means by which a plaintiff attorney can try and develop case theories which avoid the statutory caps imposed by tort reform legislation.
Q: Is this the type of practice you imagined yourself practicing while in law school?
A: Yes. I always knew I wanted to be a litigator and spend my time in the courtroom.
Q: Why did you pursue a career in the law in the first place?
A: After completion of pharmacy school I realized I need a more dynamic career. Jokingly, I tell my kids I wasn’t smart enough to go to medical school so I chose to become a lawyer.
Q: Did you have a favorite class or professor that was particularly influential in your studies or future career?
A: Not specifically, although I had a visiting trial advocacy professor who probably tried as many cases as anyone in the State. He sealed the deal that I wanted to become a trial attorney.
Q: What do you wish you had known or done differently in school? Or, put another way, do you have advice now for current law school students?
A: Obviously better grades would have helped. I didn’t appreciate how important the first year would be on career path. Even if you ultimately are able to enjoy a diverse practice over the course of your career, grades open the door to having options in the type of work you will ultimately be interested in doing.
Q: Is there anything in particular early in your career that you consider key to arriving at your current level of excellence?
A: I think the most important thing was that my mentors let me act independently and try cases on my own at early place in my career. Handling cases and not handling piecemeal projects allows you to understand how all the pieces fit together. Unless you try cases, you don’t realize how inefficient some activities undertaken on a case.
Q: How has your practice changed since the early part of your career?
A: The level of potential exposure of the cases has gotten higher. Otherwise, not much change in the scope of my practice.
Q: Can you share a lawyer you have come up against in a case/negotiation that you admire, and why?
A: I won’t name names, but there is a lawyer I have litigated against and worked with who has a level of dedication for his clients which is inspiring. There are many lawyers that are top-tier litigators, but he does more than try and get a good outcome. He treats them like he is taking care of family.
Q: Is there a case/deal/client in your career that stands out as a “favorite” or one that is particularly memorable?
A: Too many to mention. When you help someone that looks to you to take care of them, all those cases have their memorable moments.
Q: Tell us about how you interact with clients. Do you view it as important to develop business, and if so, how do you?
A: You can’t look at the client you have as a way to develop business. Each client wants to feel they are the most important client you have. If you make them feel they are important, the referrals you get will come naturally.
Q: Tell us about your career path. Did you start at your current firm? If so, what kept you there? If not, what persuaded you to join your current firm?
A: I have worked for 3 firms over 22 years. Each firm had its own characteristics. At some point after feeling like you have honed your skills, you look for challenges and opportunities to work at the highest level. That is why I ended up with Bailey and Glasser.
Q: How did you come to get your position in firm/practice management. Was this something you were always interested in doing?
A: Not at all. Because I was the senior attorney in this office when it opened, the responsibility to manage it fell on my shoulders by default. We have an excellent support staff in our main office, which handles most of the administrative load and allows the attorneys to practice without the distraction of managing the firm on a day-to-day basis.
Q: What are some of the challenges now in your current leadership role?
A: Our firm has gone through a significant transition since 2007 when one or two of the attorneys led the firm of 9 attorneys. With the explosion of our firm in multiple states and multiple practice areas, each is responsible for their practice but also integrating other attorneys from other offices into a cohesive firm. It is refreshing not to be involved in a firm where each attorney is proprietary about their work, but rather where leadership is more cross-selling other attorneys from our offices to clients.
Q: How has your firm been able to grow recently?
A: I was the ninth attorney when I started here in 2007. The firm opened the D.C. office and the Morgantown office simultaneously where Charleston was the only office since the firm’s inception. Our practice areas have grown as we have added additional attorneys who each have their own areas of specialization in a number of states. During a time when the economy was in a downturn and firm’s were contracting, our firm demonstrated exponential growth which is a testament to the quality of attorneys we have.
Q: There are many high-quality firms out there. What do you do try to “sell” about your firm to potential recruits – how is it unique?
A: Having practiced at different firms, this is one firm where your success is only limited by your own ambitions and ability. If you are self-motivated, then the sky is the limit.